Yes, we will be doing this again.
Well, almost all of “this.”
The food for our Thanksgiving table turned out beautifully this year, with the exception of the cranberry salsa. Actually, that was beautiful, too. It’s just that nobody was really in the mood for spicy, chunky, cranberry-jalapeño sauce on their turkey plate. I can’t imagine it would be popular on leftover turkey sandwiches, either.
This cranberry sauce, however, was delicious.
And these candied cranberries were both visually appealing and a fun pre-dinner treat. Little Miss took exception to the tartness of the red berry part, though–I found several cranberries sucked clean of their sugar coating, all lined up on her dinner napkin!
Yes, I had three bags of cranberries with which to experiment this year!
The 15lb turkey was brined according to the Pioneer Woman’s recipe.
Then, after soaking it in fresh cold water for 30 minutes, I followed this procedure, complete with aromatics on the inside. The only change I made was to flip the bird to breast-down 30minutes after lowering the heat to 350. Total time in the oven was approximately two and a half hours.
This stuffing was a new recipe for me, recommended by a friend. I’ve never made stuffing from scratch before, and this is likely the reason why I never really cared for stuffing. Although it was labor-intensive, I did most of the prep beforehand, and just did the final mixing and baking today. It was worth all the effort, and I plan to make it a permanent dish in my at-home Thanksgiving dinner.
Mashed potatoes were also per the Pioneer Woman’s instructions; after making these once, a long time ago, I’ve since never been able to skip the cream cheese.
We had sweet potato fries, which served as pre-dinner munchies. Also on the table this afternoon with the fries and candied cranberries were shrimp with cocktail sauce and Costco’s trail mix.
There was no green dish this year; maybe asparagus would have been good, but our experience has been that the veggies don’t get much love at Thanksgiving dinner, and we weren’t moved by any strong inspiration this year. So we skipped it!
Dessert included pumpkin pie, apple pie, and cherry pie with homemade whipping cream using our newly unpacked wedding gift (5-1/2 years into our marriage!).
Happy Thanksgiving 2013!