Friday, November 17, 2006

Thanksgiving Feasting, Part II

I will be making no Thanksgiving meal this year, nor will I be helping with preparations other than eating appetizing bits. There are so many clever little hints I've been picking up along the way that I would have loved to dish out, ways to spice up presentation, etc. Maybe next year. Until then... I will contemplate what I would have made (and make your searching a little easier in the days to come):

For munching, I would definitely have a cheese platter set out with dried fruit (apricot, plum, figs), assorted nuts (cashews, walnuts, roasted chestnuts) and some olives. A few cheeses I would absolutely have? Some of my old and new favorites: Bayley Hazen Blue, a stinky Epoisses, a butterscotched Gouda and the rich Monte Enebro. [Okay, not too difficult to figure out the key to my heart lies in cheese.] Serve it with a bold Zinfandel (the only wine pairing I will make).

If people really needed an afternoon snack I might whip up a batch of the recent cranberry bread. Fabulous with tea or coffee.

That should be enough to tide people over until a nice warming bowl of soup. How to choose since I love soup. A quick and easy one is Curried Butternut Squash or a zesty Carrot Ginger, a sweetly spiced new one is Winter Squash, and a decadent one, yet to be posted (but if you would like a recipe, let me know, it’s delicious) is a rich Chestnut Soup with Thick Bacon Bits.

A salad would follow. Probably endive, pear and walnut. Possibly with pomegranate. Much like the one here. Cleansing and delicious.

Turkey, of course. Broiled Brussels sprouts, sweet potato chips with an elegant balsamic reduction, garlic mashed potatoes topped with caramelized onions, braised beets and other root veggies for color, and maybe some sweet asparagus with a splash of truffle oil (and shavings if the budget allows). I’m not really a stuffing person, but I made this oyster stuffing, last year that was rich and delicious and scavenged to be taken home.

A pause for dessert. Maybe a walk around the block. Then dessert.

Hands down holiday favorite is the pumpkin cheesecake-- though this chocoalte espresso tart is luxurious. For the cookie lovers, pumpkin gingersnap cookies, gorgeous cranberry macadamia white chocolate chip cookies and rum raisin oatmeal cookies.

The following morning would be full of succulent Latvian Pancakes, with plenty to freeze for later snacking—the perfect way to get rid of those turkey day leftovers!

Enjoy your Turkey Day wherever you may be.

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