Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Dinner, Part 2

The meal continued with some wonderful vegetable dishes: sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, and "wilted" lettuce.

Candied Sweet Potatoes with Walnuts, Cranberries, and Marshmallowettes
(also from the film What's Cooking?)

8 med. sweet potatoes
4 Tbsp. butter
1 c. dark brown sugar
¾ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. nutmeg
½ c. white grape juice
½ c. walnuts
½ c. whole cranberries
½ c. mini marshmallows

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Peel the potatoes and cut them into 2" disks. Place them in a large pot with enough water to cover and cook until boiling; reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 10 minutes or so, until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain, and place in a large oven-proof casserole dish.

Melt the butter and brown sugar in a small saucepan, and stir in the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and grape juice. Pour the mixture over the potatoes. Arrange a walnut, a cranberry or two, and a marshmallow in and around each potato for decorative effect. Bake for 50 – 60 minutes. Remove from oven and serve immediately.

Yield: 10 –12 servings

Brussels Sprouts with Hazelnuts
(from the movie Gosford Park)

1 lb. fresh Brussels sprouts (try to buy them fresh the day they are to be used)
salted water
4 Tbsp. butter, melted
½ c. light brown sugar
1 tsp. Balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp. black pepper
½ c. hazelnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Wash the sprouts and pull off any yellowed leaves. Parboil them in just enough salted water to cover for no more than 5 minutes, then drain.

In a small bowl, mix the butter and brown sugar with the Balsamic vinegar and pepper, then stir
in the hazelnuts. Transfer the mixture to cover the bottom of a small baking dish. Place the sprouts on top of the nut mix, close enough together so that they don’t tip over. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Serve piping hot as an accompaniment.

Yield: 6–8 servings

Wilted Lettuce with Peas and Pearl Onions
(also from the film Gosford Park)

1 head iceberg lettuce, shredded
1 bag frozen peas, or 2 small cans
1 bag frozen pearl onions
2 c. water
1 lb. bacon, well done and cut into bits
1 Tbsp. bacon grease

In a medium pot, combine the lettuce, peas, and pearl onions with the water and cook until the lettuce is quite wilted and the peas and onions are cooked through. Drain. Add the bacon bits and grease, toss, and serve.

Yield: 6 servings

Although a dish featuring “wilted” lettuce might lack a certain “title” appeal, this recipe is quickly prepared, colorful, and quite tasty.