Friday, November 28, 2008

Champagne Kisses and Thanksgiving Wishes

Oh goodness, this holiday is what I needed! Thanksgiving was the best!!!! We stayed at our house because my mom flew to California to be with my aunt, and since Casey had to work today, we couldn't make it to Bend, where his Mom lives.
We made everything from scratch and used fresh ingredients whenever possible.
We special ordered a petite turkey that we brined in maple syrup and kosher salt, then rubbed with herbs and butter, even injecting butter under the breast skin, then stuffed it with lemons, apples, and fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, lavender, and sage.
We made green been casserole w/ panko topped crust, french green beans, and garlic cream. From Cook's Illustrated recipes we made Baguette Stuffing (soaked in olive oil, fresh cream and soy sauce, and baked like bread pudding, but savory.) and we also roasted carrots and potatoes in the turkey juices.
We had champagne with frozen apple slices slices, which was so yummy and helped keep things fun in the kitchen
And for dessert we had this Skillet Apple Pie, the recipe is from Cooks Illustrated, it has no bottom crust and you caramelize the apples in maple syrup on a skillet then press the dough in the mix, bake for 20 minutes and you have flaky gooey pie (there are more ingredients, but that is the basics.)

And also we had these hearts shaped shortbread cookies, which I have made in the past as Strawberry Matcha Cookies, but this time I sandwiched Pumpkin Butter and Lemon Curd alternately with a little powdered sugar on top. I also made a big batch of these earlier in the week to give out as holiday gifts to neighbors and friends.
The pumpkin butter was cool, because it was like having little mini pumpkin pies. You can get jars of it at Trader Joes for under 3 dollars, and don't let the word butter scare you like it did for me at first, it is fat free, more of a jam than a butter.
There is a ton og butter in the shortbread already, so there was no need to add more!
After dinner we had coffee and hung out, watching the most amazing movies! If you have not seen the french insect documentary Microcosmos, you must watch ASAP!
It was the most beautiful film I have ever seen. I am a huge fan of nature films, and this is the beautiful and elegant one I have seen. It makes you look at insects with a whole new perspective. There is even a snail make out scene that is so freakin cute I just about died.
Better than any romantic chick flick out there. There is a lot of time lapse photography, something that always makes me pretty much clap at the television when I get to see it.
Then we watched a Japanese Movie called "Into the Faraway Sky" billed as the Japanese's answer to Stand By Me.I didn't see many simularities, except it was a heartwarming movie about young childhood friends with a fairy tale vibe that was sweet and had just the right amount of sweetness that didn't seem contrived like so many Hollywood movies do.
What a snuggly Thanksgiving! It felt good considering I did over a weeks worth of work in 3 days this week. The whole time I was at work I pictured eating and relaxing and spending time with Casey and the dogs and now that it is finally here, I am so very grateful for it! The leftover turkey will be used used to make turkey, bacon, and swiss melt on these homemade croissants I made last weekend and saved some dough for
I am also very excited for Christmas~! On the 6th I am going with my mom to watch the Nutcracker Suite, which Portland has a good show downtown of, we are going to get dressed up and have a date together. For Christmas we usually decorate a theme on a budget, in the past we did a Candy Cane Stripe theme, this year for our new house we are going to go with an all white Christmas, a white fake tree, snowflakes, and white hanging orb ornaments, sort of a 2001 Space Odyssey Christmas, haha.
We are already menu planning together and I am very excited. So I will update the Christmas Season as it happens, until then I hope everyone is having a relaxed, special holiday season with their family.


kawaii crafter said...

You're back! I didn't realize you started blogging again. Good to see your posts.

That turkey looks and sounds delicious! Sounds like the two of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Oiyi said...

Your Thanksgiving Feast looks amazing. I bet it was super tasty.

Debzilla said...

Everything looked beautiful! I can't get enough of the winter holiday season.. So much beauty, everywhere. Redmond was fun :] Mm, turkey! Andrew drank a lot and they had a mini bonfire outside. The kids (I still consider myself a kid? Yes.) ended up playing Wii fit, drunk. WOO!

