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Epic Thanksgiving and Epic Blog Post

11 Oct

Hey all!

As promised, I am doing a complete rundown of our menu for Thanksgiving. Hopefully this will help with planning your meal. Feel free to not go absolutely nuts and over the top like we did. We are some crazy people to take on this menu, and there was 4 of us helping over the course of two days, so don’t think you can do this all with one or two people in a few hours. That would be scary.

Speaking of scary. We had some kitchen injuries! Luckily no burns or cuts or ER visits. We did have a bruised knee (me) because I smashed it on our kitchen counter when I was chopping vegetables on a bar stool. I was sitting on the bar stool to be exact.

Then Carley opened the fridge and a jar of olives fell right on the top of her foot! OW!

We were both hobbling.

I will do a post in a couple days with photos of our decor and a run down of our fall fun day. For now let’s just get to the recipes.

Each item was either our own creation, or a borrowed recipe. If it is our creation, the recipe will be at the bottom of the post, if it is a borrowed recipe, the title will be a link that takes you right to it :)

Enjoy and please comment below if you have any questions!

Drinks
– White Wine & Apple Sangria with Cranberry Ice Cubes

– Mulled Hot Apple Cider

 

Appetizers
–  Goat Cheese Spread with Roasted Garlic and Truffle Oil

– Butternut Squash and Sage Tart

Salad
– Pear Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette

 

Main
– Turkey with gravy Pioneer Woman Brine
– Cornbread Stuffing with Sausage, Fennel and Sage
– Brussel Sprout Gratin with Bacon
– Mashed Yukon Gold Potatoes
– Caramelized Sweet Potatoes
– Heirloom Carrots with Butter and Herbs
Green Bean Casserole with Frizzled Leeks and Shallots
Homemade Dinner Rolls

 

Dessert
Chocolate Pecan Pie
– Pumpkin Pie
– Earl Grey Crème Brulee

 

White Wine & Apple Sangria with Cranberry Ice Cubes:

Serves 8

2 cups fresh cranberries

Water

6.5 cups light white wine, we used Pinot Grigio

2 large honeycrisp apples, cored and cut into cubes

5 cups dry sparkling apple cider (strongbow or any hard cider works, just make sure it isn’t too sweet)

 

At least the day before: In two ice cube trays, divide the cranberries throughout the trays, you don’t have to use them all if they don’t fit. Fill the trays with boiled water, this will help the cubes to be nice and clear, not cloudy. Freeze them overnight.

The night before or in the morning: In a large pitcher, add the cubed apple and the wine. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4-6 hours. When you are ready to serve, add the cider and stir to combine. Serve in wine glasses with a couple of those cranberry ice cubes!

 

Mulled Hot Apple Cider:

Serves 10

This is an easy one.

 

8 cups non alcoholic apple cider

2 cinnamon sticks

 

In a slow cooker, add the cider and cinnamon sticks. Set for 6 hours and allow the cider to stay warm during your dinner!

 

Goat Cheese Spread with Roasted Garlic and Truffle Oil:

Serves 6

 

1 head garlic

1 large log goat cheese

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

1 tbsp truffle oil or truffle olive oil

 

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Grab your head of garlic and chop it in half, cover each half with plastic wrap and bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until very soft. Set aside to cool completely.

In a mixing bowl, combine the roasted garlic, goat cheese, parsley, salt and pepper. Place in a serving dish and then drizzle with the truffle oil.

Serve with crackers or baguette.

 

Butternut Squash and Sage Tart:

Serves 10

2 cups cubed butternut squash

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

1/2 package Phyllo pastry

1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled slightly

1 cup grated white cheddar

2 tbsp chopped fresh sage

 

On a baking sheet, add the cubed butternut squash, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Use your hands and toss to coat.

Roast at 375 for 20-25 minutes until softened. Remove and allow to cool.

On a baking sheet, lay down a couple sheets of the phyllo, then brush with some butter, repeat until you have used all the phyllo sheets. Leaving a 1 inch border on all sides, top with the grated white cheddar, roasted butternut squash and sprinkle with sage.

Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the pastry is golden brown.

 

 

Pear Salad with Honey Maple Vinaigrette:

Serves 10

1 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup honey

2 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

4 ripe pears, sliced thinly

2 heads of romaine, cleaned and torn into small pieces

1/2 cup shaved romano cheese

1 1/2 cups roasted pumpkin seeds

 

In a large mason jar, shake up the oil, vinegar, honey and salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large salad bowl, mix together the romaine, pears, cheese and pumpkin seeds. Add the dressing and toss to coat, you might not need all the dressing, go slowly.

Serve immediately.

 

 

Cornbread Stuffing with Sausage, Fennel and Sage:

Serves 10

1 cup flour

3/4 cornmeal

1/4 cup sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 egg, beaten

1 cup milk

1/4 cup melted butter

1 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tbsp fennel seeds

1/2 lb pork sausage, not in casings or taken out of the casings

1 tsp fresh chopped sage

1 cup chicken broth

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

 

Preheat your oven to 425 and butter an 8×8 baking pan.

