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on the thanksgiving menu. probably.

Okay, so I keep taking away and adding dishes, but here are three four definitely-on-the-table items:

  1. Pumpkin Ginger Bisque

  2. Kale, Parsnip, Pomegranate, and Hazelnut Salad

  3. Maple Pecan Pie

  4. Slipskin (Concord Grape) Pie

(And I just crossed out #3 because we're having a cinnamon roll pound cake for part of our breakfast before we go for a long walk and then swing by to see my mom, and we do not need so many desserts, good gravy).

Anyway, now you know for sure this is me writing this entry instead of some hacker: clearly what's already decided are the opening dishes and the desserts.  But what else to have on the menu?

The Potato Course:  Haha, because there has to be some potato dish on the menu.  I think there's going to be some kind of mashed potato thingy happening, though I'm not sure if I'll make a version I often prepare that includes chives and spinach mixed in, and is baked until you start to get little crusty brown bits on top (seriously, so good) or something more basic with a mushroom gravy option.

The Mister has voted to add stuffing/dressing, so eh, he can do that. He'd probably do the standard Pepperidge farm stuffing bread cubes with sauteed celery/onion/in vegetable broth type deal.

Then I'm trying to decide between a fish main dish or a super duper old skool lentil walnut veggie loaf (which tastes kind of like a cross between meatloaf and meat-stuffing, so that could do double duty on the stuffing front as well).  I made one of those loaves recently, so that might get a pass. The Mister wanted this butternut squash rosemary lasagna I make, but I really want to do that pumpkin bisque, so that will have to wait for a different dinner.

Bread/rolls:  *comes up blank*  I have been bookmarking so many cheese-breads and cheese rolls lately, but that feels too complicated for this holiday.  I kind of want to skip the bread option.  Perhaps I shall.

Starters:  Then there are the we-only-have-these-because-inexplicably-they're-family-holiday-traditions items, like port wine cheese spread and crackers, which I think about exactly zero other times during the year but have to have for Thanksgiving.  But I'll probably cram a few appetizers on the menu to have before the bisque, like smoked salmon-zucchini-cream-cheese wheels -- though honestly, I should not, because this is a small Thanksgiving celebration.  Our plans changed this year (they often do *facepalms*) and instead of going to NYC with the BFF there, we're staying home and *maybe* having two family members join us -- or it may just be the mister and me, which would actually be cool, because then we can totally pick the movie marathon ourselves without having to please anyone else.  *\o/*

Are any of you trying out fun new recipes this year?  Bringing out the old standards that everyone always applauds?  Going to someone else's place and sitting back all suave and cool while other people bring you dishes like you're a fancy prince or princess of some kind? Having the most awesome snack-filled marathon instead of the traditional meal?  Whatchoo eating next Thursday if you celebrate or kind of observe the USA version of Thanksgiving, is what I want to know?  :D


( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 20th, 2014 10:25 pm (UTC)
Oh dear, yes, I am well stressed over Thanksgiving prospects. The one comfort is that I am cooking for a bunch of non-Americans, and therefore THEY CAN'T JUDGE ME, right? Non-judginess is what I need, I am feeling somehow super anxious about it this year!

I am mostly going with old classics, but a few new addons - these sweet potato coins for an appetizer, http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2010/11/sweet-potatoes-with-pecans-and-goat-cheese/ - which I did last year for Christmas and loved a lot. Also stuffed mushrooms (a family classic) and spinach artichoke dip (instead of cheese and crackers, which is our usual), for appetizers.

Mains will be butternut squash casserole (a Mollie Katzen recipe that I love), veggie sides incl. stuffing and sweet potato casserole, bread, salad, etc.

Then I think I should have at least three desserts, because ... thanksgiving! Two pies and a pumpkin-chocolate cake. Anything that isn't eaten can go to work for coffee hour on Monday, everyone loves cake and pie.

Nov. 20th, 2014 10:31 pm (UTC)
Ahhhh, love the whole idea of those Sweet Potatoes! With my Pumpkin Bisque, I don't think I'd add them on, but I think those are going on my preliminary menu for Christmas, so thank you for that!

STUFFED MUSHROOMS! I have a terrific recipe I've used over and over -- Silver Palate Cookbook, I think? -- and those would be a great just-in-case addition should we have more guests than our merry band of two.

Your Thanksgiving is going to be so amazing! I wish I could jet in, so I could help hand round the appetizers and pour wine while you're finishing the last minute stuff in the kitchen! Perfect dessert plan, if you ask me -- a pumpkin case will be such a fun centerpiece, and then of course the pies are going to be fantastic. Please, you will be the coffee hour queen, bringing in those treats on Monday (if there's anything left, because I would bet dollars to doughnuts it'll all be freaking delicious).

