Thursday, November 24, 2005

Home for the Holiday

It's Thanksgiving Day, and now I'm even happier that I chose to stay home for the holiday. The snow that fell yesterday was coated this morning with freezing rain and blown into a fine sheen by the bitter winds as the temperature dropped into the teens. Hello, Winter!

It's a perfect day, then, for turning on the oven and cooking a simple harvest meal to celebrate the day.

I peeled and sliced one of those beautiful organic butternut squash from my favorite farmer, the Cheerful Lady, then browned the slices in a pan while I prepared the topping: sauteed organic onion and garlic from the farmers' market, chopped dates, organic pistachios, grated lemon peel, parsley, dried mint from the garden, cinnamon, and lemon juice. (Thanks once again to Local Flavors for a fantastic recipe!)

While the squash and the topping baked together briefly in the oven, I steamed some fresh kale to add to my dinner plate. (I just love squash and kale together. Maybe it's my peace-loving Irish blood, seeing the orange and the green in harmony -- or maybe I just love autumn vegetables.)

By the time I had filled my plate with my humble Thanksgiving feast, the sun had come out, shining brightly in the blue sky, and I had yet another reason to give heartfelt thanks.

I love a good, traditional feast shared with family and friends as much as the next person, and yes, I'm a sucker for a good pumpkin pie (with real whipped cream, please!). But today I gave thanks for a full larder and freezer, as well as for the realization that a simple meal would be more than sufficient. I gave thanks for the loved ones who called and shared a small part of the day with me, and I gave thanks for the peace found at the end of the day.

And for the rest of the weekend, I'll give thanks for the time to bake more!


At 11/29/2005 6:01 PM, Blogger Tina said...

Yes, real whipped cream! My friend Shawn, with whom I spent Thanksgiving, gets raw milk from a local farm. So we not only had real whipped cream, we had real RAW whipped cream! I've never had better whipped cream in my life, amazing!

At 11/30/2005 7:43 AM, Blogger The Baklava Queen said...

Now THAT sounds good! And I just spotted an article about raw milk on Grist Magazine: "Raw milk, hot commodity" by Tom Philpott (my favorite blogger there). Worth a read!

I especially like using real cream for whipped cream because then I can infuse it with yummy things like orange peel or lime peel or ginger so that it pairs even better with the dish. But then, I'm a cooking geek sometimes... ;)


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