Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving Spread!

We are in prep mode for the big turkey day in our house - which is extra interesting considering I'm also in nesting mode and (for the past two days) severely cranky, swollen and pregnant mode.  Is it surprising that my husband is working today?  I think not... ;)

This time last year.  Rachel was just figuring out how to pull herself up. 
Thanksgiving is easy at our house since it's just us and, honestly, I love it that way.  I hate the stress of rushing and traveling and, since we don't live close to any family, we have spent a lot of holidays that way.  Once we had the girls, we opted for traveling around the holidays (cue my trip North last week), but spending the actual days at home and creating our own family traditions. 

Well, and when you stay home you get all the leftovers...which is really what I'm in this for, people.

When we were planning our menu, Scott made the comment that we could really keep things simple with it just being us and not having a big spread.  I just laughed at him because I have been CRAVING Thanksgiving food and planned a menu based around my own pregnancy whims.  Not that he is complaining!  Here's what we're having (and there's going to be plenty if you have no place to go and want to stop by!):

Food Network's World's Simplest Thanksgiving Turkey - easy and yummy sounding.  That is right up my alley.  I had a Barefoot Contessa (who I love) recipe picked out, but like a dummy, I went to the grocery store BEFORE consulting my recipes and forgot lemons.  So this one covered everything that I have on hand.  

I'm planning on putting the bird in as soon as we get up so we can eat early...and still have room for leftover sandwiches later. The leftover sandwiches are truly our mission in life when it comes to Thanksgiving.  The first Thanksgiving that Scott and I spent on our own, we concocted sandwiches with turkey, mayo, cheese, lettuce, stuffing and cranberry relish...and oh my glory.  I remember making more stuffing just so we could have more sandwiches.  Scott's only Thanksgiving request was that I get good rolls for these beauties...oh, and that I don't ditch the sugar in his grandma's cranberry relish...but we'll get there.

Stuffing - My husband jokes that I am the only person on earth that would rather have Stove Top over something homemade.  And I would.  I love it.  This is the only time of year that I fix it and thanks to a BOGO special a couple weeks back, we shall have plenty.  Of course, I will probably doctor it up a little bit, but the little red boxes are our friends.

Paula Deen's Sweet Potato Bake - We love this sweet potato casserole, and it is all Paula Deen:  rich, sweet and yummy.  I omit the topping for mini marshmallows and it is still delicious. Roasted Turkey Gravy - I'm not planning mashed potatoes, but I do like gravy on the turkey...and sometimes on the leftover sandwiches...ha!

Roasted butternut squash - Just plain and simple with butter.  I like the mix of tastes and colors this adds to the plate - especially against the red and greens.  This particular butternut is from my mom's garden and is just the perfect size.  It was still growing when we were up visiting in September and Elizabeth loved walking out to the vine every day with my mom to look at it.  In fact, they named it "Lizzy" and my mom saved it just for Elizabeth.  Let's hope she eats it!

Green bean casserole - ala from the side of the French's onion can.  mmmmm...this will be our green for the plate.  

Scott's Grandma's Cranberry Relish - Elizabeth and I are going to make this today and she is excited about helping.  Scott has asked me repeatedly if I'm going to put sugar in it and it really is a little too tart without it.  It goes something like this...2 bags of fresh cranberries (thank you Publix BOGO this week!), 1-2 oranges (zest and juice).  Chop it all in the food processor and add sugar to taste...normally about 1/2 still want it with a little zing.  It needs to balance the sweet potatoes, after all!

Potato rolls - Again, thank you Publix.  I know my battles, and decided to let someone else make the rolls and I'll do the pie.  Talking about rolls always makes me think about when we had Scott's wrestlers over for Thanksgiving dinner and I made at least 6 cans of crescent rolls and they devoured every one.  Poor guys had to spend the rest of the evening sweating them back off, but they assured me it was worth it.

$5 Dinner Mom's Maple Pumpkin Pie - You all know that I love the $5 Dinner Mom and recently purchased her ebook on Holiday Entertaining and it really does not disappoint.  In fact, if you're interested, it's on sale now for $1.99 and I'll just link this entire sentence to the book for you to find it.  We're also going to make her pie crust, although I think I'm going to add cinnamon to it, like she mentions in another article I can't find right now.

I also have enough cider to last us the day spent inside and we have visions of getting out Christmas decorations...shew!  So...what are YOUR plans?  Whatever they are, I hope you have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!  We are thankful for all of you!


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