Monday, October 12, 2009

I Double Dog Dare You

Lamentations about early snowfall, cold weather and a crappy week at work were still echoing throughout the house. Looking out from our kitchen window, the trees were still green, and snowflakes were gently falling.  The leaves had not had time to turn their cheery shade of yellow, and now were too frozen to fall.  We even made the National News, the broadcaster saying it has been the coldest Thanksgiving in the west in fifteen years. Fanfriggin'tastic!  

We were planning our Thanksgiving Feast, unsure of how many people would eventually be at the table. It is usually in the neighbourhood of 8 to 12.  We will prepare the usual suspects......turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, and mix it up with different vegetables. This year it's spaghetti squash from the brother-in-law's garden, sweet potatoes and farmer's market cauliflower.  Desserts are an opportunity for creativity, as long as we follow the code of having something that is "not creamy" for one of the regular guests. That is always easy, because we usually make two desserts.

Two of the remaining dishes from our OKFWW throwdown are: 

Pecan Crusted Chocolate Pate
from Cellar Door Bistro

Photo from Jennifer CK

Pear and Almond Galette 
from the Naramata Inn

Photo from Jennifer CK

We will do a "Twofer" on the same plate. 

We have been making chocolate pate for over twenty years, as it was on our restaurant menu "back in the day".  We will garnish it with a black currant coulis from our very local (backyard) currant crop.

The Pear and Almond Galette would have to be re-imagined, as we had only our memories to go on. 

We used small forelle pears, and packed the cored cavity with homemade almond paste. These were placed on a square of puff dough and then baked in a very hot oven.

We think we did OK.  There were plenty of mmmmmmm's around the table. 

Thanksgiving Dinner has changed from when we started preparing them for the extended family.  Our little boys are now men, and the sippy cups have turned into beer bottles. The conversations around the dining room table have changed, but the conviviality has not.  When we were cleaning up the mountain of dishes the next day, we looked at each other and  said "still worth it?"  Yeah......we have a few more years left in us!


Vivian said...

I hear you as to how strange it is to see green poplars with snow on the ground. Very weird. I feel cheated in a way. The weather has made me think of nourishing soups way earlier than usual, like borscht made with roasted beets and carrots from the garden. Just curious, are you able to fire up your outdoor oven in temps like this?

Colleen said...

Our oven can be fired all year long, even when it is -20......however, it is the cook that freezes! We will develop our thicker skin soon and venture back outside!

Cheryl Arkison said...

Love the idea of stuffing the pears with almond paste before cooking!