Thanksgiving Recap

How was everyone’s Thanksgiving?  Mr. R and I had a lovely time with his family and are now back home — and gearing up for the next holiday!

Each year my inlaws take care of the traditional foods — turkey, mashed potatoes, etc — and Mr. R and I experiment with some new sides and desserts.  Here is a recap of some of the dishes that really worked.

Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good

This recipe was AWESOME.  We will definitely make this again.

Find a medium-sized pumpkin intended for carving (a pie pumpkin will not have a large enough cavity) and stuff it with deliciousness.  You may want to select one a few weeks in advance; it seems stores cleared out their pumpkin inventory right before Thanksgiving and we had a difficult time tracking one down at the last minute.

Cut off the top and clear out all the seeds and pith.  Season inside with salt and pepper.

Combine bread cubes, cheeses, garlic and spices.

Mix cream and nutmeg and pour into pumpkins.

Replace cap and bake for 2 hours.  Remove from oven CAREFULLY and serve on a platter.  Be sure to get some of the pumpkin flesh as you serve it!

Vegetarian gravy

I am really the only one who eats this and in the past we have always had store-bought varieties.  But I decided to make it myself this year.  After perusing myriad recipes I came up with this one:

Ingredients
1 1oz package dried woodland mushrooms
2 large or 3 small shallots
1 dried chipotle chili
3 cups vegetable broth
3T butter
3T flour
1T marsala wine
Salt, pepper to taste

Directions
Rehydrate mushrooms and chili in warmed vegetable broth for about 20 minutes, then bring to a simmer for 5 minutes more.

In the meantime, chop the shallots and measure out other ingredients.

When mushrooms are done, strain, reserve broth, chop mushrooms into small pieces and discard the chili.

Saute shallots and mushrooms for several minutes in a small saucepan.  Deglaze pan with marsala wine.  Add reserved broth and keep warm.

Make roux:  heat 3T butter and add in 3T flour.  Whisk together until brown.

Whisk in broth with shallots and mushrooms and continue to stir until thickened, about 5-10 minutes.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Yum!

Dessert

Mr. R made some beautiful pies:

Pecan in the foreground, derby to the left, and pumpkin pie in the rear.

I will have to make a separate post on these very soon.

And now it is time to start planning for Christmas!  What new recipes will you be trying this year?

-R

 

 

 

 

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