Today’s Wednesday–8 days before Thanksgiving; 4 days before my kids, et al, come to celebrate our early-bird feast. There’s several inches of white stuff on the ground, school’s out and some neighborhood kids just made a snowman. It’s leering at me from across the street. Wipe that silly grin off your face before I knock it off.
Pears beginning to poach in a fruity mulled wine.
Oopsie! Debby Downer’s come to visit. Normally I’m delighted with the first stuff of the season. But memories of last winter…today’s temps below freezing …two feasts to prepare…a book demanding its 20 millionth proof…a house that needs cleaning…no assistant to assist…Really, Frosty, really? Can’t you wait until December?
My family assumes my spatula is a magic wand, perhaps yours’ does too; no short-cuts for this gal. Grinning mightily, I’m supposed to cherish this holiday; be an enthusiastic spoke on the wheel with the other smily-faced Thanksgiving Day guru bloggers, communally slavering over saucepan, over pen, over this one holiday that devotes itself to food. That should be me. But, yet, it’s not. This year I’m saying’– make it go away, please?
It’s essential making dishes 24 hours in advance as, folks, I’m in survival mode, and the savory panna cotta (not sweet, per typical panna cotta) dealie I’m launching to conclude tomorrow’s meal is a piece of work. I’ll make the Goat Cheese Panna Cotta and Poached Pears portion of the recipe tonight, the entirety to be completed an hour before dinner’s served. Salad and cheese courses are often served after the main, and this recipe takes care of that, plus the poached pear adds an element of sweet.
Whisk goat cheese until incorporated into sauce and smooth.
Place pan in ice bath then whisk in gelatin (read notes on blooming gelatin). Whisk until completely incorporated and mixture is not gritty.
Pour mixture into oiled ramekins and refrigerate at least 6 hours and up to 24.
Make bacon-maple syrup and strain out bacon.
Panna Cotta perfection! Just the right amount of jiggle and creaminess while maintaining its shape.
Today’s Saturday: When you read the following recipe (I dare you), you’re right to conclude that I’m a whacked-out masochist since I’ve kvetched ad nauseam about my work load. (I get it; nice problems and all that.) If you’ve read this far, perhaps you’re feeling my pain because holidays knock you broadside, too. This year my novel-to-be takes the rap.
Recipes are included in Simmer and Smoke; A Southern Tale of Grit and Spice, and the following is a recipe I’ve made only once, and it will appear in the book. It needed a microscopic proof and that’s what I gave it. I’ll serve it tonight, but made a sample to photograph and taste. The layers of texture and flavor incorporate into a shimmering, creamy, bacolicious dish; a real show-stopper and, in retrospect, worth the effort.
One last thing. Forget deep breathing mantras. Here’s my strategy for Thanksgiving Day Survival: Lucy’s Pig Punch. Yeowza!
Women that grew up in countries outside of the United States, immigrated to America as young adults, raised families and have grandkids, capture my imagination. They’ve escaped war, poverty and oppression, many bringing only the shirts on their back and the recipes from their homelands. And their stories? Makes my life look like a pony ride at a … Full recipe post »
There are over a hundred billion stars in our galaxy. Says Google, at least. After perusing chocolate chip cookie recipes on-line this week, I’m guessing there are about that many recipes for chocolate chip cookies. Minimum. So do I really need to burden the web with, yet, another one? It depends. What’s your taste in cookies? The following list … Full recipe post »
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