What I’m Reading Today

Welcome to the procrastinators edition of ‘What I’m Reading Today”.  That’s right, if you don’t know by now what you plan to put on your Thanksgiving table tomorrow, you’ve officially procrastinated.  However, having read through today’s food sections I think you’re in luck.  Gorgeous recipes are ripe for the picking and many of them come together with what you’ve already bought at the market. Wait, you’re a procrastinator…you haven’t even shopped yet have you?  Time to get moving my friend, that bird needs to be in the oven in about 24 hours!  Happy Turkey Day….Gobble Gobble!

The Los Angeles Times brings us this beautiful gratin of potatoes and mushrooms, Potato Gratin Forestiere.  Sure, French style potatoes a la Daniel Boloud might not be your first go-to dish on Thanksgiving but check it out regardless.  Paper thin potato slices are layered with plenty of nutmeg tinged heavy cream and wild mushrooms. Indulgent?  Yes but, isn’t that what Thanksgiving is all about?

Gravy can be tricky.  No recipe is needed, really, but knowing a few helpful tips will ensure you gravy that has a smooth texture without being too thick and enough flavor to perk up turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes (if you’re like me, it’s one bite of all three on the fork at once-drizzled in gravy).  From The New York Times, this Simple Gravy You Can Make Ahead of Time is brilliant.  The link, to a video, features the always spot-on Melissa Clark so you know this one is going to be good.  Key hints?  Save those giblets (the gizzard specifically) and turkey necks for a quick homemade stock and go for a texture that is “less like heavy cream and more like rich half-and-half”.  To make it even richer, reheat when your turkey is resting and add your turkey drippings.  No one will know you did all the “hard” work ahead of time!  
Pumpkin pie not doing it for you this year?  Want something else to shake up your dessert table?  How about a Cranberry Almond Crisp from The Washington Post?  With the potential exception of crystallized ginger, everything in this recipe is in your kitchen right now-you already bought some cranberries, right?  Thrown together quickly in a cast iron skillet, you can have this dessert assembled and bake it while you eat dinner.  I might dice up some pears to balance out the tartness of the cranberries but the ginger and sugar will do a fairly good job of this on their own.  Add a little vanilla ice cream or whipped cream and your pumpkin pie will have the perfect mate.
Happy Cooking and I look forward to hearing about your Thanksgiving kitchen adventures.
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