Anyway, I'm glad you're happy and had a wonderful Thanksgiving! See you sooooon.

Hey Harriet said...

Happy belated Thanksgiving! Glad to hear that the day was a special one for you. Oh that food! You're killin' me! I'm drooling all over the place wanting to taste it all!

Loved the film Microcosmos! Did you also enjoy Baraka? I think it was made by the same people but I could be wrong. Either way, it was also a super film. I sent our friend M.Kate a copy of Baraka a while back thinking she'd appreciate it. Hope you're enjoying your weekend. Nice to see you posting again! Yay! :)

M.Kate said...

Hello bunbun :D
So happy to have you back in blogland..have missed all your beautiful shots! Lovely turkey, did you keep a slice for me ;p
Everything is so perfect, you really are a good cook and love those heart shaped cookies. Hope you can take a longer will be so unfair to travel thousands of miles and stay for a short while. So looking forward to see you and Casey. I would love to see Microcosmos..thoug I dont think they have it here. Hey Harriet's Baraka was really awesome, I have seen it so many times...Happy belated Thanksgiving.

Amanda said...

I'm glad you had a nice Thanksgiving! I've always wanted to decorate my house in a theme for Christmas, I don't know why I don't. :)
Oh, and Dustin and I saw the Nutcracker in Portland a few years ago, it is so much fun. We were underdressed though, big time. Everyone else looked like they were going to a ball or something so I felt pretty dumb in jeans. I would love to go to it again, dressed right!

ling239 said...

the heart shaped pie and cookies are so lovely!!

happy holidays!! ^_^

bunbun said...

Thanks everyone!
deb: drunk wii fit, that is funny!
harriet: I have never seen Baraka, but Casey told e he has, and we are renting it on Netflix next week. This week we are caught up in the series entourage.
More my style than sex and the city. there is a "dude" side to me for sure, it just doesn't come out in this blog too much!

Mkate: They wont let me take longer than four days off at a time, so we will see. I think that ay change by spring. Thank you for your well wishes!

I am sure that whatever you do for Christmas is super cute. Plus, last year you had that guesthouse that was straight from Cribs! Are you going again this year?

Thank u! So sweet. I think you would like them, too, because they aren't too crazy sweet! I know you don't like things too sweet!

amy said...

your thanksgiving dinner looked delicious. I love the apple champagne, the heart crusted pie aww, and you're a genius for ordering the special mini turkey.

Turkey bacon and swiss melts! Yum!
My mom didn't have much turkey leftover so I didn't ask to take any home. I wish I did so I could make a tbs melt.

I hope you plan on posting pictures of your 2001 Space Odessy Christmas tree. I am not a big christams decorator so who knows if i'll even have a tree, but this theme idea sounds fun. I could do a disco Christmas with disco ball ornaments and a shag carpet tree skirt. Ok, not really.

Spitting Image said...

wow. thats all I can say.

Debzilla said...

Thanks! It was an odd experience for sure, and I don't know if I'll do it again. But a week or so ago my left arm went numb. Seems that I had Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and something was compressing my nerve. I went to the chiropractor and he aligned three of my left ribs, which seemed to be the source of the problem. After that it was healing time. I had a massage the next day and I've been sore and weak ever since. Also, those three ribs have messed up my posture.

Ku said...

I think you need a bigger table for next Thanksgiving. o.o;

Also, I really really really want one of those cookies now. ^3^

Also also: HELLO, YOU ARE ALIVE! This makes me happy. ^_^

bunbun said...

Haha Ku, That is funny, my parents and sister and niece are coming for thanksgiving next year and we are renting a table. I am excited to make a feast bigger than for two. I get nervous making meals for people other than Casey because he will eat pretty much anything.
And I am glad I am not dead, too!

kelly said...

Wonderful food! Your pics and description make me salivate! haha Happy festive season to a happy couple (YOU)!

Gina said...

Merry Christmas and a happy new year to you!