Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Day

My husband's family came down from Chicago to
spend a few days with us. It was nice to be
surrounded by family for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Of course we made turkey but here are some of the other dishes we served for
Thanksgiving Dinner.

Sweet Potato Casserole with a
cranberry, pecan, brown sugar
crumble on top.

Apple, Cranberry and Fennel Dressing
This is a picture of the good stuff in the Dressing - sorry I forgot to take a picture of the end product.

Cranberry, Pear Chutney

I made a green bean side dish that had shallots, bacon, almonds and balsamic vinegar.

And for dessert we had Pumpkin Pie, Apple Pie and a Chocolate Tart.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Make Ahead Turkey Gravy

The count down begins ~ only 12 days until Thanksgiving!
The "Arduinos" are coming down from Chicago
and I am excited to host Thanksgiving this year.

I am going to do my best to get ahead so that I don't
feel rushed when everyone arrives.

Todays project: Turkey Gravy

I started by browning two large turkey wings in a
Dutch oven with a little oil, salt and pepper.
Then I removed the turkey wings and set them aside.
I quartered 2 medium onions, a few carrots, a few
parsnips and celery. I put them in the Dutch oven
with a little butter and cooked them for about
7 minutes. Then I added a cup of white wine
and stirred all the vegetables and wine together.
Next, I added 4 cups of chicken broth, two sprigs
of fresh rosemary, some fresh sage leaves and
three cloves of garlic. I put the turkey wings
back into the mixture and allowed all the
ingredients to cook on low heat for about 45 minutes.
Pour the ingredients through a strainer keeping only
the liquid. I plan to freeze the gravy so that all
I have to do on Thanksgiving Day is add a little
butter, flour, salt and pepper.

Yeah, the gravy is made. Now I need to decide what I can make next.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Mushroom Lasagna

We took out the pasta machine yesterday ~
It has been a while but we were up for
the challenge of making lasagna noodles.

Just a few weeks ago we were in NY for my
brother's wedding! The reception was at
this excellent restaurant called the
Gramercy Park Tavern. One of the appetizers
they served was this very delicate mushroom
lasagna. It was outstanding and I would love
to taste it again but I don't know when I will
be back NY.

So, I figured if I can't go there and get it
I would try to make my own version of mushroom
lasagna. That is why the pasta machine was put
to use this weekend ~ we had to start with
homemade noodles.

For the filling, I chopped up baby portobello
and shitake mushrooms. I sauted the mushrooms
with some shallots. Then I added white wine
and cooked the mixture for another 5 minutes
until the liquid was absorbed. In a bowl,
I poured this mixture and then added chopped
parsley, grated parmesan cheese
and the white part of one egg.
After everything was combined it was pretty easy
to start layering my lasagna.

Instead of adding pasta sauce in between the layers I added a half
white wine and half chicken broth mixture.

Here is the end result:

The lasagna was excellent, however, it was not the same flavors as
the lasagna we had at the Gramercy Park Tavern. I will have
to do a little research and see if I can find out what type
of mushrooms they use and some of their key ingredients.

Brioche French Toast with Raspberry Puree

We stopped by this little market yesterday to pick up a
few things and I noticed that they were selling
packages of Raspberries for $1.49. What a great deal!
I picked up some for our Sunday morning breakfast.
My husband made Brioche French Toast with Raspberry Puree.