|La Dolce Duchessa's Thanksgiving|
What does that subtitle mean? In praise of a realistic Thanksgiving? It means that before the meal even started, a bottle of red wine was spilled on the white linen table cloth. It was because my husband was desperately trying to feed mashed potatoes to the starving almost 19 month old- and some of the wine landed in the mashed potato serving bowl- he said, 'It's on the outside, though, so if we just serve the potatoes from the center, that shouldn't be an issue...' Then, my son's mango juice cup's lid (one of the only varieties of fruit juice he will consume, but hey, we like mango) went flying and out sploshed the mango juice onto the table cloth in a different area, to which I responded 'hey, now it's a party!' because, really, what else are you going to say? Then I spilled red wine on the bottom of my wine glass- 'oh hey, you've ruined the tablecloth!' came the shouts- you know what? No big deal. Any of it. Because my little family was together, happy and healthy, and we even had my wonderful Mom visiting to make her signature stuffing (which is really her Mom's recipe). So, a roaring success! Even if the pictures say otherwise!
|American Gothic tribute- and our red wine covered table!|
Don't sweat the small stuff. See the big picture. Enjoy what can be enjoyed- affirm what can be affirmed! Yes, I love things done well, and elegant food and beautiful tables. But, that can't be every day. It just can't. And that is just fine. Really.
|My Grandmother's stuffing|
|Plain old white sandwich bread is best for stuffing|
Grandma's Thanksgiving Stuffing
(enough for 6-8 people, or 4 people plus leftovers)
2 yellow onions, chopped
2 bunches celery, chopped
1 to 1 1/4 loaves white sandwich bread, a few days old, torn into pieces
2 sticks unsalted butter
poultry seasoning (although salt free, we like Bell's) Bell's Turkey Seasoning
salt and pepper to taste
|Beginning your stuffing with butter and onion|
You'll need a large stock pot for the next phase of cooking. Once the onion and celery are sufficiently softened in the melted butter, transfer to the stock pot. Continue to heat over low to medium heat, and begin to add the bread pieces. You'll want to do it a little at a time, and mix, so the butter gets absorbed into the bread. Begin to add some chicken broth (we used about 2 to 2 1/2 cups for this amount of stuffing, but this will vary based on your bread, so you'll need to eyeball this). And, some more poultry seasoning. The adding of the poultry seasoning is to your taste, so continue to taste as you go along. Remember, white bread is pretty tasteless, so be bold, you want your stuffing to be able to stand on its own. Keep mixing the bread in, and once you've added in all the bread, see where you are in terms of moistness and flavor. You don't want it to be too wet, if it is, add more bread, or too dry, if it is, add more chicken broth. Taste it, and season with salt and pepper.
Before you are ready to put it on the table, spoon it into a deep casserole dish and let it heat and dry out a little in the oven at about 200-225. Cover loosely with foil- not tight- because you want some drying. Especially the top, so you can have a nice mix of firm and soft in the final stuffing.
Once its firm and dry enough on top to your liking, remove from the oven and serve. You may serve it in the warm casserole pan or spoon it into another serving dish, trying to keep the dry portions on the top. Enjoy!
|La Dolce Duchessa's Apple Pie|
We also enjoyed a lovely apple pie, for the recipe, click here: La Dolce Duchessa's Apple Pie, why not whip one up for Christmas dinner? Or a lovely raspberry pie? La Dolce Duchessa's Raspberry Pie
To clean the table cloth, which is a white linen tablecloth, I put it into the washing machine with OxiClean powder and used a hot cycle. I stopped the machine at the soak step and left it overnight. I finished the cycle the next morning, and it came out, no problem. I didn't have to treat the individual stains at all. Wasn't that easy? OxiClean