Sunday, December 4, 2011

Giving Thanks

This Moment we have everything to be thankful for, home, jobs, family and friends. We have weathered stormy times and survived. now we give thanks for all the people who got us through.

Turkey number one. Guided by the "Real Simple get ahead on the holidays feature, I put together our first turkey dinner of the season. While my sweet man still spends his Saturdays at Trader Joe's, we decided early that we needed to get one of the TJs brined turkeys, as we waited too late and missed out last year. Mid-month, I pulled out the roasting pan, simmered a saucepan of Cider Glaze and Roasted a beautiful bird to Bronze perfection. The other beauty of starting early is the opportunity to enjoy more sides than can be consumed in one sitting.
(Cider Glazed Turkey, buttered turnips, cornbread stuffing with apples and giblets, cranberry sauce)

Thanksgiving Day the family gathered at the newly refurbished home of my brother and sister in law in the woods at Claude's Cove. All of our family traveled in from distant miles, as well as my sister in law's brothers and sister in law. My Thanksgiving morning was spent in my tradition of watching the Macy's parade and making a selection of side dishes from recipes I'd been gathering over the past weeks. Sweet Potatoes with Apples and Bacon (Trader Joe's recipe), Smothered Country Green Beans (Garden & Gun) and a Traditional Cornbread and biscuit dressing , a Southern Living Recipe, but a dead ringer of what Mom and Grandma made in past years. Last but not least, a homemade Cranberry Sauce made of a blend of fruits, juices and spices, not too sweet and a mellow accompaniment to the main dishes.

Cranberry Sauce

1 cup cranberry juice
1 bag of fresh whole cranberries
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 TBS Fig Preserves
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 tsp. lemon zest
1/4 tsp. lemon zest
1/4 tsp. Allspice
1/4 tsp.ground Ginger
Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 7 minutes until cranberries burst. Cool and chill before serving.

The family gathered and feasted and talked and wined and dined together on a gorgeous Autumn Day, where the sun filtered through the trees and jewel toned color glimmered still.

A welcomed day after was for resting, relaxing, and gathering a collection of antiquities for vending. Off to the Antique Mall, then a stop off to visit my old buddy Jimmy at his Antiques Shop. It was so great to see him and, as a bonus, from his treasures,, I found a perfect "McCoy" Turkey Platter for a steal!

Turkey platter McCoy as we'll call him, came home for the roasting of Turkey part deux. Another TJ bird, rubbed with varietal salts and spices, we served it up with a broccoli casserole, more dressing and leftover sweet potatoes from the day before. All leaving plenty for the turkey salads, turkey soups and sliced turkey sandwiches for days and weeks to come. yum yum. And Amen.