Canadian Thanksgiving falls on the second Monday of October and is probably my new favorite holiday. As a kid I never liked traditional fall foods like pumpkin pie, stuffing, and sweet potatoes but now I can’t get enough! I wanted to share here what my 2010 Thanksgiving meal looked like. Turkey, stuffing, sweet potato & apple casserole, green beans, carrots, with gravy and cranberry sauce on the side and pumpkin pie for dessert.
I ordered the free-range turkey (raised on a small farm) through a local meat shop. It was about 18 lbs and thankfully fit into my roasting pan. Every year I keep telling myself I need to buy some string but always forget. We tried to pin the cavity closed but it all fell open while it was cooking. This actually led to a nice browning of the stuffing which was delicious. The only thing I do to prep the turkey is stuff it and pour melted butter over top. I always cook it covered until done then brown it with the lid off for about 30 minutes.
The recipe I used is Beth’s recipe for Oven Baked Stuffing but I left out the water and stuffed the turkey with it instead. As the bread in the stuffing, I made a pan of almond flour brownies and dehydrated them for a couple hours so they would hold together. I would think using an almond flour or coconut flour loaf in any regular stuffing recipe would work. The nut base makes it a great complimentary flavour to the turkey.
For gravy I just took the pan drippings, added some sautéed onions, and blended until mostly smooth. Really, that is all you have to do for delicious gravy! You can add water if you don’t have much liquid left in your roasting pan, but I had at least 2 cups.
I made this the day before and it turned out nicely jelled. One package of fresh cranberries, 1 tbsp lemon juice and honey to taste. I put the cranberries in a pot with just enough water so they wouldn’t burn. Once they softened up I mashed them with a potato masher. I let it simmer for about 15 minutes then added the lemon juice and honey. Then I just let it simmer until it was thick and very dark. It looked black on the bottom and was stuck to the pot, but it tasted perfect.
Sweet Potato and Apple Casserole
This was a last minute decision to make something with sweet potato. While these are not SCD-legal, it is one of the first foods I’ve added back in and have been eating for a few months with no problems. Candied sweet potatoes are a common side dish, but I wanted something simple with no marshmallows. I boiled the sweet potatoes whole, then peeled the skin off and sliced them. I peeled, cored and sliced some apples. In a casserole dish, I put a layer of sweet potato, a layer of apples, sprinkled some cinnamon on top and then repeated with another layer. I spooned honey generously over the dish and dotted with lots of butter. I baked it at 350F for close to an hour, until the apples were soft and the top was nicely browned. This turned out wonderfully. I plan on trying it with butternut squash as an SCD-legal version and I’m sure it will turn out. The sweetness of apples blends really well with root vegetables. I’ll take a good picture of it and post the full recipe once I test it out. Update: here’s the recipe!
Carrots and Green Beans
Nothing special here, I just steamed carrots and green beans then added a ton of butter and some sea salt. Any excuse to have more butter!
I used Beth’s Pumpkin Pie recipe which I made last year for the first time and loved. I didn’t bother with a crust and just baked this filling in a pie plate on its own. It was delicious. Even the non-SCDers loved it and asked for more. I guess I should be giving thanks to Beth for her wonderful recipes!
I am dairy-free right now, but since I was having tons of butter in my other dishes I figured whipped cream would be a nice treat. Heal Balance Live has a great SCD Whipped Cream recipe. Cultured yogurt cream will still whip like regular cream and you just need to add a bit of honey to get the sweetness back.
After dinner I put the turkey carcass into a big stockpot on the stove with about 7 liters of water. I let it simmer overnight and in the morning it was a wonderful dark brown rich broth. I got about 6 liters out of the first batch, then added more water to simmer the bones a second time. I expect the second batch to be a bit less rich, so I added some vegetable scraps for some extra flavor and nutrients.
Maybe I’m getting used to cooking a lot, but it seemed easier this year to prepare all this food. That and my family made for wonderful guests who brought other pies, fresh bread and even a Chinese noodle dish. I also made regular mashed potatoes for everyone else, and some mashed sweet potato in case the casserole didn’t turn out. We had tons of food leftover!
Check out Mrs Ed’s Research and Recipes for more SCD Holiday ideas!