Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thanksgiving Part II

Thanksgiving came and went. It was the first time I "hosted" a family meal (with more than 7 or 8 people) and it went well. It was VERY hard work. We had 35 people in total and it was 6 weeks of prep. The Pedant's mother helped organize everyone with a google group and document, and everyone pitched in.

My food came out great. The quinoa salad was a HUGE hit! Plus, I have 2 containers left (I would have had 3, but we ate it for breakfast Friday!). The Pecan Pies were also amazing, but the crust got a bit crispy - and broke 3 plastic knives. I made them in glass baking dishes and afterwords my mother said I might have needed to lower the heat. I will likely make the pie again for my work pot luck in December so will double check the cooking temp.

Thursday was one of the longest days I've had: After having nightmares at 4AM that the pie was burned to a crisp, I woke up VERY sleepy at 7 and did a 5 mile turkey trot (with my best time ever in a race - under a 10 minute mile!). I came home about 11:30am to a full house: Parents, grandfather, aunt, 2 cousins and made a second pie dough. (My mom rightly thought 1 pecan pie wasn't enough.) After, we went to the supermarket for some lunch stuff - a big salad. At 1:30 or so, we started the cooking
  1. Making pecan pie and cooking said pie
  2. Making stuffed mushrooms (my mom made the stuffing earlier but we needed to stuff)
  3. Making stuffing (which my mom did most of)
  4. Making quinoa salad (which I did most of)
About 2:30pm I realized I hadn't had enough water post race and had a THROBBING headache all night...

About 2ish TP went to his parents' house to get table cloths, wine, utensils and some other stuff since his mother was having a bit of trouble with the oven and the turkeys...

About 3 I started setting up the room with my dad and assorted family members. People started coming about 4 and I finally got to shower about 4:15! It was a non-stop event but I had a lot of fun doing it!



Artichoke dip (Sherb's aunt)
Guatemalan black beans (S's aunt)
Broccoli/Carrots (S/TP)
Salmon (TP's aunt)
Humus, crackers, pita (S's cousin's parents)
Stuffed Mushrooms (S's mom)


3 Turkeys (TP's mom, TP's aunt, S's cousin)
Stuffing with meat (S's cousin)
Stuffing with no meat (S's mom)
Broccoli (S's cousin)
Slaw with tasty, tasty ramen noodles (S's cousin)
Quionoa salad (S/TP)
Sweet Potato (TP's Mom)
Sweet Potatoes with tasty marshmallows (TP's aunt)
Cranberry sauce from jar (TP's aunt)
Cranberry sauce - exact same kind! (TP's aunt, S's aunt - a wonderful coincidence!)
Salad (TP's Aunt)
Roasted Veg (TP's mom)


2 Pecan Pies (S)
2 Chocolate Pecan pies (TP's mom)
2 Pumpkin pies (S's cousin)
Chocolate chip cookies (S's aunt)
Pumpkin bread (TP's Mom)
Cranberry Bread (S's mom)
Parve whipped topping (TP's Aunt)

Wine, beer, soda, TP's Grandmother's whiskey sours

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Every food blog I read is doing a Thanksgiving post, so why not my own?? I'm kind of hosting our big dinner - The Pedant and I are combining families in the party room of our building. Other family members are making the Turkey, but we're still pitching in.

I'm making a Pecan Pie (recipe from Joy of Cooking, which I have heard from a friend is the easiest and best recipe for pecan pie) which I'm excited about. I'm making that Wednesday after work.

I'm also making a Southwest Quinoa and Sweet Potato salad (ala Mark Bittman). I've already cooked the sweet potatoes and will cook the quinoa and assemble the salad Thursday. But it will be a rush - I am running a 5 mile race that day (in order that I can enjoy my pecan pie!). I was originally going to make the quinoa Wednesday but am running out of room in my fridge...

