Three days of cooking and baking resulting in more food than we could possibly eat in a day – but which will give us days of leftover dinners – just in time since Chip’s exhibition at our village Resource Center opens tomorrow and runs through Christmas Eve so family life will be a little out of kilter for awhile. This week I am reversing the blog postings. I am doing Food on Friday on Thursday and will post the Hawk Studio post tomorrow instead of today.
So lets talk Thanksgiving. This is the biggest meal we prepare all year. There is traditionally the turkey, stuffing, a white potato dish, a sweet potato dish, three vegys, gravy, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie and apple pie. Then we build from there. I wait for the November Bon Appetit to arrive and first comb through it for recipes. This year was a tough one – I really could not find anything that I thought the family would love, so we changed things up. I pulled out all of the November Bon Appetit’s I could find from over the years and we tried to pick one recipe out of each. I also added some things from the family cookbook and then the family volunteered what other things they would like.
The menu was as follows:
Cider Brined Turkey from the 2011 Bon Appetit
I was not happy with the brining bag or the quantities in the recipe as they did not cover the turkey, even after adding additional cider and water. I can’t say that the resulting turkey was representative of what a brined turkey should be like. My other gripe with this was that the recipe called for the turkey to be roast at 375 degrees – which is 50 degrees higher than I usually roast a turkey. The result was that it was finished before I expected and the edges were burnt.
Garlic Mashed Potatoes from the 1998 Bon Appetit. This recipe is nice in that you don’t peel the red potatoes – which really helps with time management issues during that last hour or so of cooking.
Sweet Potato Pudding with Pecan and Gingersnap Topping from the 2010 Bon Appetit
This is one of those Oh My God Wonderful recipes. It is alot of work – you even whip up egg whites and fold them in to give it its lightness – but when you eat it, it is soooo worth it.
Easy Cornbread from the 1999 Bon Appetit (Markus’s request). Markus made this entire recipe from scratch – he is learning how to read a recipe and keep track of ingredients now.
Truthfully, I never got to eat this so I have to go from Markus’s review which was that it was good. I was stuffed before I got to the breads. Sigh.
Mushroom and Green Onion Stuffing from the 1999 Bon Appetit (it was supposed to include chestnuts also but we could not find the jarred chestnuts we use for this recipe)
We cook our stuffing in the turkey.
Sweet and Sour Green Beans from the 2000 Bon Appetit. This one bombed. Boiling down 3 cups of red vinegar and sugar to less than a cup filled the kitchen with an acrid air that ran Chip right out of the kitchen. I thought the boys would like the sweet and sour taste, but they didn’t. Looks like I will be eating a lot of green beans in the next week or so. Vash made the green beans.
Citrus Glazed Carrots from the 2008 Bon Appetit. Jesse made these.
These met with mixed reviews. Vash liked them, Jesse did not really care for them but ate them and Markus was no comment. They include orange, lemon and lime peel and juice in the recipe.
We also just heated up a couple of bags of frozen organic corn because I love corn and if I am having mashed potatoes I want corn. 🙂
Fruit Salad from the Family cookbook. Now I thought that the boys would like this. It is simple – acini di pepe macaroni, crushed pineapple, mandarin oranges and cool whip (and some other stuff that is not really noticeable in the recipe) but not a one of them liked it. I think the macaroni just put them off and every one of them did not finish the little bit on their plates. I was never a huge fan of this, but most kids love it so I thought it would be a treat for them. Not this time. I probably won’t post that recipe as a result.
Cranberry Pecan Bread from the 1998 Bon Appetit. Still. . . . too . . . full . . . to . . . eat.
Two loaves of Gram’s Pumpkin Nut Bread, which I had posted about previously.
An Apple Pie and a Pumpkin Pie – with whipped cream on the side because Chris is not a fan of whipped cream.
So tonight they all wanted the pumpkin pie with the whipped cream.
Vash wanted you all to know that he gave the pies a thumbs up.
We also made hot mulled cider which we served out of our really cool ewer.
I cheated and had to use the jarred turkey gravy because Chip had the pans in the living room while he was working with the turkey and by the time I got them back it was too late to start my own gravy. It was not bad gravy – but not as good as homemade.
We started on Tuesday when the boys and I made the pumpkin nut breads, the cranberry nut bread and dough to make the Lemony Slice and Bake Cookies in the December, 2011 Bon Appetit.
We will make the cookies tomorrow night. There just was too much food to add one more thing today.
Then Wednesday we made the pies, the cornbread, brined the turkey and prepped all of the other dishes.
That gave me two periods of rush today. First thing this morning the stuffing had to be made and the bird stuffed and put into the oven. That was done by 8:40 a.m. Then about 2:30 Chip and I did the last minute stuff to get all of the dishes on the stove, get the bird out of the oven and the sweet potato pudding into the oven.
I bought Chip a new (and actually sharp) carving knife this year because it is his job to carve the turkey.
Then it was just putting it all out on the table
And sitting down to eat.
What else can I say but