Turkey: This technique comes courtesy of Alton Brown. We have made this turkey several years in a row and it has always been a success! The recipe is his Good Eats Roast Turkey. And we basically follow the instructions for the brine and how to bake it. However, we do not use the aromatics, instead going for stuffing!
Potatoes: There isn’t much to say for the potatoes. For us, the simpler the better. Take 10lbs of all purpose potatoes. Peel. Chop. Boil. Mash. Butter, heavy cream, salt. Yum!!
Sweet Potatoes: Now growing up, my family was never one to mess around much with sweet potatoes. We never made sweet potato casserole, or added marshmallows or brown sugar to them. Our favorite way to have sweet potatoes was almost similar to regular potatoes. Just boiled and mashed, with butter and salt. Love it! As I’ve grown up, I guess I’ve gotten a bit more adventurous with my tastes and I have been willing to try variations on my very simple, but favorite method of eating sweet potatoes. This year, I will be trying this recipe from lovingly named Mashed Sweet Potatoes. We’ll see how it goes. I am weary of messing with my sweet potatoes, but apparently that makes me the oddball, not everyone else!
Stuffing: So the stuffing is a bit controversial in my house right now. My husband stoutly insists that stuffing is not stuffing without a ton of meat added to it. So every year he forces me to add large amounts of sweet italian sausage to our stuffing mixture. It’s not that I’m as a rule opposed to sweet italian sausage, but I’m not always sure it’s something that belongs in my stuffing. For me, I only love my mothers stuffing which I’m pretty sure just contains bread, butter, and those parts of the turkey that come in a little bag that most people get nauseous looking at. Now, my husband, being one of those people who gets nauseous looking at the tiny little heart and lungs, has never let me attempt to make stuffing the way my mom always did, thus I have been dealing with mediocre stuffing laced with fennel seed landmines ever since. One day… I will prevail, but for now stuffing = bag of store bought stuffing bread, butter, chicken broth, cooked italian sausage.
Cranberry sauce: Well, cranberry sauce is always controversial. There are those who love it and those who hate it… there is no inbetween. We are 50/50 here so I will continue to make cranberry sauce every year, even if I am the only one who enjoys it. Perfect Cranberry Sauce pretty much sums things up, since there are only so many ways to make the stuff.
Vegetable supplement: As a byproduct of my youth, I have *almost* always required a vegetable supplement to be served with whatever my dinner is. Thanksgiving is no exception. This year we are going to be trying Balsamic Roasted Brussel Sprouts. Sounds delicious!
Gravy: I really should have my husband write this part since gravy remains largely a mystery to me. Something about drippings from the turkey, flour, butter? I dunno, which ever way you shake it, I never really pay much attention to the stuff, but somehow it’s always there.
Bread: This is another one of those things that for whatever reason, is a necessity at Thanksgiving time. There is so much other food around, but somehow bread is needed to mop up the turkey juice and gravy, to take the first bite of in order to prepare your stomach for further awesomeness. Bread is a must. This year, I’ll be doing Lemon Rosemary Gruyere Crusty bread!
Add in an amazing dessert or two, some wine, and that my friends, is a Thanksgiving feast!! Guten apetit!
We will be hosting Thanksgiving again this year. We have two changes to our menu for the year. One is the veggie. We’ll be switching it up from Brussel sprouts, to a Creamed Spinach dish. The second thing is that I’m going to make a good old Apple Pie.