The 3 Hour Thanksgiving Menu
Our family decided last minute they wanted to celebrate Thanksgiving a weekend early because, well, that was when everyone was going to be together. This was decided last Saturday evening when I had literally nothing in the refrigerator, not even the turkey. What was I going to do? To make matters more stressful, I had to have dinner on the table by noon because one of my little chickadees needed to catch a plane home. At first I began to panic. A whole turkey big enough to feed 12 adults was going to take too long to cook in time for the noon deadline. Never mind that I still had to shop for all the produce. Here is how I managed to pull it all off in three hours, delicious, festive and celebratory enough to have a glass of wine too.
Thankfully I did not have to clean the house. My new eBook was about to launch in 2 day , so all my paperwork on the kitchen table was tucked away. We had just had a showing for my house (it’s for sale, could someone please make me an offer?) so it was immaculate, otherwise I would be going nuts trying to clean it. Instead I pulled myself together and headed out the door at 9:00 am.
I went directly to my local butcher, Howard the Butcher (yes that’s his name) in Caledon and picked up 2 giant boneless turkey breasts. I hopped in the car and went to Am Braigh Farms to gather organic carrots, kale, potatoes, garlic and other ingredients for my dinner. What I was serving was decided by what produce was available - that part was easy.
With a car full of groceries I headed home and began to cook. On the way home I mapped out the timing of food prep and cooking. Obviously the turkey was going to take the most time so I started there. The recipe I created for the turkey breast took advantage of some of my own fresh herbs from the garden too. I have included the recipe below so you can create a similar version for your own Thanksgiving. What I liked about this recipe is that instead of using a bread stuffing I put loads of vegetables in the breast. I had pulled up fresh sage, parsley, garlic, onions and celery from my garden and put it all in the food processor along with a bit of olive oil. This made a thick paste that I could stuff between the meat and the skin of the bird. In 15 minutes I had the turkey breasts stuffed, seasoned and into the oven.
With Kiersten’s help meanwhile, we prepared Kale Ceasar Salad, Celeriac Mashed Potatoes and a slew of fall vegetables that take no time to prep. A few sides of cranberry sauce, chutney and applesauce along with sourdough artisanal bread dipped in olive oil, and the meal was done.
HOW TO MAKE TOSCA'S 3 HOUR THANKSGIVING MENU:
From groceries to serving this meal, it took me 3 hours with a little help from my sous-chefs Kiersten and Rachel. New husband Mat set the table with his own ideas for decor. Maybe that was what made this meal so nice - it was a team effort in which we all played a part. Everyone got to shine.
From my table to yours, here is my 3 hour Thanksgiving Supper. Enjoy your Canadian Thanksgiving long weekend and don't forget to give a little thanks.