Gathered from friends old and new, these recipes are going to make you and yours very happy. Promise. And having recipes borrowed from friends makes me feel connected, even while we're apart.
An Interesting Option
First I invite you to join me in one of my most precious holiday traditions: the reading of the turkey-in-a-hole pictorial essay. If you are not dying from laughter by the middle of this, there is no hope for you. Poor Girl Gourmet is written by my friend Amy who is a solid friend, talented and hysterical writer, producer, recipe developer and cookbook author. Several of her dishes are in our regular rotation.
While you're there, poke around Amy's site and you'll find much to inspire - and on a budget! Always good. Thanks Amy! (and if you're interested in travel, check out the Tiny Farmhouse Tours.)
Other Dishes to Try
Lots to like here: sides, rolls, desserts, vegetarian friendly dishes. We want everyone to feel welcomed, don't we?
Delicata Squash Boats Stuffed with Red Rice Pilaf - courtesy of my friend Kim O'Donnel. This recipe has become one of my all time favorites and has made me such a fan of Delicata squash. Can't get enough. I recently taught a Kitchen Confidence group how to make these.
I'm pretty sure when someone takes a bite, closes their eyes and says "I just need a moment..." You've got a winner. I have added a tiny bit of orange flower water, but it doesn't need it, we just had it on hand for some sweet potatoes. You'll get the same reaction with the straight ahead version.
Latkes - In case you're not aware what this "Thanksgivvukah" holiday is all about, it so happens this year Thanksgiving falls on the first night of Hannukah. I think this is like a Haley's comet, once-in-a-lifetime situation.
I tested this Sweet Potato- Apple Latke recipe from the terrific Amy Traverso, author of The Apple Lover's Cookbook for all of us who may want a Thanksgivvukah option. I'd heard Amy on David Leite's Podcast "Talking with my Mouth Full" describing these and let's just say there was some swooning involved.
That was all the convincing I needed.
These gorgeous pumpkin "cozy" rolls (above) are indeed comforting. I had made these Golden Pumpkin Spice Dinner rolls the last year but really loved the look of these Pumpkin Cozy Rolls and my friend Carolyn Jung has never steered me wrong. Hers take a longer (overnight) rise (but no longer hands on time) and make a smaller batch. Mine take a couple hours and produce a larger batch. [Here I must share a reminder to read through your recipe before beginning or else you're leaving your husband notes that read "4 am take rolls out of fridge, 5 am when you're back from gym, please preheat oven. 6 am please put coffee on and try to wake me..."]
I love the texture and color of Carolyn's rolls, Adapted from “Choosing Sides” by Tara Mataraza Desmond, and especially if you want variety at the table, some gorgeous color and are hosting a smaller crowd, I'd go with that one. By the way, if you're a fan of San Francisco, and good food, check out Carolyn's debut book: The San Francisco Chef's Table. It would make a great hostess or holiday gift!
These Gluten-free (or not, your choice) Pecan Pie Bars look like the perfect solution for adding some variety without another pie. In years past I've had two or three pies, which is fine, (what's "too much" when it comes to pie?) but I'm going to have to try these soon. We're going light on dessert this Thanksgiving for us, but if you've got enough people, and/or a gluten-free guest, wouldn't it be lovely to have this easy to make ahead, gluten-free treat to share?
Jane Evans Bonacci, AKA The Heritage Cook is a new Facebook friend who's always ready with a supportive word and delicious often gluten-free recipe. I like that she gives you both the gf and regular option in the recipe. If you're cooking for someone with celiac or gluten intolerance please refresh your knowledge here with some tips on How to Host a Food-Allergic Guest (includes tips on GF).
Do Ahead Tips
It's not too soon to do some prep.
- If you're going to need/use linens iron them now while you're watching a show.
- Make some spiced nuts to have with cocktails.
- Finalize your grocery lists - what you'll need for baking, from the last Farmers' Market, from the liquor store.
- Stock up on garbage bags, zip top bags/containers.
- Make stock for gravy.
Be happy while you're living, for you're a long time dead. Scottish Proverb