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Thanksgiving Menu 2010: Grateful for the bounty

Posted Nov 24 2010 2:40pm
Thanksgiving 2010 Menu

Fall Butternut Squash Soup
Nana's Whole Wheat Crescent RollsNama's Armenian Pilaf Green Bean Casserole Southwestern Roasted Sweet Potato Salad Mary's Free-Range Herb Roasted Turkey Wild Rice & Goat Cheese Stuffing Pomegranate-Pear Cranberry Sauce Pumpkin Tiramisu Nana's Blueberry PieVanilla Ice Cream
Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays because it's a chance to celebrate two things I love: family and food. At the Gilmore Home, preparing the Thanksgiving feast is just as much fun as eating it because we all get together to prep and cook together. This year our table will be filled with our family, my parents, Ericlee's parents, my brother and sister-in-law and niece, a cousin and her baby and any of my hubby's students who are brave enough to join the party.

Our healthy journey over the last several years has meant seeking out and creating new healthy versions of Thankgiving faves . We've tackled our menu little by little, one dish at a time. Last year we ditched the traditional sweet potatoes with marshmallow sugar overload and added a Sweet Potatoes dish with Pomegranate & Mint. This year I'm serving up a new spin on sweet potatoes that I learned from my friend Sam Jessup at our church's "Taste of Friendship" event a few weeks ago. His Southwestern Roasted Sweet Potato Salad has a memorable Chipotle pepper kick. It's also a great addition because it can be made a few days ahead and still maintains that pop of flavor and healthy ingredients.

The biggest change or step we took this year was ordering a turkey through Whole Foods. Ericlee did a little research and found out that these cage-free birds are from a local Sanger family. Mary's Free Range Turkeys eat a vegetarian diet. They never have antibiotics or hormones. No preservatives are added to them. The little brochure explains, "Mary's Free Range Turkeys are raised the old fashioned way: with plenty of space. In the sunny San Joaquin Valley of California, the turkeys are humanely raised by allowing them to roam in a stress-free environment. With cleaner living quarters, a healthier and happier turkey is grown resulting in a wonderful taste." Sounded impressive to us. The cost was only $1.99/pound - We thought it would be much more.

Maybe you're like me and you're already skipping ahead to all the creative ideas you can employ with turkey after Thanksgiving. Here are some of my fave Thankgiving Leftovers options . This year I'm going to try out Turkey Mole - a recipe from my chef friend Willie Bezemer. I can hardly wait for the meal after Thanksgiving!

Leave us a comment. What's new or traditional on your menu this year? How are you using local ingredients to celebrate?
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