Wednesday, November 30, 2011

GH Thanksgiving Recipes

If you saw yesterday's GreenHouse Thanksgiving photos, and are hungry for more, today I'll give you all the tools to recreate some of those dishes themselves.

Of course, I assume you don't need to make 25 servings of each, so I'll pare down the ingredient amounts, but if you do want the full 25 servings versions, just let me know!

As with any good menu, this one began with some imagination, lots of internet and cookbook research, and a trip to the farmer's market (in my case, the first indoor winter farmer's market of the season!). Many of the ingredients were from our Dane County Farmer's Market: the sweet potatoes, potatoes, apples, salad greens, cranberries, wheat bread for stuffing, eggs, and carrots. The onions and garlic were from the local farm of the GreenHouse Program Coordinator.  And the rest of the ingredients all came from the Willy St. Co-op. Pretty cool.

The full menu:

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GreenHouse Thanksgiving 2011

Sweet Potato Biscuits 
Cranberry Sauce 
Green Salad with Dried Cranberries and Carrots (no recipe) 
Green Bean Casserole
Apple-Walnut Stuffing 
Vegetarian Gravy 
Rosemary and White Bean Mashed Potatoes 
Apple Pie 

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Sweet Potato Biscuits
from "Screen Doors and Sweet Tea," by Martha Hall Foose, via our friends SK and TY

2 medium sweet potatoes
2/3 cup whole milk
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) butter, melted
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake sweet potatoes on a baking sheet until tender, about 40 minutes. Once they cool, cut them in half, scoop out the flesh, and mash it up.  This should yield about 1 cup mashed potato.
  2. Raise oven temperature to 450 degrees. Mix the sweet potato flesh, milk, and butter. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Gently mix the dry ingredients into the sweet potato mixture to form a soft dough. Drop the dough by tablespoons onto a greased baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until they are a deep orange color. Yields 12
My notes: Instead of roasting the potatoes, we peeled, chopped, and boiled them.  We also ended up baking the biscuits for about 20 minutes, and had a little problem with burning. On the whole, this time around they ended up tasting more like pancakes than anything else--still delicious but not as biscuit-y as I'd had them before when my friends TY and SK made them. Maybe it was because we didn't roast the potatoes? I'd love to hear the results of any experiments from you all...

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Cranberry Sauce

~10 ounces cranberries
1.5 cup white sugar (or less, to taste)
2 1/4 cup water 
2 tsp orange zest
  1. In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in the water and zest. 
  2. Stir in the cranberries and cook until the cranberries start to pop (about 10 minutes). 
  3. Remove from heat and place sauce in a bowl. Cranberry sauce will thicken. (8 servings)

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Homemade Green Bean Casserole
 adapted from the Post Punk Kitchen

4 cups green beans (2 cans; if using fresh or frozen, pre-boil for ~7 minutes)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cups sliced mushrooms
4 cups creamy mushroom soup*
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
fresh black pepper
1/2 cup fried onions
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  1. Saute onions in olive oil on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and saute for 7 minutes more.
  2. Mix the flour into the mushroom soup until very few lumps are left. Add to the pan along with the salt and pepper. Stir often for about 10 minutes, until thickened.
  3. Preheat oven to 375*. Add the green beans to the pan. Mix in half of the fried onions. 
  4. Transfer to an oiled casserole and top with the remaining onions and bread crumbs Bake for 25 minutes, until browned and bubbly.

* we used 1 box of Imagine brand condensed soup mixed with half water/half milk
** we used the cheap store brand full of bad stuff, but I've heard Trader Joe's has a healthier version

Our notes: this came out even more delicious than the Campbell's Soup/French's Fried Onion version, I think. It was so saucy, though, as it often is, that I almost wished we hadn't made the vegetarian gravy, and had just used the sauce from this as gravy for the stuffing and mashed potatoes. Live and learn.
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Apple-Walnut Stuffing

1/3 cup butter 
1 large onion, finely chopped 
2 stalks celery, finely chopped 
1 cup chopped red baking apple 
1 cup chopped green cooking apple 
2 cups whole wheat bread cubes, lightly toasted 
1 cup chopped walnuts 
2 tablespoons dried whole-leaf sage 
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary 
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme 
1 large egg, beaten 
1 cup milk 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon pepper 
  1. Melt butter in a small skillet over medium-high heat; add onion and celery, and cook, stirring constantly, until tender. 
  2. Combine apples, bread, walnuts, and herbs in a large bowl; stir in cooked vegetable mixture, egg, milk, and salt and pepper to taste. 
  3. Spoon into a lightly greased baking dish. 
  4. Bake at 350* for 30 minutes. Serves: 6
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Vegetarian Gravy

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup chopped onion
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons light soy sauce
4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  1.  Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. 
  2. Stir in flour and soy sauce to form a smooth paste. 
  3. Gradually whisk in the broth. Season with sage, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. 
  4. Reduce heat, and simmer, stirring constantly, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until thickened. Serves 12.
***

Rosemary and White Bean Mashed Potatoes


1.5 quarts water
1.5 tablespoons salt
1.5 pounds potato peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
12 ounces white beans (cannelini, navy, northern, or even garbanzo)
3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1-1/2 tablespoons rosemary chopped fine
3-8 ounces boiling water from potatoes

  1. Bring the water to a boil in a medium pot, and then add the salt.  Boil the potatoes until they are fork-tender, approximately 20 minutes.
  2. While the potatoes are boiling, heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan. Once hot, add the beans and cook for 1-2 minutes.  Next add the garlic and rosemary, continuing to stir the beans for another minute.  Ladle 3 ounces of water from the potato pot into a food processor.  Add the garlic-and-rosemary-infused beans while still hot to the food processor.  Process the beans until smooth.  Transfer the bean puree to a bowl and keep warm.
  3. When the potatoes are ready, drain them and let them rest for 5 minutes.  Puree the potatoes and then add to the reserved bean puree. Mix thoroughly, season to taste, and add more potato water as needed to moisten. Makes 9 (1/3 cup) servings
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Apple Pie


6 cups thinly sliced apples
1/2 cup brown sugar (less if apples are sweet)
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon flour
½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 pie crusts (ours were pre-prepared from the co-op, but this is a great recipe if you need one)

  1. Prepare your pastry for a two crust pie. Peel, core, and slice apples; measure to 6 cups.
  2. Toss apples with lemon juice, flour, vanilla, nutmeg, butter, and cinnamon
  3. Arrange apples in layers in pastry lined pie plate. Cover with top crust. Place on lowest rack in oven preheated to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bake for 30 to 35 minutes longer. Serve warm or cold. Serves 8
Our notes: We made two apple pies, and then had another set of pie crusts, but not quite enough apples for a third pie. We did, however, have sweet potatoes left over from the biscuits, so we combined the apples with the pureed sweet potato and made a combined apple-sweet potato pie. It was a bit soft, but delicious.

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