Thursday, November 14, 2013

Handy Food Blogs and Some Holiday Meal Links

Well, kids, the holidays are nigh upon us. 
Personally, I love the holidays. They're a good time of year for a food whore. I mean, foodie. I'm hugely fond of cooking for days for the folks I love. I'm sorry to admit it, but I love seeing Christmas displays in October, listening to Christmas music while I'm planning the Thanksgiving menu, and I would totally put up the Christmas tree the day after Halloween if I could talk my husband into it. It's a sickness. I love the colorful, sparkly happiness of it all.

To that end, I thought I'd just do a list of links to fun recipes, blogs, gadgets, and anything else that may inspire you!
  • As you know, I'm a big fan of Ben Starr. Here's a link to his extensive blog post on how to prepare a brined turkey. He even has a video to show you how! 
  • Deb at Smitten Kitchen did a humorous post on how to do chicken stock in the crockpot! Freaking genius, I say, when we all know that good stock is the basis of rad stuffing and gravy and well played at a time when stove-top space is at a premium. 
  • The ladies at Spoon Fork Bacon have a luscious-looking recipe for sweet potato and rosemary gratin for those of you tired of that crap with the marshmallows on top. (I'm deeply sorry if the marshmallow version is your favorite. Sort of.)
  • This little gadget is the secret to turning the turkey drippings into something non-greasy and delicious. 
    The built-in strainer will strain out the big chunks, and if you wait a bit for the grease to separate and rise to the top, the spout will allow you to pour out the tasty juices sans grease. 
  • Every year, I make Martha Stewart's Steamed Cranberry Pudding for my momma. Don't be turned off by "pudding" in the title; it's just a really moist, thick cake that is as good as licking the batter out of the bowl. For the pudding, you'll need one of these:
    You put your cranberry mix in the bottom, top it with the cake batter, and lower the whole thing into a pot of boiling water (up to just below the lip) for a gorgeous holiday cake.
    The best part is that if you get the mold, there are a variety of recipes appropriate for all times of the year at the Martha Stewart Living website. And it's so pretty!
  • Jerry at Cooking Stoned posted this recipe for Cranberry Christmas Sangria. You can bet your turkey wishbone this will be happening at some point Thanksgiving weekend. 
What are some of your favorite Thanksgiving traditions/dishes? Some of our favorites include orange-rosemary turkey, butternut squash risotto, glazed bacon-wrapped green beans, my grandmother's cranberry salad, and maple-pecan pie. I'll post some of those recipes as the big day draws nearer!