Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving : The Meal

Yesterday we had our first Thanksgiving together. I started cooking Friday, mixing up the watergate salad (minus the whipped cream), and making the pumpkin pie. From scratch. They don't have graham crackers in the UK, and finding canned pumpkin is a challenge. So I had to buy a pumpkin (the last one Sainsbury's had weeks ago) and keep it in the fridge to stay fresh. Friday I cut it up, boiled it, and made myself a pie. The crust didn't turn out the way it was suppose to (oh, how I miss you store bought graham cracker pie crusts) but it was manageable. I left it to chill overnight in the fridge.

Saturday morning first thing I made cornbread and biscuits. American biscuits! I have missed them. I may have to find a recipe for biscuits from scratch and make them occasionally. These ones were from a packet mix my mom sent me. I mixed all/most of  the ingredients for the green bean casserole and the sweet potato casserole and stored them in the fridge for cooking later.

Nid started the turkey, which we cooked in a roasting bag with a half a bottle of sparkling wine. Then Nid made us each a Buck's Fizz which those of you in the US will know as a Mimosa with the left over sparkling wine and the orange juice from the sweet potato casserole. An hour before dinner was to be served I put the casseroles in the oven, baked for 35 minutes, put the bread back in the oven for a quick heat up with the turkey and we served. There was so much food it didn't hardly fit on our table, which thankfully has pull out extensions on both ends.

I suppose it is worth mentioning that Friday night I went to bed with a little bitty clogged nose, and Saturday  morning woke up with a cough and runny nose. I couldn't believe it! I took some Dayquil right away and that helped, so I was at least not miserable while doing the cooking. And the cooking did go smoother than I thought it would. I had a slight mishap with the whipping cream. Because of course here they don't have Cool Whip, I had to buy whipping cream (which Nid and Jacqui helped whip before dinner), but that was after I dropped the container on the floor and spilled half. Which ironically left me with exactly the amount I needed for the watergate salad and the topping for the pumpkin pie.

Anyway, the meal went great, and everybody loved everything (at least they said they did). Here is a list of everything we had.


I remember as I cooked that I kept thinking, I need to put this in my blog and I need to put that in my blog... but whether it just wasn't that important or whether the cold and/or cold medicine is jumbling my brain, I can't remember any of the funny anecdotes I was going to include. Oh well. The meal was a success, everyone was stuffed and happy, and we've got yummy left overs for dinner tonight, so I am well satisfied with how the day went. Thank you again, Matt and Jacqui for coming over. Thank you Briony and Cale for being so wonderful and helping with the cleaning up without complaining. And thank you Nid for putting up with me while I was sick and stressed about the cooking. I am a lucky girl.

Oh! And Virginia Tech beat the University of Virginia 42 to 13 at UVA. Go HOKIES!


ColleenfromPA said...

something in my adult life that I am very happy about is the turkey breast crown, makes cooking a turkey sooo much easier than the days of my dad checking the bird for hours and hours.

midwesttomidlands said...

Hi nice to "meet" you in blogland! We have to be determined to fix American foods in the UK don't we? Just those little ingredients we were used to grabbing at the grocery store, we now have to make from scratch or find a substitute. Looks like your meal was a success!

Jenny said...

Colleen - It was our first time with the crown, and I cannot imagine ever wanting to do a whole bird again! So glad you stopped by.

midwesttomidlands - Very nice to meet you as well. Yes, absolutely! It was not an easy road to Thanksgiving, but so worth it in the end to have the familiarity, especially during the holidays. We're planning an American/English Christmas dinner, which I think will be a lovely new tradition.

david said...

mmmm, dinner looked great Jenny! I'm already making plans to visit Crozet for Thanksgiving dinner next year! j/k - lol. Thanks for letting us in on your first Thanksgiving dinner together.

Jenny said...

Thanks David. Mom's already informed me that I'm cooking for the whole family next year, so go on and bring the girls, we'll have a big ole' party!

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