I totally did not see how this post was going to end. I expected more of a desperately searching for ways to feed and entertain the guests, not desperately searching for a flavor profile.
Good luck with the car, and remember, your guests are coming over primarily for your company, and only secondarily for the food. They'll understand. (Or if not, you should be charging more.)
Can you order online and have them deliver? Our local Stop and Shop does that with "Peapod" delivery. Don't know what's in your area, but hopefully someone might?
I have to look into that. Thanks for the thought!
The lime juice idea is a lifesaver for me. Literally, since I'm deathly allergic to bell peppers (and eggplant and mango). SO glad you posted about your discovery :)
How sad for you. I have a lot of environmental allergies, but my food allergies are blessedly limited. And it was one of the best curries I've ever made!
I HATE bell peppers. I've experimented a bit with lime, but it didn't actually occur to me to use it as a full on substitute. :)) Thanks for bumping my brain in the right direction!
Hope the car woes are solved soon. :)
The lime made an amazing difference. I'm definitely going to keep it in mind myself! And thanks.
you know, i ran into this problem today, too. but in a sweet dish rather than savory!
i make cranberry sauce, so that i can have some (diabetic friendly. normally i use the little crazy artificial sweetener packets, but i had some stevia-in-the-raw that i was NOT crazed about that i needed to use up, and went for that instead. (easy recipe....cook the cranberries with a little water till they pop, add sweetener.) but the stevia doesnt *taste* the same, it has a bitterness that nutrasweet doesnt. so i reached for lime juice, and THAT did it. threw in some chopped pecans, too, just for something different. and you're right, the acidity absolutely balanced out the bitterness and the different sweetening power.
It's like a miracle food! That's really great.
I'm unimpressed with stevia.
I heartily agree with the thanks from people above with bell pepper allergies. I don't have one, but habitate with someone who does, and have been weaned off of them to the the point where they taste bad to me. Okay cooked in the sauce (and for Thai that seems essential) but not actually eaten, much like dried Szechuan chilis that come in Chinese food. So, kudos!
(and there's nothing wrong with not having meat protein in a dish...)
In theory, there's nothing wrong with not having meat protein in a dish. But in practice, it frequently ends up feeling like a bunch of side dishes and no main course, particularly when you haven't really planned for a protein substitute.
If I were one of your guests, and came in a car, I'd consider it part of the fun to go shopping with you today.
Anyway, this is why you're such a better cook than me -- I'd never be able to suss out the flavors like that. When a dish "needs something" I never know what!
Unfortunately, the guests aren't arriving until dinner time, which means that grocery shopping for Thanksgiving can't happen with them until about 6pm, and that's a time I'm not looking forward to being in the grocery store!
I'm still learning, believe me! One of the reasons I write these things down is to reinforce them in my own brain.
Hugs to you!
You are awesome. :)
We usually go food shopping on Wednesday night and I realized we can NOT do that this week. Coincidentally, I'm making meatloaf tonight but on purpose.
Do you have a bike basket, or a little wagon? If it's a nice day you could pick up a few staples. Calling a cab isn't ideal, but it shouldn't be too much. Friends that are stay at home parents that you could barter with a night of babysitting?
Also thanks for the suggestion of sweet potatoes in curry idea, it had never occurred to me to add it.
It's pouring rain, so the biking idea is out. We do have friends coming this evening who have offered to take us to the store, so we will get to buy groceries.
The sweet potatoes are really very good in curry. I like them cut thin so that they cook thoroughly.
I had a similar experience recently.
I'd made a crock-pot beef stew, and came home from work to discover that it was so bitter it was almost inedible. My first idea was an apple, and adding one did help. What finally saved it was a couple tablespoons of balsamic vinegar.
Acids are kind of amazing like that.
I keep Apple Cider Vinegar on hand for such occasions. Allergic to limes I am...yes, really. Strawberries and mushrooms too.
Vinegar will also do the trick, true. Bummer about your allergies!