Food and Garden Dailies started as a way to record my family's favorite recipes. It has come in handy many times when I'm asked for a recipe. I simply email a link to the blog! But I couldn't just stick to recipes. The kitchen is tied to the garden in so many ways...and so I let you into my ever changing garden as well.

If you're interested in my all-time favorite recipes, check out this post first: My Favorite Recipes

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Thanksgiving/Holiday Meal Plan

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This is an update (updated 11/7/11) to my plan that I created several years ago.  It's one I'll probably post each November. 

Are you looking for some new Thanksgiving recipes? With Thanksgiving approaching I thought I'd share my Holiday Meal Plan with all of my (tens of???) readers. My hope is that it will help your stress levels if you are preparing Thanksgiving dinner and all the trimmings for family or friends. These holiday recipes are our family's traditional dishes. Sometimes there's a different vegetable or bread, but we pretty much serve the save thing for Thanksgiving or Christmas. It might sound boring, but considering we only have this once or twice a year, it is a meal we look forward to!
 


The Menu:
Thanksgiving morning: Apple Streusel Coffeecake
Thanksgiving Dinner: Turkey, Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Cornbread, Broccoli with Garlic Butter and Cashews, Green Beans with Pecans, Smoky Scalloped Potatoes, Sausage Stuffing
Dessert: Apple Pie
Day After Thanksgiving: Day After Thanksgiving Turkey Pot Pie
(I can never decide between mashed potatoes (easy!) and the scalloped potatoes (scrumptious!), so they're both listed.  I don't usually make both, unless it's a really large crowd.  
 The following plan will easily feed 10-12 people with some leftovers. For additional people, add another vegetable dish.

Make sure to have on hand:
  • dried sage
  • dried thyme
  • olive oil
  • dried rosemary
  • bay leaves
  • ground marjoram
  • cayenne pepper
  • dry mustard
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • cinnamon
  • apple pie spice
  • fresh thyme (1 TB)
  • butter, salted
  • butter, unsalted
  • vegetable shortening
  • sugar
  • flour
  • cornmeal
  • light brown sugar
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • canola oil
  • milk
  • soy sauce
  • white wine vinegar
  • garlic
  • vanilla
  • eggs (4)
 Shopping List:
  • salted cashews (1/3 C)
  • shelled walnuts (1 C)
  • pecan halves (1 C)
  • plain low fat yogurt (16 oz)
  • Granny Smith apples (6)
  • broccoli (1 1/2 pounds)
  • celery (1 C)
  • onion (2 large)
  • fresh parsley (1/2 C)
  • 5-10 lbs. baking potatoes (5 pounds if making just one of the potato dishes; 10 pounds if making both)
  • 2 pie crust shells (As a shortcut you can use Pilsbury refrigerated pie crust, or you can make your own)
  • chicken broth (2 cans)
  • ground sausage (1 lb)
  • herb seasoned stuffing mix (8 oz) (or a loaf of bread to make your own)
  • turkey
  • 1/4-1/2 pound ground soy “sausage”
  • 2 C smoked Gouda cheese
  • heavy cream (1 1/2 C)
  • buttermilk (1 1/2 C)
UP TO A WEEK BEFORE
CHOP
1 cup celery
1 cup onion
1/4 cup parsley
Place all 3 in a baggie for Stuffing.
1 large onion
Place in a baggie for Scalloped Potatoes
1 cup celery
1 cup onion
Place both in a baggie for Turkey Potpie.
1 ½ pounds broccoli, in bite sized pieces
Put in baggie for Broccoli dish.
3-4 cloves garlic (whole...don’t chop)
Place in a tiny prep container for Mashed Potatoes.
1 cup walnuts
Put in prep bowl for Coffee Cake.
1/3 cup salted cashews
Put in baggie for Broccoli Dish
2 pounds fresh green beans, wash and  trim ends
Put in baggie for Green Bean Dish.
4 TB shallots
Put in small prep bowl for Green Bean Dish
3 TB fresh parsley
Put in small prep bowl for Green Bean Dish



SHRED
2 C smoked Gouda cheese
Place in baggie for Scalloped Potatoes







 DAY BEFORE
COOK
1 pound ground Italian sausage
1/4-1/2 pound ground soy “sausage” (My daughter is vegetarian...so I make some of the stuffing with her "sausage".)
Put in separate baggies for Stuffing


CHOP
6 cups Granny Smith apples (pie) 
2 Granny Smith apples (coffee cake)
Keep apples in a bowl of lemon juice and water, covered in the refrigerator until needed.

