Happy Thanksgiving, or Thanksgivukkah, a day early. I’m hosting this year, so preparations are already under way. Here’s what’s on the menu:

  • Roast turkey with juniper and herbs
  • Gravy
  • Artichoke Parmesan sourdough stuffing
  • Garlic buttermilk mashed potatoes
  • Sweet potato casserole with pecan topping
  • Roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon and caramelized onions (courtesy of my sister)
  • Tossed green salad with dried cranberries, pecans and roasted delicata squash
  • Cranberry sauce (courtesy of my mother)
  • Rolls (ditto)
  • Pumpkin pie with real whipped cream
  • Apple-pear crisp with vanilla ice cream (courtesy of my sister)
  • Appetizers: Shrimp dip (Jeff’s family recipe) and a veggie tray (provided by my sister)
The turkey recipe, by Chef Maria Hines of Seattle’s Tilth, Agrodolce and Golden Beetle restaurants, is from the November 2007 issue of Sunset magazine. I made the recipe that year, and so did half of Seattle, apparently, as juniper berries were sold out almost everywhere. They were much easier to find this year! 
The stuffing recipe is also from Sunset, circa 1994 (I think). I made it for my first official Thanksgiving dinner, just me and Jeff in our little rented house in Fort Wayne, Indiana. I’ve tried a few other stuffing recipes since, but always come back to this one. Let’s just say that it is 1000 times easier to find good artisan sourdough today than it was in 1995 (especially Indiana in 1995). The sourdough for this year’s stuffing comes from Grand Central Bakery, as do the crusts for my pumpkin pies. I can make a mean pie crust, but I welcome the high-quality shortcut this year!

I’ll be cooking my turkey the traditional way (in the oven), but in case you’re thinking about deep frying yours, watch this cautionary tale, “Eat, Fry, Love,” featuring the musical stylings of Captain Kirk…errr…William Shatner.

Have a fun, festive holiday weekend! I’ll be back with a post on Monday.