Preparing for Thanksgiving, 2006

One of the benefits that I hadn’t anticipated to having a blog is that, since I’ve posted a number of my favorite recipes including my favorite Thanksgiving recipes, my recipes are easily at hand. No searching. No stray pieces of paper.

This year we’re having

Smoked turkey and dressing
Cranberry Sauce with Zing
Brussels Sprouts and Chestnuts
Pumpkin Chiffon Pie

Mashed potatoes and gravy, of course. Some day I’ll have to write a post on the art of making gravy. I usually start with a brown roux but an uncooked flour and butter mixture is excellent as thickening, too. Much better than the old flour and water method. If you’re going to use that method, for goodness sake use cold stock instead of water. Why dilute the flavor of your wonderful turkey drippings or stock?

The turkey is smoking (I put it on at 7:00am and I’ll take it off around 5:00pm for 6:00pm serving), I’ve finished my pie crust. Maybe I’ll start my rolls now.

I’ll try to post some pictures later in the day.

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

4 comments… add one
  • It’s nice to see another guy who cooks. I did the dressing (squash, cranberry, hazelnut and cornbread), green beans, mashed potatoes, bourbon sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, pumpkin cheesecake and pecan pies from scratch. Bought the turkey cooked from Whole Foods and just warmed it. (It was all for the in-laws, so we have to stay pretty conservative, nothing adventurous.)

    Everything worked but the easy part, the pecan pies: I listened to the recipe instructions rather than my own intuition and they were undercooked. You must trust the force when cooking.

    My back hurts.

  • I do all the cooking all the time in our household. It was an early accommodation in our marriage. I’m a better cook; I do all the cooking and all the shopping. For the last 30 years whenever my family has gathered I’ve done all (or nearly all) the cooking.

  • ‘…with Zing’

    What’s Zing?

    My brothers and I (with one exception) all ended up being good cooks. The family joke was that we learned ‘in self-defense’ as my mother’s cooking left rather a lot to be desired–though my father was an excellent cook. She grew up as the second oldest in a family of 11 kids. Her cooking was ‘institutional’ and, being of Irish descent, tended to the school of ‘Oh, just boil it to death and it’ll be perfectly fine!’ cooking. My father brought a French-Canadian sensibility to it all, though even there, there might’ve been a surplus of ways to use maple syrup. Eggs poached in maple syrup anyone?

  • I call it “with Zing” because “with a heckuva lot of black pepper” doesn’t sound quite as good.

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