Monday, November 23, 2015

Thanksgiving Menu Planning

Everyone in our family has a favorite side dish they request at special family meals,  
including Thanksgiving and Christmas.  
We bake a turkey at Thanksgiving and Christmas.  
We also serve a baked Kentucky Country Ham at Christmas. 
In 2012 we added gluten free dishes to our menu.  This year
everything will be gluten free, with the exception of Sister Schubert rolls for Peyton. 
 A few of our favorite family recipes are below: 
For son-in-law Tim: 

Sweet Potato Casserole
3 C sweet potatoes, cooked or canned (I use a 29 oz. can, drained)
½ C. brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
½ t. salt
½ stick butter or margarine, melted
½ C. evaporated milk
1 ½ t. vanilla

½ C. brown sugar
1/3 C. flour (I substitute GF flour)
1/2 C. chopped pecans
1/3 stick butter or margarine melted

Mash sweet potatoes.  Add sugar, eggs, salt, butter, milk and vanilla.  Put mixture into an 8x8 casserole dish.  Mix topping ingredients and spread over sweet potato mixture.  Bake at 325 degrees for approximately 30 minutes. 

My family never made stuffing in the turkey, we always make Southern Cornbread Dressing baked in a casserole dish. Glenn's favorite side dish was my mom's dressing.   By the way, my mother was pleased that Glenn loved her dressing so much that she made him his own pan to bring home.  
While I'm on the subject of my mom's cooking, she always made dumplings to serve with turkey and dressing. The dumplings were everyone's favorite! Oh my! What memories! 
My gluten free cornbread dressing last year was very good.  I served it with gluten free turkey gravy. 
Corn starch has become a substitute for flour as the thickening agent in my gravy. 

Below Austin's Favorite: 

Southern Corn Pudding (my gluten free version) 
5 eggs 
1/3 C. butter, melted
1/4 C. white sugar
1/2 C. milk
4 Tablespoons cornstarch
1 (15.25 oz). can whole kernel corn
2 (14.75 oz.) cans cream-style corn (gluten free) 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Grease a 2 qt. casserole dish.
In a large bowl, lightly beat eggs.  Add melted butter, sugar and milk.
Whisk in cornstarch.  Stir in corn and creamed corn.  Blend well. Pour mixture into prepared casserole dish. 
Bake for 1 hour.  

We can't have a big family meal, picnic or holiday, without Deviled Eggs
My mother-in-law called her's Dressed Eggs. 
Either dressed or deviled, most families have their own special recipe.  
My basic recipe is from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book 
given to me as a wedding shower gift 45 years ago. (obviously it's not the newest version!) 
I top my deviled eggs with 1/2 a stuffed olive. 
Do you have anything special you add to your deviled eggs? 

Daughter, Melissa, was a Home Ec. teacher (Family and Consumer Science) 
for 11 years and supervised her classes making many turkey dinners, always to indlude
homemade cranberry sauce, but her requirement is canned Ocean Spray Cranberry Sauce
with our turkey dinners because it's her favorite! Our neighbor sends/brings homemade cranberry sauce and I'm the only one in the family who will eat it! 

For Peyton: Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans 
Those of us in Appalachia cook our garden green beans nearly all day, usually seasoned with a small cured country ham hock or "salt pork." When Aunt Mary was living, her job was to bring the Appalachian favorite  Shuck Beans.  Some folks called them "shucky beans" or "leather-britches."  
They were dried green beans picked from the garden and laid out in the sun to dry. They were stored and cooked during the winter. 

I'm still working on perfecting gluten free desserts.  The pumpkin pie I made last year with a store-bought frozen GF crust was a total failure, except for the many laughs we had trying to get the rock-hard crust out of the pan. I won't mention the brand name of that crust.  
I made a recipe for "crustless pecan pie" and GF Banana Cupcakes last year.  Both were good. 

I took these photos at Melissa's in 2012.  
I never seem to take time to take photos of Thanksgiving meals in my own kitchen. 

Do you have favorite family or regional recipes your family members ask you to make? 


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