 PREPARE
12 prep bowls shown in the chart below (click on it to enlarge)
Apple Streusel Coffeecake:  Make the batter and keep it covered and refrigerated in the Kitchen Aid mixing bowl. (Quickly beat it in the morning.)
Pie crusts (can be placed on waxed paper and rolled up in the fridge until needed)
Smoky Scalloped Potatoes:  Prepare, cover with foil, refrigerate.
Clean and prep turkey. Put the spice rub under the skin. Cover with foil and place in the refrigerator.  (For a detailed look at seasoning the turkey under the skin, check out this post:  TURKEY SEASONING UNDER THE SKIN)
The following chart is the beauty and brains behind the simplicity of this meal. I set out 11 prep bowls (sizes are listed on the chart), and fill them assembly-line style with different ingredients. Each bowl is numbered with masking tape so I know when to use it. Once these bowls are filled, most of the work is done!
Ingredients to get out for the assembly bowl line:
  • dried sage
  • dried thyme
  • olive oil
  • dried rosemary
  • bay leaves
  • ground marjoram
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • cinnamon
  • apple pie spices
  • butter, salted
  • butter, unsalted (2 sticks)
  • vegetable shortening
  • sugar
  • flour
  • cornmeal
  • light brown sugar
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • canola oil
  • milk
  • soy sauce
  • white wine vinegar
  • garlic
  • fresh thyme
  • cayenne pepper
  • dry mustard
And now, for the chart.  If you click the photo below, the whole chart will be large enough to view the details.


MORNING OF
BAKE
Coffee Cake
350 degrees, 70-80 minutes (make sure center by cone is done)

PREPARE
Stuffing (can keep warm in crock pot)
Use wok (small or large burner)
Put turkey in oven (see time chart).

JUST BEFORE TURKEY IS DONE
COOK
Peel and boil a few pounds of the potatoes w/garlic for mashed potatoes (You can skip this step if the Scalloped Potatoes will be enough for your group.)

ASSEMBLE AND PREPARE
Apple Pie
Cornbread
Take Scalloped Potatoes out of the refrigerator.

ONCE TURKEY IS OUT OF OVEN
PLACE IN OVEN 
425 degrees
Cornbread
Apple Pie
Scalloped Potatoes 

COOK STOVETOP
Broccoli w/Garlic Butter and Cashews (use large stock pot, then skillet on large burner)
Green Beans with Pecans (use 3 qt. stock pot and steamer)

PREPARE
Gravy
Use medium pot and small burner
Mash the potatoes. Use KA mixer or potato masher. Mash with butter, milk, salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm.
Carve turkey after 20-30 minutes of cooling.

And now, the recipes:

Broccoli with Garlic Butter Cashews
1 1/2 pounds fresh broccoli, cut into bite size pieces
1/3 cup butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup chopped salted cashews
Place the broccoli into a large pot with about 1 inch of water in the bottom. Bring to a boil, and cook for 7 minutes, or until tender but still crisp. Drain, and arrange broccoli on a serving platter.
While the broccoli is cooking, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Mix in the brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, pepper and garlic. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat. Mix in the cashews, and pour the sauce over the broccoli. Serve immediately.*
*It really does taste best when served immediately. When it's re-heated, the broccoli gets a little too mushy. So, I recommend only cooking the amount of broccoli your family will be eating at one sitting. You can reserve some of the marinade/cashews for another day when youcan quickly steam some fresh broccoli.

