Thankful

Well I can say NaBloPoMo is a bust.  I did not blog yesterday.  Granted I have enough musings to fill a couple of blogs but will try and keep this relatively short.

I was up early and got the turkey out to sit for an hour.  It just cooks better if its not icebox cold.  In the meantime I started some bacon for my deviled eggs.  I made several kind of eggs but the bacon and jalapeno are the favorites and were all eaten.

I made the deviled egg filling and assembled the eggs.  Put the turkey in the pre-heated oven about 8:00 a.m. and then started to assemble my massive Charcuterie board.  The board only held a portion of my ingredients and I actually left off several things because there was just too much.  I left off smoked salmon, and all of the fresh veggies like carrots and cucumbers.  Oh well, it was still amazing and WELL received.

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My turkey was out of the oven by 11:00 and I made gravy.  I had enough drippings and bone broth I had on the stove to make two batches.  This was my only catastrophe of the day.  I made the first batch and while it was still basically bubbling hot in the skillet I tried to pour it into the container I was taking it in.  (At least I tried this over the sink.)  It of course spilled over the side and onto my hand which let go of the container as my other hand continued to pour my hot gravy down the sink.

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I made the next batch and poured it into the pan my bone broth had been in and then poured that into the container for travel.  Needless to say it was Such Good Gravy and we will had enough.  Maybe because of all the meet and cheese we ate before dinner.

Besides the turkey, the gravy, the charcuterie board two pies and the deviled eggs I loaded up all of the gingerbread houses and decorating gear into my car for the drive down to family in Irvine.

We spent a lovely day with family.  Eating WAY TOO MUCH and enjoying all of it.  We played a very aggressive game of pictionary of which my team lost, badly.  Ate dinner and then broke out the gingerbread houses.

A lot of lessons were learned from these houses.  Next year, cause this IS gonna happen again, maybe we get houses that are already put together.  Or since the putting together and failing at that was such a source of fun we will put them together at the beginning of the day and decorate them after dinner.

Emily won, she worked right through dessert and put the most love into her house.  There were lots of other great houses but most importantly the event was a hit.  We had dessert (more food) once most of us were done with the houses.  Cleaned up the mess and moved them all for a group photo.

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So by the time I got all of that re-loaded and home, only taking the food out of the car last night, I knew as I couldn’t even stay awake for  15 minutes that the blog of the day for November was a lost cause.  At least I got through most of the month and will finish strong.

Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving,

Prep, and more prep

This morning I made an apple pie, steamed my eggs for deviled eggs and prepped my turkey for tomorrow morning.  Then I got ready for a long commute to work.  Not only is it one of the busiest days on the roads here, but it also rained today.  Unless you live in Los Angeles, you may not understand this horrible combo.

I left for work before 1pm, giving myself over an hour and a half to get the 25 miles.  I made it in plenty of time, it did take just over an hour and it is so much easier if there is no rush or stress.  The average speed was about 35 MPH.  Actually not bad and I was thrilled.

After todays prep, tomorrow morning what I have left is to roast the turkey, make gravy, assemble the deviled eggs and put together my kick butt Charcuterie board.  Then pack it all up along with the gingerbread kits and drive to meet family for the day.

I do think Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday!  Not just the day, but the lead up and prep as well.

 

Tomorrow we will be loading up the turkey, two kinds of gravy, cranberry sauce, deviled eggs, charcuterie board, two pies, eleven gingerbread house kits, decorating items for those, games and my camera.   I am so glad I took Friday off of work.

Charcuterie Board

Can’t really say it  “shaar·koo·tr·ee” but I’ve been planning, prepping and BUYING for days to make a kick-butt charcuterie board.  When I usually put together something like this for dinner I usually just call it a picnic.

Inspiration started in Italy this last year.  I mean who doesn’t love olives, cheese, prosciutto and nuts.   The internet has been super helpful this week.  I have continued to add things to the pile to go on this board for Thursday.

The thing is, now I have far more things then I have board real estate for.  The price of buying a pre-made board at this point would have been way cheaper….even to get a super fancy and high end board, but damn I’m having fun.

Lori and I picked up a tray this last weekend for me to build this thing on and I have a list going and little bowls for olives and such.  Today I went to the deli and bought the cured meats for this masterpiece.  The joy I have gotten out of this so far has got to outweigh the price difference because I have been having a blast.  By the size of this board none of us will need Thanksgiving dinner, final pictures on Thursday after I put it together and transport it.  But none of the bowls are gonna fit on there.

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Ready, Set, Decorate

Being a week from December you may think I mean Christmas.  But in fact I am still all about the gingerbread house decorating we are doing on Thanksgiving.  We will be in a house full of creative people and this should be a blast.

This morning I drug out my two decorating tool boxes and cleaned them out.  Putting cake items away and filling them with decorating bags, tips, colors and sprinkles.  I will bring these along with the kits on Thursday.

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After playing with all the tools and cleaning up yellow spilled dye inside the box I did the laundry, changed the sheets and then we left for massages.  The once a month massages are such a treat and I’m already looking forward to the one next month.

We swung into Whole Foods and picked up my turkey.  I had ordered it spatchcocked but they hadn’t done it yet so that took a few minutes to do.  I didn’t bother to try and get any of my fresh items there today, the place was crazy.  Besides, there are “to-do’s” every day this week leading up to Thanksgiving.  Luckily Trader Joes and Sprouts are both near my gym so I plan on hitting up both of those tomorrow.

Granted I start thinking about what else I can get for these gingerbread houses and need to stop that, we have ENOUGH already!  Nobody needs a box of triple gingersnap cookies for the perfect roof shingles. (Adding to list)

Thanksgiving shopping week

I am very excited for Thanksgiving.  I’ve been planning and purchasing all week.  I even picked up a couple of games and for after dinner, along with ten gingerbread house kits.  There are ten of us for Thanksgiving and after thanksgiving dinner we will ring in the Christmas season with a friendly compitition.

The kits come with some royal icing and candies and I have a ton of materials left in with my cake decorating tools.  That doesn’t mean I dont want to swing by michaels for a few frosting tips for everyone to share.  Or is that just an excuse to buy more frosting tips???

I plan to get all of my shopping done before the weekend is over so any last minute things I come up with I can get in the mornings before work but mostly avoid the stores all together.  As it is now I only need the fresh items having wrapped up everything else this week.

It was one of those weeks that after the gym each day I was doing some kind of shopping, trader joes, sprouts, costco, bed bath & beyond for those kits.  Perhaps I’ll get away with only Whole Foods Sunday to get the turkey I ordered.

 

 

Recipes

Its a slow(ish) night at work.  So I have been looking up recipes for Thanksgiving.  I am not cooking everything by any means this year.  But I am making the turkey and a few other things.  On another note, I am most excited about the spatchcocked turkey I have already ordered.

I have been freezing the ends of celery, carrots and onions for a few weeks to make my veggie stock for gravy also.  I do love this over cooking time of year.  I am also going to create some experiments of my own in the next week, namely cranberry sauce.

I may be the only person at dinner who likes cranberry sauce, so I am trying to find a sugar free option.  There don’t seem to be a lot without using erythritol or something like that.  So I am going to try to make some with ripe pears as a sweetener before Thanksgiving and see if I can create the masterpiece I usually create, but sans sugar.