It’s harvest season and if you haven’t been able to tell yet our team has been taking full advantage!
Now that we have officially entered into the first week of November, I think it’s safe to say we can begin sharing some of our seasonal favorites! Right?! This is the time of year for gathering around a table and enjoying an amazing meal together filled with tradition passed down from the generations. In honor of that, we’ve designed a Thanksgiving tablescape w/ prepared side dishes that we hope inspire you this season as you prepare for guests.
And, I’ll give you the same warning as I did in last years post:
Bare with us! This blog post is a little lengthy, BUT some of the yummiest & most delicious Thanksgiving recipes await!
Lyndsay and Tina put their heads together and created this very festive table top! The greenery with hints of orange is the color palette we all started craving November 1st. Although this holiday can be stressful, a tabletop like this one is very easy to put together and cost efficient! You likely already have half the items in your home ready to use. Here are the details down to every little touch:
Woven placemats: IKEA (similar)
White plates: TJ Maxx (similar)
Magnolia Leaf Table garland: Hobby Lobby
Mini oranges: Any grocery store
Copper goblets: New this year to Pier 1
Black tags: Michaels Craft Store
Burlap table runner: Michaels Craft Store
APPETIZERS & SIDES
Matt was really tootin’ his horn about this Cranberry sauce recipe. So much so, that he actually wrote an entire paragraph to convince you of this. I’ll just leave it here, for you all to enjoy reading as much as I did.
Thanksgiving dinner is the best. And my favorite dish to make is the cranberry sauce. I know you’re thinking, “Matt, this is because you’re a slacker and want something easy.” I can forgive you for this. Many a thanksgiving goer has chosen cranberry sauce for just this reason. But trust me, I’m different. Look, this is important…. CRANBERRY SAUCE IS IMPORTANT! Sorry for yelling. Let me set the table: Thanksgiving is dominated by the real heavy hitters: turkey, stuffing, gravy, and pies. All awesome, but all heavy or sweet. Cranberry sauce is the one player in the game that has a chance to cut through this melange. Cranberry sauce is the maverick, the poet, the rugged individualist so renown in American folklore. Cranberry sauce is to thanksgiving dinner what Flavor Flav is to Public Enemy. Cranberry sauce is the nitrous in your funny car. Cranberry sauce is what we all aspire be. Be a hero! Be cranberry sauce!
One, 12 oz bag of frozen cranberries
1 tbsp honey (yes honey, NO sugar allowed!)
3/4 c water
Combine in a small sauce pan and simmer until cranberries swell and break open. It doesn’t take long, 10-15 minutes is all. Then put into a glass serving bowl and refrigerate over night. Yes, for you procrastinators, you can make it the day of but it won’t be nearly as good. Magic happens in the refrigerator while the lights are off and everyone’s snoozing. This bag makes about 4 servings, adjust accordingly.
Next up, is Colette’s Veggie Pizza! She first learned about this dish at a dinner party she attended a couple years back. She loved it so much she began adding it to the menu at her own gatherings. It’s super easy to make and more than that, very delicious!
Two 8 ounce cans of Pillsbury crescent rolls
One 8 ounce pkg of cream cheese
1/2 c sour cream
1 tsp dried dill weed
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/2 c small, fresh broccoli florets
1/2 c fresh cauliflower florets
1 red pepper, chopped
1 tsp dried dill weed
1 c shredded sharp cheddar
Heat oven to 375°F. Unroll both cans of dough and separate into 4” long rectangles. In an ungreased 15x10x1-inch pan, place dough; press in and up sides to form crust. Bake 13 to 17 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely, about 30 minutes. Finely chop broccoli, cauliflower and red pepper. In small bowl, mix cream cheese, sour cream, dill and garlic powder until smooth. Spread over crust. Top with vegetables and serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours before serving.
I like to think of Leslie as being the queen of carrot dishes. I’m not joking either. Last year, at our team Holiday party, everyone raved about Leslie’s carrots. This year for Thanksgiving, I’m happy to report she has done it again! These honey roasted carrots are a sure-fire WIN!
Honey Roasted Carrots
Salt & pepper
14 carrots, cut in half (we used the colorful variety here)
1-2 fresh thyme leaves
11 tablespoon EVOO
1 tablespoon of honey
12 ounces goat cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl toss together carrots, olive oil, salt & pepper. Dump the carrots out onto a rimmed baking sheet and spread them into a single layer. Place the carrots in the oven and roast for 10 min. Remove from oven, drizzle w/ honey and toss to coat them. Roast carrots in the oven for another 10 minutes or until slightly caramelized. Serve with crumbled goat cheese, thyme, and another drizzle of honey.
Oh man, this dish was a newbie this year. I had heard all about how hard it was to make but I didn’t believe! To be honest, I really wanted to make it because of it’s photogenic potential. Look it up on Pinterest, you’ll understand. Note to self: Ratatouille takes TIME, don’t rush and your end product will be well worth the wait!
1/2 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
1 cup tomato puree
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Few sprigs fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
1 small eggplant
1 small zucchini
1 small yellow squash
1 long red bell pepper
Soft goat cheese, for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Pour tomato puree into bottom of an oval baking dish. Add sliced garlic cloves, chopped onion, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil into the sauce. Season sauce generously with salt & pepper. Trim the ends off eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash. As carefully as you can, trim the ends off the red pepper and remove the core. Cut the eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash and red pepper into very thin slices, 1/16-inch thick. Arrange slices of prepared vegetables on top of the sauce from the outer edge to the inside of the baking dish, overlapping so just a little of surface is visible, alternating veggies. Drizzle the last tablespoon of olive oil over the veggies and season generously w/ salt and pepper. Sprinkle the thyme sprigs over the dish. Cover dish with a piece of parchment paper cut to fit inside. Bake for approximately 45 to 55 minutes, until veggies are cooked, but have some structure so they are not totally limp. Top w/ goat cheese and serve.
Our final & cutest Thanksgiving side. These will be recognized the minute they hit the table! Soft fluffy pumpkin rolls with a side of cinnamon butter. Nothing better!
Pumpkin Rolls w/ Cinnamon Butter
For the bread:
1 pkg Rhodes dinner rolls
Sliced pecan pieces, for the “stems”
For the butter:
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Coat pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place rolls on pan and cover with plastic wrap. Let rolls rise for two hours. Slice edges of dinner rolls. Uncover plastic wrap from rolls. Using a sharp knife, slice seven to eight sections of roll, leaving the center intact. Press hole in the center of roll. This is where you will insert your stem. Re-cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for an additional one to two hours. Check to make sure your holes are still indented. If needed, press again. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat rolls with egg wash. This gives your pumpkin a nice shiny coat. Then bake rolls for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Cut whole pecans into thirds. Insert a third into the center of each pumpkin roll as your stem.
AND, as an added bonus we’ve created a recipe card to match our tabletop that you can download and fill in with your favorite recipes!