IT WILL BE OKAY! :DDDDD You are a lovely hostess, and this sounds like a marvelous spread and dinner party plan!
Nov. 25th, 2014 07:49 pm (UTC)
Our family stuffed mushroom tradition is the Julia Child recipe - time-consuming, but so worth it! (I think it may be the only recipe my mom makes out of her cookbook, lol.)

You should totes try the sweet potatoes with radish, I bet they would be extra super delish!

How are your other menu decisions coming? I guess not much time now if you're celebrating Thursday - I'm not until Saturday, since, you know, not a public holiday here, lol. :)
Dec. 4th, 2014 09:29 pm (UTC)
So sorry I didn't get back to you before Thanksgiving was well over! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving-on-Saturday celebration in the U.K.!
Nov. 20th, 2014 10:33 pm (UTC)
And can I just say, I saw Deb's note at the SK recipe saying you can swap out the celery for radish, and I have been doing that in all sorts of instances lately, and will totally do that when I make Christmas Sweet Potato coins by way of your mention! :D
Nov. 20th, 2014 10:55 pm (UTC)
The mister walked in to a T'giving trial run yesterday that included all side dishes: braised collards, oven roasted cabbage and multi-colored carrots and onions, delicata squash and oven roasted fingerling potatoes. They were all delicious but i'm dropping the collards because they're nice and soupy and I don't want to have to have a bowl at each place setting. I haven't decided on the main dish yet but it's going to be something that bakes at 350° like all of the sides.

We've had a windfall of pecans (literally) so I'm making a pecan pie for dessert and sticky buns for breakfast (the most important meal of the day until the next important meal).

Those sweet potato yam appetizers look delicious *bookmarks*
Nov. 21st, 2014 03:11 am (UTC)
The meal of sides sounds like heaven to me. :D Who needs a main course?

I hear you on the collards! I've been making some braised kale lately, and it's a lovely saucy thing tossed with spaghetti but perhaps not on its own on a plate where it might run into the other side dishes.

Delicata squash! I feel almost that I am not fulfilling my obligations to food blogging-kind's enthusiasm this season by not having *some* kind of delicata squash recipe on the menu. I will have to pine over yours and feel I'm participating in the yumminess by proxy!

Ahhh, I am so jealous of your pecan windfall! That sounds fabulous. And I'm trying to remember, but I ran into a vegan nutella-like recipe recently, over at MinimalistBaker, I think, that I have been wanting to try. Brownie Spread or some such? It used walnuts and almonds and dates with the chocolate ingredients. But I bet would be lovely with pecans in place of the walnuts if you were flummoxed as to what yummy things to do with the rest of those abundant pecans.
Nov. 20th, 2014 11:59 pm (UTC)
We're going to the IL's house so there will basically just be MIL's food -- she isn't super keen on anyone getting into her way in the kitchen (and I don't really blame her!) but we recently had this Spicy Honey Pumpkin soup and it was soooo good. I might make it again for a holiday meal at some point in the future. http://archive.aweber.com/beefolksgeneral/L5Gsj/h/Here_is_your_November.htm
Nov. 21st, 2014 03:13 am (UTC)
I *completely* understand your MiL! Wow, that sounds like the perfect pumpkin soup for a honey lover! I'm sure that would go over really well at a holiday meal.
Nov. 21st, 2014 01:42 am (UTC)
Oooh, I'm glad I read, because YES! Silver Palate Stuffed Mushrooms! I love the walnut and cheese one, and the sausage and olive always goes over well with hubby. (Although definitely not vegetarian.) I haven't made those in AGES.

I'm cooking (like always), and will probably mostly go with old classics. Not sure about the potatoes, though. The one thing I do know is that I'll probably go newer for the veggie, because there's a new greenbean recipe that I like, and I'm debating trying a salad with grapes and goat cheese instead of my normal strawberry spinach. Dessert sounds like it will be bittersweet chocolate pie with white chocolate whipped cream and an apple tart.

While I do like to bake bread, sometimes it's just as easy to pick up good quality rolls if your grocery store has a decent bakery. Like you said, making your own tends towards complex when you have so much other stuff going at the same time.
Nov. 21st, 2014 03:19 am (UTC)
RIGHT???? It's the walnut and gruyere and feta and spinach one that makes my heart go pitter-pat. Always a huge success, and a great little trick to pull out of your sleeve for company.

Oooh, green bean recipe! I always love those, though funnily enough, I have never actually eaten the one that commercials assure me is the go-to one over Thanksgiving (the one with the creamed soup and the canned onions, and I am still a little boggled by the whole idea of canned onions, but anyhoo). I found a Green Bean Gremolata recipe this summer that I loved to bits -- pretty sure it's Ina Garten's.

Your desserts sound superb! I love all apple tarts, and you can't go wrong with that sort of chocolate recipe that is so satisfying with just a sliver of it after a big meal.

