Thanksgiving yum-yums

Since my Dad left for Maine (he's one of those avid deer hunters. Gone with his male 'gf'' Jimmy to roam the wild woods for that big buck) the joke in our family has been that I can finally have "fun" with Thanksgiving dinner. Dad won't be returning until late Sunday night, which means I have free rein to channel my chefy routs and make some non-traditional yum-yums without the usual:

"What the hell would you want to make that? Stick with what we always do." grumble...grumble...grumble...

And so I set to Pinterest, cooking magazines and Food Network (duh. Any excuse to watch the Food Network is a given) to find something delicious to make for my 10 family diners on Thursday. I found some gems, my friends. Some real gems. And the excitement I feel when I think about re-creating some of these dishes is really quite embarrassing. I mean seriously, who falls asleep giddily dreaming about getting up early Thanksgiving morning to stand in the kitchen with a Mimosa; elbow deep in pie crust, sage stuffing and the carcass of a dead bird?

This chick. That's who.

But I know that there are others in the world just as cray-cray as me. There are those of you out there who also look forward to the crazy-cooking-fiasco surrounding Thanksgiving day. You thrive on sharing with friends how you'll be cooking for 10 or 15 or 20. You too ferociously pin thanksgiving pies and biscuit and raid the family cookbooks for delicious recipes. And so, this post is for you. May you, my new crazy-thanksgiving-loving-friend, bask in all the delicious glory of these Thanksgiving yum-yums. 
Deep Dish Pumpkin Pie


David Jacoby's Pie Crust:
3 cups all-purpose flour

8 ounces butter

Pinch salt

Pie Filling:

1 3/4 cups (about one 15-ounce can) pumpkin puree

1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons lightly packed dark brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 1/2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp salt

1 1/4 cups evaporated milk

3 Tbl molasses
3 large eggs

Whipped Cream:
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

 For the crust: Put flour in the food processor, add 6 tablespoons ice water, the butter and salt. Pulse in the food processor until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Remove from the food processor and knead until light. Wrap the dough and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Remove and roll out dough to fit the pan. Place pie weights in the bottom and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow the pie shell to cool.

 For the filling: Place the pumpkin, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt in a large mixing bowl and blend with a whisk. Add the evaporated milk, molasses and eggs; stir vigorously with the whisk until smooth.

Pour the filling into the pie shell. Cover the edge of the crust with aluminum foil.

Bake the pie on the center rack of the oven until the top is shiny and set. The pie is set when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 hour.

For the whipped cream: Chill the whipping cream for 15 to 20 minutes. Combine the chilled whipping cream and sugar in a bowl them whip them together with an electric mixer until you see firm peaks, a couple of minutes.

Remove the pie from the oven and carefully remove the foil. Cool the pie on a rack. Serve the pie warm, cold or at room temperature with a dollop of whipped cream.

Paleo Green Beans with Mushrooms and Toasted Almonds


2 pounds trimmed green beans

8 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 whole scallion, thinly sliced - white and green parts
4 Tbl extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbl butter
Salt and pepper

Step 1:
Blanch green beans for 5 minutes in boiling salted water.

Step 2:
While green beans are blanching, place large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and butter. Add mushrooms and saute until golden brown (3-4 minutes). Add scallions, saute one more minute. Pull green beans out of water and add to pan.

Step 3:
Season with salt and pepper. Remove from pan and finish with 1/2 cup tasted almonds.
Cream Cheese Cranberry Bars

Nonstick cooking spray
21⁄2 cups finely crushed graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
4 packages (8 ounces each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
4 eggs
1 package (12-ounce) white chocolate chips
11/2 cups dried cranberries
4 ounces Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3-4 tablespoons milk
  • Preparation
  • 1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
  • 2. In a medium bowl combine crushed graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Press into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake 10 minutes. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  • 3. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F. In a very large bowl combine the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy using an electric mixer on medium. Beat in eggs, one at a time, just until blended. Pour half of the white chocolate chips and half of the dried cranberries into batter. Combine. Pour over prepared crust.
  • 4. Sprinkle remaining white chocolate chips and remaining dried cranberries over batter. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until edges are set but center still jiggles slightly. Cool completely in pan on cooling rack, about 1 hour.
  • 5. For cheesecake icing, beat cream cheese until creamy. Beat in powdered sugar. Stir in vanilla. Add 3 tablespoons milk and stir to thoroughly combine. Add milk as needed to get desired consistency. Drizzle
  • over cooled bars. Refrigerate baking cookies & cakes at least 2 hours before serving.
  • ~
So stock up on the champagne and orange juice. T-minus 2 days until we stand in our aprons at 6 in the morning, the Macy's Day Parade hype blaring out of the tv, and guzzle those mimosas. 
Cheers, my friend. 


  1. That all looks amazing...but those green beans look wonderful! I'm always looking for a new, great green bean recipe!

    1. I'll let you know what we think, Lauren! But seriously, green beans, mushrooms and toasted almonds? How could it be bad! Mmmm!

      Happy Thanksgiving!


Leave me some love and make me smile!