beer-cheese bread, Better Homes and Gardens, bread for Thanksgiving, Caramel Apple Pie, caramel-apple cranberry-cherry pie, cheddar-sage biscuits, duchesse potatoes, giving thanks, gougere bread, Happy Thanksgiving, mashed potatoes, menu planning, Nigel Slater, Quaker bonnet biscuits, quick beer bread, quick dinner rolls, quince-apple pie, Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving baking, Thanksgiving dinner, Thanksgiving leftovers, Thanksgiving pie making, Thanksgiving sandwiches, vegetarian main courses, vegetarian Thanksgiving, Williams-Sonoma, yeast biscuits, zucchini-cheese crumble
Thanksgiving is only one week away! My family’s meal is already settled—it doesn’t change much from year to year—but in case you need some last-minute inspiration, I’ve compiled a round-up of the recipes I’ve blogged about that would suitably grace the festive board. Let’s have dessert first, shall we? If you’re looking for something a little more interesting than the usual pumpkin or pecan pie this year, try this quince-apple pie with oat streusel. It’s unique enough to satisfy the more adventurous, yet familiar enough to keep traditionalists happy. Quince doesn’t get much attention on our continent, but it is a lovely fruit to bake with; so if you can track some down, this pie is definitely worth a try. All right, I know Thanksgiving is all about turkey, but what should you do for all the vegetarians in your life? Or those who simply feel that the side dishes are the true high point of the meal and would be quite happy without a turkey—I come dangerously close to this category, but the traditionalist in me is currently still holding power, so the turkey stays (for now). However, if a turkey is not forthcoming on your Thanksgiving table this year, this savoury zucchini crumble from Nigel Slater’s Kitchen Diaries, hearty with potatoes, rosemary, walnuts, and lots of cheese, is perfectly capable of standing in as the main course. And it’s so delicious that, if you make it as alternative main dish for your vegetarian guests, warn them that they will have to fight off envious carnivores. Now, as for the side dishes, mashed potatoes are fairly standard, but suppose you were to take those mashed potatoes, enrich them with a few egg yolks, piped them into individual portions, and bake them until they were crusty and golden on the outside? These classic duchesse potatoes, despite their French origin, seem like a good addition to the Thanksgiving potato repertoire. I rather fancy they would be delicious with turkey and gravy piled inside. However, if you like having the gravy slowly mingle into everything else on your plate, you could always just pipe the mashed potato into plain rosettes. Dinner rolls are a good way to sop up that gravy, if it has run all over your plate, but the time commitment that is required to make them might be too much on the busiest cooking day of the year. So compromise on these old-fashioned Quaker bonnet biscuits. They are leavened with yeast, for the proper dinner roll flavour, but only have to rise once, for half an hour; and they bake in 15 minutes. All told, they can be made in an hour, and half of that time is for the rising and therefore completely hands-off. Or, if you decide to use the inevitable turkey leftovers in soup, make a batch of the biscuits on the day after Thanksgiving instead, and serve them on the side for dunking in the broth. And speaking of leftovers, if sandwiches are more your thing, consider a loaf of this cheesy beer bread. The thyme and mustard make it a perfect match for turkey. And if bread baking on the day after Thanksgiving sounds insane, be reassured. It’s a quick bread, which requires nothing more than stirring together the ingredients, depositing the batter in a loaf pan, and baking it for 50 minutes. For this slight effort, you will be rewarded with a Thanksgiving sandwich that is a celebration in itself.
Update: November 24th, 2014
I have since posted up a few more Thanksgiving recipes on the blog, and they all deserve to be featured on this list as well!
These scrumptious cheddar-sage biscuits are my most treasured Thanksgiving recipe. I dare you to only eat one–I have, to date, only been able to accomplish this feat on one Thanksgiving dinner. And I’ve been making these biscuits for the past ten years.
If plain pumpkin pie is too boring for you, this show-stopping caramel-apple pie with cherry-cranberry compote sparkles with enough flavours to please even the most adventurous foodie.
Happy Thanksgiving! Eat well and be grateful.