Last Friday was the day we celebrated a favourite, adopted holiday of ours- Thanksgiving.
Our first year back in Australia we didn't do anything. That is not to say we didn't want to, it's just
a) we didn't really know anyone and
b) Our house wasn't exactly the most inviting place. Our dining room was the size of a shoe box and the kitchen wasn't much better.
We decided somethings were better left as memories and toasted all our Thanksgiving memories with a beer and a bag of chips.
This year however was slightly different. Nic and I mentioned to friends (yes, we seemed to have made a few in the past year!) how we loved the American celebration of Thanksgiving and to our surprise we heard echoes of excitement . We compared drools when it came to pecan pies and stuffing so we put it out there to a few people and asked if they would like to join us in the turkey feast? To our excitement we had a few takers so the turkey was booked, brined and slowly cooked last Friday.
The day was set as close to the real Thanksgiving as possible, however, this being November I am booked out at the cooking school with dinners and classes so a week beforehand was as close as I could get!
Sadly we don't know any American folk here, however we have the pleasure of being friends with a wonderful Canadian man who was more than happy to come to dinner. John did educate us in the Thanksgiving celebrations held in Canada- after discussing why they celebrate it in Cananda we decided to forget about it and drink more wine! A great friend of mine, Catherine (a.k.a Schkinny) also jumped at the chance to chow down on turkey, stuffing and pecan pie, after all her twin sister is over in NY waiting her turn to be invited to someones house, living in hope of some turkey. Sadly I didn't give enough notice for other guests, so it was up to the four of us (plus the kids) to get the "meat sweats" and make our American friends proud.
The last time I cooked a whole turkey I brined it, so I followed suit again and wasn't disapointed. The white and dark meat was juicy and succulent while the stuffing was cooked to perfection. I choose to pop the stuffing in my bird and I have to say, it tastes fantastic every time so why have the choice? I say stuff that bird people!!
Perfect roast potatoes were served (soft and fluffy on the inside, while the outside was a golden crunch). Green beans were sauteed in butter with almonds and then finished with a good squeeze of lemon juice and a sprinkling of salt and pepper just before serving.
Our last vegetable was roasted pumpkin that I lightly drizzled in agave syrup just before removing from the oven to give that a natural sweetness which complimented the Italian sausage, walnut and cranberry stuffing. Seriously, after all that food dessert just seems like a joke.....alas when I popped the pecan pie on the table everyone had their forks at the ready and all said yes to servings of double cream.
I am feeling full again just typing this! As you can see by the photos, we had a wonderful feast with wonderful friends. Nic and I are so happy we finally got to enjoy one of our favourite holidays again with new friends and memories of old, wonderful friends we hope to share another Thanksgiving with one day in the not to distant future.