What a feast we enjoyed yesterday with our families. This year we gathered in New Bern on a beautiful fall day with clear blue skies and temperatures in the mid 60’s. Everyone who attended contributed a menu item – some old, some new.
For hors d’oeuvres, my Dad, who loves olives as much if not more than I do, brought an olive tray. The tray consisted of marinated mushrooms, garlic olives, marinated peppers ranging from red to pepperoncini peppers, and green olives.
For the main menu item, I decided to make one of my tried and true recipes from a previous Thanksgiving, where Mom and I made all new recipes (everything turned out pleasantly delicious), a sage-pancetta turkey and gravy from epicurious. Sage and rosemary with Italian bacon, butter, shallots, and Parmesan are a flavorful combination we’ve enjoyed twice now.
The recipe requires rubbing the finely blended ingredients directly onto the Turkey skin, which meant I had to separate the skin from the meat – a not so pleasant task. Let’s just say I felt like I had violated the turkey.
Fond memories from my childhood are of my Grandmother on Thanksgiving Day standing in the kitchen preparing homemade pie crusts for apple and pumpkin pies, and yeast rolls, which were baked just in time to be served with our dinner. I have made yeast rolls ever since I asked her how to make them and had a kitchen of my own. Yesterday morning, I spent 10 minutes or so in front of the oven wondering why the first batch of rolls weren’t browning before I realized that I had somehow thought 325 degrees was the right temp when really they should have been baked at 425 degrees (my bad) for 15 minutes. Fortunately, they tasted fine the day of but have slowly gone down hill in freshness since dinner was served. Major oops!
My Mom’s contribution was a glazed spiral ham that was heated up the day of, and, my other favorite, buttery mashed potatoes and corn pudding.
Cranberry sauce out of a can should never be served if you have a MIL who makes delicious cranberry sauce like mine. The sauce er chutney is very refreshing since it is not too sweet or dry. Another family member brought one sweet potato casserole with crumbled pecan topping, and sweet potato pie. You really can’t go wrong with either one.
While in Ocracoke Island for Ocrafolk Festival earlier this year, we discovered the traditional fig cake during our stay at a local B & B. The cake is made from fig preserves is very moist and reminds me of a spice cake.
Late this summer my co-worker brought figs into work to share and I ended up with about six cups. I made two cakes before I decided to save two cups of preserves for Thanksgiving and this is how it turned out.
I hope everyone got their fill of turkey lurkey this year and enjoyed time with their families.