Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Thanksgiving Fare

I wanted to post some of our Thanksgiving goodies.  This year I straddled the line.  I made food that everyone would eat, but I made sure many of the items had only ingredients that are on our list of "okay" foods.  I think it went well but I will say that I did learn that butter does always make it better.  Next year I'm going to brine my turkey so we don't need butter.  I must get away from butter ;-)

I like to make my own cranberry sauce and good ole Trader Joe is kind enough to carry organic cranberries!  I put them in a pot of water and simmer them with cinnamon and cloves until they look like this. Then I add honey to taste.  They were quite tart this year so I put in a whole cup of honey and they were still tart.  I've put orange juice in them before which helps a lot but I was short the oranges this year.  Still - Kaelyn loved dipping her turkey in it!

My favorite part was my stuffing. I'll admit - I've always been a boxed stuffing girl and yes, it's my favorite part of the meal.  So I wanted to make my own this year and didn't even use a recipe.  I purchased the Health Starts Here Whole Grain Bread from Whole foods (a friend of mine just informed me they actually cell the bread crumbs if you prefer a crumby stuffing - I like mine chunky!).  I cut off the hardest part of the crust and then cut the bread in to 1/2 inch pieces.  I sauteed 4 celery stalks and a whole onion in butter (1/4 cup).  I then added 2 cups of vegetable stock, 1/2 teaspoon each of sage, fresh thyme, rosemary and poultry seasoning, and 2 cups of baby kale/chard/spinach (also sold at Trader Joe's).  Then I tossed it all together and baked it for 1/2 hour.  I think it was delish.  Next year I will try to make it without the butter.  I didn't want to take too many chances the first time around!

Persimmon pie. This is one of my favorites. And when I've served it in the past it's been a favorite. I'll admit our families did not choose this - they opted for the regular apple or pumpkin cheesecake (not on our approved ingredient lists!) but my family is not the most open to our type of food.  That said, this pie was really good.

Above is the "before baking" shot and below you can se it amidst the other pies (which I'll pride myself on switching my sister to butter and 1/2 whole wheat flour rather than the usual shortening and white flour).  It is the top left pie.  I make it without a crust (I am not fond of crust anyway) and put a yummy topping on it.

Persimmon Pie Recipe

Slice 8-10 fuyu persimmons (thin)
1/4 cup maple syrup (the real raw stuff...not Log Cabin!)
1 T corn starch
(Let this sit while you prepare the cobbler, or even longer. If any juices collect, drain them out.)
1 C oats (best to go with non quick cooking oats b/c you want the texture to remain in tact as much as possible)
1/2 C whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 C honey
1 t cinnamon
1/3 C butter (softenend, not melted) or melted coconut oil
1/3 C greek yogurt 
Prepare oven at 400 degrees
Stir topping together and spread it over the peaches to create a top-layer crust.
Bake for 20-25 minutes
Let cool for 20-30 mins and eat!

By the way - this pie is equally good with apples or peaches.  I haven't tried it with berries yet but I'm sure that would be good too!

Keeping it real! Kathy

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