It has been a while since we have hosted a real Thanksgiving meal. Last year we visited The Canebrake for Thanksgiving dinner and then hosted a “snack” buffet the weekend after.
This year, The Hubs’ parents are coming! I am so excited. I love them. I definitely do NOT have the stereotypical in-laws.
I have absolutely no nosy, buttinsky , or meddling in-law stories. None. We get along great! 🙂
So let’s talk turkey.
I went perusing through the November Thanksgiving-themed magazines and fellow bloggers’ posts and compiled a menu. I want to keep it simple, delicious and healthy.
We will smoke a turkey breast with rosemary in the vintage “green egg.”
What else is on the menu?
- From Eating Well, a grape and fennel salad
- From my SRC buddy, Aimee at From Chapelhill to Chickenville, sauteed Swiss Chard with Bacon and Raisins.
- From Eat Yourself Skinny, Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Apples and Fried Rosemary
- From Inquiring Chef, Green Beans with Sweet Spiced Pecans and Goat Cheese
- From Ocean Spray, my take on their Wild Rice with Cranberries and Caramelized Onions (This is a favorite of The Hubs and is our stuffing alternative.)
- Riesling Gravy from Martha Stewart (Instead of giblet stock and turkey drippings, I use chicken stock. This is one of my mother-in-law’s favorite.)
- From Chris at Cafe Sucre Farine, Decoupaged & Sesame Brioche Rolls
- From my mom, her “famous” pecan pie from her bed & breakfast days
- And, at least one pumpkin pie from our last garden pumpkin. (I made a pretty delicious sweet potato pie last year.)
- Oops, I almost left these out—yes, a cranberry relish something-or-other.
I searched through my Thanksgiving recipe files and found a favorite but forgotten recipe. I have no idea where it originally came from.
Cranberry-Orange Relish with Jalapeño
2 c. fresh cranberries
1/4 c. diced red red onion
1 large jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped
2 T. fresh lime juice
1 orange, peeled, sectioned, and cut into 1/4-inch pieces (reserve juice)*
2 t. fresh grated ginger
up to 1/2 c. honey (or sugar)
1/4 c. fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped
1/4 c. pecans, toasted, broken in pieces
Place cranberries in food processor, and pulse to chop coarsely, about five pulses. Transfer to a medium bowl.
Add onion, jalapeño, lime juice, orange sections and juice, ginger, and celery; mix gently. Gradually add sugar and stir, tasting as you go, until you achieve the correct balance of sweetness.
Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days. Just before serving, add mint and pecans, and toss to combine.
*Place orange segments in a glass baking pan or on a cutting board placed in a rimmed baking sheet. That way you can reserve the juice as you chop. (You can also substitute mandarin oranges and add a splash of regular orange juice.)
The beauty of this recipe is that you can make it up to two days ahead of time. You can also adjust the sweetness to your liking. I think I almost like this better with ham than turkey but I would eat it anytime. (Last year I tried to find fresh cranberries in February for a recipe to no avail. I am buying in bulk this year and freezing them.)
I hope to covertly snap some pics as I cook and post them post-Thanksgiving. (Remember, The Hubs is the only family member that knows I blog.)
Please, please, please have a wonderful holiday. Enjoy your family, friends, and food! And, do not forget to give thanks.
I am now off to bake and cook my fanny off (but I love it!) because I am so thankful the in-laws are coming for a visit.