By Eileen Goltz
Thanksgiving is that rare holiday that can be either very casual (sweatpants and slippers) or an occasion to bring out the good china. Whichever way you choose to celebrate, there are lots of ways to keep it simple so that you can actually be a guest at your own table. Try a few new simple side dishes and spatchcocking your turkey
Okay, before you get out your dictionary, spatchcocking is a cooking method that consists of splitting your turkey in half, butterflying it, removing the backbone, laying it flat, skin side up on sliced onions, carrots and celery, in a roasting pan then roasting it. This speeds up the cook time by increasing the surface area. Better browning and you can cook a 12 pound turkey roasts perfectly in about an hour and a half as opposed to four hours. You should calculate between one to one and a half pounds of turkey (with bones) per person.
As for the side dishes the following recipes for simple delicious and elegant recipes will compliment any table no matter if you’re an empty nester and there are just 2 of you or you’ve got your entire family scheduled arrive in two hours.
PASTRAMI BRUSSEL SPROUTS
6 slices of pastrami
2 pounds brussel sprouts, trimmed, cut in half
3/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Cook the in a pastrami skillet until crispy (2 or 3 minutes). Let drain on paper towels, pour out all but two tablespoons of the grease. When the pastrami is cool, crumble it and set it aside Heat the grease and add the Brussels sprouts; cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the broth and bring the mixture to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for about, five minutes. Uncover and cook until the remaining liquid is almost evaporated. Add the crumbled pastrami and mix to combine. Cook one minute. Season with salt and pepper and serve. Serves 8.
BUTTERNUT APPLE BAKE
1 butternut squash (2 pounds), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices
3 large tart apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons margarine, melted
Preheat oven to 350. In a greased 10”X15” baking dish, arrange the squash slices in a row, overlapping slightly. Place the apple slices on top. In a bowl combine the brown sugar, pecans, flour and cinnamon then sprinkle the mixture over the top of the apples. Drizzle the melted margarine over the top. Cover with foil and bake for 40-50 minutes or until squash and apples are tender. Serves 6 to 8. Modified from tasteofhome.com
ROASTED BEET AND QUINOA SALAD
(pareve or meat)
1 cup quinoa, cooked in chicken or vegetable broth, cooled
6 beets, medium sized, washed, ends trimmed
Olive oil for brushing
1 leek, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
2 handfuls of spinach, chopped
1/2 cup parsley, roughly chopped
1/4 cup roasted, salted almonds, roughly chopped
Preheat the oven to 450. Brush olive oil over the beets and wrap them aluminum foil. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake for about 40 minutes. Remove and cool, in the foil for 15 minutes. Peel them (the skin should slip off) and cut into bite sized pieces. .
In a salad bowl combine the leek, avocado, spinach and parsley. Mix to combine. Just before serving add the beets and almonds, drizzle with dressing (recipe to follow) and mix to combine. Serves 6.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoon rice wine or apple cider vinegar
Sea or kosher salt and cracked pepper to taste
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine. Modified from food52.com
© Eileen Goltz thanks 14a