What Ya' Got Cookin' Thanksgiving 2015 edition

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

Just in time for Thanksgiving and Holiday recipes.
We came from here:


Thumbnail by Ric_of_MAF
Lucketts, VA(Zone 7a)

I have a huge slab of bacon that Mike won in a raffle at the Moose Lodge. What a strange item to raffle off, but oh my how good it is. It is from a local butcher and is really thick cut and flavorful. I saw a recipe on Pinterest for gruyere bacon mac and cheese and will probably make it tonight. I've never had gruyere cheese before and couldn't believe how expensive it was at the grocery store! Recipe looks great though.


Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

Gruyere cheese is the main cheese is the main ingredient in our Christmas Eve fondue, along with Chardonnay. Don't ask it's a long story. LOL

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)


Yes--Gruyere cheese is "up there" in price. My sister always sacrifices
and buys it to make her famous Christmas Fondue.

I always bring a big wedge of Jarlsberg cheese--which mixes well with the Gruyere
in the Fondue. I get that at BJ's for a very reasonable, price--like $5.69/lb.
Costco should have it too... G.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

We cross-posted--and on the same topic....G.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I love a great bacon for pasta fagioli. Supposed to be pancetta but any good bacon will do. Love a good d bacon with brussels for the holiday.

This message was edited Nov 11, 2015 5:02 PM

Lucketts, VA(Zone 7a)

I just looked to confirm the price I paid for the gruyere cheese - it was $8.29 for 8 ounces, and I bought 2 of them, because I couldn't remember how much the recipe called for while I was there. I'll have to check it out at Costco next time I'm there. I know it was quite a savings when I bought a bulk brick of cream cheese there for the cheese cake vs buying 4 8oz packages at the grocery store. I am actually sitting here at the computer eating the last piece that I hid from Mike ROFLOL. It is even better a few days after the initial baking.

Fondue was such a 70s thing, and you hardly ever hear about it anymore. I wonder why, because it is so good. I got the bright idea of getting multiple Fondue pots after an evening out at the Melting Pot restaurant a few years ago, but true to my nature the idea was there but the follow through has not been lol. How many times can I say "when I retire...." I'm sick of saying it and you all are probably pretty sick of hearing it, but honestly I keep thinking about how much more time I will have to do all the things that I've been wanting and intending to do for years. At the Melting Pot, all parts of the meal are Fondue - appetizer bread with a cheese fondue, main meal filet mignon chunks and shrimp in broth based fondues, and desert pound cake and fruit with a chocolate fondue. Yum.

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

I have a fondue pot (electric) that you can borrow for a party! We use it every so often but mostly for cheese fondue, although we did do a chocolate one when my brother's family was visiting once.

Lucketts, VA(Zone 7a)

Ha ha - when I bought those fondue pots I got two metal ones for meat broth and two ceramic ones for cheese and chocolate so I could have them all going at once for a meal - can't do anything half way ROFLOL.

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

Growing up, we heated oil sometimes in a fondue pot, and used it for bits of steak... bananas are also really good fried!

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

Don't know if I have ever actually eaten fondue.

Missing- yum, maybe I'll do that, bacon sauteed with brussels sprouts?

I'm very traditional (boring) with Thansgiving, after all I only do it once a year so why mix it up?

I like my cranberries relish style with orange; others here want the sauce with the grooves from the can shape.

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

Holly's grand made cranberry sauce with orange , walnuts and I think diced apple. After she went to an elder apartment one of the aunts started to make it. They must make a heck of a batch 'cause they send it to at least 4 households at Thanksgiving.
We've probably been doing fondue on Christmas Eve since the 70s. LOL I'm not sure how it even got started. We have anything you can imagine cut up. From aspergras tips to zucchini, meats and breads included. Often we do chocolate for dessert, which can range from apricots to watermelon with baked goods. By Christmas day we have a fruit salad and veggie tray ready for our gathering and buffet. Ho Ho Ho!

Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

How do you get the chocolate ganache to stick to watermelon? Doesn't it just slide right off something juicy like that?

I love the idea of Christmas Eve fondue. A family friend with 5 boys all close in age used to do hot dogs, since the kids "were too excited to know what they were eating anyway." My folks used to have a few good friends & neighbors over on Christmas Eve... food, caroling around the piano, then church services. One year I came home from college and took charge of the buffet -- and made Indian food. Gotta hand it to those Pittsburghers, they bravely tried everything!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

My older sister in NJ has ALWAYS done a cheese/wine Fondue on Christmas Eve.
We all eat it with fresh, crispy, chunked bread. I think she has 4 sets of Fondue forks...

It has become a "religion"--that can never be broken. All her children, now middle aged,
and all 11 of their children (Grands), Some now in college, and some still in school,
would NOT have Christmas without Fondue--even if we all are stuffed to the gills--
there HAS TO be Fondue at the end....
I am sure this tradition will carry over in ages to come--no matter who is making it.

I picked up a full set of Fondue stuff at a Thrift Shop, the whole works--but have not used it.
By myself--it would not mean anything....and I would never make it anyway.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

I 'discovered" Brussels Sprouts just a couple years ago. I never knew how
sweet they would taste when sauteed with some yummy additions....
Bacon???? Of course! Doesn't EVERYTHING taste better with bacon and butter??

Re Cranberry relish with orange is a sure thing. --Hate the jellied stuff. It is too sweet
and there are no other subtle flavors in it.

AHEM--I am going to be totally and shamelessly bragging about how great my
home-made Cranberry sauce is.

It has in it:
Apples, water and sugar, a sachet full of Cloves, A whole (skin and all)
big Navel orange--smithereend mixed in as it cooks. Also--a generous
amount of finely diced fresh Ginger. Simmered to perfection.

Everyone loves it. I mean--LOVES IT!!! I will post the recipe below:
Don't mind that it seems long--as i always include a lot of hints and such.
I write recipe directions as if the person using it were a total beginner in cooking.


Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Measures given are all “ballpark”—this makes several medium jars-full)

Approx. 3lbs. apples (7-8 med. of any kind)-peeled, cored and very thinly sliced.
Three bags fresh Cranberries—washed, picked over and coarsely chopped in a food processor (pulse until just “broken up”).
3 to 4 cups sugar and 3 cups of water
***Note: since all items are in three’s, if you want to cut the recipe down, or increase it-- just do it in thirds of everything.
****Note #2—In 2011, seems Cranberries now come in only 12oz. Bags. Not 16oz.
This should decrease the amounts a bit. I have adjusted the amounts above.

--One full teaspoon of whole Cloves. Wrap in a gauze sachet for easy removal.
--Zest of one Lemon—finely slivered, or grated.
--About 2 regular tsp. finely diced fresh Ginger root. Be generous! This is good!
--2 small, or one large, sweet, juicy Naval Oranges-- cut in 8 sections and seeded.
Grind up, totally, in food processor—Rind and pith and all—and add to cranberry mixture
-- 1/3 cup Cherry or Blackberry Brandy (optional) but it is yummy.

--Using a non-reactive, 6-8 qt. pot, add sliced apples, the water and the cloves sachet. Cook/simmer over low fire until it resembles chunky applesauce—stirring now and then…about 30-40 minutes.
--Add the sugar, and stirring often, simmer until sugar is dissolved—maybe 15 min.
--Add the crushed cranberries to the apples. Do them in batches, if needed.
--Bring back to a gentle boil. Lower heat way down and simmer, covered, for
about one hour--stirring often so it won’t burn.
--Add the ground up Oranges and the chopped ginger. . Stir well to mix in.
--Zest of one Lemon can also be added here, if you like. (optional)
Simmer another 30 to 45 minutes more--stirring occasionally.
***At this point, you can taste for sweetness and adjust to your taste. ***
I usually end up adding more sugar at this time.