Green Beans with Pecans (San Francisco Encore)
Prep ahead of time:
-wash and trim 2 pounds of fresh green beans
-mince 4 TB of shallots
-mince 3 TB of fresh parsley
Steam until just tender, but still firm:
2 pounds of fresh green beans
In a skillet, saute until softened:
3 TB butter
4 TB minced shallots
Add, and brown lightly:
1 C pecan halves
Stir in:
beans
3 TB minced fresh parsley
Toss to coat and heat thoroughly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cornbread
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease 8 x 8 x 2" baking dish.
Mix together:
1 C sifted flour
2 TB sugar
3 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 C cornmeal
Make a depression in the center of the dry ingredients and lightly beat:
1 egg
Add to the center mixture:
1/4 C canola oil
1 C milk
Stir dry and wet ingredients together until the flour mixture is moistened.
Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Turkey Gravy
Pour off drippings from roasting pan.                                                          
 Add to a pot:
3 TB drippings
 
Add, and stir to make a paste:
3 TB flour
Gradually stir in:
1 ½ C condensed chicken broth, undiluted
½ tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 tsp coarsely chopped fresh marjoram leaves OR
½ tsp dried marjoram leaves
Bring to a boil, stirring. Mixture will be thickened and smooth. Simmer, stirring, 1 minute
Makes 1 ½ cups.  

Sausage Stuffing
In large skillet, saute:
1 lb sausage
Drain any fat and add:
1 C chopped celery
1 C chopped onion
1/4 C chopped parsley
Saute for 8-10 minutes.
In large stove top pot, combine
1 pkg (8 oz) herb-seasoned stuffing mix (or dried bread chunks from a good artisan bread)
½ tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Toss to mix well.  
Add:
1 C chicken broth
sausage mixture
Toss lightly.

Apple Streusel Coffeecake
Streusel (In bowl #3)
1 3/4 C packed light brown sugar
3/4 C all purpose flour
1 stick (1/2 C) cold butter, cut in small pieces
2 tsp cinnamon
1 C walnuts, coarsely chopped
In a medium size bowl, stir everything (except the walnuts) together with fingertips until crumbly and butter is completely incorporated. Stir in walnuts.

Cake (Dry ingredients in bowl #4)
3 1/4 C all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 ½ sticks (3/4 C) butter or margarine (not spread), at room temperature
1 1/4 C sugar
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1- 16 oz container plain low-fat yogurt
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced into ½” pieces (apples are in the refrigerator, diced)

Mix flour, baking powder, and baking soda in a small bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Beat in vanilla and yogurt. With mixer on low speed, beat in flour mixture.
Grease (and flour) the Pampered Chef bundt pan EXTREMELY well with butter (not Pam) or margarine.

Spoon 3 cups batter into pan, spread evenly.
Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of the streusel, the apples, and then ½ cup of the streusel.
Spoon on remaining batter and spread evenly, then add the nuts.    
Sprinkle with remaining streusel, pressing down lightly so it sticks to the batter. 

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 60-70 minutes or until a pick inserted in cake comes out clean. Cool on wire rack 15 minutes. Place cookie sheet over pan and carefully invert both. Remove pan and cool completely. 
The most “undone” part of the cake is in the middle around the cone. 

Serves 16. Per serving: 462 calories, 7 g pro, 63 g car, 21 g fat, 80 mg chol with butter, 41 mg chol with margarine, 291 mg sod. Exchanges: 2 1/4 starch/bread, 2 fruit, 4 fat. 

Old Fashioned Apple Pie
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Slice:
6 C tart apples (Granny Smith/about 4 apples or 2 lbs)

Combine:
1 C sugar
1 tsp apple pie spice*
1/4 C flour
dash salt

Add sliced apples, lightly toss.

2 pie crust shells (or make homemade crust listed below) 

Fill one pie crust and add the other on top. Seal edges and slit the top shell.

