A Thanksgiving Spread

Since it is November, we decided to do our own little Thanksgiving spread at Jodi's place! The evening of Tuesday, November 3rd started with with two delicous appetizers by Andrea. Lynley created beautiful "Roasted Beet Salads with Blue Cheese" (from Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello), Jodi baked up a fabulous bird, "Sage and Oregano-Rubbed Turkey with Honey-Lemon Glaze (from Pillsbury's 2008 Thanksgiving magazine), and Lynley also did a Butternut Squash Risotto (Barefoot Contessa). Bridget whipped up some "Candied Yams and Apples" (based on a recipe from The Essential Mormon Cookbook), as well as "Savory Herb and Sausage Stuffing with Tangy Granny Smith Apples" (from Better Homes and Gardens December 2006). We polished off the evening with "Turtle Pumpkin Cheesecake" by Lara (also from Pillsbury's 2008 Thanksgiving magazine). Unfortunatey, LS has had it with yeast! :( 


Jodi working her magic with Tom Turkey.
Roasted Beet Salad with Blue Cheese

Butternut Squash Risotto

Savory Herb and Sausage Stuffing with
Tangy Granny Smith Apples
11 T butter
2 medium Granny Smith apples, coarsely chopped
3/4 pound sweet Italian pork sausage, casing removed
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1 bag (16 oz) Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Stuffing
2 cups Pepperidge Farms Seasoned Croutons
1/2 cup chopped fresh sage leaves
1 egg, beaten
1. Coat 3 quart casserole dish with 1 Tbs butter and set aside
2. Cook and stir apples in 12" nonstick skillet over medium0high heat for about 5 min, or until browned. Pour apples into large bowl and set aside.
3. Heat 2 Tbs butter in skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage, onion and celery. Cook until well browned, stirring frequently to break up meat. Add broth and remaining butter. Heat to a boil.
4. Add stuffing, croutons, sage and egg to apples. Pour broth mixture over apple mixture and stir lightly to coat. Season to taste.
5. Spoon stuffing into prepared dish and cover.
6. Bake at 350 deg for 45 min or until hot.
Candied Yams and Apples
6 yams
4 apples
1 cup orange juice
1 orange (zest from entire orange)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ cup butter
¾ cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 eggs
½ cup sugar
½ cup chopped pecans
¼ cup melted butter
1 bag marshmallows
Peel and cut yams into desired size pieces. Place in a large saucepan and cover with water; cook until tender. Peel and core apples and cut into wedges. Arrange yams and apples in a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. In a medium saucepan combine orange juice, orange peel, cornstarch, melted butter, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Pour sauce over top. Add 2 beaten eggs. Before baking, sprinkle with ¼ cup sugar and pecans. Drizzle with ¼ cup melted butter. Bake at 350° for about 30 minutes or until apples are tender. Add marshmallows last 5 minutes if desired.

Turtle Pumpkin Cheesecake
1 1/2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cub butter
1/4 cup flour
2 t pumpkin pie spice
1 can (15 oz) pumpkin
4 (8 oz) packages cream cheese
1 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cups granulated sugar
5 eggs
1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted (to toast - cook over med heat in a skillet until light brown)
2 oz bittersweet baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 T vegetable oil
1 cup carmel topping
Heat oven to 300 deg. Wrap foil around the bottom of a 9" spring form pan to prevent drips. Spray the bottom and 1 inch up the side with cooking spray. In small bowl, mix cookie crumbs and melted butter. Press crumb mixture on bottom and 1 inch up the side of pan. Bake crust 8-10 min or until set. Cool at room temp for 5 minutes. Refrigerate about 5 minutes or until completely cooled.
In another small bowl, mix flour, pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin; set aside. In large bowl, beat cream cheese on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth. On low speed, beat in eggs, one at a time, just until blended. Gradually beat in pumpkin mixture until smooth. Pour filling over crust. Bake 1 hour 15 min to 1 hour 25 min, or until edge of cheesecake is set but center still jiggles slightly when moved. Turn over off; open door at least 4 inches. Let cheesecake remain in oven 30 minutes.
Cool in pan on cooling rack 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight before serving.
Just before serving, sprinkle pecans over top of cheesecake. In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate and oil uncovered on high 1 min to 1 min 30 sec, stirring every 15 seconds, until melted. Drizzle chocolate over pecans.
To serve, run knife around edge of pan to loosen cheesecake; carefully remove side of pan. Drizzle caramel topping over each serving. Store covered in refrigerator. Serves 16.