Friday, November 27, 2020

THANKSGIVING PANDEMIC STYLE


 Hello, friends!  I hope everyone in the States had a great Thanksgiving Day yesterday.  It certainly was a different one for us, but we ended up having a terrific day.  Although I did miss being with my family, it was safer to just stay home this year.

As usual I got up way before Joe.  I like having the morning to myself to wake up, do things around the house, and lately to watch at least two (sometimes three) Hallmark movies.  It takes 90 minutes to take my morning medicine before I can eat.  They all have to be taken separately and spaced 30 minutes apart.  A great time to blog too.

At any rate I didn't do all that much yesterday.  In fact, I ended up falling asleep after breakfast and waking up when Joe came downstairs around lunch time.  Boy, did that feel good to get that extra sleep!  And being the big kids that we are instead of lunch we ended up having coffee for Joe and hot chocolate for me.  I have been craving hot chocolate for weeks and now that urge is over!

As soon as we finished our drinks, I started the turkey.  I had a breast that weighed about 6 pounds.  I lifted it into the sink to open it and wash it off and hurt my back.  So Joe had to do the lifting for me.  Joe found me a recipe on the Allrecipes website and I used that to mix up some butter and herbs to put under and on  the skin.  And boy was that ever good!  It smelled wonderful cooking too.  We let it roast for an hour while we just sat and talked.  Then it was time to put the rest of the butter on it and cook it for another 30 minutes.  I actually cooked it a little longer than that because I wasn't sure it was done.  It turned out just right.

While it was cooking for the last part we went into the living room and watched some TV.


After I took the turkey out of the oven I started on all of the sides while it rested.  I am not good at getting a large meal to all come out at the same time.  So it was a little hectic for me.


But finally everything was done.  Joe told me to take a picture of the sides.


Mashed potatoes, stuffing (I added sautéed mushrooms to it and it was wonderful!), Brussels sprouts cooked in butter, cranberry sauce, and gravy.


I sliced some of the turkey breast and put it on a plate.  I do not like turkey all that much.  I especially do not like white meat.  But this I loved!  It was so moist and juicy!  And there is a lot left.

Every year at my sister's house, my brother has a picture taken of him holding his silverware waiting to start eating.  Here's a picture of Larry from a couple of years ago.


Joe said it wouldn't be the same without that picture, so he did the pose.  Ha, ha, ha!  But Joe looks happier than Larry.


Everything was really good.  And there was even enough for seconds.



Even Jack enjoyed his turkey.


Of course for dessert there was pumpkin pie.  One for Joe.


And one for me.


I got some cute paper plates that we used for our dessert.  As you can see, the pie didn't last very long.


Of course, what is Thanksgiving without a Peanuts cartoon.






The only thing missing from the day was the parade.  Our local station did a good job of replacing it, but it wasn't the same.  Next year.

Before I take down all my decorations let me show them to you.  This was not a good year with all my health issues so I did not do a lot of decorating.  A lot of the things I love did not get put up.  Hopefully I will do a better job with the Christmas decorations.

I love decorating my back patio area.  This is so cute.


My new fall item this year was this cute little fall gnome.  I loved his big sunflower.


Sorry this is a little blurry.  I put the Lenox leaf candle holder by the gnome.


I put some pumpkins and sunflowers on the table by the window and on the windowsill.


I found a leaf garland which I put into the window along with a battery-powered candle that looks very real.  It even flickers.



And, of course, my beautiful autumn wreath on the front door.


I love fall so very much and I will miss it when I take things down this weekend.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I can't wait to hear all about it.

Kathy



Thursday, November 26, 2020

PUMPKIN PIE


 Happy Thanksgiving Day, friends!  I'm wishing you all a wonderful day today whether you can be with your family and friends or not.  It's just Joe and me today, but we are going to have a great time.

I'm so sorry I did not have the time to write a post yesterday.  I had planned to, but the day got away from me.  In any case, I promised to show you how I make our 200 year old family recipe for pumpkin pie, so here it is.

The year after my mom died, my brother took her handwritten cookbook and put it all together for me.  My sister got a copy too.  Such a thoughtful gift.  And the pumpkin pie recipe (such as it is) is in it.



I began by putting the can of pumpkin into a large bowl.  When I was little my great-grandmother used a fresh pumpkin.  The day before she made the pies my great-grandfather would peel it and cut the pumpkin into pieces.  (Pumpkins are tough to cut!)  Then she would put it into a large pot and boil it until it was very tender.  I don't know how long, but it seemed like hours to me as a kid.  Then she would drain it and take a colander and mash it through the holes.  It had to be done in small batches and took a long time.  This was almost an all day event and why it had to be done the day before.  It was put into the refrigerator to cool and be ready for the next day.  I use a can.  So much easier.  Fortunately at the end of her life (she lived to be 94) she used a can too.  I knew I didn't want to make a lot of pies, so I used a small can and cut down on the eggs and milk.


Make sure to use the pure pumpkin and not the pumpkin pie filling.  Since I was cutting the recipe in half, I used 3 eggs.  But later rethought myself and put in another one.  4 eggs in all.


After they were mixed together, I grated the peel of a lemon and added it.  I found the planer hard to use to get the rind, but I didn't know where I put my box grater.  It is much easier on the box grater.  But I got my rind and added it.  Be sure to use the yellow rind, no white part, and do NOT put the juice in.  That would ruin the pie.



Mix it in and then add the sugar.  How much sugar?  I don't know.  The way I was taught to make this pie is add things until it tastes right.  I know how it's supposed to taste and when it tastes the way it should, then I stop.  I began with two scoops.  I think I added another three before it was right.  I think.  I didn't count.


Joe came into the kitchen at this point and took pictures for me as I added the ginger.  That is the only spice in this pie.  Again I began with the amount in the recipe, but added more at the end until it "tasted right."


I put milk in the pumpkin pan, stirred it around to get the last of the pumpkin out, and poured it in a little at a time until it was the right consistency. 


Then it was taste, add, taste again.  What does it need?  Add and taste again.  When it tasted right, I prepared the crust and poured the filling in.  The last step is to sprinkle cinnamon on the top.


It is baked in a hot oven on the bottom shelf until it is partially baked and then put on the top shelf to finish.  What is a hot oven?  I don't know.  I used 400*F (about 200*C).

Since Joe does not like my kind of pie all that much, and I don't like his all that much, I made the Libby's pumpkin pie for him.  There was a little filling left over, so we put it into two ramekins and had pumpkin pudding for dessert last night.  It came out good.


Oops, guess I need to clean my oven door today.

You can see my pie is more orange than Joe's pie.  And yes, we have a pie apiece.  Are we spoiled or what?

I didn't take a picture of the finished product, but you will see it in the Thanksgiving post.  I will try to put it up tonight, but it might be tomorrow before I do.

In any case, have a wonderful day.  I'm looking forward to reading all of your posts about this special time.

Until later...

Kathy