Bake 45-50 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

The Best Pie Dough (Cook's Illustrated)

Double Crust 10-inch Regular or 9-inch Deep-Dish 
When rolling out the dough, roll to a thickness of about 1/8-inch thick (about the thickness of two quarters). 
For a double-crust 10-inch regular pie
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon table salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
13 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
7 tablespoons vegetable shortening, chilled
4 - 5 tablespoons ice water

1. Mix flour, salt and sugar in food processor fitted with steel blade. Scatter butter pieces over flour mixture, tossing to coat butter with some flour. cut butter into flour with five 1-second pulses. Add shortening and continue cutting in until flour is pale yellow and resembles coarse cornmeal with butter bits no larger than small peas, about four more 1-second pulses. Turn mixture into medium bowl. 

2. Sprinkle 4 tablespoons of ice water over mixture. With blade of rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix. Press down on dough with broad side of spatula until dough sticks together, adding up to 1 tablespoon more ice water if dough will not come together. Shape dough into two balls with your hands, one slightly larger than the other. Flatten into 4-inch-wide disks. Dust lightly with flour, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 minutes before rolling. 
Time and temperature: I started the pie out at 425 degrees. Once the crust was nicely browned, I  turned down the oven to 350 degrees. The result was delicious! I didn't have to use the pesky torn foil pieces around the edge of my pie (you know...to keep the edges from burning). Next time I might brush a little water or egg over the raw upper crust and sprinkle on a dusting of cinnamon and sugar. 

A handy trick: I had trouble lifting the bottom crust up and placing it in the pie pan. It kept breaking apart. So, I rolled it out on a Tupperware pastry sheet I own, set the pie pan (upside down) centered on the crust, and with the help of my husband, carefully flipped the pan/crust/pastry sheet. The crust landed nice and neat right in the pie pan!

Lumpy Garlic Mashed Potatoes
 
Wash and scrub 15-20 potatoes.
You can peel them, or leave the skins on. (I often peel about a third of them, as I like the skins.
Cut potatoes into fourths. )

Place into large stockpots, filling with water (but not too much...or it will boil over).
Add a clove of garlic into each pot of potatoes.
Boil until you can pierce the largest potato chunk with a fork.
Drain the potatoes.
Put the potatoes back in the pot, or in a large bowl.
Add, to taste, milk, salt, pepper, and butter.
Mash with a potato masher.
Serve hot!

Turkey

* The USDA does not recommend cooking turkey in an oven set lower than 325 degrees F.
* Place your turkey or turkey breast on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.
* For optimum safety, stuffing a turkey is not recommended. For more even cooking, it is recommended you cook your stuffing outside the bird in a casserole. Use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of the stuffing. The stuffing must reach a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
* If you choose to stuff your turkey, the ingredients can be prepared ahead of time; however, keep wet and dry ingredients separate. Chill all of the wet ingredients (butter/margarine, cooked celery and onions, broth, etc.). Mix wet and dry ingredients just before filling the turkey cavities. Fill the cavities loosely. Cook the turkey immediately. Use a food thermometer to make sure the center of the stuffing reaches a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
* A whole turkey is safe when cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F as measured with a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook turkey to higher temperatures.
* If your turkey has a "pop-up" temperature indicator, it is recommended that you also check the internal temperature of the turkey in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast with a food thermometer. The minimum internal temperature should reach 165 degrees F for safety.
* For quality, let the turkey stand for 20 minutes before carving to allow juices to set. The turkey will carve more easily.
* Remove all stuffing from the turkey cavities.

Timetables for Turkey Roasting
(325 degrees F oven temperature)
These times are approximate and should always be used in conjunction with a properly placed thermometer.

