Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Hawthornes' Thanksgiving. 2016.

The wonderful thing about the Hawthorne Thanksgiving this year is that it was a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Holidays, being holidays, don't carry much weight with me, but of all of them, Thanksgiving is the least offensive.  No new attire is required and no gifts are given or even expected.  What is expected is food.  And that's why I'm thankful for Thanksgiving.  The food.

This year was bittersweet, even though no chocolate was involved.  Two Hawthornelets, two Hawthorne doglets, and one Hawthorne catlet were missing, but I am grateful for one Mr. Hawthorne and one Hawthornelet and one Little Junior who were all here, in addition to the hangers-on and drop-ins we always have.

Another wonderful thing about the Hawthorne Thanksgiving this year is that you can eat this meal ANYTIME!  No turkey was involved.  No gravy.  No ham.  No mashed potatoes. No potato salad.  No biscuits.  No rolls.  No casseroles.  None of that stuff usually reserved for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  And don't get me started on why we eat the same stuff at Christmas we just had a month earlier.  It's crazy.

So I welcome you to the Hawthorne Thanksgiving, non-traditional as it was.  In fact, the only thing traditional about it was one item I made, which I make every year.  Julia Child's Gâteau de Crêpes-  only one of the most perfect things I've ever eaten.

I sorta had an epiphany.   No. I wouldn't call it that.  A realization, I would say.  In the process of life, and how things go on with or without you, and how you have choices, and you can choose what and how to do things, I decided that I'm neglecting my blog and, with this post, hope to rectify that and to continue posting in a more timely fashion and in ways that would help the home cook.  That said, the 4-5 of you that still read my blog will have some new things coming your way.  Here's a hint:  Go buy oysters.

Back to Thanksgiving.
Always, check out the food first.

 Mr. Hawthorne made Caesar salad dressing and blanched green beans.
I made homemade croutons with herbs from the garden.

 The only traditional thing about this Thanksgiving was Julia Child's Gateau and the Champagne.
I make it every year.The gateau, not the Champagne.

I love this.  Homemade crepes, dilled carrots, mushroom duxelles, blanched broccoli, Swiss cheese, custard sauce.

And then I look out the window and see this.
 An apparent adult with three minors.  In a canoe.
I did not see any flotation devices, but I could be mistaken.

And yes, I have identifiable photographs of all four, but choose not to post pics of minors on my blog.

 My thoughts are now on oysters. And I bet you wonder where Rosie is going with this.
 I caramelized some orange peel.
Not to worry.  Rosie knows where she's going.

 I reduced cranberries with cranberry sauce, balsamic vinegar, and brown sugar until thick and syrupy.

 I picked a mess of collards, kale, and sorrel in the yard.
These are all volunteers.  Happy little vegetables.  The fittest of the fittest.

 I sautéed the greens and sliced mushrooms.

 Topped each oyster with greens, cranberry reduction, caramelized orange, pomegranate arils, and Brie cheese.  Quick trip under the broiler for the Brie to melt.

Loves me some wafting steam.

 I could eat a dozen or so of these.
 Mr. Hawthorne's contribution - Mediterranean Shrimp with sliced potatoes and fennel, shrimp, lemon zest, feta cheese, kalamata olives, parsley from the garden.

I will have Mr. Hawthorne make this again.  It's that good!

 Ooooh...  What's Rosie up to now?

 If you guessed, "Making fettuccini with garden greens," you would be correct.
I need someone to clean up behind me!
And in front of me!
Green fettuccini.  Grown in my garden!
 The fettuccini was tossed with olive oil and butter and paired with pecan-battered and fried scallops and shrimp with ...  reduced cranberry sauce and caramelized oranges, along with Mr. Hawthorne's contribution - dipping sauce - mayo, Texas Pete, and Chablis mustard.

Oh...  Almost forgot the Parmesan crisp.

And the food continues.  Saturday, THE VanderCamps of Michigan visited.
I made a butter, seasoned, and toasted tortilla filled with ...
... carnitas which had been simmering for hours, along with black beans, yellow rice, crème fraîche, shredded iceberg lettuce, sliced scallions and jalapeños, grated cheddar cheese, and Mr. Hawthorne's canned salsa, along with cilantro from the garden.

And Mr. Hawthorne made his most excellent sausage ragu with my homemade pasta.
Sausage ragu recipe will be up soon.  Promise.

And then for the finale, I cranked the pasta maker up to the thinnest setting, #8, and made angel hair pasta, just to show off.

I think THE Vandercamps of Michigan were duly impressed.

And then, Saturday night, I started on Sunday morning breakfast.
Yeast waffles.  The batter needs to sit at room temperature all night.

It's Sunday morning.  The blessings are still flowing.  And the waffles are steaming.
I like to crisp them up even more in the toaster oven.

Yeast waffles, with Plugra butter, Mr. Hawthorne's homemade blueberry sauce, some heated up cranberry reduction sauce, some caramelized orange pieces, pure maple syrup, and a sprinkling of powdered sugar.

And Youngest Hawthorne made dessert for breakfast.
Mr. Hawthorne had made a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving.  He couldn't help himself.
Me?  I can do without pies and I don't particularly care for pumpkin.
However, this was a pumpkin smoothie.
Pumpkin pie with ice cream done up in a blender.
I will eat this happily.

Happy Thanksgiving from the Hawthornes.
Count your blessings!

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