Sunday, November 21, 2010

Holiday Meal Planning

We're invited out for Thanksgiving, and I'm bringing along my Pecan Pie Bars.  The recipe was posted here recently and I do recommend them heartily.  I asked my hostess if she needed another "side" but she thinks there's always too much food and she's right.

We're having company the day after, and I'm going to roast a turkey breast and gussy up some Pepperidge Farm Stuffing.  I saute onion, celery and mushrooms, and add some herbs and spices.  My sage plant has a gazillion leaves, so sage and fresh parsley will be well represented. It's always good to have bits of green.  I'll make my famous green bean casserole from scratch and we'll have fresh cranberry compote and the soup will be a curried butternut squash which I made recently and was to die for. We're having an orange-mascarpone tart drizzled with honey and pistachios for dessert.  It's seasonal, tasty and not to heavy.  Always remember your colors and that we eat first with our eyes, hence the old saying, "my eyes were bigger than my stomach." 

I don't like to eat until I feel overstuffed.  It's almost as bad as being hungry.  We have noticed that any kind of pasta or fried rice goes down so easy and before you know it a third helping might be in the works.  Stop!

We had  tuna-noodle casserole tonight, with some fancy noodles from Ocean State Job Lot. Use Italian tuna in olive oil because it tastes better.  I saute onions and in the same pot make  a white sauce and add reconstituted red and green peppers (or the real thing if I have it). A pinch of cayenne or a few red pepper flakes add resonance.  Today I added chives, cilantro and a handful of frozen peas.  A sprinkling of salt and pepper and some smoked paprika.  We always put crushed potato chips on top for crunch.  The whole business is toothsome.  I use a pound of noodles and 2 cans (6 oz.) tuna.  The dish is greater than the sum of its parts.  Once I even served it to company.

In college, when everyone was poor, we used to pool our money and buy tuna, noodles and a can of peas.  I can't recall what bound everything together.  The fellowship was good and the conversation stimulating.  In those days, away from home, I was learning to eat new foods and formerly scorned, untouchable foods.  I'm so glad I did.  Nothing is more aggravating to entertain than a picky eater.  

Off to read the December Bon Appetit.

1 comment:

Carla @ Practical Meal Planning said...

Your menu sounds delicious. I'm following your tag for Green Bean Casserole. Never made it before, but should would like to try. Thanks!