We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Monday, November 25. 2013
What's on your menu? (re-posted) -
Inquiring minds want to know. Here's ours, for around 23 people - family and friends:
Unknown hors d'oevres (my Sis brings) with Champagne.
Two turkeys, one in the oven with cornbread stuffing, and one on the grill. Extra stuffing. Gibier gravy. My Mom is making her famous artery-smoothing mashed potatoes with sour cream and cream cheese and chives etc in them (mashed potatoes like that plus regular red wine intake have kept my 85 year-old Dad alive and kicking thus far). Brussel Sprouts sauteed with bacon and shallots. String beans with almonds. Creamed baby onions. Sweet potatoes done somehow by my Bro. Mountains of various forms of Cranberry sauces (The best? Orange-Cranberry Relish). Corn pudding (from good dried corn like Cope's) from my M-in-law. Good red wine, cider, along with lots of Martinelli's for the teetotalers and an assortment of really good beers including Palm and some of the German Weissbraus that I have become fond of.
Pumpkin Pie made by Mrs. BD from fresh pumpkin, and Squash Pie from fresh Butternut squash. Apple Pies made by another Sis. Indian Pudding. Pumpkin Cheesecake. Ice cream and whipped cream on the side. Some decent Port for after, with cigars for the gents (and for any women who want them. As far as I know, Mrs. BD has not smoked a cigar since the Macanudo she rebelliously enjoyed at our wedding reception).
The best part? Everybody helps clean everything up after, and nobody leaves until it's all done. It gets like The Cat in the Hat around here. The strong men scrub the pots and pans and carry the rental tables and chairs out to the driveway. Our family - families - are like that: they seem to enjoy work and effort, and seek it out. If they can't find any work at hand to be done or any mess to be tidied, they go for a five mile run or split some firewood or build a wall or do something useful. None of my own kin will watch TV. It's Yankee blood. We do not do idle very well, even on vacation. Or especially on vacation. Maybe it's a flaw - but mess and idleness are the haunts and playthings of the devil. We can rest and "relax" all we want when we're dead. Until then, it's "Hi, Ho, Go, Go" as long as we can.
With a world so full of wonders and challenges, why leave a legacy of a dent in a sofa?
Anyway, what are y'all cookin?
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spinach salad, cream cheese mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, oyster dressing, dried corn (homemade), turkey, pecan and pumpkin pies, cranberry punch (kids), beer & wine (me & the misses) Happy Thanksgiving
Turkey, mashed and sweet potatoes, stuffing and gravy, Brussel sprouts in horseradish cream, elotes corn salad, vegetarian lasagna, cauliflower au gratin, kielbasi, pierogies, pumpkin pie, sherry-soaked bundt cake and baklava
We have been invited to a friends' house-they are great cooks and there will be lots to eat. I will contribute a yellow squash casserole, apple crumble and a peanut butter pie.
Oven roasted turkey, herb stuffing, southern yam casserole, mashed potatoes with gravy, green bean casserole, baked pineapple, fresh cranberry relish, jello salad and pumpkin pie.
We have a similar family gathering. Unlike you, I don't host the party. I think the advantage is mine on this point. The food and drink will be similar. But, since this is Dallas, we'll see more jalapeno and pecan than you probably will.
The advantage goes back to you on the cigars. I am surrounded by anti-smoking zealots, so no cigars for me.
We consign the anti- tobacco zealots to the kitchen. They are no fun at all.
Baby scallops wrapped in bacon, Brie and crackers and artichoke dip, fresh shrimp at regular lunch time. "Dinner" a couple of hours later.
Turkey w chestnut stuffing, homemade creamed turkey gravy, fresh cranberry sauce (plain), sweet potatoes mashed, baked turnips mashed with garlic and olive oil, brussels sprouts and baby onions in cream sauce , garlic mashed potatoes made with cream and butter and chopped fresh chives, fresh arugala from the garden on the side.
Break for an hour for a walk.
Dessert: Apple pie, pecan pie, pumpkin pie w vanilla ice cream.
Another walk. Anyone who refuses to walk has to wash the dishes.
The Cranberry Orange Relish recipe is my favorite. Our family has used it for years -- proof that the best things to eat and to do are the simple and perfect things.
We'll be having 2 dinners - going to one and hosting one (the second without turkey - just a ham slow-cooked in an inch of water in the slow-cooker - try it). In addition to the usual dishes, we'll have sweet potatoes two ways - baked plain with butter, and steamed, peeled, sliced and heated in a skillet in brown sugar/butter sauce.
