The family-style restaurant dinners that are perfect for big groups – the washington post

The Bedouin Tent dinner at Compass Rose features a seemingly endless parade of dishes culled from the restaurant’s street food menu. Homemade pasta sauce in crockpot (Photo by Dixie D. Homemade pasta sauce for lasagna Vereen/For The Washington Post) Compass Rose

Talk about an escape: The first sign that you’re in for a special evening is the setting itself. Homemade pasta and sauce The Bedouin Tent at Compass Rose was created from a back patio that owner Rose Previte enclosed and made to look like the place she slept on a Sahara Desert trip. Homemade pasta sauce food network Think pillows, throws, dim lights — and a really chill soundtrack.

Homemade spaghetti sauce from scratch food network You’re completely separated from the rest of the restaurant.

The dinner kicks off with a celebratory wine toast. Homemade tomato sauce for pasta From there, sit back, loosen your belts and be prepared for a seemingly endless parade of dishes culled from the globally inspired street food menu. Homemade pasta sauce using fresh tomatoes Your meal may include everything from a Lebanese fattoush salad and African curry goat to Indian bhel puri chaat and Spanish fried potatoes. Tomato pasta sauce jamie oliver There are usually a few specials or dishes the kitchen is trying out.

No dinner at Compass Rose would be complete without khachapuri, the Georgian bread filled with egg, cheese and butter. Easy homemade sauce for pasta Want a second? No problem. Best homemade spaghetti sauce using fresh tomatoes Servers are good about trying to gauge your hunger and interest in certain dishes. Homemade tomato pasta sauce using fresh tomatoes (Meat-free fare wasn’t as forthcoming as we would have liked for the vegetarian in our party.)

The evening ends with a bit of a show. Homemade meat pasta sauce You’ll be provided with Moroccan mint tea, over which you position a sugar cube that you saturate with drops of lavender absinthe. Make homemade pasta sauce Set the cube on fire, watch it flame blue and drip into the tea.

DBGB chef Michael Martin carries a whole roasted suckling pig through the restaurant for presenting to the table before it’s sliced. Tomato pasta sauce brands (Photo by Bill O’Leary/The Washington Post) DBGB

Chef Ed Scarpone starts by deboning a 14-pound young pig, then fills it with a sausage stuffing made from the loin and a separate shoulder, plus such seasonal touches as apples and grilled leeks. Homemade pasta and sauce recipe The pig is sewn back up, poached and roasted to get a perfectly crackly skin, boosted from a glaze of foie gras fat. Homemade spaghetti sauce recipe no meat Before it’s sliced, the finished product comes out to the table whole — good for pictures, you know — and is paraded through the restaurant, setting other diners’ tongues wagging.

Salads and sides are part of the meal, and those currently include an arugula and fennel salad, cheesy tart flambee with bacon and onion, fingerling potatoes and Brussels sprouts. Easy homemade tomato pasta sauce recipe (Scarpone said he’s happy to customize the filling and accoutrements to diners’ preferences, such as the Cuban-accented pig with pickles he served one party.)

Finally, as if you needed another reason to show off, servers bring out the baked Alaska. Easy homemade spaghetti sauce with meat At the moment, the dessert has an apple and vanilla ice cream center inside a gingerbread crust. Homemade white sauce for pasta The kitchen takes an initial pass at torching the decorative meringue coating, but you’ll want to have your phones ready to snap pictures again when it’s doused with vanilla-infused vodka and lit for one last flourish.

The family-style pasta dinner at Hank’s Pasta Bar includes such dishes as butternut squash ravioli and wild mushroom lasagna. Homemade pasta sauce slow cooker (Becky Krystal/The Washington Post) Hank’s Pasta Bar

It’s kind of like dinner at nonna’s house, if nonna’s house was a bustling restaurant. Sauce for pasta noodles Just make sure you’re dining with people you like, and people who don’t mind sharing food, because the whole point is to try a little of everything.

The evening starts with house-baked focaccia. Homemade pasta sauce quick Then comes the charcuterie board, likely featuring pickled vegetables, crostini, mustard, a bit of jam and such meats as prosciutto, speck and mortadella.

