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Vegetable pairs with main course?
Posted: 18 February 2014 04:43 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Chef Susan,

Do you have a chart that shows the best vegetables to pair with meat dishes?

I am looking at expanding my side dishes to enhance our dining experience.

Thanks,
Russ H

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Posted: 21 February 2014 07:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Dear Russ –
Thanks for the question!

Here are a few tips that might help you in choosing side dishes:

- The richer and more complex the main dish, the simpler the sides. For example, if you’re serving Beef Bourguignon (Beef Stew) or something creamy like Beef Stroganoff, a roasted, steamed or boiled green vegetable works well.

- With simple mains such as roast chicken or grilled fish, go with a more complex side. Try a gratin (Chard Gratin or Potato Gratin), or cheesy pasta such as Penne with Cheese, Cauliflower and Broccoli.

- If your main dish has a sauce AND that sauce has a lot of vegetables, such as Spanish Style Chicken or Tilapia with Coconut Sauce, plain rice or pasta is all you need.

- If your main dish has a butter or cream sauce, try a slightly acidic side to offset the richness, such as Shredded Kale Salad or Spinach with Garlic and Lemon.

- Try not to repeat main ingredients.  For example, you wouldn’t serve Broiled Chicken with Sun-Dried Tomatoes with a Tomato Salad.

- Use cheese in only one component of the meal.

I hope these tips help; let me know if you have other specific pairing questions.

Thank you and happy cooking!
Chef Susan

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