Thanksgiving Bites!

After kind of a rough day at work, I decided I should do a post about my second great love; food!!!

I absolutely adore food. I’d rather go grocery shopping than clothes shopping. I’d rather stay in baking than hitting the town with my ladies. I’d rather stay in cooking with my husband while listening to Flamenco music than go to the movies. I’d rather peruse food blogs than shop online. I’d rather go out and try a new restaurant than go out for drinks.

It’s bad. My husband’s a chef. I can’t think of a time that I find him sexier than when he is in the kitchen. Thankfully, I also love running…otherwise I think we’d have a real problem!

I also love Thanksgiving. I have such fond memories of the family dinners of yesteryear…including Aunt Rayna’s Chocolate Kahlua Cake, Nana’s amazing salads and sweet potatoes, giant turkeys, mashed potatoes (with the skins) and bickering with my brother and sisters.

My siblings and cousins are probably going to kill me when they see this.. but I couldn’t resist…Check out my awesome red velvet dress with the super frilly collar…EEK!

One of our famous holiday dinners... circa 1990-91

“Moving on…

I thought I’d show you some of my recent obsessions in the food blog world, maybe something you could use for the big Thanksgiving feast you’re attending! I have made almost all of these recipes or similar versions of them and can tell you that they are great! All of these are a little different than your traditional Turkey Day Fare. Be warned, you are about to be blown away!

1. Swiss Chard Sweet Potato Gratin. 

Deb is the best. Smitten Kitchen is one of my go-to food blogs, whether it be for dinner, dessert or a snack. This Gratin will rock your socks off! We made this for Christmas last year and as a vegetarian dish at our wedding…there was nothing left. Absolutely amazing!

2. Apple Pie Cookies

Another Smitten Kitchen Creation, these cookies are not for the faint of heart, but they are so worth it. If you’re looking for a fun twist on a traditional dessert, then these are the cookie for you. Just be warned, you’ve got to be in it for the long haul-Not because they are difficult to make, but they are a little labor intensive.

3. Caramelized Onion Dip

If you are anything like me, the apps are just as important as the main course. This dip is from Heidi at 101 Cookbooks, simple to make and a little fancier than the standard french onion dip. I think it’s even better after sitting in the fridge for a day, allowing the flavor to really come out. This is a great dish to bring along, serve it with veggies, crackers or some tortilla chips.

4. Rosemary Olive Oil Cake

Another 101 Cookbooks recipe, this is one of my favorite cakes to make. More savory than sweet, it’s got a little bit of everything: glorious undertones of rosemary, dark chocolate surprises, and the moistness that every olive oil cake has. Yum! I throw in some flax seed meal just to give it that extra something. Again, if you’re looking for something a little different, make this! Actually, just make it anyway.

5. Pumpkin Cream Pie

Confession, I haven’t actually made this pie, but it looks mouthwatering. I love Pioneer Woman’s blog because she makes everything so easy. She also uses real ingredients. I may have to make this for our celebration…now to convince Ben that we need another dessert…

6. Spaghetti Squash with Maple Syrup and Shallots

Spaghetti Squash. I adore it. Add Maple Syrup and Shallots, you have a winner. Not only is it fun to eat, but it’s soooooo goooooood! Another win for P-Dub.

7. Chicken (or turkey?) Pot Pie with Cream Cheese and Chive Buscuits

I know this is a leftovers recipe, but still. Look at it, Joy the Baker rocks. This rocks. How else are you gonna use up all that turkey?

8. Vegan Chocolate Avocado Cake

This cake is awesome. I mean, just look at the frosting! I didn’t use as much sugar in the frosting but that’s only because I am not a super sweet person. It’s something fun and different! Try it!!! Just make sure not to use overly ripe avocados, especially in the frosting, it will quickly turn that vibrant green to a weird brownish color.

9. Quinoa Stuffing

Once again, I haven’t made this but it looks great. It’s got so many of my favorite ingredients in it. Whether you are gluten-free or not, this is definitely something to try! Quinoa makes me happy, it is fun to eat and so good for you!

10. Shredded Brussel Sprouts

I know Brussels Sprouts aren’t for everyone, but really, these sound sooooo goood!  (sorry, you have to scroll down to get to this recipe.) I definitely think these are worth a try…I mean, they have pancetta and caraway in them, how can you go wrong?!

That’s all for now. Let me know if you end up trying any of these and what you think! What are your favorite Thanksgiving foods? Be on the lookout for a sampling of our Thanksgiving feast (the first in our new apartment as a married couple! AH!)

Have a safe, happy and blessed holiday!