photo by Jennifer Johnson

This year we’re keeping our meal intimate but all of the recipes are easy enough to increase should your gathering be larger. We love starting the day off with a seasonal cranberry smoothie, a healthier way to ease into what’s certain to be a long day of indulging with family and friends.

cranberry chutney

cranberry cooler

  • 1/2 cup ice
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 cup frozen cranberries
  • 1 cup (packed) chopped kale, washed and dried
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 4 dried prunes
  • 1 tablespoon honey, or to taste

In a blender, chop ice. Add water, cranberries, kale, banana, prunes, and honey. Blend until completely smooth, adding more water if necessary.

Makes 1.

roast turkey with leeks + sourdough stuffing

A much easier alternative to a whole turkey, especially if your gathering is smaller.

  • 2 boneless turkey breasts
  • 2 leeks, white and light green parts, trimmed and chopped
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium shallot, sliced
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
  • 4 cups cubed sourdough bread, lightly toasted
  • 2 cups low-sodium (or homemade) vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. Pat turkey breasts completely dry. Place one turkey breast between two pieces of parchment paper and gently pound out breast until surface is fairly even (this will allow for easier rolling). Repeat with remaining breast. Use a sharp, thin knife, cut each breast parallel to surface, almost in half just stopping short of outside edge. Open turkey breasts (should be like opening a book). Set aside.
  3. Place leeks in a sieve and rinse under cold water several times to remove dirt. Pat completely dry.
  4. In a medium sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add shallot and leeks and cook until softened, 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add thyme and parsley and cook for another 30 seconds. Transfer to a large bowl. Add bread and 1 cup vegetable stock and season with salt and pepper. Toss until everything is combined. Add more stock if necessary until mixture just holds together.
  5. Place some stuffing inside each turkey breast (do not overstuff). Carefully roll up, ending seam-side down. Tie each breast with 4 pieces of twine at various intervals, making sure stuffing stays inside. Season outside of each breast with salt and pepper.
  6. Place remaining stuffing into a small baking dish.
  7. In a roasting pan or a large oven-safe sauté pan, heat another 1 tablespoon butter along with remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add turkey breasts and sear on all sides. Transfer pan to oven, along with baking dish of stuffing and cook for about 30-40 minutes, or until internal temperature of turkey is 160°F (check turkey under stuffing as well for same temperature) and stuffing is lightly browned on top.
  8. Remove from oven and transfer turkey breasts to a plate. Tent with aluminum foil and allow to rest for about 10 minutes.
  9. Place pan back over medium heat to make gravy. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons butter and flour in a small bowl. Add to pan drippings and whisk until combined over medium heat. Add up to 1 cup vegetable stock and cook until thickened and has reached desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
  10. Cut each breast into 2-inch thick slices and serve with additional stuffing and top with gravy.

Serves 2-4.

creamy mashed potatoes

  • 2 large Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk, at room temperature
  • 1-2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. Place potatoes in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Add a pinch of salt and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are fork tender, 15-20 minutes (depending on size of potatoes).
  2. Drain potatoes and return back to pan. Gently mash with a potato masher (or fork). Add 1/4 cup milk and 1 tablespoon butter and mash until combined. Season with salt and pepper. Add more butter or milk if necessary to reach desired consistency. Serve warm.

Serves 2-4.

cranberry chutney

This sauce can be made ahead of time and served cold, or at room temperature.

  • 8 ounces cranberries, fresh or frozen
  • Juice from 1 orange
  • 2 strips orange zest
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan and place over medium heat. Simmer until cranberries begin to pop and sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and orange zest and discard. Allow chutney to cool to room temperature before serving.

Makes approximately 1 cup.

pumpkin truffles

We love these bite-sized treats after a big meal, which are also perfectly portable too. 

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin purée
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of cloves
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 6 ounces white chocolate, chopped
  1. In a food processor, combine cream cheese, pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, vanilla extract, cloves, and salt until well combined. Do not overmix. Add graham cracker crumbs and mix until just incorporated. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  2. Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet and set aside. Remove bowl from refrigerator and using a teaspoon, roll into truffles. Place truffles on prepared baking sheet and place in freezer for about 1 hour (to keep them for longer, cover them well with plastic wrap and when frozen, transfer to a zip-lock bag).
  3. Fill a saucepan with a little bit of water. Place a glass bowl on top, making sure water in pan doesn’t touch bottom of bowl. Add chocolate to bowl and simmer over low heat until chocolate is smooth and completely melted.
  4. Remove truffles from freezer and working quickly, roll each one in chocolate using a teaspoon, coating well on all sides. Place truffles back on parchment and dust a little bit of nutmeg on top of each one. Allow to chill until ready to serve, at least 1 hour.

Makes approximately 12 truffles.


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