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Variations on classic recipes for Thanksgiving

November 17, 2012

My family can be quite the traditionalists when it comes to food for the holidays. Boooring. This year, I tried to sneak a chocolate french silk pie into my bake list, and not surprisingly, got some grumbles and several thumbs down. “What about the pecan pie?” my sister asked. So, it got nixed for the pecan. Damn crybabies. If I knew I could get away with it, I’d make it a black bottomed one, but I doubt I’ll get my family blitzed enough that they wouldn’t notice. If you think you can sneak a few recipes into your bake/cook list this year, and still compromise with the family by using some traditional flavors, you should definitely check these out.

Thanksgiving twofer pie is a great spin that knocks out two pies in one. Two glorious pies: pumpkin on the bottom, pecan pie on the top. I usually leave it in longer than the recommended time, since it can come out a little gooey. Nothing wrong with gooey though. Dorie Greenspan’s Good for Almost Everything Pie Dough is one of my favorites. I just made seven discs of it in preparation for the pie marathon I’ll be doing this week.

Ginger Orange Cranberry Sauce gets its flavor from ginger beer and orange juice. Be sure to have a lid or splatter cover on hand in case those cranberry juices try to make a run for it all over the oven and onto your shirt.

Stuffing Cups help you use a pan this holiday that, unless you’re making muffins or cupcakes, wouldn’t otherwise be used. Which is great since I always seem to be lacking 13 x 9 pans around the holidays. You could use this technique and use your favorite stuffing recipe. I think muffin sized cups are a great idea, especially since this cuts down the baking time by one half.

Ina Garten’s Pecan Squares are a tasty variation of the pecan pie in a handheld form. If I can double fist these and have a square in each hand makes this recipe a definite “W”.

Pumpkin Roulade with Ginger Buttercream is a better choice than the store-bought version that “bakers” have made on some indeterminate date. No thanks. These can also be made in advance, just wrap tightly and freeze. Place in the fridge the day before to let it thaw out.

Celery Root and Apple Puree, another by Ina Garten, is a great way to get that starchy fix and sneak some veggies into the kids. I’m talking about those adult-sized kids. The food mill gives it a great texture that cannot be duplicated in the food processor or blender.

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From → Holiday cooking

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