Test Kitchen | Thanksgiving Favorites

25 Nov

Entering back into the workforce today I have only a few regrets about the holiday past, and the biggest one is that I didn’t score myself a leftovers plate! We went to an “orphans feast” of types for Thanksgiving and I have never, I mean NEVER seen that great a variety or mass of food outside of a chow hall. It was cruh-razy. (The photo above is table 1-of-4, by the way. And we didn’t even get to TWO whole turkeys.) Crazier, perhaps, were my favorite dishes of the day! So I’m going to share them with you along with similar-looking recipes. Because odds are good I’ll be making these myself very soon…

1). Chicken Liver Pate

I was actually pretty shocked by how good this was, and it totally overshadowed all the other dishes, despite the all-around deliciousocity of everything. Man, I’m thinking about it now and my mouth is watering.

2). Oyster Dressing

I pretty much like any and all dressing/stuffing. Down to the Walmart brand boxed stuff you just add water to and let sit for 5 minutes. Oyster stuffing, though? That little unexpected kick is just fantastic. A faint seafood taste that is totally not overwhelming, and really sets off those great herbs and other deliciousness. Yum.

3). Cranberry Sauce, not the canned kind.

As far as I’m concerned, that canned jelly business is for the birds, despite its apparent popularity resurgence on The Facebook. Just type “canned cranberry sauce” into the search box. Anyhoo, fresh cranberry sauce is super easy to make, you can mix up the ingredients to your own liking (try brown sugar, port wine, lime juice, pomegranate seeds…) and it is TASTY. Tasty, I say.

4).  Ginger, Cranberry and Almond Scones. With Cranberry Curd.

Everybody’s heard of lemon curd. Cranberry curd is tart and delicious like lemon curd, but it is even more better! The awesome color alone sets it a mite above (although LAYERING cranberry, lemon and lime curds on, say a crepe cake would be UH-mazing) and it has crazy character and of course, the element of the unexpected. Pair it with scones (I used the above recipe and then added fresh cranberries, ginger and almonds) and you’ve got a not-too-sweet surprising holiday dessert that people will think took forever, but it really didn’t.

5).  Wheat Berries and Sausage.

“‘The heck is a wheat berry?!” you might ask. “Exactly,” I would reply. ha. From what I can tell, wheat berries are 1). Something hippies eat, 2). Cooked like rice, and 3). Actually really tasty! This young fellow (who wants to pursue community gardening and healing as a career after college) brought an especially tasty wheat-berries-n-sausage dish that made me want to delve into the terrifying (but oh-so-enticing) grains bins aisle of Whole Foods and emerge Victorious! with wheat berries, sprouted grains, and fresh peanut butter. Because I AM HEALTHY! Well, baby steps first.

Did you eat anything different from traditional Thanksgiving fare that you want to start incorporating into your own holiday tradition?

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