By the time the pasta arrives, you may already be filling up on the warm Italian hospitality, but plow ahead. Homemade spaghetti sauce from whole tomatoes The restaurant makes about a dozen varieties of pasta in-house, and the family-style meal means you’ll be able to sample several of them.

Unlike other group outings, here you choose your dishes. Homemade tomato sauce for pasta recipe Try the butternut squash ravioli, which hits all the right seasonal notes of warm spices and cream, and Jamie’s Favorite Paccheri Cacciatore, which is named after owner Jamie Leeds and merges meaty, zippy and salty flavors to a comforting end. Tomato pasta sauce recipe nz The wild mushroom lasagna manages to be both rich and earthy at once — let’s not think about the calories in the bechamel sauce. Homemade pasta sauce without tomatoes Pass them all around, and have a merry ol’ time.

The Bo Ssäm meal at Momofuku includes a huge pork shoulder accompanied by shrimp salad, fresh vegetables and rice. Homemade pasta sauce from garden tomatoes (Joy Asico/Asico Photo) Momofuku

Think of this dinner as moo shu on steroids. Homemade pasta sauce recipe with fresh tomatoes Founding chef David Chang’s pork shoulder is the main attraction, cured with salt and sugar overnight and then slow-roasted with another sugar and salt rub for six to eight hours.

At 8 to 10 pounds, it lands on your table with an authoritative thud, which is likely to elicit gasps, laughs and more than a few photos before you attack the hunk of meat with reckless carnivorous abandon.

Assemble your own wraps with the accompanying vegetables and condiments (Ssäm Sauce, Kewpie mayo, hoisin sauce and ginger scallion sauce), or just eat the meat straight up. Homemade pasta sauce with tomato sauce No judging here. Tomato pasta sauce recipe italian (Just lots and lots of napkins, please.)

The dinner is certainly enough to satisfy on its own, and you’ll most likely end up with leftovers. Homemade pasta sauce for baby But if you have a good-size group, follow our lead and order a few extras from the rest of the menu to share, such as the shrimp buns, chilled spicy noodles and really fun beignets and ham.

Did you know you actually can score a reservation at Aaron Silverman’s Rose’s Luxury? You just need to have enough friends — and cash — to do it.

You could splurge on the rooftop dinner for eight to 12 people at $125 a head, but for half the price, the group dinner still gets you a great evening in the ever-buzzing dining room.

Your persistence will be rewarded. Homemade spaghetti sauce recipe with garden tomatoes The evening is an edible trip through Rose’s menu, with a few extra items thrown in for good measure, although the offerings frequently change. Homemade pasta sauce with tomato paste It’s a safe bet that the famous pork sausage and litchi salad will find its way to your table, as will one of the large plates, such as the smoked brisket served with white bread, horseradish and slaw.

The hot-pot dinner at the Source centers around a bright red Le Creuset Dutch oven filled with a 20-hour broth. Quick homemade pasta sauce recipe (Becky Krystal/The Washington Post) The Source

The Source’s upstairs main dining room exudes sophistication. Homemade spaghetti sauce recipe from scratch But you’re probably going to be the most fun-looking group if you sit down for dinner at the hot-pot table.

Sure, it can get messy, and you may walk away smelling like the aromatics that bubble away in the bright red Le Creuset Dutch oven at the center of your table. Homemade pasta sauce nz When it’s this convivial — not to mention delicious — who cares?

At the heart of the meal is a 20-hour broth, a triple stock of chicken, beef and pork with Sichuan peppercorns and Thai chili peppers. Best homemade spaghetti sauce recipe from scratch Throughout your dinner, you drop into the communal broth a progression of meat (short ribs, meatballs, pork belly, pork shoulder), seafood (shrimp, cod), vegetables (tofu, bok choy, potatoes, mushrooms), dumplings and poached eggs, all of which are brought out gradually.

The result is a heady soup that gets more complex as the night wears on, especially if you supplement what’s in your bowl with such tableside condiments as a Sichuan pepper salt, pickled serrano peppers, chili paste and miso tahini paste.

Servers are available to do the cooking for you. Easy homemade cheese sauce for pasta But try dipping each addition yourself as you go. Homemade pasta sauce tomato It’s more enjoyable to seize the reins and embrace the DIY “we’re in this together” nature of the evening.