Saturday, November 10, 2012

This is the first time I've written for this particular blog but I have to agree with Marrisse about Thanksgiving side dishes. I think they make the meal. Here is my contribution.


5 lbs. unpeeled red potatoes, quartered
12 oz. butter, room temperature
5 oz. grated Romano cheese
1-2 Tbsp. chopped garlic
2 1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 tsp. oregano

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender, but still firm and holding onto their skins, about 45 min. Drain.
Stir in butter, Romano, garlic, salt and oregano and mash.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Sweet Potato Thanksgiving Sides

Sweet potatoes are great even when it's not Thanksgiving. But here are a couple of sweet potato options that I think work really well as feast day sides (I'm starting to drool just thinking about them).

Sweet Potato Souffle
(Don't know if it's really a souffle, technically, but it makes for an alliterative title)

2 (29-oz) cans sweet potatoes
3 large eggs
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 Tbsp butter, melted
2/3 cup milk
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp nutmeg

1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp flour
2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp melted butter
1 cup broken nuts
Preheat oven to 350 deg. F.
Blend sweet potatoes, eggs, flour, 1/3 cup brown sugar, 2 Tbsp melted butter, and milk. Mix in spices and beat. Pour into casserole dish.
Mix topping ingredients and sprinkle over sweet potato mixture.

Bake covered at 350 deg. F. for 1 hour, then uncover and bake an additional 15 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes before serving.

If the souffle is a little too desert-y for your meal, or you're afraid it will steal the spotlight from the pumpkin pie, there's always the more savory roasted sweet potatoes.

Roast Sweet Potatoes

Preheat oven to 375 deg. F.

Peel and cut the following in a 1-inch dice
2 1/2 - 3 pounds sweet potatoes
2 onions (or cut in wedges)
2 or 3 medium apples (not red delicious or a tart one like granny smith; something crisp and sweet like fugi or gala)

Spread in single layer in a roasting pan and toss with:
1/4 olive oil
black pepper
a couple sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme.

Cook at 375 deg for 25 - 30 minutes, or until all is tender.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Thanksgiving Side Dishes

We all know we're going to have turkey and gravy on Thanksgiving, but that's not what I get excited about eating.  I really get excited about the side dishes.  My mom's fabulous stuffing, Emily's super delicious cranberry sauce, Jen's amazing sweet potato souffle.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.  With Thanksgiving fast approaching, I wanted to send out a challenge to you--post your favorite Thanksgiving side dish recipes or tips before the big day.  May all our Thanksgivings be more thankful and delicious than the last.

My contribution is a recipe I came up with a few years ago.  I wanted green beans in a butter sauce, but couldn't find a recipe, so I experimented and came up with this one.

Garlicky Green Beans in Butter Sauce

2 Tbsp. butter
2 garlic cloves, sliced very thin
2 tsp. flour
1/2 c. chicken broth
2 cans green beans
1/4-1/2 c. sliced almonds
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add the garlic and saute until golden brown.  Stir in flour and cook for a minute to take away the floury taste.  Stir in chicken broth.  Cook until thickened, one to two minutes.  Add green beans and heat through.  Off the heat, add almonds and season to taste.

Here are my tips and suggestions:
--Don't leave the garlic alone, it will go from pale to burnt quite quickly.  Also, don't be tempted to turn up the heat to make it go faster (I always do that.), the burnt will happen quicker.
--If you don't like garlic, either leave it out, or fish it out of the butter before adding the flour.  The second option will give you a subtle toasted garlic flavor.
--The butter sauce is made to be 1 Tbsp butter, 1 tsp flour, and 1/4 c. broth to 1 can green beans, but if you make the recipe as I have it here, you could probably add another can of green beans and have the sauce cover it.
--I usually make the sauce, add it to the green beans and microwave it.
--This can be made ahead of time.  Make the sauce, pour it over the beans and put it in the fridge until you're ready to eat it.  Then, nuke, add the almonds and season.