One Local Turkey
Thanksgiving is probably one of my favorite holidays, so I am excited that this year will be my first turn to prepare the Thanksgiving Day feast. Luckily, we have a small, easy-going group of family and a few friends coming over so there is not too much pressure! I have been brainstorming this week about what I will serve; I would like to have the traditional Thanksgiving dishes but since this is our first time hosting, we can start our own Thanksgiving traditions and keep it as healthy and as local as possible.
Most Thanksgiving Day meals revolve around turkey, so I thought I would set the local theme by making a Maple Glazed Turkey using a free-range bird ordered from nearby Misty Knoll Farms in Vermont. The rest of the (preliminary) line-up consists of a Cranberry Chutney using local apples and a local honey as a natural sweetener, a Smoky Root Vegetable Gratin, maybe a squash something or other, (can I squeeze in a Chestnut Stuffing too?) and, of course, Pumpkin Pie using a real pumpkin, rather than the canned stuff, and this crust so I can take advantage of my whole wheat pastry flour from upstate NY.
Wow, that seems like a lot now that I have all laid out there. Which brings me to some tips and resources I’ve come across while planning for next week:
- Plan in advance! Come up with a menu, if you haven’t already, by the end of this week.
- Go local! Use this helpful article to help formulate a local menu. Or adapt some of your current Thanksgiving staples to use more local ingredients. Browse around the farmer’s market this weekend to see what is in season, (or find out using this state by state guide) and then go online to search for recipes here. No one says it has to be 100%, but every time you choose local, you are making a difference.
- Once you have determined your menu, formulate a shopping list, time-line, and think through all the recipes to confirm you have enough pots and pans, plus space in the oven, refrigerator, and on the counter top. Also, think about what can be made in advance to ease the stress and cut back on your time in the kitchen.
- Don’t forget to save all the leftovers for new dishes like this one.
So with one week to go, let the fun begin. We would love to hear about what you are serving this Thanksgiving, how you might be incorporating local foods into your Thanksgiving Day traditions and any green tips you may have to share.