Thursday, November 24, 2011

Pinch's 2011 Thanksgiving Menu

Fruit Salad
Rosemary Raisin Toast with Apricot Jam
Scrambled Eggs with Gruyere
Eggnog Lattes

Amuse Bouche
Bacon-Wrapped Medjool Date

Butternut Squash Demitasse with Spiced Pepitas

Mixed Greens with Pomegranate Seeds, Candied Pecans, and Prairie Fruits Farm Chevre

Cranberry Granita

Roast Turkey with Gravy
Beef Filet with Assorted Sauces - Bearnaise, Stilton or Horseradish
Mashed Yukon Potatoes
Vegetarian Stuffing
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Leek and Pancetta
Grand Marnier-spiked Cranberry Sauce
Some Sweet Potato Concoction
Golden Pillow Dinner Rolls

Pumpkin Pie
Pecan Pie
Chocolate Pound Cake with Chocolate Glaze
Frozen Peanut Butter Pie

Liquid Assets
Blood Orange Soda
Pinot Noir or Prosecco

A menu should speak for itself so here are a few notes:

I always plan breakfast. It needs to be satisfying enough to hold one over until dinner, yet simple since there's much cooking to do. I picked up a fragrant pineapple (determined by smelling the bottom of tens of pineapples. Does everyone know this is how to pick a melon or pineapple?), a Tuscan melon, some grapes, strawberries and blackberries.

I got these great ceramic appetizer spoons at World Market for the Amuse Bouche and some white ceramic sake cups for the Butternut Squash Soup. The petite sake cup will be just right for less intrepid diners.

The Intermezzo is a shout out to a Thanksgiving of yesteryear, celebrated here. Could anyone spend even one night in a cozy A-frame buried in the snow and not fall in love with mountain living? Sigh. An intermezzo serves to cleanse the palate between courses, in this case I'll bring it out after the salad. It's hardly sweet, just enough sugar to balance the tart market cranberries (you should see the size of these things, procured Wednesday at the Green City Market!), and has just a hint of orange.

The main event needs little explanation, just the basics with a new tweaks from year to year. I'm tired of green beans, so the Brussels Sprouts will be new, assuming I get my act together. It's after midnight, the wee hours of Thanksgiving morning, and it's just occurred to me that I forgot to get Brussels sprouts at the market today.

Dessert is fixing up to be a whole buffet of sweets: Pecan and Pumpkin pies, baked in the thin French tart pans I like so much. My skilled daughter will contribute her Chocolate Pound Cake which is rich and delicious with chocolate glaze on top. And now that I finally sourced the elusive Famous Chocolate Wafer at Apple Market I am going to make a frozen peanut butter pie, also for old time's sake. We used to eat FPBP whenever we went to Paul's Pasta in Groton, Connecticut. I'm going to improvise that recipe, but will essentially conjure a peanut butter mousse using peanut butter, cream cheese and whipped cream, freeze it in a chocolate crust, then top it with a thin layer of chocolate glaze and whipped cream. It's totally unsophisticated but sure to a hit among those less than thrilled with traditional Thanksgiving pies.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Anonymous said...

"Bacon-Wrapped Medjool Date" YUM!

Assorted sauces? YUM!

Hey Katie, was perusing the net for a sweet potato dish and swung by... Seems you have the same idea as me... "Some Sweet Potato concoction..."

Think I will cube, toss with the usual sweeteners and some spices then oven roast...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and the family...

-Matt in Austin

Katie Fairbank said...

Matt! I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving. Our sweet potatoes ended up as oven roasted fries with a bit of a kick. The assorted sauces were a hit and the Brussels were completely forgotten. Now I can start planning our Christmas celebration dinners.