The main dish was pita sandwiches, with homemade pita bread (thanks, once again, to Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.) Pita pockets are somewhat time-consuming when you're making a lot of them. I think the time spent is worth it, but of course you can very easily just purchase them!
Most of the pita sandwich fillers were vegan, since Ann (the mama) is vegan. But there were a few non-vegan options too.
Pita veggie sandwich fillers:
Hummus (See below for recipe)
Marinated sweet peppers (chopped, from an "olive bar" at local grocery store)
Green olives (sliced)
Kalamata (brown) olives (sliced)
Red onions (chopped)
Feta cheese crumbles (non-vegan)
For those who didn't want a sandwich chock full of veggies, I made chicken salad. This chicken salad recipe is easy and fantastic: Holiday Chicken Salad. I pretty much follow the recipe exactly, so I take zero credit for it and feel comfortable telling you one of the ladies at the shower told me it was the best chicken salad she'd ever had. I will note that I chop the green onions and green peppers small so the flavor isn't overwhelming. (I'm not generally a fan of either of those ingredients, but I love what they add to this recipe.)
To drink, we had Sparkling Punch, a delicious, non-alcoholic, vegan punch. (Lots of punch recipes contain ice cream or sherbet, and aren't vegan.)
Other ladies provided green salad and fruit with fruit dip. Whole Foods Market's bakery made a chocolate cake with raspberry filling--vegan, gorgeous, and delicious.
I like making my own hummus. It's delicious, super easy, and inexpensive--makes you wonder why storebought hummus costs so much! Here is the recipe:
Based on this recipe from AllRecipes.com2 cloves minced garlic (or 1 tsp. jarred minced garlic--this is what I use)
1-19 oz. can garbanzo beans--drained, with half the liquid reserved
2 Tbsp lemon juice (bottled is fine)
2 Tbsp tahini*
1/2 tsp salt
Throw everything except the pepper and olive oil into a blender or food processor and blend well. Blend in as much of the liquid from the beans as it takes to get the consistency you desire. Transfer to a bowl. Sprinkle with pepper, and drizzle with olive oil (both to taste.) Enjoy as a dip, spread, or even by the spoonful! Both of my kids have gone through periods of liking hummus, and neither of them cares for it now--but it's always worth a try; it's a good way to eat healthy protein and healthy fat.
*Tahini is sort of like peanut butter, but it's made with sesame seeds. I found it at a local gourmet supermarket that has lots of natural foods. If you can't find it locally, there's always Amazon.