My mom and I will also be assembling stuffed mushrooms and finishing a stuffing. It should be a hectic day, but fun.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Still Eating

Not much cooking has happened this week - since again, busy life - but I have been diligently eating my cooked food. The parsnip soup is still amazing as is my ziti (and my mom's eggplant Parmesan).

I did go out for lunch this week with some coworkers and had a great risotto with autumn vegetables. I've made risotto before and The Pedant and I do a pretty good job, but this was superb. Really amazing.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Yesterday's Food

I've been thinking about this picture thing but can't get my act together I guess...

Yesterday The Pedant and I had a fun day and it included lots of food. (And probably too much soda - we figure we both had about 1.5 liters each...and I had a bit too much trouble falling asleep...)

So, our day in food:


TP and I are taking a deep water cardio class at a local high school Saturday mornings. It's a lot of fun and an intense workout. Both of us needed new clothes, so we headed to a big mall after our class to beat the rush, but needed breakfast first. We had "bagels" (which I put in quotes because outside of New York "bagels" are never as good) at a local bagel place that is actually pretty good. Since it was pretty crowded, we sat outside (it was lovely!) and ate our "bagels" and read the paper. Then, we headed to the mall.


After the mall, we went to Bertucci's for lunch. As I get snobbier about my food, I have realized I don't really enjoy most chain restaurants. The food is usually fair and too greasy and the portions are WAY too large. I do however LOVE Berucci's, especially for lunch. They give you salad, their bread is worth every calorie, and their lunch portions are a great deal. TP got chicken picatta (which prompted us to plan making a version at home one day) and I got an eggplant pannini.

Food Prep/Dinner:

We ventured on after lunch to Costco and the Teet for some essentials and then came home and napped for a bit. (I think we deserved it.) I did get up and then make some food for the week and for dinner. For dinner, I made a baked ziti with vegetables. It was about half pasta, half vegetables (broccoli, mushrooms, onion, pepper, roasted in the oven while the pasta was cooking). I used ricotta cheese and made a tomato sauce and topped it with some mozzarella, provolone and Parmesan cheese. It came out well. Except, I have to remember to under cook the pasta more next time! The veggies let out a lot of water and the pasta got a bit too soggy.

I also made a roast parsnip soup. It's really easy and really tasty. We didn't eat it for dinner (it didn't go with the pasta really and we intended to make a salad, but we got lazy/not so hungry when we made dinner) and I'm really excited to eat it for lunch today.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Finally Back!

I spent this weekend celebrating my grandfather's 90th birthday and it was lovely!! The only downside is that several family members asked how my blogging was going. I sheepishly admitted I have been lazy. So no more. New goal: posting at least 2 times per week. I will continue to debate about putting pictures up - at least about cooking (The Pedant and I hate taking pictures of food at restaurants: it's rude).

OK - a small update since August: We've been cooking a lot! Not much terribly new - we did make some great meals but nothing really out of the ordinary. I am excited that the weather is FINALLY cooling down and I can make more wintry foods like soups, casseroles, roasted vegetables, etc.

Last week I made a black bean and butternut squash chili. the recipe came from NPR's The Splendid Table's weekly newsletter. It came out really well. I personally love chilis. I also love sweet and spicy foods.

Also, I have a new project one day. My Aunt M. is an EXCELLENT baker. There is a cake from HER Aunt, that is a chocolate cake. It is a really rich chocolate cake with freshly made whipped cream and a chocolate "frosting." My mom makes the cake also and it is incredibly tasty. It has always intimidated me since it is a 2 step process and you have to add the chocolate sauce on top of the whipped cream. I really enjoy baking and have always wanted to have the time and space to bake (and the willpower to not eat everything as it comes out of the oven). When I was home this weekend Aunt M. showed me how to make this cake (well, the chocolate sauce that is the hardest part) and has now told me it's time for me to bake it. She also chastised me for not owning a 9x13 metal baking pan. So now i have a project. Anyone want a tasty chocolate cake??