I usually make my cranberry relish and gravy three days prior to Thanksgiving. (If I didn’t get around to freezing Make-Ahead Gravy.) The flavors only improve and that last-minute turkey trot chaos is somewhat mitigated.
I begin with the relish because it’s a cinch to make. I’ve had delicious cooked cranberry relishes and chutneys but I prefer this uncooked, fresh tasting, easy version. A friend just told me he adds Grand Marnier to his relish; I’m going to separate dish and put Grand Marnier in one and leave the other without.
Gravy requires a bit more finesse. There are countless variations of make-ahead gravy, for good reason. No one wants to struggle with getting the lumps out of gravy while the turkey grows cold. Yet nothing is better than gravy made with the last-minute turkey drippings.
My recipe proposes a truce between make-ahead gravy and last-minute gravy. I make the gravy “base” in advance and whisk in the drippings and mushrooms right before serving.
There is great controversy surrounding giblets. I come from a giblet-loving stock of folks. We love giblets in our gravy so much, we’ve nicknamed a favorite niece “Giblet”. I have learned that not everyone shares this predilection for the innards so I serve chopped giblets on the side.
One final warning: Omit the bay leaf if you remember the jar from last year, or worse, from a previous marriage.
Here’s a no-recipe recipe for folks with little time and large palates. Tomato sauces are great to have hanging out in the fridge for impromptu meals. With their high acidic content, they have a lengthy refrigerated shelf-life, at the ready for spooning over, or incorporating into, grain dishes and proteins. The best bottled, freshest tasting … Full recipe post »
Today I began cooking for a holiday party I’m hosting the day after tomorrow. One item I want on the menu is an old-fashioned spice cake, and while thumbing through cookbooks in search of a recipe, I was imagining rich layers of flavor that would be more redolent of spice than cloyingly sweet. No such … Full recipe post »
Hi there! I'm Peggy Lampman -
Food writer by trade, curious cook by design.
The past 30 years have witnessed a raucous race from my professional to
home kitchen - persnickety customers, petulant children and piles of dirty dishes
lie in my wake. And the dinnerFeeds - well - they
are my story. More about Peggy and this site...
Taste buds prickle; wanderlust triggered. An Argentine barbecue (asado)
enticed me to Patagonia. A friend gave me a vial of ground sumac berries--4 months later I was
waking at dawn to the "Call To Prayer" in Turkey. Porcini to Tuscany, and so on. Read more about my chronicles of
trips and favorite associated recipes. Browse my travel recipes...
Here are ideas gleaned from others that speak to me;
where I highlight projects that bring friends, neighborhoods, and communities together. For me,
complimentary food makes the project and event more fun. Browse my projects and related recipes...