Unstuffed
4 to 8 pounds (breast) 1½ to 3¼ hours
8 to 12 pounds 2 3/4 to 3 hours
12 to 14 pounds 3 to 3 3/4 hours
14 to 18 pounds 3 3/4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds 4 1/4 to 4 ½ hours
20 to 24 pounds 4 ½ to 5 hours

Stuffed
4 to 6 pounds (breast) Not usually applicable
6 to 8 pounds (breast) 2½ to 3½ hours
8 to 12 pounds 3 to 3 ½ hours
12 to 14 pounds 3 ½ to 4 hours
14 to 18 pounds 4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds 4 1/4 to 4 3/4 hours
20 to 24 pounds 4 3/4 to 5 1/4 hours

-Tuck wing tips under the shoulders of the bird for more even cooking. This is referred to as "akimbo."
-Add ½ cup of water to the bottom of the pan.
-If your roasting pan does not have a lid, you may place a tent of heavy-duty aluminum foil over the turkey for the first 1 to 1 ½ hours. This allows for maximum heat circulation, keeps the turkey moist, and reduces oven splatter. To prevent overbrowning, foil may also be placed over the turkey after it reaches the desired color.
-If using an oven-proof food thermometer, place it in the turkey at the start of the cooking cycle. It will allow you to check the internal temperature of the turkey while it is cooking. For turkey breasts, place thermometer in the thickest part. For whole turkeys, place in the thickest part of the inner thigh. Once the thigh has reached 165 degrees F, check the wing and the thickest part of the breast to ensure the turkey has reached a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees F throughout the product.

 Day After Thanksgiving Turkey Pot Pie
In a bowl, combine:
1-2 C shredded/chopped turkey meat
1 C chopped celery*1 C chopped onion*
1-2 C stuffing
1 C gravy

*You can saute these in a little butter if you like. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't!

 Line a pie pan (I swear by the Pampered Chef stoneware ones...they do not produce soggy bottomed crusts!!) with one pie crust.

Fill with the above contents. Place a second pie crust over the top, sealing the edges.
Decorate as desired. (I used a turkey shaped cookie cutter to cut out   all those little turkeys around the edges. Just wet the bottom of the dough piece with a little water so it will stick to the crust.) Put a few slits in the top crust so steam can escape.

Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes (until the crust is golden).
Let the pot pie cool and set for about 15 minutes before cutting into it.

For the crust...I use the same crust recipe that was used for the apple pie. So, if you're making crusts, just double that recipe.

Smoky Scalloped Potatoes
(Cook's Illustrated)
 
Move over, mashed potatoes—we love this recipe for an alternative holiday potato side dish. Buttermilk and smoked Gouda give this casserole its rich flavor and creamy consistency, so we don’t recommend substituting these ingredients. Here’s what else we discovered:
* Adding a pinch of baking soda to the potatoes as they cook helps to tenderize them without leaving any residual taste.
* This dish can be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.

Serves 8 or more

4 tablespoons unsalted butter*
1 large onion, minced
4 garlic cloves, minced (Cook's Illustrated) 
4 teaspoons dry mustard
1 tablespoons minced fresh thyme leaves
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
5 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and sliced thin**
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups shredded smoked Gouda cheese

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Melt butter in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, mustard, thyme, salt, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in potatoes, cream, buttermilk, and baking soda and bring to simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until potatoes are almost tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in cheese and transfer mixture to 13 by 9-inch baking dish.

2. Bake until cream is bubbling around edges and top is golden brown, about 15 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

Make Ahead: The casserole can be prepared through step 1 and refrigerated for up to 24 hours. When ready to bake, cover with foil and bake in 400-degree oven until hot and bubbly, about 40 minutes. Remove foil and continue cooking until top is golden brown, about 30 minutes.

* I always have unsalted on hand, but with all my holiday cooking, I ran out.  I made it with salted butter and it came out just fine.  But if you have the unsalted on hand, I'd use that.

Tofurky
We also make a Tofurky roast each year, as we have some vegetarians in the family.    We've found that one  roast can be cut in half (as soon as you buy it at the store).  Cook up half hte loaf for Thanksgiving, and the other half for Christmas.

1 comment:

Bella said...

Umm this is AMAZING!! My Mom always does Thanksgiving (and then my boyfriend and I do our own the day after) but if I ever get to host Turkey Day I am using this! So awesome!! TFS