--When Sauce looks dark red, and all uniform in texture, remove from heat and add the Brandy. Mix in well. Find and REMOVE THE CLOVE’S sachet!!!

--Using a ladle, carefully, pour the hot sauce into clean jars almost to the top and seal them immediately. I find the small Salad Dressing jars work best, but any ones will do. Cool a bit. Label with the year and refrigerate. The jars will seal tight as they cool.
No need to sterilize any of these jars….They will suck tight as they cool.

***Note: I have found that, kept in a refrigerator, this sauce lasts for years and years without losing any flavor! HONEST!!!!! Gita

Lucketts, VA(Zone 7a)

When we have Brussels Sprouts I cook them in a steamer. While they are steaming I fry up bacon. Then I remove the bacon, cut the sprouts in half, saute them in the skillet in the bacon drippings. Remove with a slotted spoon into a bowl and crumble in the bacon. Sooo good! It's fortunate that Brussels Sprouts are so seasonal, or my serum lipids would be way high.

This message was edited Nov 11, 2015 10:41 PM

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

we've had some really good brussels, halved while raw and sauteed i olive oil

Salem Cnty, NJ(Zone 7b)

I like sprouts roasted, too. Definitely with bacon.

made soup today.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I just found a recipe with figs
One with pistachios
And one with maple syrup

My friend brought me her grandmas ' chopper ' ...it works great. Seconds to chopped brussels.
No dragging out the foid processor nor using a knife endlessly.

I saute the mushrooms, shallots, and sweet red pepper
but steam or roast the brussels....and toss.....together Grated parm on top.

For a main course ( not Thanksgiving ) I add shrimp and bacon to the mushrooms, shallots and and sweet red pepper

Salem Cnty, NJ(Zone 7b)

Ooohhhh, my mouth is watering! 😛

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

I would be happy to post a recipe if you want Jan.

Salem Cnty, NJ(Zone 7b)

That would be great, missingrosie!!

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Brussels and Figs

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 to 8 ounces bacon, chopped
1 pound Brussels sprouts, stems trimmed
1 cup dried figs, stemmed and quartered
Freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons good quality balsamic vinegar, or more to taste

Put a large skillet over medium heat and add oil, then bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until it starts to crisp, 5 to 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, put sprouts through feed tube of a food processor equipped with a slicing attachment and shred. (You can also do this with a mandoline or a knife.)

Add sprouts, figs and 1/4 cup water to pan; sprinkle with salt and pepper, turn heat to medium, and cook, undisturbed, until sprouts and figs are nearly tender, about 5 to 10 minutes. Turn heat to medium-high and cook, stirring occasionally, until any remaining water evaporates, another 5 to 10 minutes. Add vinegar, taste, adjust seasoning and serve.

This message was edited Nov 13, 2015 9:32 PM

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Brussels Pistachio and Onions

3 cups brussels sprouts, cleaned and halved
1 cup cipollini onions or shallots, peeled and quartered
½ cup raw pistachios
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon sea salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
Pinch of chili flakes
3 tablespoons sherry wine (or vegetable stock if omitting alcohol)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine brussels sprouts, onions and pistachios in a bowl and toss with spices, olive oil and wine.
Roast brussels sprout mixture on sheet pan for 12 to 15 minutes, shaking pan about halfway through to ensure even cooking. Serve hot.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Brussels Hazelnuts Maple Syrup

1 ½ pounds brussels sprouts
¼ cup olive oil
¾ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon (or 10 grinds) black pepper
2 tablespoons maple syrup
½ cup toasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

