Friday, December 19, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008

Well here it is! Thanksgiving day menu and pics! I went to Ecuador 2 days after Tday, so I'm just now getting around to posting this! Hope you all enjoy, and maybe get some ideas for next year! I made this for 10 people, and we still had some leftovers! Perfect size! Please email me or commen if you would like recipes (better than I have posted) or Qs!

Roasted pumpkin and goat cheese dip served w/ garlic croutons.
Shaved asparagus salad with cranberries, chicory, roasted pecans and lemon vinaigrette.
Apple and onion roasted turkey with an herbed compound butter.
Shelley's mashed potatoes (family brought).
Shaved brussel spouts with crispy bacon, red onions and apple cider vinegar.
Fresh green bean casserole with a baby bella mushroom cream sauce.
Sausage and cornbread dressing.
Sweet potato rolls.
Cranberry compound butter.
Pan gravy with bouquet garni.
Pumpkin cake layered with chestnut mousse, iced with Italian meringue buttercream and served with maple ice cream.

Appetizer: Pumpkin/ goat cheese dip w/ garlic croutons.
Clean a sugar pumpkin, remove seeds. Roast until soft @ 350F, then scrape out insides. The shell will be sturdy and you will use this for presentation. Add 6 oz goat cheese and 3 roasted garlic cloves to the pumpkin pulp. Mix up, add salt and pepper to taste, and f needed add a little milk to thin it out. Should be texture of hummus. For the croutons: buy a baguette and slice into 1/2'' slices, toast in oven. When done remove and rub with a little raw garlic.
*I made dip ahead and reheated in microwave, croutons need to be fresh though. Everyone LOVED this dip and it was pretty easy to make.

Salad: Shaved asparagus salad.
Tear some romaine, baby spinach and arugula up. Toss in some shaved asp. To shave asp simply use a very sharp peeler and shave parallel slices of the asp, I used about 0.75# for my salad. Toss in some craisins, roasted pecans and shaved chicory. For the vinaigrette: 1 c EVOO, 1/2 c lemon juice, zest of 2 lemons, salt and pepper. Add all into a jar and shake.
*Made whole salad and dressing day before!

Main: Apple and onion roasted turkey w/ compound butter.
Combine 1/2 c butter, 2 T each chopped rosemary, thyme, sage and parsley. Rub under skin of bird. Place bird in roasting pan upside down (to let the breasts get nice and tender from the drippings) and stuff with quartered apples and onions. Cover legs and wings with foil to prevent overcooking. Place celery, carrots and onion in bottom of pan to flavor drippings (for gravy). Roast @ 325F for 3 hours, then flip and roast for 2 more. Remove foil from legs and wings and put oven at 425F. Roast for 30-45 mins, check temp (should be 165F).

Shelley's mashed potatoes
Shelley brought them.

Shaved brussel sprouts with crispy bacon, red onions and apple cider vinegar.
Thinly slice 3 packages of brussel sprouts (~ 3# total). Saute 1/2# bacon until crispy, then add julienned red onions. Add brussel sprouts and cook until wilted, but NOT mushy. Finish with some slat and pepper and about 2T apple cider vinegar. These were a hit!

Fresh green bean casserole with baby bella cream sauce.
Dice fresh green beans into ~1.5 inch pieces, on the diagonal. Make cream sauce: chopchopchop 24 ounces baby bellas and saute with butter until liquid has evaporated. Thinly slice 12 ounces baby bellas and add to mix, saute for about 5 min. Add about 1T flour and stir. Add a splash of white wine. Add 1 small carton heavy cream (and some milk to thin out, if needed) and simmer for about 5 min. Add some salt and lots of pepper. Blanch green beans bright green and slightly soft. Combine sauce and beans, top with onions (I just used store-bought b/c I don't want to fry onions) and bake at 350F until hot, or about 40 min.

Sausage and cornbread dressing.
Cornbread: I made according to a recipe I got at the fair this year with my stone ground cornmeal! YUMMM. 1 cup corn meal, 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 c sugar, 1 tablespoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 cup milk, 1/3 butter, melted, 1 egg --- Mix and bake at 400F for about 25 min. Let cool, then crumble into about acorn size chunks. For the dressing: cook 1# ground sausage and drain, then saute 1 chopped onion, 2 celery ribs, finely chopped, and 1 carrot, finely chopped. Add the mirepoix into a big bowl and combine with 2 eggs, 1c diced apples, cornbread recipe that you crumbled and 1T chopped thyme, and rosemary and 2.5 T chopped sage. Mix and add enough chicken broth for the wetness you want. Bake at 400F for about 45 min. Consume.

Sweet potato rolls.
Okay, I winged this one... here goes. You will need one boiled sweet potato, mashed and cooled, about 2 cups. Please use a sweet potato and nothing from a can, it really matters. Cut 2 sticks cold butter together with 4 cups flour. Add 2t baking powder and 1/2t salt. Add in mashed sweet potato. Add two eggs. Add flour or milk if needed if too dry or wet. I added a little more flour. drop by spoonfuls onto baking sheet and bake at 350F for about 18-20 min. YUM.

Cranberry butter.
Add 1/4 c water, 2 c cranberries and 1 c sugar to a saucepan. Turn on medium and simmer until the berries pop and you have a nice cranberry goo... about 30 min. Cool completely. Add this to 2 sticks of soft butter and that's it. You may add a little salt (I did) and more sugar if you feel its needed.

Pan gravy.
Take drippings from turkey pan, and separate the fat and the juice. Heat the juice in a saucepan with stems leftover from turkey and stuffing herbs. Make a roux with 1 stick butter and 1/2 c flour (I use Wondra) and cook until slightly golden and nutty smelling. Add hot broth 1 c at a time and whisk in like mad! I used about 6 cups. Simmer for about 5 min... its ready.

Pumkin cake layered with chestnut mousse with Italian buttercream and maple ice cream. Start this cake the day before!

Cake: I used melted butter instead of oil, no nuts and made 2 8-in cakes, which will become four layers.
Mousse: Simply make and chill overnight, the spread between the pumpkin cake layers when you assemble it the next day.
Buttercream: THE best buttercream EVER. Also the one I make b/c I cant eat egg yolks. YUMYUMYUM. You will be eating this straight. I made it waaay ahead and stuck it in the freezer, it came out perfect with no funny flavors (seal it tight).
Maple ice cream: mix 3c half and half with 1c grade B maple syrup (better flavor than grade A) and 1t vanilla. Chill in fridge for at least 4 hours then freeze according to your ice cream maker. So simple but the flavor is amazing. I added 1/4t xanthan gum fo texture, but its not neccesary.


Table centerpeice, hollow a pumkin, fill with water, and put flowers in... done!



more turkey

sweet potato rolls

shaved brussels

green bean "casserole"


people eating

cake, a little lopsided...?

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