We celebrate what is probably the most traditional American Thanksgiving dinner possible (1950’s style)…the kind every baby boomer remembers.
Turkey and Dressing, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Yams with little toasted marshmallows on top, Green Bean casserole, Jello Salad, Rolls, cranberry sauce and pickles and olives and of course pies! Pies include pumpkin, apple, mince meat and pecan and this year lemon meringue and dixie with ice cream. Our only departure from tradition is no homemade ice cream but Murrays Ice Cream from Westport.
I buy a fresh (not frozen) turkey from the local grocery store. I order it ahead and then pick it up the afternoon before so I don’t have to keep it refrigerated long.
The dressing recipe is one my mother did (with my own updates until I arrived at one everyone seems to like). I stuff the turkey and make enough to also cook a separate casserole dish full of dressing. I make it the night before and let it refrigerate overnight which seems to help to make it even more flavorful.
Dressing recipe (.doc format) or (Dressing recipe-pdf format)
YAMS with little marshmallows
The yams with little marshmallows on top are the same as what my aunt Lola used to make for Thanksgiving.
Yams with little Marshmallows recipe (.pdf format)
GREEN BEAN Casserole
The green bean casserole is right out of the fifties. I think everyone in America served the green bean casserole for Thanksgiving in the fifties…it was so trendy then! I decided to look up the history of the green bean casserole and had to share …so straight from the history channel!
THE ORIGINS OF THE MYSTERIOUS GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE
MAKE-AHEAD TURKEY GRAVY
This year I had a recipe for make-ahead gravy. I liked having it already made so I will probably use it again. I used a recipe I found on all recipes.com. The only change I made was I used twice as many turkey wings…I like more flavor in my gravy.
Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy
Chef John’s Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy – Printer Friendly – Allrecipes.com
Nothing special with the mashed potatoes. This year I tried Yukon Gold variety. I also add a little canned milk and potato water and just a little butter (if I don’t have my low-fat guests attending I use cream instead of canned milk and more butter) and salt and pepper to taste.
CRANBERRY JELL-O SALAD
Why a Jell-O salad? I grew up in Utah…need I say more?? At least it is not green. If you don’t understand read “Jello-O and Mormonism: The stereotypes surprising origins” or Jell-O Love: A Guide to Mormon Cuisine . During the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City the most collectable pin was the green Jell-O pin.
(My mom’s favorite Jell-O dish was orange Jell-O with shredded carrots and if she got fancy it also had crushed pineapple in it. We had it often.)
The Jello salad I make every year for Thanksgiving is one my mom used but it has “evolved” ….it is more a fruit salad held together with a little Jello BUT it does have cranberries in it.
CRANBERRY FRUIT JELLO SALAD (.doc format)
CRANBERRY FRUIT JELLO SALAD (.pdf format)
ROLLS (.doc format)
ROLLS (.pdf format)
PUMPKIN PIE (.doc format)
PUMPKIN PIE (.pdf format)
APPLE PIE (.doc format)
APPLE PIE (.pdf format)
Pie Crust Recipe (.doc format)
Pie Crust Recipe (.pdf format)