You're so right, about the solution of using rolls! I think past Thanksgivings recently we've done easy quick-bread type offerings, but yeah, I will consider the grocery store for that part of the meal.
Nov. 21st, 2014 01:59 am (UTC)
haha I am scoffing at thanksgiving this year and running off to the beach with TJ to write the last 4 days fo NaNoWriMo in a big hotel, with a pool and several bars!

When I get home, a visiting friend is roasting a goose for me, ostensibly in honor of recently past birthday, but it will feel like the turkey day to me, since it will be a reunion of friends too.

Pumpkin Bisque sounds divine! recipe? ^_^
Nov. 21st, 2014 03:21 am (UTC)
Sounds lovely, both the NaNo accomplishing and the post-holiday feast!

I'm going to try out a riff on the one from BHG -- it comes up first or second on google when you search Pumpkin Ginger Bisque.
Nov. 21st, 2014 07:40 pm (UTC)
visiting you thread sent me on a Smitten Kitchen tangent, which led to hours on Pinterest, drooling and planning foodie gifts. darn you! ;-)
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:25 pm (UTC)
It's so fantastic that now you are always at your holiday destination! All your menu items sound terrific to me (haha, sorry you have to suffer through the shrimp cocktail, though). And it's completely understandable you need rest more than you need complicated additional items to add to the meal. Good luck with the rest of the unpacking, and enjoy your delicious settling-in Thanksgiving round up!
Nov. 21st, 2014 07:43 pm (UTC)
ooo, brussel sprouts: two ways to convert the haters:

1. halve, toss with garlicky oil, sliced side down on cookie sheet in hot hot oven. serve with a dipping sauce if you must. or carmelized shallots


2. disassemble the little cabbages into their fluffly leaves! toss in a hot pan with butter and pistachios, lots of fresh ground pepper. a bit o' lemon juice. To die for! and unrecognizable. devilishly clever - I love converting the vegetable phobic.
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:27 pm (UTC)
I'm flummoxed that anyone still hates Brussels sprouts; whenever I mention loving them, pretty much everyone says they do too. However, if I had Brussels sprouts haters coming to a meal where I was already definitely serving them, pfftt, who cares about them? More Brussels sprouts for meeeeeeeee! *clappy hands* I've had them all sorts of ways, but bestest for me is the basic olive oil/salt/pepper, roast them up, om nom nom.
Nov. 22nd, 2014 03:28 am (UTC)
Last year, I had baked sweet potatoes, to cut done on the carbs I ate (I still had a tiny bit of the other stuff, if I wanted a taste) and I really liked them, and still felt Thanksgiving-y.

This year, I am feeding a lot more people, so I wanted a roasted-type sweet potatoe recipe, and I found one for Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Apples with Vanilla Bean and Thyme Butter that sounds delish. I am going to try that. It may become a staple if it works. Who knows, with the addition of the apples, I may even get my husband to eat sweet potatoes.
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:29 pm (UTC)
Sweet potatoes are so delicious, and the recipe you found sounds fantastic! I adore thyme, so I'm willing to bet cash money your dish will turn out really well. Hope the apple addition gets your husband on board the sweet potato train!
Nov. 22nd, 2014 04:29 am (UTC)
I personally am in charge of potatoes. I know for sure I'm doing a mashed, baked sweet potato dish, two version, one with alcohol and one without. I'm really intrigued by your chives and spinach dish for the other potatoes.

I'm organizing everyone else's contributions, to make sure we have all the elements we want. The big dishes are the turkey, cavatini (which is this lasgna-like dish my mom used to make and my brother has taken over the past five or six years), and the desserts. A good friend of mine is joining us this year, and her specialty is dessert. So far, multiple pies (pumpkin, pecan, raisin, chocolate creme and banana creme) and cupcakes are on the list.
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:44 pm (UTC)
Potatoes, an excellent thing to be in charge of for Thanksgiving! The mashed sweet potatoes sound delectable; will you use bourbon for the alcohol?

It is really, really good! I poked around online, but because I can't find a version of the mashed potatoes that looks similar enough to the recipe I use, if you like I can type up my recipe notes and post them later.

That's great, to be hte organize-y person, not only to ensure coverage, but so you can delicately vote down anything that doesn't sound super delicious. Of course you will only use your powers for good, I'm sure! :D

YAY, ALL YOUR PIES SOUND FABULOUS! I totally want to transport in to your celebration for the desserts alone!
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:23 pm (UTC)
I'm being completely different this year by serving duck breast. However, we're still having cornbread stuffing, carrots for Petzi Sis and Brussels sprouts for Yours Truly.

Edited at 2014-11-22 01:24 pm (UTC)
Nov. 22nd, 2014 01:45 pm (UTC)
That sounds like a fun change! Back in the day when I still ate meat, I remember enjoying duck.

And cornbread stuffing, deliciooouuussss! I always love Brussels sprouts, so I applaud that like I'm clapping for Tinkerbell to come back to life, for real.
( 24 comments — Leave a comment )


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