Thanksgiving

Menu 2016 (and many, many prior years!)

This is my traditional Thanksgiving menu.  My very favorite holiday, because it is so food-centric and fall harvest foods are so incredibly delicious. I might substitute brussels sprouts for collards if I had a second oven to roast ’em.  But maybe not since those collards are so deeply satisfying.  I omit what for many is standard fare of mashed or sweet potatoes and my orange dish is butternut squash — no need in my view to over, overload on carbs since there is stuffing and that turkey is gonna put folks to sleep anyway.  And then there’s pie, of course.  I will link to recipes shortly.

North Wind Farms natural turkey (16# is good size, even for small crowd)

Stuffing

Watercress salad to start

Crudities — carrots, olives, dilly beans, cheese and crackers

Cranberry quince chutney

Cranberry orange relish

Maple butternut squash puree

Collards — 2 hr simmer with garlic, sweet and regular onions, red pepper flakes in chicken stock

Onion, leek shallot gratin

Pumpkin pie

Maple, chocolate pecan pie

whipped cream

Decaf coffee

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Winter salad — Watercress, pears and blue cheese

A delicious, elegant dinner party first course.  I served for Thanksgiving.  Pears are in season; watercress is a welcome bright green as Winter is setting in in the Northeast US.

Ingredients:

Watercress

Mesclun

Pears – D’Anjou

Blue cheese

Walnuts – roasted and cooled (375 degree oven for 8 mins until fragrant)

Vinaigrette:

Shallots, minced; soaked in apple cider vinegar to cover

Lemon juice

Walnut oil

Olive oil

S&P

Shake in bottle; refrigerate up to a couple days. Remove before using to come to room temp.

Salad assembly:

Wash and dry lettuce and watercress; remove thick stems if needed

Cut pear in half and core with corer, or cut into quarters and slice to remove core.

Cut quarters into quarters  or thirds lengthwise to make moderate-size wedges.

Toss greens with vinaigrette. Place on individual plates. Lay pears in pretty way grouped together on side of plate. Sprinkle walnuts and blue cheese on top. Drizzle more dressing on pears, etc.