Four days and counting – cue the panic and break out the fat pants! Are you ready? I most assuredly am not, but with a plethora of recipes floating around the interwebs, I’m breathing a little bit easier.
This is Ben and my first holiday as a married couple and we have decided to forego the chaos and upheaval that normally comes with big family holidays. Normally we would have to choose between splitting our holiday one of three ways, with my dad and step-mom, mom and step-dad or Ben’s parents 300 miles away – but with him in the middle of his first quarter of nursing school and my trying to just keep pace with the rest of the world, it seemed like the best option for us was to spend our first holiday as man and wife together – just the two of us. And Huck, too – naturally.
This also happens to be my first year of cooking my own Thanksgiving, all by myself. o.O
Ben will be tucked away banging his head into his desk finishing a last minute 10 page paper on nursing ethics and peeking through the door of our room to catch the latest football scores and I will be commandeering the remote and be watching Harry Potter all the way through getting myself primed for the impending Christmas season. Am I the only one who craves a little wand waving and quidditch during the rainy fall months? It just gets me in the spirit. Don’t know why, but it probably has something to do with me being weird and loony. You already knew that though.
Anywayy… since this is Ben’s and my first Turkey Day together, I wanted to make sure that it felt like home. The one resounding requirement to our Thanksgiving fare was Ray’s Sweet Potato Casserole. Never have I met Ray, but he is a casserole legend and this is the one dish that everyone looks forward to in the Keno family during the holiday of Thanks. So being the wonderful wife I am, I am making this just for Ben. Where’s my wife of the year award? I suspect it is in the mail now.
This is one that would be easy to make head of time and pop in the oven 25 minutes before dinner is ready. Score 1 for Megan and easy planning!
I started with two sweet potatoes – since this is just me and Ben, and boiled them like regular potatoes. Then drain away!
Now this beauty is how I went about “mashing” my potatoes – it’s a ricer. If you don’t have one of these, I highly, astronomically recommend it. It’s doesn’t mash as much as it aerates your potatoes, keeping them light and fluffy instead of condensed and brick-like. Unless you’re into that sort of thing, which I pass no judgements.
This one, in particular – the RSVP Ricer, has two removable and interchangeable presses, this one is the finer of the two. *Sidebar* this ricer was the highest rated ricer by America’s Test Kitchen. And they test ’em ALLL, so I trust ’em. *End Sidebar*
The ricer is super handy because it also – oh so conventiently – has a bowl rest on it so you can let it sit on your bowl as you press.Who wants their taters flying through the air ala Three Stooges – no one.
Then into the bowl went buttah (obviously), sugar, eggs and a little milk.
Oh, and some vanilla.
Fold it around so you don’t flatten the sweet potatoes until the butter melts deliciously into the crevasses and you’re ready to put it into the baking dish.
Smooth it out in the bottom of a baking dish and get ready to top it with a little brown sugar, coconut, chopped pecans (or in my case walnuts), flour and maauurr buttah!
Fork that baby til it crumbles and sprinkle onto the sweet potatoes. Now you’re ready to bake. Put into a 325 oven for 20-25 minutes or until crispy and golden brown. Now this one is fantastic if you want to make it a day or even two ahead of time, and you just throw it into the oven as your bring your bird out of the oven to rest. Just switcharoo and you’re ready to go as soon as the bird is ready to carve. Viola!
Ray's Sweet Potato Casserole
A family tradition that can be made a day or two ahead of time!
4-5 Sweet Potatoes, cubed
3/4 cup Sugar
½ cup Milk
2 Eggs, beaten
1 tsp Vanilla
6 Tbsp Butter, softened
1 cup Coconut
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 pecans (or in my case walnuts), chopped
¾ cup flour
6 tbsp butter, melted
3 tbsp Butter, melted
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In large saucepan or stock pot, boil water. Add in cubed sweet potatoes and simmer just until potatoes are fork tender. Drain in colander and set aside. Place ricer over bowl and press potatoes in multiple batches. Add in vanilla, softened butter, milk, beaten eggs and sugar. Fold everything together until butter has melted and everything is evenly dispersed.
Pour into a lightly greased baking dish. Set aside.
In bowl, mix together coconut, brown sugar, chopped pecans, and flour. Stir in melted butter and mix until the coconut/brown sugar/pecan mixture starts to look like crumbles and is pea sized. Sprinkle over the top of the sweet potatoes.
Place in oven for 20-25 minutes, or until top is golden brown. Serve warm.
*Note* This dish can be made a day or two ahead of time and bake day-of. You may need to increase the time of baking if it comes straight of the fridge and into the oven.
Original recipe from Ray Hulet.
Now for 102 extra recipes for your Thanksgiving holiday – cause you weren’t indecisive enough already!! Check out some of my favorites. You just know these will be a hit!!
Because, 101 recipes just wasn’t trying hard enough.
Artichoke Dip – Hill Country Cook
Crispy Salmon Bites – Running to the Kitchen
Roasted Tomato and Brie Baked Brie Dip – Country Cleaver
White Bean and Garlic Hummus – Bran Appetit
Cheesy Shredded Chicken Bites – Dine and Dish
Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke Tapenade – Country Cleaver
Baked Bourbon Buffalo Wings – Bev Cooks
Asparagus Parmiaiano Puff – Bell’alimento
Asparagus and Brie Perogies – Country Cleaver
Flagship Cheese, Asparagus and Pear Bites – Country Cleaver
Bacon Gorgonzola Guacamole – Simply Scratch
Prosciutto Warpped Gorgonzola Stuffed Dates – Simply Scratch
Sweet and Spicy Golden Plum Dip with Coconut Shrimp – Country Cleaver
Rosemary Pecans and Cranberries – Country Cleaver
Chantrelle Ricotta Crostini – Heather Cristo
Marinated Beecher’s and Caprese Bites – Country Cleaver
BLT Dip – Climbing Grier Mountain
Basil Infused Vodka – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Eggnog Martini – Recipe Girl
Blood Orange Champagne Cocktail – Heather Cristo
Sloe Gin Sours – London Bakes
Irish Coffee – My Life as a Mrs.
