In all the hubbub about breakfast, oats, and blogospheric elitism, I let The Great Thanksgiving Triumph escape my attention for a precious few days. As I previously mentioned, we got a frozen store bird at The Big Supermarket, losing valuable locavore credibility. On the other hand, I biked the groceries home in the snow, gaining both carbon offset credits and insane-guy-on-a-bike points, so I figure it’s about even at that point.
As for the rest of the meal, I didn’t want to overdo things, over-extend myself, and not have any fun, so I decided I’d make the turkey and stuffing, two other sides, and two desserts. That’s what passes for not overdoing it around here. Was that enough? Heck no. Even though I knew that friends were bringing sides, I ended up with:
-Honey-bourbon glazed turkey with apple-sausage stuffing
-Smashed Yukon Gold potatoes with garlic and rosemary
-Baked Acorn squash with brown sugar and raisins
and toasted pumpkin seeds.
(I took a picture of the gorgeous, glazed turkey with its crispy, salty, succulent skin; really, I did. God only knows where it is now. Otherwise, I would post it here. Oh well.)
So much for not overdoing it, right? At least I was smart enough to spread the tasks out over several days. I started planning and prepping on Tuesday, did most of the work on Wednesday, and finished everything Thursday.
One interesting (to me, anyway) thing is that all this food, which ended up feeding 12 people with leftovers, didn’t push the grocery budget out of shape. (I’ll break down the budget, with a bonus feature, in another post.) What that tells me is that I didn’t go “far out of my way,” so to speak, in buying and using ingredients that I wouldn’t ordinarily have. The cranberries, oranges, acorn squash, whipped cream, and whiskey were exceptional purchases, and I probably went through two extra pounds of butter, but we have it on hand anyway. For the rest, I used what was on hand: lots of apples, breakfast sausage, leftover bread ends, and so on. And believe me when I say that the balance of the whiskey wasn’t wasted, either.
I’m still working on the spreadsheet of the various recipes and their components, so I’ll have a fairly accurate tally of what I used. One problem I’m running into is that since I often do a fair bit of improvisation when I cook, and I seldom bother to stop and write things down as I go, I don’t have quite as accurate a record of what I used as I’d like. Nevertheless, I think I can get a good idea; then I can see where it came from.