Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

cranberry. orange. dates.

The Table

Is it really only 13 days until Thanksgiving? Somehow that just doesn’t seem possible. I don’t know if it is because we have had a bit of an Indian Summer week in Chicago which allowed me to commute without any outerwear (no! coat! on November 11th!) and run in shorts and a tee. This year, rather than visiting Dave’s family like in years past, we are heading to Florida to visit my Dad’s side of the family. It will be the first time for Dave to meet most of this part of my family and some cousins I haven’t seen since I was in elementary school. And there may be some beach walking and cute town visiting. Needless to say, I’m looking forward to the holiday. I’m starting to compile a list of recipes that I want to make in Florida and the first one of my list is this Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Dates that I made last year. I got the recipe from one of my past Gourmet (sob!) magazines and it is a keeper. If you are in need of a little change to your cranberry sauce, give this recipe a try. Also really great on some greek yogurt for breakfast as leftover.

Cranberry Orange Date

Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Dates
Recipe adapted from Gourmet: November 2008

•1 cup water
•1 1/4 cups sugar
•3 strips orange zest
•1 cup fresh orange juice
•3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
•1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
•1 cup coarsely chopped pitted dates* (6 ounces), divided
•2 (12-ounce) bags cranberries (thawed if frozen), divided

*Dates are a little tricky to chop because they get so sticky so this is how I do it: make a slice in the date lengthwise and pull out the pit. Then cut the date into long strips. Then gather a few strips together and slice again to make smaller bits. Wipe the knife down with hot water to get of the gunk if it gets too sticky.

Simmer water, sugar, zest, juice, vinegar, and cinnamon stick in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring, 3 minutes. Add half of dates and half of cranberries and simmer, stirring occasionally, until cranberries begin to burst, about 7 minutes. Stir in remaining dates and cranberries and simmer until remaining cranberries begin to burst, about 7 minutes more. Serve at room temperature


The Spread

I can’t wait to tell you about my weekend in Philly, especially about my mother’s recipe for Cornbread Stuffing and some wonderful Chocolate-Pecan Tarts but I was busy decorating the apartment for the holidays and restocking the fridge today. Be back this week.


Turkey Day Inspiration
1. sweet potato buttermilk pie, 2. Apple pie, ready for baking, 3. Untitled, 4. creamed spinach, 5. apple ginger upside-down cake, 6. cranberries, 7. Test Turkey!, 8. Bourbon Cranberries, 9. french pear tart

I am packing up for a 7AM flight to Philly tomorrow to spend Thanksgiving with Dave’s family.  This year I will be tackling half of the menu (Rich, Dave’s Dad, is tackling the other half, with Deb, Dave’s Mom picking up desserts).  I am pretty excited to give a few classics a new update and I have been enjoyed reading about everyone else’s preparations in the blog world.  I just wanted to share with you our planned menu, with links to online recipes when they exist.  Hopefully, I will get a chance to blog about the actual dishes later and I will update the links.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I know that I am very thankful to have Dave and his family in my life, that my parents are healthy and are spending their Thanksgiving in FL with my dad’s family.

{Philly Thanksgiving 2009}

Turkey Breast: Two Ways

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Brussel Sprouts w/ Balsamic & Bacon

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Cranberry Sauce with Dates and Orange

Green Bean Casserole

Mom’s Cornbread Stuffing

Spinach Salad w/ Cranberries

Assorted Desserts: Classic Apple Pie, Key Lime Tarts, Chocolate Pecan Tarts

A Happy Thanksgiving



I didn’t manage to post yesterday because after I got back to my apartment at 11, unloaded all the bags and granny cart of half my kitchen items that I took to Mehul’s to finish up the cooking, took a hot bath, I was ready to go to bed!  Even though I didn’t travel to Texas or PA with Dave, I had a very wonderful Thanksgiving.  I cooked for two full days (corn bread stuffing, Twofer Pie for this week’s TWD, Caramelized Apple and Pecan Pie , French Silk Pie, and my first TURKEY.)

The wonderful spread

Sliced Turkey and Stuffing (with and without sausage)

Pies...3 different ways

Since I really need to get working on my Advanced Tax Transactions takehome final, I should finish right here. I had a great time meeting new friends and trying new recipes. I will post about everything that I made in the future but the next 2 weeks are going to be stressful and finals packed.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!