Wednesday, November 14, 2007

TT: 13 Favorite Holiday Meal Dishes

Thirteen HOLIDAY MEAL DISHES I LIKE TO SERVE

Thanksgiving is a week away so it's time for all the cooks to start their menu planning. I've actually never hosted a big family gathering at Thanksgiving (only Christmas & Easter), but here are some of my favorite dishes to serve at a holiday meal:

1. Orange-Zinfandel glazed ham from the Thanksgiving 101 cookbook by Rick Rodgers. Mix 1 jar orange marmalade with 2 garlic cloves, 1/2 cup red Zinfandel, and 1/2 cup OJ. Marinate ham overnight then bake until done.
2. Roast turkey. A trick I learned to keep the breast from drying out is to ice it prior to sticking the bird in the oven. Another one (if you don't have anyone with heart disease in the family!) is to pin bacon strips on the breast to let the drippings seep into the meat as it cooks.
3. Gravy. I like to make a starter using turkey stock and butter in case the turkey does not give off enough drippings. Also, I like to add 2 Tbsp. of bourbon for flavoring.
4. Sourdough, apple, and sausage stuffing. I make this recipe from Bon Appetit but use sourdough instead of French bread. I've also used Pepperidge Farm stuffing mix & just added the sausage, apple, leeks, and celery.
5. Triple cranberry sauce. I've adapted this recipe by using 100% cranberry juice from the natural foods section in lieu of the cranberry cocktail concentrate and then bumping up the sugar to 1 1/2 cups.
6. Maple-glazed carrots from Thanksgiving 101 by Rick Rodgers. Saute baby carrots in butter, beef broth/bouillion, and real maple syrup. Sprinkle with toasted pecans.
7. Mashed potatoes. The trick with these are to make them as close to the meal as possible so that they're still warm when served. I peel & chop the potatoes a few hours ahead and cover with a couple inches of cool water. Then I start cooking them shortly before the turkey is ready to come out of the oven. By the time the bird is cooled, carved, & ready to go on the table the potatoes are ready to mash.
8. Steamed green beans with slivered almonds. I am not a fan of the traditional green bean casserole made with cream of mushroom soup & french-fried onions on the top.
9. Fruit salad with scoop of rainbow sherbet. This is how my family traditionally starts all big holiday meals.
10. Tiramisu. This is one of those dishes that are really tricky to make well from scratch & it's simply easier just to pick up at one's local bakery.
11. Pecan-Bourbon pie. Another recipe from Rick Rodgers' Thanksgiving 101 cookbook. Add 2 Tbsp. Bourbon to the standard corn syrup-brown sugar-eggs-butter filling. Yum!
12. Apple pie. I like to use tart Granny Smith apples for this. Rick Rodgers has a great suggestion to saute them in butter & sugar prior to putting them in the pie to minimize shrinkage.
13. Weird dish relative always brings & nobody has the heart to tell not to. In my family, this is my aunt's Jell-o salad. She's been showing up with it to every family meal since long before I was born and I'm sure she'll bring it as long as she's able to. I love her dearly but not her odd concoction of lime Jell-o, cottage cheese, pineapple, and vegetables (!) I'm sure your family has a similar dish that everyone has to choke down a small serving of to be polite.

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31 comments:

Sandy Carlson said...

The Orange Zinf. recipe has my vote! God bless, and thanks for this TT full of great T'giving ideas.

Chelle Y. said...

You just made me very hungry.

Greatfullivin said...

I NEED this Rick Rodgers cookbook! Everything sounds wonderful! Thanks for stopping by and for asking about my son-in-law's mother. She is having surgery in the morning. Say a prayer for her won't you? Happy TT.

WorksForMom said...

Wow, these all sound divine. I think I gained 2 pounds just reading about all that food.

The Gal Herself said...

#9 sounds easy to make yet it's so original! Thanks for the idea, and thanks for visiting my TT.

Nicholas said...

I love proper mashed potatoes. Especially with garlic. Powdered mashed potatoes should be banned, or at least be severely restricted and carry a health warning!

http://agentlemansdomain.typepad.com

Janet said...

In my family, it seems to be my aunt's plum pudding that most of the younger generation dislike. To me, it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without it!

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

I was okay with the lime Jell-O until we got to the vegetables. Vegetables?? Weird.

The stuffing sounds good. I might need to look that one up...

Happy TT!

Lori said...

Gosh, your list has my mouth watering. Of course after I read #13 I realized you and I obviously have a realative in common (smile). Enjoyed the laugh.

Lori said...

OK...how come I just ate dinner and now im hungry again??? Great list. They sound yummy!! Happy TT.

SusieJ said...

This is great!! I'm going to have to re-arrange some things on our menu for next week to make room for one or two of these.

Open Grove Claudia said...

It sounds like you are really going to have a feast! I've never heard of Orange zinfindel ham - but it sounds wonderful.

Happy TT!

Fresh Girl said...

Oh, you have made me so very hungry. Do we really have to wait a whole week for Thanksgiving?!

Happy TT!

Mitchypoo said...

Oh, that ham recipe sounds good and we're taking Ham to my relatives for dinner. We'll give it a try. Happy TT!

2boys2teach said...

mmm...

Thanks for stopping by. Blessings!

*Rae* said...

I love the Orange Zinfandle idea lol in my family its my aunts idea of Orange & Cherry Jello with pieces of fruit and hard candies mixed in I don't know what made her decide to start making this I have to say thank goodness I live 3000 miles away from that dish now lol Happy TT

Nicole Austin said...

Yum! I might have to come visit your place for the holidays. :D

Happy TT!

Raggedy said...

I am so hungry now for Thanksgiving dinner!!! Yummm Yummm...
I like the green bean dish if you substitute the mushroom soup with cream of chicken..:)
Terrific Thursday Thirteen!
My TT is posted.
Have a wonderful day!
Happy TT'ing!
*^_^
(=':'=)
(")_ (")Š
Raggedy

Mishelle said...

I'm hungry EXCEPT for 13!! LOL

Alasandra said...

Well except for the weird dish everything sound scrumptious. My Dad smokes his Turkey with a Ham on the top rack of the smoker. The juice from the Ham drips down on the Turkey. Resulting in a moist, yummy Turkey.

Sassy Lucy said...

Awesome T13...kudos on being the featured T13er for the week, I am glad that you were, I love to find other homeschoolers,hope you'll pop in and visit me, and hope you won't mind if I blogroll you.

Santa's Elf said...

This reads like a simply delicious meal! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. :)

Nap Warden said...

#1 sounds way yummy!

Erin said...

I love cooking for the holidays! it's so much fun!

Yuriko said...

You're making me hungry! And it's an hour away from lunch! :(

Holly said...

I'm hungry - except of course for the jello salad. I used to have an aunt in the family who'd bring that. Must be an aunt thing.

This year I'm going to not stuff the turkey with stuffing, but quarter some navel oranges and sweet onions. Heard that recipe on the radio..

Smiles,
Holly
http://theabundanceplace.com

Holly said...

These all sound wonderful. I love tiramisu!

impworks said...

Are you sure #13 isn't a long running bet to see how long she can get away with it before someone tells her to stop?

Great T13, glad I just eat :-)

Diana said...

Yum...looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner!!

damozel said...

Oh MAN. Another blog about delicious Thanksgiving food....sounds so good.

I LOVE your post about the poor showing of even elite schools on civics education. It's absolutely fundamental; you'd think kids would be taught government along with the three R's.

thanks for visiting us...

Sue said...

You have definitely whet my appetite with this TT! :) Happy belated TT and thank you so much for stopping by!