21 November 2008

The Thanksgiving Cookbook

With Thanksgiving next week, I thought I would post some Thanksgiving cookbooks on the site. While it may be possible to get away with a standing rib roast for Christmas, it is hard to do Thanksgiving without some type of fowl. Ruth Reichl, well know editor of Gourmet summed it up this way:

"On my watch, we will never not do a turkey. I believe very firmly that there are some traditions that should be honored. And one of the great classic American traditions is the classic Thanksgiving meal."

Lucky for you, I am not going to share a turkey recipe with you. If you can't make a turkey, call the ladies at Butterball. One piece of advice -- you have a 30 pound frozen turkey sitting in the freezer, put it in the refrigerator NOW!!

The Thanksgiving Cookbook by Holly Garrison offers a lot of plain old-fashioned help. She takes you from setting the table to the leftovers.

Garrison offers buying tips and cooking info on most every bird found at your grocery or in your backyard, from squabs to turkey. She will even give you tips on a standing rib roast of a ham (but don't tell Ruth Reichl!)

The book is all text, so if you need to see the finished product you are out of luck. The recipes are calm and straightforward. While she advocates fresh vegetables, she is not adverse to cheating with beets. Don't listen!!! If you are cooking for days, there is plenty of time to roast some beets. Here is her recipe for Beets With Lemon Sauce.

4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
Three 16 oz. cans whole small beets, well drained
1/8 teaspoon salt
Big pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind

Heat the butter in a Dutch oven or large heavy sauce pan. Stir in the brown sugar and lemon juice and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the sugar is dissolved. Stir in the beets until they are well coated. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the beets are glazed, about 20 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper. (May be prepared ahead up to this point and reheated) Sprinkle the beets with grated lemon rind and serve.

For another take on Thanksgiving beets, check out my recipe for Beets With Candied Ginger In Yuzu Honey at the Lucindaville site.

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