I am not a hot dogs and hamburger on the grill kinda gal when I invite people over for a pool party (or frankly when I go to others’ parties). I am not averse to meat, if it is good. I patronize my local organic farms when I want a semi-annual steak, and certainly whenever I want a cut of pork. I have begun to greatly appreciate the Boston Butt cut of pork. It is forgiving — you stick in the oven and it is done, whenever. It also is a fatty cut which has the glorious advantage of essentially self-basting in its fatty porkiness which accentuates the good flavor.
Little neck clams on the grill, served with melted butter (melted in small dish on grill). Clam broth is optional.
Grilled kielbasa. Buy the best quality you can find. Fatty pork is a happy complement to clams.
Reheated pork butt. I prepared the day ahead by slow-roasting in oven; I marinated the pork in Puerto Rican style a la Mark Bittman.
Deviled eggs. Because it’s not a summer party without ’em! These go early and fast!
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)
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
Maple, chocolate pecan pie