To prepare the brussels sprouts, remove any yellow or brown outer leaves, cut off the stems and cut in half.
In a large bowl, toss the brussels sprouts, olive oil, salt and pepper together. Once all of the brussels sprouts are coated in oil, spread them into a 9-by-13-inch (or larger) baking dish or sheet tray to roast. Note: You may want to line your sheet tray with foil for easy cleanup because the caramelizing process leaves a sticky residue.
After 15 minutes, stir the brussels sprouts with a spatula or large spoon to even out the browning. After 30 minutes, stir in the maple syrup. (Steps 1 through 4 can be done a day in advance; store covered in the refrigerator. Continue with Steps 5 and 6 right before serving.)
Continue to roast the brussels sprouts for about 15 more minutes, or until they are fork tender (about 45 minutes total roasting time).
Toss the roasted brussels sprouts with the hazelnuts and enjoy!

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Brussels and Pancetta

1 ½ cups fresh bread crumbs
2 teaspoons thyme leaves
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 pounds baby brussels sprouts, washed and trimmed (cut larger ones in two)
Salt and pepper
6 ounces pancetta in small dice (1 1/2 cups)
3 tablespoons minced shallots
1 tablespoon minced garlic
½ cup balsamic vinegar
½ cup veal stock or rich chicken broth, more if needed
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Nutritional Information

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, mix bread crumbs and thyme with 1/4 cup olive oil, and spread on a cookie sheet. Toast, tossing frequently, until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes.
Heat butter and remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until foamy. Add brussels sprouts, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and sauté, tossing frequently, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add diced pancetta, and sauté, tossing frequently, until sprouts are well browned and softened slightly, and pancetta is crisp, about 10 minutes more. Reduce heat, add shallots and garlic, and sauté until fragrant, 2 minutes.
Increase heat to high, add balsamic vinegar and stock, and cook, tossing frequently, until sprouts are glazed and tender, about 10 minutes; add more stock if needed. Taste, adjusting seasoning if necessary, and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Transfer to a warm serving bowl and scatter bread crumbs on top.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Dried Cranberries, Toasted Hazelnuts, and Orange Zest
Makes 4 to 6 servings


2 lbs Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise if small or quartered if large
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup lightly toasted, peeled, chopped hazelnuts
Zest of 1 orange

Preheat your oven to 400°F. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the Brussels sprouts with the oil, sprinkle with salt and a few grinds of pepper and toss again. Roast, stirring once or twice, for 20 to 25 minutes, or until nearly tender and browned.
Toss the Brussels sprouts with the oil, sprinkle with salt and a few grinds of pepper and toss again.
Add the dried cranberries, hazelnuts, and orange zest. Stir well and continue roasting for at least another 5 minutes, or until Brussels sprouts are deep golden brown, crisp on the outside, and tender on the inside.
Add 1/3 cup of roasted, chopped hazelnuts to the Brussels sprouts.
Add the orange zest.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Missingrosie's Brussels and Bacon


Thick cut bacon - 4 slices
8 -12 oz box fresh white button mushrooms - sliced thinly
One medium- large sweet red pepper - chopped
3 medium shallots - peeled and sliced thinly
One medium clove garlic - chopped fine
Celery seed ( not powder ) 1/4 teaspoon ??
Dill ( dried fine ) - one teaspoon
Butter ( according to your taste and diet )
1/4 cup shredded fresh parmesan ( in cold section )

Roast brussels until browned and tender OR
Or -- trim and steam until tender

Set aside

In frypan fry bacon until crisp -- drain on p. towel (and crumble)
( don't toss the drippings )

Sauté the veggies (except garlic) in pan /drippings until well browned ....then add the garlic and get that light brown

(garlic burns quick...stand right there and stir)

When all veggies and garlic are browned WELL ...drain in a bowl lined with paper towels

Chop brussels well....toss veggies with brussels, bacon, and butter..

Top with grated fresh parmesan

I left spice amts loose
Celery seed is strong - so careful
Salt, pepper, dill -- taste and adjust spices after butter.
I use 1/4-1/2 stick butter - depends again on your taste and diet requirements

Family loves this and the mix of veggies and bacon do ahead of time...as a matter of fact...can fix it entirely the day or so before and just bring to room temp and heat in micro or pop in oven with the turkey last 20 min or so. Then add the bacon and the parmesan right before serving.

