Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008

Thanksgiving dinner was a success once again this year. While I was terribly sad that my grandparents were unable to join us from California, it was still an enjoyable day with delicious food, conversation and fun. This year our family was joined by my dad's cousin David and his wife Martha, who live in the southern part of the state. I, of course, decided to document the entire day with pictures. So. . .I present to you: Thanksgiving at our house, 2008:

We didn't try to wake up particularly early, but we decided to get started around 7:00am. The first item on the agenda was the pumpkin pie. We have had this pumpkin pie recipe for as long as I can remember, and it is soooo good! My job was to make the filling while my mom made the crust.

Next on the agenda was the pumpkin roll cake. I assembled the cake (with the help of our KitchenAid mixer, as you can see in the picture!) while my mom beat the egg whites, then we folded it all together to make a fluffy pumpkin cake. This was baked and as soon as it came out of the oven we rolled it up in a big towel and it stayed this way in the refrigerator for over an hour. Later we unrolled it and stuffed it with a delicious whipped cream/rum extract/heath bar pieces mixture. Yummy!

The green beans and canned yams sat on the counter for most of the day, waiting to be used, and begging to have their picture taken. The green beans were used in the green bean casserole, which is a new tradition since we moved to Idaho (we used to have brussels sprouts when we lived in California) and I think it's pretty tasty! The yams were for the sweet potato casserole, which is something my mom, being raised in the south, enjoys.

Pretty soon the pumpkin cake was done in the oven and it was time to de-pan it and put it on the towel to roll up. We coated it with powdered sugar before rolling it to help it not stick to the towel. Yum!

We don't like to eat a big lunch on Thanksgiving because there is so much food to be enjoyed for dinner, so we enjoyed some appetizers provided by David and Martha. They brought mini quiches (one had a spinach mixture and the other was ham and eggs) and a fancy cheese which we spread on crackers. My dad had also purchased some herring which everyone else seemed to enjoy, but which I decided to pass on. :-)

My next task was to set the table. This is something that I love doing every year -- I think it is fun to make the table look pretty and to set out the dishes. It is especially fun when we use my mom's good china, but this year we decided to simplify things a little bit. I decided that, in order to properly document the day, it was important to take a picture of the table before and after I set it in order to show the transformation. While I was setting the table I discovered that the Purina Dog Show was on TV, so I enjoyed watching some interesting dogs parade around as I set the table. I was also on the phone at the same time, so setting the table turned into a fun little break from the kitchen -- a dog show, a pretty table, and a phone call. :-)

The one thing I realized after I took the picture of the finished table is that I forgot to put out the cornucopias! My grandmother has a set of cornucopias that we used every Thanksgiving at her house. When my grandparents were coming to visit us for Thanksgiving a couple of years ago I asked her to please bring the cornucopias, because they are something that I have a lot of memories of -- so she did, and since she left them here, we used them this year. Normally we fill them with candy corn, but this year we put nuts and chocolate-covered raisins in them. We used our moose and bear plates, so I alternated between which plate was at which place.

My mom and Martha busily made the dressing. We've used the same recipe for as long as I can remember, and I can't imagine Thanksgiving without it. It's got lots of veggies (celery, onion, watercress, parsley, and yes, even mushrooms), bread, bacon, sausage, and spices. Yum.

Before long it was time for David to carve the turkey (while Reba supervised, of course!). . .

. . .and then we all gathered in the dining room to enjoy the feast!

Unfortunately I did not get any pictures of the cranberry relish or the cranberry sauce, or the creamed corn or the mashed potatoes, or even the Idaho Potato and Cranberry Orange rolls, courtesy of my work. But. . .they were there, and they were all enjoyed.

Thanskgiving was a success, once again!

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