Thanksgiving dinner and other meals over the holiday weekend provide an opportunity for people to connect with one another by participating in centuries-old communal tradition: giving thanks together over a joyous meal.
Thanksgiving is a beloved American holiday. It’s a celebration of foods, flavors, and customs that often evoke happy memories of good times enjoyed with family and friends. There’s something comforting in knowing that on the fourth Thursday of every November, most Americans are engaged in the same activity. Through laughter and words, we as friends and family come together to sit at the table, share the season’s wonderful foods and express how grateful we are to have one another.
Yet, preparing for Thanksgiving meals can be daunting. I did not have to cook for many guests this year, but it did take me some time to decide on a meal plan that would be satisfying and memorable for my family. On Thanksgiving morning I spread out on my counter, my vegetables (mostly roots, tubers) and fruits (pears, apples, cranberries, etc.) and asked myself, “now what can you do with these Martine?” I had recently gone to our local farmers market so I was inspired to use regionally grown vegetables and fruits at their seasonal best. I wanted to focus less on perfection and more on simplicity.
I also knew that I wanted to try and make a pretty main dish, something that would establish the look and feel for the entire table. My goal was to prepare a dish that would serve as a strong focal point and surround it with colorful side dishes that would help elevate the table to the feel of a holiday meal. Below are a few photos of my what I came up with on Thanksgiving morning.
As Thanksgiving entertaining often goes beyond the holiday meal, there were a few other dishes—ancient grains, soups, desserts, and an irresistible Pumpkin Bread—I prepared for family and friends throughout the long holiday weekend.
Thanksgiving entertaining is about bringing people together to share seasonal foods, the warmth of home, and the bonds of family and friendship–simple gifts worth celebrating every year.
For Holiday Recipes, visit:
The Vegetable Feast
Vanilla Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Rustic Fall Polenta with Fontina and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Exotic Mushroom Pâté
Triple-Chocolate Mousse Cake
(More Holiday Baking ideas coming soon)