Believe it or not, I’ve never cooked a Thanksgiving Dinner. In all my adult years I’ve always traveled to the East coast for Thanksgiving, and I’ve never been the one in the kitchen. But this year I’m staying in Los Angeles and my man and I are doing it. We’re making our first Thanksgiving dinner! It’s less than a week away, so it’s definitely time to plan out our menu. Feel free to poach any and all of our dishes, and comment below with your own ideas or recipe requests. It’s time to cook!
Thanksgiving is my favorite food holiday. I love turkey! I know, I know, I’m always giving you vegetarian recipes. But I actually LOVE turkey, and it’s my main reason for not being a vegetarian or pescatarian. So Thanksgiving dinner is a slice of heaven, but I’ve never cooked a whole turkey before. I have watched my mom make a turkey every Christmas and I’ve cooked dozens of roast chickens. Now it’s my time to cook the big bird and my turkey will be seasoned with rosemary, thyme, and lemon. YUM! Super psyched for the cornerstone of my Thanksgiving dinner.
Another favorite of mine, and a staple of Thanksgiving dinner, is of course stuffing! I’m a fan of all types of stuffing, excluding ones with pork or beef sausage. For my first Thanksgiving dinner I’m trying my hand at a poblano corn bread stuffing! I found an amazing recipe that I plan to tweak just a bit. Check it out HERE! I’ve never made corn bread stuffing, but I know it will be great. I trust my cooking genes! I debated whether or not to make a regular stuffing, but since my mom makes an amazing traditional stuffing at Christmas, I decided it was time to branch out and try my hand at corn bread stuffing. Plus my man loves corn bread, so I know he’ll love this new stuffing!
One cannot make Thanksgiving dinner without having a stellar mashed potato recipe. It’s a staple! Lucky for me, my mom taught me how to make mashed potatoes when I was a child. It was at every one of our Sunday dinners, but for my first Thanksgiving dinner I’m adding a twist. I’m putting my own spin on mashed potatoes with some of my favorite savory goodies. I think chives are in order, and of course some sort of soft cheese. I’m partial to goat cheese, or a boursin style cheese. It’s totally going to be an on the fly recipe, jammed packed with flavor. If it’s one thing I know, these bad boys need to be bursting with flavor!
Honestly, I could make so many more dishes to go along with my Thanksgiving dinner, but if I did that my husband would think I’m crazy and going overboard! So I’m dialing it down and finishing off my menu with some great vegetable dishes. I’m going to make some saracha infused green beans, topped with caramelized onions. Sometimes a nice, simple, veggie dish with a flair is all you need to accompany your dinner. Then I’m making yams. Oh yeah!
Thanksgiving dinner wouldn’t be complete without a yam dish and my man longs for candied yams with marshmallows. I’m going to oblige. Live a little, am I right? I know there are so many other ways to make candied yams; SO many healthier style dishes, but hey it’s Thanksgiving. Candied yams with those delish marshmallows are coming to the table. They’re super simple to make. All you need is a can of candied yams, brown sugar, butter, and marshmallows. That’s it kids! Simply bake that bad boy and it’s ready to enjoy. Done and Done.
Thanksgiving dinner also needs a cranberry sauce. My man prefers homemade cranberry sauce to those in the can and I’m fully on board with that! This year I’ll be trying my hand at making my own cranberry sauce. Woo! I found a super easy recipe on food network.com that I’ll be using, along with fresh cranberries. I can’t wait to try this bad boy out.
Since I’m not the only one cooking for my first Thanksgiving dinner, I can now move to the dessert portion of my menu. Dessert will be had at this Thanksgiving feast! I love pumpkin pie, but just the basics kids. I’m making a classic pumpkin pie, with a side of whipped cream. I always just go by the recipe on the can of pumpkin; easy peasy!
I’m super stoked to be making my first Thanksgiving dinner and I already know I’ll be cooking up a storm the Wednesday before. I might even add a few items, like another dessert and some appetizers. Also, we need popovers. I’ll pre-make the stuffing, pumpkin pie, and possibly the potatoes. Although I might make those MP’s day of, along with the cranberry sauce. Get ready for pictures, visuals to see how amazing this Thanksgiving dinner will be!
Photo credit to http://www.loveandlemons.com/ & http://media3.onsugar.com/