Celebrate graduation with these family-favorite and time-tested recipes

It is hard for me to believe, but both of my kids are graduating this month. My son from college and my daughter from high school— and the graduations are just a day apart.

Thankfully, both events are here in Baton Rouge so it will not be too hectic, and it will be easier for family to come to town and celebrate with us.

This brings me to the theme of this month’s menu: a graduation dinner for the extended family.

There are a few key elements to pulling off a large meal to mark a major life milestone—especially when much of my time that weekend will not be spent in the kitchen cooking.

First, I must plan a menu that can be made ahead of time and will serve a crowd. Second, I want to make a meal that both of the Koch kids love, and one that comes with special memories and meaning.

I asked them to give me their thoughts on what they would like for their special graduation dinner. Together, they created this easy do-ahead menu filled with some of our family’s favorite recipes.

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On the menu

Papa’s Angel Hair Pasta

Ms. Therese’s Meatballs

Gigi’s Chocolate Buttermilk Sheet Cake

This article was originally published in the May 2023 issue of 225 magazine.

Recipes by Tracey Koch, Phil Riegel, Therese Rosso and Maryanne Petkovsek