Today I realized that Thanksgiving is a short two weeks away and I need to plan my menu in advance for this year.
What I am Serving
Turkey, obviously. In the past I ordered from the reputable Paulina Market in the city. Now that I'm a suburbanite I no longer have that option and last year got a bird from Whole Foods. It was fine, expensive and I prefer to order organic from a local butcher this time. I've heard good things about Harrison's Poultry Farm, that has been around since 1893.
As for cooking the turkey, I will stick with what I've been doing for years. Butter under the skin with herbs, oranges and onions in the cavity. It's always juicy and I don't think the turkey is the place to try something new, despite the fact my husband is pushing to use the convection oven.
Potatoes. Mashed potatoes are always a hit in my family, but the amount of butter and cream gives me a stomach ache. I'm considering adding a new sweet potato recipe. Part of me wants to go old school with the marshmallow covered yams. Or I could go healthier and serve garlic herb roasted sweet potatoes.
Vegetable. This is always a hard one and often overlooked and packed up as leftovers. Green beans are traditional and I am researching some variations for this year. Bacon wrapped green bean bundles would be the splurge or no fail butter and garlic beans could be the safer option. Are there other vegetables that are traditional for Thanksgiving? Corn?
Bread. Speaking of corn, my mom makes a fabulous corn bread. Every year she says she isn't making it anymore, but every year I request it. I know I would miss it if it wasn't there this year.
Cranberries. The recipe my mom usually brings is delicious, but has a ton of sugar. It could be fun to try a new approach to cranberries this month. I might go rogue with Roasted Balsamic Cranberry Brie Crostini.
Dessert. My mother-in-law often shows up with an apple or pumpkin pie plus something chocolate, for me and the other chocoholics.
What else do I need? Appetizers? Usually we don't serve anything before the meal, because I don't want everyone to fill up end not eat the huge meal.
Are you hosting Thanksgiving this year? Do you prepare the same dishes every year or mix it up?
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