Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving Menu

My in-laws will be joining us for Thanksgiving and it will be the first time that I am doing the holiday at my house. I am NOT making the turkey, though. I have always wanted to try deep fried turkey but am not brave enough to do it myself. Plus, I really, really, really hate touching raw poultry and the idea of having to do any manipulating of that big bird gives me the heebie jeebies. So, I ordered the turkey from our local meat market and only will have to reheat it. But everything else I will do myself.

Company comes tomorrow night, and I will be serving them a fun recipe that I found on one of my favorite blogs, We are Not Martha: Pumpkin Pasta with Chicken Sausage. I will be using whole wheat pasta and Fage 0% yogurt instead of the other dairy. But, I have a major thing for pumpkin lately. I have been going through cans of it. You get such a nutrient and fiber rich punch and a lot of flavor. I add it to my oatmeal, to LL's smoothies, to cookies, and my new favorite "treat" - Fage 0% yogurt, 1/4 cup of pumpkin, 1/2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice, 1 packet Splenda (aka elixer of the Gods), and a sprinkle of Fiber One cereal. So, anyways, this pasta sounds really great.

I also have the whole wheat variation of no knead bread rising right now and will bake it off tomorrow.

Then, Thanksgiving morning I will be doing the 5 mile Run Through the Woods race and then a Thanksgiving yoga class so they will be on their own. Luckily for them, I will leave them some of Dorie's Allspice Crumb Muffins for them to munch on while I am gone.

For lunch, we want to eat light, but still be in the Thanksgiving spirit. So, I will be serving a roasted butternut squash and apple soup from the NYtimes Dining section. and a big, beautiful salad with goat cheese, dried cranberries, diced honeycrisp apples, and some of the sweet and savory spiced nuts that I just made from a Gourmet recipe and that can easily be munched on all weekend. Hopefully we will have some bread left, but if not, I have an extra one in the freezer just in case!

And, onto the BIG meal. As mentioned, the turkey will be a deep fried one. Along side, I will be serving a Sausage, Chestnut and Mushroom "Dressing" (first time I ever used that word, but I am in the South now) that I found in the Williams Sonoma catalog. Only, instead of focaccia, I will be using the Cook's Illustrated Corn Bread.

I am will also be making maple pecan sweet potatoes. I know that they are from Cooking Light, but they will be amazing! I love sweet potatoes, maple syrup, and pecans, and they have some butter, so there is nothing dietetic about them. However, this recipe does call for one ingredient that I have never added to sweet potatoes before, but many of you have: marshmallows! Back in high school, my friends and I used to have a "Day After Thanksgiving" Feast, and I famously was aghast when my friend even suggested this, telling him, "I am not a Goy!" However, here I am in Texas and the tiny marshmallows are waiting to be bruleed on Thursday!

For the cranberry sauce, I made a light and fresh cranberry orange relish from Gourmet. It was good last night, and is supposed to be even tastier a few days later. And, for "something green", but something that still goes with the deep fried turkey and southern theme, I will be making brussel sprouts with bacon. Not sure which recipe I will be using yet, but anything with bacon is bound to be good!

And last, dessert . . . Oh, how I had a hard time with this one. I wanted to make so many desserts, but we are only 5 adults, one of whom had a heart attack recently, so it seemed as though I should reign in my desires to bake up a storm. In the end I settled on DrRuckus's favorite - classic, two crust, deep dish apple pie. But not just any apple, pie! First, I will be using the magical Cook's Illustrated vodka pie dough. And, on top, we will be serving homemade cinnamon ice cream and butterscotch sauce from Food and Wine.

The exciting thing is that I used all of my magazines for this menu, as well as my beloved NYTimes. The bad part is that I am so far ahead of the game that I am now rethinking that second dessert decision.

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