For most people, Thanksgiving is all about the Turkey. As a vegetarian, for me Thanksgiving is all about the side dishes. My husband takes care of the turkey and homemade gravy (both of which, I'm told, are divine), and I do the rest. But I am a traditionalist. On Thanksgiving, I don't want any weird fancy vegetarian tofu nonsense. I want down-home comfort food--mashed potatoes, stuffing, homemade rolls, & pumpkin pie--and I want each dish to be the best thing I've ever tasted. As far as decor goes, I want autumn leaves and decorative turkeys, and maybe a few pumpkins and ears of corn here and there. No modern interpretations, no plum and mauve color scheme, just harvest goodness at its best.
Here is my inspiration:
(Photo Credit: MarthaStewart.com, BetterHomesandGarden.com, Delish.com, Ruth Soukup 2009)
Over the years, I've collected a handful of amazing recipes that I make only at Thanksgiving The rest of the year, I drool just thinking about them. They are time-tested and delectable, and although each year Husband begs me to scale back a little, these dishes are the core of my Thanksgiving dinner and I can't stand the thought of missing even one.
Here is this year's menu:
Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes
Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes
Roasted Parmesan Brussels Sprouts
Caramelized Onion Pull-Apart Rolls
Pumpkin Pie with maple whipped cream
Apple Pie with homemade vanilla ice-cream
(If you would like me to post any of these recipes, please leave a comment below!)
For decorations, I am going to attempt to make the tin-can luminaries that I wanted to make for Halloween (but ran out of time for). I've already collected the cans and bought the spray paint, so now it is just a matter of pulling it all together. I love the idea of autumn leaf place cards and autumn leaf trivets made from felt. Those directions are found on MarthaStewart.com. Using scrap ribbon to tie up the napkins is also a very cute idea.
Pulling it all together on a budget is going to be a challenge. I've managed to accumulate a great stockpile of staples, which will help, and now that I have established my menu, I will make a list of needed ingredients and try to collect as many as possible on sale over the next four weeks.
So tell me, what's your favorite can't-miss Thanksgiving dish?