When leaves begin to turn colour into browns, orange, reds, and yellows, we know that cooler temperatures are fast arriving. Besides telling us that we are approaching to the days before snow will be falling, we are also aware that soon it will be Thanksgiving. This is always celebrated in the United States on the last Thursday of November. Just when our weather in Saint Louis is beginning to get chillier!
I usually think of a golden brown, roasted turkey, stuffed with a traditional family recipe of a sausage/oatmeal stuffing, wild rice cooked in a chicken broth (made from scratch,) freshly cooked cranberries with cinnamon sticks, acorn squash seasoned with salt, freshly ground pepper, brown sugar, and butter, and brussel sprouts seasoned with thick, apple bacon tidbits. Yum!!!
Root crops are also popular to serve at Thanksgiving as they are found in our grocery stores at this time of the year. Due to the Fall season, vegetables such as celeriac and squash are much cheaper to buy around Thanksgiving time. The ground is still warmer than the air temperature making it still fresh for the chef to use. Celeriac I have talked about in another blog posting.
Beets, carrots, onions, parsnips, and turnips are also other root vegetables that can make your Thanksgiving dinner complete. They are very tasty with brown sugar and butter melted on top. Simply wash and clean your vegetables, then lay them on a greased baking sheet. Add your seasonings of freshly ground pepper and salt to your vegetables. Roast at an oven temperature of 350F for about twenty minutes. Make sure you keep checking on them every five minutes so you can turn them and keep them from getting burnt.
The sweetness of beets, carrots, and parsnips balances your medley of root vegetables if you choose to roast leeks and brussel sprouts with them. A very colourful side dish to your holiday Thanksgiving dinner!
When planning your Thanksgiving dinner, make sure you order your turkey ahead of time and allow a few days, in the fridge, for it to defrost. You can prepare your stuffing ahead of time, but keep it in the fridge once cooked and cooled, so you can save time when roasting your turkey.
You might consider adding wild mushrooms to your wild rice. If you don't want to search for wild mushrooms, which are now often available in your local grocery store, try adding a can of mushroom soup and slice up brown mushrooms.
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