In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, and baking powder. In a seperate bowl, mix together the egg, milk and melted butter. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and mix just until combined. Pour into the prepared baking dish and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before removing from the pan.

Once the cornbread is cooled completely. Cut it into 1 inch cubes, set aside.

In a pan over medium high heat, add the vegetable oil and heat. Once the oil is hot add the fennel and allow that to cook for 1 minute until fragrant. Add the sausage and cook until browned and  cooked through, breaking up into small pieces as you go.

Once the sausage is fully cooked, lower the heat to medium low and add the sage, cornbread, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Stir to coat.

Add the cornbread mixture to a 9×12 baking pan and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until browned and crispy on the top.

 

Brussel Sprout and Bacon Gratin:

Serves 10

6 slices thick cut bacon, cut into 1/4 inch pieces

3 cloves garlic, minced

About 40 brussel sprouts, cleaned and quartered

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup panko bread crumbs

1/4 cup butter cut into a bunch of little pieces

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×12 baking pan.

In a large saute pan over medium high heat, saute the bacon until crisp, add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute then add the brussel sprouts and cook until softened and cooked through, season with salt and pepper.

Add the brussel sprout and bacon mixture to the prepared baking sheet and top with the panko and pats of butter. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the top is golden brown.

 

 

Mashed Yukon Gold Potatoes:

Serves 10

6 lbs yukon gold potatoes, peeled and quartered

1  1/2 cups  heavy cream

1/2 cup butter

2 tbsp kosher salt

 

In a large pot add the potatoes and enough water to cover, place over high heat until boiling. Lower heat to medium and cook until the potatoes are fork tender (no resistence when you poke a fork into them) about 20-25 minutes. Drain and put them back into the pot with the lid on.

In a large measuring cup or microwavable bowl, add the cream and butter. Microwave for about 1-1.5 minutes, until the butter is fully melted and the mixture is hot.

Mash all the potatoes without any liquid, until there are not any lumps. Add the cream mixture slowly while mashing, until smooth. Add the salt and mix again. Serve hot!

 

Caramelized Sweet Potatoes:

Serves 10

6 medium sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1/2 inch rounds

1 cup butter

2 cups brown sugar

 

Add the sweet potato rounds to a large pot and cover with cold water. Heat over high heat until boiling. Once boiling, lower the heat to medium and cook until almost cooked through, about 18-20 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool completely.

Heat a griddle or pan over medium heat and melt about 1/4 of the butter on the griddle. Add about 1/2 cup of the brown sugar and allow the sugar to melt into the butter, stirring it around the griddle with a spatula or flipper.

Add some of the cooked and cooled rounds of sweet potato, and brown in the sugar butter mixture. Remove to a 9×13 baking dish and repeat with the remaining sweet potatoes, adding more brown sugar and butter each time until you’ve cooked all of the potato rounds. Drizzle any extra caramel over top at the end.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 12-15 minutes until heated through before serving.

 

 

Heirloom Carrots with Butter and Herbs:

Serves 10

 

10-12 heirloom carrots

1/4 cup butter

1 tsp salt

1/4 cup chopped parsley

 

In a large pot of boiling water, par boil the carrots until they are tender. Drain and set aside.

In a large frying pan, add the butter and cook over medium high heat until bubbly. Add the carrots and saute until cooked through, about 4-5 minutes. Add the salt and Parsley and stir.

Serve hot.

 

Pumpkin Pie:

3 large eggs

2 cups pumpkin puree

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 pre-baked pie crust (we used this recipe)

2 cups fresh whipped cream for serving

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together the eggs, pumpkin, cream, brown sugar and pumpkin pie spice.

Add to the prepared pie crust and bake for 40-45 minutes until set. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Slice and serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

 

 

Earl Grey Creme Brulee:

Makes 10 creme brulees

4 1/4 cups (1 litre) heavy cream

2 earl grey tea bags or loose leaf tea in a steeper

12 egg yolks

1/2 cup sugar

Extra sugar for brulee-ing

 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

In a large pot, heat the cream over medium until steaming. Lower the heat to medium low and add the tea bags or steeper with tea and allow the tea to steep in the cream for about 2 minutes, not allowing the cream to simmer or boil.

Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs and sugar until fluffy.

Remove tea bags from the cream and then slowly whisk the cream into the egg mixture. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and then pour into 10 ramekins.

Place the ramekins into two seperate 9×12 baking dishes and pour in some very hot water to come about halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until set.

Remove from the water bath and allow to cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, about 3-4 hours.

Once you are ready to serve, dust the tops of each creme brulee with about 1 tsp sugar and then brown with a kitchen torch. Serve immediately.

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