Thanksgiving Archive

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

spicy squash salad with lentils and goat cheese

squash salad with lentils and goat cheese

Odds are, this week is full of sugar for you. Chewy sugar, hard shiny sugar, sugar molded into candy corn, fluffed into marshmallows, coating adorable little popsicles of cake, wound with brown butter around grains of puffed rice and that doesn’t even include the peanut butter cups you’ll pilfer from your kid’s trick-or-treat bucket this weekend followed by the sweet slide from Thanksgiving’s marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes and December’s minty candy canes.

black lentils, soaking
bucheron

I, for one, could really go for a salad right now. I’ve been roasting a lot of squash and sweet potatoes lately, usually for the half-toothed member of our family and one day, I was looking to turn it into more of a fall salad and I stumbled upon a recipe from Bon Appetit. I nixed the arugula because the stuff I found at the market was spotty, and anyway, (gripe alert!) I like challenging myself to make salads that don’t hinge on leaves that are only in season a very small fraction of the times of the year people insist you should eat them. (End gripe.) I used a butternut squash instead of a pumpkin because they seem to roast up in cubes better, and also because they’re a much easier shape for my little sherpa to hold in his lap (and only occasionally gnaw on) as we head home from the market. I added toasted butternut squash seeds because I love some crunch with my salads and do hope you know they toast up almost as delightfully as pumpkin seeds. Finally, I used black lentils because that’s what I had in my pantry and what’s prettier in the last week of October than a black and orange medley?

butternut peelings

Continued after the jump »

Monday, November 23, 2009

gingerbread apple upside-down cake

gingerbread apple upside-down cake

I know everyone says that this whole early-baby thing “goes by so fast” and “blink and you’ll miss it” and I believed them, I really did. But I hadn’t prepared to take a bite of this cake last week and push it away disinterested because it’s “too fall/wintery for right now”, look at the date on my phone and realize that, holy gingerbread (see how baby-friendly we’re getting here at SK?!), it’s freaking November already. And not early November, but days before Thanksgiving, thus, late November. And forget November, what happened in October? I remember nothing, not one single thing save a vague recollection of an overlarge can of Crisco.

apple overboard
peelings

Despite my protestations, it turns out this gingerbread-spiced molasses-heavy caramelized apple upside-down cake is perfect for the holiday-decked winter months whether I’m ready for them or not. It’s intensely flavored, dark and coppery and goes about as perfectly with some barely sweetened, softly whipped cream as I imagine it would with a dark beer or hard cider (as in, why did I not think of that sooner?).

apple slices

Continued after the jump »

Thursday, November 19, 2009

creamed spinach

creamed spinach

I started fixin’ for some creamed spinach when I was pregnant — yes, they aren’t kidding about those iron cravings — but I never got to making it this summer. Because I didn’t have… time. Now, just pause for a second while I reach through this computer to throttle my summer self for thinking she knew what not having time was all about.

so much spinach

Then I had a baby and I was still craving creamed spinach but, you know, then I had a baby and really didn’t have time. And a week passed and then a month and a second month after that and on the very first day of his third month of life I was still drooling over an imaginary bowl of creamed spinach and decided enough was enough.

mid-recipe

Continued after the jump »

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

sweet potato buttermilk pie

sweet potato buttermilk pie

As many of you have figured out, I’ve got a megawatt crush on Southern food. It comes out with a vengeance all summer when I want nothing more than to dry-rub ribs, make corn bread and buttermilk dressing salads, dive headfirst into tomato pie and douse pretty much everything in bourbon then usually goes into a soft hibernation over the winter save a fried chicken or chicken and dumplings run-in or two.

pie doughsweet potatoesready to steamsteamed

Given this infatuation, it seems only right and proper that I’d get in a recipe for sweet potato pie at a time of year when sweet potatoes are exactly everywhere. But while I do love me some sweet potato pie, there’s a heaviness about it that is exactly what some people like about it but leaves me feeling kind of lukewarm. So you can imagine when I spied this fluffier, tangier and [here's the part I think you're really going to remember] almost cheesecake-like version of it a cookbook written by and I’d like to believe for Manhattanites with a thing for Southern home cooking, I bookmarked it instantaneously and then sat on my hands/tapped my feet impatiently until sweet potato season came around.

sweet potato buttermilk pie

Continued after the jump »

Thursday, November 12, 2009

swiss chard and sweet potato gratin

swiss chard and sweet potato gratin

Surely I’m not alone in this: When I’m eating starchy foods, I think I should be eating more greens. When I’m eating my greens, I wish I had heavier foods to balance them. And pretty much all of the time, I wonder why it has been so long since I made macaroni and cheese.

so much chard!yamsmise, messgreens and yams gratin

And this is what happens when I stewed all of these thoughts together in my head over countless feedings. I love sweet potatoes but I find most preparations of them too heavy and sweet (which is why I stick to spicing, curry-ing and/or spicing, curry-ing and frittering them); I love chard but I find most preparations of it too earnest but when I put these together in a gratin I ended up with the most bubbling, gurgling, cooing delight of a fall comfort there could be.

(Or maybe I’m just talking about the baby.)

Continued after the jump »