The Holidays don't have a lot to do with business.. so I thought I would take a departure from the norm and talk about what's really important.. family and food. What you may or may not know about me.. is that I love to cook and I am a sentimental guy. So the Holidays are always a favorite for me.
I start with a Fresh, All Natural turkey. I was up and out early last Saturday expecting to fight the crowds at Sprouts. Getting the bird was easy, finding our favorite Brine, not so much . A quick call home confirmed I had walked by the entrance display and Boom! I was done . Brine in hand. An awesome turkey begins with a good brine.
The freshest of ingredients were gathered in the last day or so. However, usually 10 minutes into the TDay prep we will discover a missing, yet necessary ingredient and I will run to AJ's . This year, I look forward to using the motorcycle for this a.m. run.
Our family tradition dictates a classic herb stuffing, with Sage, Thyme , Parsley and a sprinkling or Rosemary gathered from our herb garden. I like to use sweet onions and I highly recommend The Macy's Day Parade, for family viewing in the background for stuffing and turkey prep. This year there is a new Elf on the Shelf balloon, sure to be a big hit in our house. It works for us- My job is hyping up the appearance of Santa which of course occurs at the very end!
Earlier in the am, Suzanne & the girls will finish up the Harvest decorated sugar cookies and the pumpkin pie, so the oven is clear and the house smells good, and of course the kids get to sample the cookies post- breakfast.
Our favorite dishes include fresh, french style sauteed green beans, mashed potatoes ( I like to throw in horseradish or garlic), sweet potatoes ( the wife's fav with black pepper and brown sugar) smashed turnips and this delicous cranberry sauce with apples and brandy. I might be tempted to throw in a favorite brussel sprouts dish, but I digress. And yes, I am a " clean as I go" chef.
My favorite wine happens to pair well with Turkey too, Edna Valley Chardonnay ( visiting the winery is on my bucket list). It is crisp and enjoyable, so you might want to purchase more than one bottle . ( Just sayin).
The girls get busy with the table prep, this includes a cool craft project they do each year compliments of Martha , pairing an easy printable with glue and her never ending yarn stash. ( Don't ask.) In addition, we always grab some rosemary from the garden and the roses we have in bloom- simple , but beautiful. During dinner the Arizona sun will shine through the french doors in our dining room, lighting the table with a great glow and the roses are always a great touch.
Right around this time, Zoe will start circling in her walker, anxiously anticipating the arrival of our Elf on the Shelf who arrives sometime on Thanksgiving Day, usually with great fan fare and a creative flair.l After the arrival, I share the book with the kids each year and it's the official start of our Holiday season.
Our day will wrap up with a family movie, desserts in front of the fire ...and if I am lucky later ..the chef will be rewarded with his favorite sambuca and espresso as the day ends with a fire on the patio. The memories however.. they stay forever.
What is your favorite Thanksgiving memory?
ps. the family pic on top was our first "family only" Thanksgiving, that was all about US and a great success. It is also a great shot of our girls, that have now entered the " tween" stage and now have a bit more " sassy" in each smile.