Spiced Pumpkin Martini – My Life as a Mrs.
Deep Fried Turkey – Spicy Perspective
Turkey – The Novice Chef
Honey Herbed Glazed Turkey – Taste and Tell
Roasted Turkey with Herb Butter and Roasted Shallots – Cookin’ Canuck
My Favorite Turkey Brine – The Pioneer Woman
Malt-Beer Brined Turkey – Love and Olive Oil
Asian Turkey – Spicy Perspective
Sourdough Bread Stuffing – Perry’s Plate
Roasted Butternut, Sausage and Fennel Stuffing – Gimme Some Oven
Chantrelle Stuffing – Honest Food
Sourdough and Cornbread Sausage Stuffing – Picky Palate
Oyster Dressing – The Pioneer Woman
Bacon Leek Stuffing with Sage – Simply Scratch
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar – Two Peas and Their Pod
Asparagus with Shallot Caper Vinaigrette – Country Cleaver
Green Bean Casserole – Table for Two
Broccli Gratin – Running to the Kitchen
Potato Artichoke and Goat Cheese Gratin – Domestic Fits
Roy’s Spicy Sausage and Rice – The Church Cook
Baby Carrots – Picky Palate
Roasted Delicate Squash – Rachel Cooks
Wild Rice Caramelied Shallots, Cranberries and Pecans – Eat Live Run
Oven Roasted Vegetables – Spicy Perspective
Spaghetti Squash with Swiss Chard – Cookin’ Canuck
Potatoes of all kind:
Apple Balsamic Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Goat Cheese and Cranberries – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Scalloped Potatoes – Recipe Girl
Shepherd’s Pie – Lauren’s Latest
Bacon and Caramelized Onion Mashed Potatoes – Cookin’ Canuck
Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes – Rachel Cooks
Apple Bacon Stuffed Sweet Potatoes – How Sweet Eats
Easy Cheesy Mother-In-Law Potatoes – Hill Country Cook
Cajun Seasoned Potatoes – Simply Scratch
Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Blue Cheese – Cookin’ Canuck
Brown Sugar Sweet Potatoes – Miss in the Kitchen
Orange-Cranberry Sauce – Baked By Rachel
Bourbon Vanilla Cranberry Sauce – Eat, Live, Run
Homemade Cranberry Sauce – Simply Scratch
Cranberry Relish – Kvetchin Kitchen
Cranberry Orange Sauce – Table for Two Blog
Boozy Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce – Realistic Nutritionist
Potato Leek Soup – Heather Cristo
Lentil Soup – Simply Scratch
Roasted Corn and Beer Chowder- Country Cleaver
Tarragon Borscht – FouLou
Chicken and Guinness Stout Stew – Country Cleaver
Creamless Tomato Basil Soup – Country Cleaver
Butternut Squash Soup – Table for Two
Watercress Soup – Country Cleaver
Cream of Potato Soup – Comfortably Domestic
Cauliflower Soup – Running with Tweezers
Rolls and Bread:
No Knead Cheese Studded Dinner Rolls – Farmgirl Gourmet
Hefeweizen Honey Rolls – The Beeroness
Pumpkin Beer Bread – Country Cleaver
Buttery Croissants – The Novice Chef
Homemade Pretel Bites – Dine and Dish
Black Pepper Parmesan Drop Biscuits – Bake Your Day
Apple Butter Yeast Rolls – Spicy Perspective
Rosemary Sea Salt Focaccia – Country Cleaver
Cornmeal Rolls – Comfortably Domestic
Nutella Pecan Pie – Country Cleaver
Sweet Potato Pie with No Roll Crust – Bakeaholic Mama
Mom’s Black Forest Cherry Pie – Inside Nana Bread’s Head
Cranberry Crumble Bars (Gluten Free and Regular) – Country Cleaver
Irish Cream and Chocolate Silk Pie – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Pie – Brown Eyes Baker
Pecan Pie Bars – Table for Two
Apple Pie Poptart Fudge – Domestic Rebel
Apple Cider Caramels – Smitten Kitchen
Spiced Pear and chocolate Bread Pudding – Country Cleaver
Plum Pie – The Realistic Nutritionist
Individual Pear Crumbles – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Cheesecake Crack Dip – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Praline Monkey Bread- Country Cleaver
Roasted Almon Pecan Pumpkin Butter – Running to the Kitchen
Chai Cheesecake Bars with Pumpkin Spice Ganache – Country Cleaver
Old Fashioned Pumpkin Pie – Simply Recipes
Pumpkin Beer Bread – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Cheesecake – My Baking Addiction
Pumpkin Cheesecake Gelato – Country Cleaver
Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcakes – Table for Two Blog
Pumpkin Pasta and Turkey Sausage – Table for Two
Day After Leftovers:
Leftover Turkey Casserole – Lauren’s Latest
Turkey, Brie and Apple Panini – The Novice Chef
Rosemary Hummus Turkey Wraps – She Wears Many Hats
Asian Turkey Lettuce Wraps – Bev Cooks
Turkey Enchiladad Verde Soup – Homesick Texan