Here's what I'm making for Thanksgiving

Photo by Scott Keeler, Tampa Bay Times

Photo by Scott Keeler, Tampa Bay Times

Happy One Week Till Thanksgiving! Also know as How Is It Already the Middle of November, Why Isn't It Colder Florida You Are Lame, Can My Fridge Fit a 16-pound Turkey, etc.

There's a lot going on. I'm trying to nail down my final Thanksgiving menu right now, so I can start prepping. My husband and I are going to my parents' house, but I'm in charge of menu coordination. Everyone pitches in on the sides; hubs does the turkey. I always get overwhelmed, usually about 45 minutes before the turkey needs to come out of the oven. Making lists helps! So here goes.

 

Turkey

We are probably making this Orange and Sage turkey, a combo I haven't tried before but that sounds divine. Sage everything, please. 

 

Roasted cranberry sauce

Roasted! I love this idea. It's fresh cranberries, some citrus and sugar, but instead of putting all of that in a saucepan, you roast it in the oven. It's even easier to make, and delicious. Make extra for leftover-turkey sandwiches. SCROLL DOWN FOR THE RECIPE!

 

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Brussels sprouts with cheesy croutons

My mom likes to have some sort of substantial veggie on the table, and she loves Brussels. I fell in love with this recipe from the blog Kale and Caramel. It's why I made this bread, which I will add to some roasted sprouts and shallots, a bunch of sage and some sweet pomegranate seeds. YUM.

 

Mashed potatoes

Dad is on mashed potato duty, so I'm leaving that in his capable hands. Hint: Lots of salt and butter will get you very far.

 

Sweet rolls

I'm a firm believer in rolls on Thanksgiving, because I'm a firm believer in rolls at any point in life. I'm making these today, and freezing the uncooked babies until Thursday, at which point they'll get baked in the morning before the rest of the stuff goes in the oven. Bonus: The house will smell like bread all day.

 

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Sage and sausage stuffing

I made this beauty this past weekend, and it's now resting in my freezer until next week. I plan to reheat it in the oven with more chicken broth.

 

Green bean casserole

There's no escaping it: mushroom soup, a little milk, fried onions - this is the most old-school side we indulge in. My family has upgraded to fresh green beans instead of canned, and we know to make way more than we need, because this is usually the most popular side in the spread.

 

Pecan pie carrots

Carrots are my favorite veg, and this recipe is so simple and so delicious and does not require any extra oven space. 

 

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Roasted butternut squash

I'll have one vegan at the Thanksgiving table, and this is a dish that can easily be meat- and dairy-free. For the rest of us, a sprinkling of goat cheese tops things off nicely. 

 

 

Roasted Cranberry Sauce

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2 12-ounce bags fresh cranberries
2 thinly sliced shallots
1/2 cup brown sugar
A bunch of grated lemon zest
A bunch of grated orange zest
1/3 cup orange juice
Splash of red wine vinegar
Salt
Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place everything in a over-safe baking dish. I used a 13- by 9-incher. Stir to coat the cranberries with all the delicious things, then bake for about an hour. Stir about halfway through. The mixture will be jelly-like and not too liquidy when done, though it will firm up more when you take it out of the oven. Source: Adapted from Bon Appetit