Thanksgiving dinner has always been my favorite holiday meal to prepare. I enjoy trying new recipes and making changes to traditional favorites, to add a new twist. Sharing the meal with friends and family is the best part; the more the merrier. So it was hard not to get sad and discouraged as it became apparent over the last few weeks with the increase in COVID cases, that my husband and I would be spending it alone. The lovely memories of past holidays would have to sustain us through this one.
One such memory is of my daughter and I preparing the turkey. We have tried different techniques over the years and found that soaking the turkey in a brine is one of the best methods for making a moist, delicious turkey.
Another option is to coat the bird in butter and olive oil mixed with chopped fresh herbs, lemon zest, salt and pepper.
A few years ago I passed the serving spoon to my daughter and son-in-law, and they have prepared some amazing Thanksgiving feasts. Last year there were 18 people in their apartment. They organized a fantastic meal and everyone had a great time.
There would be none of that this year. But we made the best of it with Zoom calls and a special meal for the two of us.
We started with parmesan cups with chevre and sautéed vegetables.
I coated a small turkey breast with butter and herbs (as described above) which my husband, aka theTravelsketcher roasted to perfection. He also made some savory, rich and delicious gravy which topped the mashed potatoes and turkey perfectly. Roasted Brussels sprouts and green beans sautéed with chopped shallots were also on our limited menu.
For dessert I made pears poached in red wine seasoned with cinnamon, cloves, orange zest, and a little sugar.
Later today I will be making shepherd’s pie with the leftovers.
It certainly was a different type of holiday this year. Hopefully by observing the guidelines set by medical professionals, we’ll be celebrating in person with our friends and families next year and the holiday we spent alone will be a distant memory.
Stay safe and healthy,