We'll leave The Pioneer Woman's Spanish Green Beans in the slow-cooker for our second dinner. I'm making Bulgur Wheat Dressing and bread/sage/celery/giblet dressing to go with the in-laws' cornbread dressing at the first dinner. I'll bring plain, fresh cranberry sauce and maybe a cranberry salsa. Plus a giant ham in a roaster.
I'm not making the pies. I'll bake Bon Appetit's killer Pumpkin Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce (using evaporated milk and whole milk in place of half-and-half) with a maple sauce as a variation on the magnificently rich caramel sauce:
1 cup medium to dark amber maple syrup
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup salted butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Combine ingredients except vanilla in a large saucepan with a heavy bottom. Stirring constantly, bring to a boil and cook over medium heat until smooth and not too thin (about 5 minutes). Serve warm, adding vanilla just before serving. Stir occasionally while serving.
Plus, we'll have old-fashioned vanilla sauce (sugar, water, flour, nutmeg, vanilla, butter) as a reminder of our pioneer heritage.
Oops. Forgot the 1 cup heavy cream in the maple sauce. I know. It's as rich as Bon Apetit's caramel sauce. And you'll have leftovers for other things. The sauce is not good cold. Must be re-heated.
My favorite cranberry-orange relish is actually from one of the Jane Brody cookbooks: cranberries, a sectioned, but unpeeled orange, a little sugar, and a tablespoon or two of orange liqueur mixed together in a food processor. It has much less sugar than the typical cranberry-orange relish, plus the orange peel gives it added zing and the liqueur a nice bit of kick.
We have a "mixed" Thanksgiving at my house, combining my wife's Yankee favorites and my Southern ones. Turkey, of course, with oysters and cornbread dressing, candied sweet potatoes, rice, roasted brussels sprouts (very yummy and pig-easy to make), apple pie, pecan pie, and homemade cranberry jam. (Which means we won't be having the traditional Thanksgiving Cranberry Can Mold.)
A little bird stuffed with cranberry, orange, cornbread mix and pinot noir.
How does one stuff Pinot Noir into a turkey? Surely you mean you add it to your brine?
I was thinking the same thing - plus, the bottle might make it a tad crunchy...
I have a rather full and busy life plus I enjoy watching some TV...its not such a bad thing!
Envious of the big crowd ... we'll only have 4 adults and a 3 year-old. So it's a 9 lb bone-in turkey breast roasted (basted with Madeira), gravy, apple-sausage stuffing, mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables (squash, brussel sprouts, turnips, carrots tossed in olive oil, cracked pepper and coarse salt), cranberry sauce (similar to the linked recipe, but usually kinda made up every year) and a romaine salad. Pumpkin, Apple and Pecan pie on the dessert table with whipped cream. Rose' and cheeses are the appetizer. A bottle of Chateauneuf du Pap (a gift from an old boss) with the bird.
Pretty much light fare this year - Inlaws are in...
Roast turkey breasts - both brined and cooked sloooow for several hours to heat, then the final heat burst for crust. Drippings gravy also
Three-bread stuffing (Wheat, Rye, and Pumpernickel) with wild mushrooms and Granny Smith apples (plus ample onion and celery and herbs)
Steamed Broccoli\Cauliflower with homeade cheese sauce (Gouda this year for the Birthday girl\Wife)
Simple mashed potatoes with sour and heavy creams - ample butter and fresh cracked pepper. Good baked yams too.
B-day Girl's homemade biscuits and honey butter (making that now...)
Homemade pumpkin and apple pie, with a Marble B-day cake for the Misses from Child One (budding cook in training - frosting job by Child Two (if it makes the cake....))
Coffee treat is fresh walnut roll and fresh brewed coffee (still have a good cinnimon\hazelnut blend held back for this) for the night - gotta pull the duty until midnight.
Black Friday is what is left...
Our first year to our self's. We had to move to California for the last three years on business before we retire. So all the family is back in Colorado and other states. Basic dinner for us. Small Turkey, Cranberry stuffing. Mashed potatoes, Broccoli + Cauliflower casserole and Dump Cake with ice cream and pie for dessert. Ooh and an extra loaf of white bread and jar of Mayo for Turkey sandwiches for the following few days. The last part being a necessity.