I have added shrimp to this for a main dish. I think it would go well with broiled scallops too.

Salem Cnty, NJ(Zone 7b)

THANK YOU!!!!! I have choices.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

All looked simple and festive.

I have not tried - but I plan to.

The last one is not food format..I don't make from a recipe. But if youtry it - you will like it.

This is a photo of the chopper that works on everything!! I love it.

I didn't say "chop the brussels" in the recipe - forgot ... But I do..if not, then I would leave off the butter - the light wash of olive oil for roasting plus the bacon fat that the veggies sauted in should be enough. You can judge after you taste.

This message was edited Nov 14, 2015 10:21 AM

Thumbnail by missingrosie Thumbnail by missingrosie
Frederick, MD(Zone 6b)

One of those recipes suggested using a mandoline on brussels sprouts -- please don't!! The potential for injury seems way too high. Bacon on sprouts sounds great, shredded finger not so much.

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

Our friend Jane would agree to that, after shredding herself.

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Yeah, buddy just got a surprise on one of thise things with a carrot.

I will stick with my collard chopper.

Salem Cnty, NJ(Zone 7b)

Wellll..... I did the last recipe, but really put my own spin on it. I roasted the sprouts cut in half. Fried up the bacon took it out then sautéed the pepper, shallots, and mushrooms in the drippings. I had leftover roasted cauliflower and potatoes and some sautéed green beans so I added all that to the veggies in the pan and the bacon and sprouts. Mixed it all together and then added a fresh avocado at the very end. Served it with some rotisserie chicken. I poured a little balsamic vinaigrette over it. Wow!!!!! What an explosion of favors!!!! I didn't have any celery seed or garlic, but I didn't care. Don't think I could ever replicate it again, though, BUT I will certainly try.

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

Wow Jan, yum!

We talked about the menu tonight, consensus here is that it shall be traditional in tastes. The talk started because we were eating a hot sauced turkey meatball recipe. It didn't seem like we can really 'hot' up the usual items. So we're doing pepper jelly on cream cheese for appetizer, and deviled eggs with Old Bay. And my pumpkin pie for dessert, and a birthday cake for nephew, and a dish of flavored dark chocolates.

I keep a note for every year about my meal, how big the turkey, and other details, so I don't start second guessing myself.

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Jan--you are my kind of a cook.
Add anything that you think will taste OK. Make it ALL your own.


Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

That sounds great Jan.
All the time I wish I'd at least written down what all I used, let alone how much. I've thought a couple of times, I need a nanny cam in the kitchen so I can see what I did different so I can replicate it.
I have in the past tried leaving everything I used set out till after we eat, BUT, since Holly cleans up when I cook, you can see where that is going...LOL

Hillsborough, NC(Zone 7b)

Jan - sounds great!

I could make a meal out of that!

I find the mushrooms, shallots ( or Vidalia onions ) sweet peppers and a wee bit of garlic take me a lot of places..in a meatloaf...mixed with rice and stuffed in peppers and baked, mixed with soaked bread or rice and green peas for a chicken stuffing, in omelets, in crab ( cakes ) tossed with olive oil over pasta...mixed with tuna for salad -.added to tomato soup..ditto potato soup...lots of things. I saute up big batches and put in freezer bag (portion sizes) and grab a bag or two or three when needed. Makes cooking easy - no frypan mess.

Dover, PA(Zone 6b)

JR, spent the night, so it was Belgian waffles for breakfast. He just loves them, well all the grands do, served with soft butter and butter pecan syrup. JR also likes his breakfast sausage. It used to be we ask him what he wanted with his sausage, now it's what do you want with your waffles.
Lily and Lucas say, "Poppie makes the best waffles, in the whole world", so I try to. LOL

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