Friday, April 13, 2007

"Company" Dinner

Tonight my parents are coming over for dinner.

Hubby said I should serve vegan food only (in response to my mother's lack of hospitality when I dine in her home). But I know that serving my typical healthy meals would only make my parents uncomfortable. The idea of tofu, beans or other "health" foods makes them squirm.

So I've devised what is, I think, a pretty good compromise. I admit, however, that it's designed to show my mother that it's possible to put together a meal for vegans and meat-eaters with very little extra work.

Here's the menu:
  • Salad: A basic, green salad with baby spinach and romaine lettuce. Nothing intimidating about this, and it should appeal to everyone. I'll have Ranch dressing for those who prefer it, and oil/vinegar dressing, too.
  • Italian Baked Tilapia: Hubby will prepare the fish, which will be baked with diced tomatoes, a little bit of garlic, some lemon juice and fresh basil. This will rest on a small bed of...
  • Whole wheat Italian pasta: I chose a thin spaghetti so the bed of pasta seems like a lighter "side" (instead of making the dish feel like a heavier spaghetti meal). I'll toss it with a very light sauce of cooked diced tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, fresh basil, fresh oregano and maybe some sundried tomatoes. For the meat-eaters, Hubby will toss in some cooked shrimp and shredded cheese right before topping it with a filet of Tilapia. I will garnish with fresh basil leaves and then serve plated.
  • Rolls: Rather than serving garlic bread, I am opting for fresh-baked rolls.
The meat-eaters get fish as their main dish, with pasta and salad as their sides. I will eat the pasta (without the shrimp and the cheese) as my main dish, with salad as a side.

Truthfully, the pasta would probably be good without the addition of the shrimp. But I have a hard time creating healthy dishes that my family likes, and I thought it might help make this one more appealing to them.

Hopefully the meal will be tasty. I am also hoping Mom learns that vegans and meat-eaters can basically eat the same meal with just a teeny tiny bit of extra effort.


jeannie* said...

Way to be the bigger person and serve up some nice fish for your parents! That sounds like a great menu!! I want to come over heehee

Fatinah said...

sounds like an awesome compromise. You'll have to let us know how it goes. I can't imagine they won't be happy with such a feast.

Bathsheba Freud said...

That sound deluxe!

I'm interested in hearing about your mum's response. I wonder if (some) mum's take it personally when you opt for an "alternative" diet. I'm a vegetarian and was vegan for 2 years and sometimes i get the feeling that my mum takes my life choices as a criticism of her.

WeightWatchnWoman said...

This meal sounds great!! I hope everyone enjoyed it.

Maria said...

Hello! And thank you for dropping by my blog! What a great idea about choosing a dress.. trying them all on and asking for opinions! I too, liked all of them on you :-) (Great help huh?)! I enjoyed this last post you did because you mentioned in detail what your menu was..and I'm such a foodie.. I really appreciate stuff like this! The menu sounds awesome and I'm sure it will be very tasty -I hope it is well received by your family! I went vegan for a month.. and my friends/family thought I was weird. Everyone asked "what can you possibly eat when you cut out animal products"? My inlaws are kind of the same with me re: eating 'my' food and I'm not vegetarian or vegan. Because we will eat Italian or Asian or Moroccan or whatever at home.. it's 'freaky' to them. "We like simple Australian food" they tell us. There is no 'Australian food' by the way. What they eat basically is different versions of meat, potatoes and overcooked (boiled) vegetables. All the time. Or quick meals will be bacon, chips (ie. fries), fried egg. When we visited my husbands grandmother (she's 90 next month), I volunteered to cook dinner for one of the nights we were there -a basic good quality pasta with an Italian meat sauce. Hubby's grandmother was shocked "NO! NO!" she said "We don't eat your food". She had been getting regular briefings from her daughter (my mother in law) about the kind of food I cooked. Anyway.. I hope all goes well with your dinner! :-)

Cory said...

That sounds like a wonderful plan. I hope everything went well.