What the Baristas are Dishin’ Up on Thanksgiving

BY  |  Wednesday, Nov 21, 2012 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (7)

I know you have all been wondering what the Baristas are doing and serving for Turkey Day. This year I will be hosting Thanksgiving at my home with family and friends and the usual chaos of my children playing, “The Pilgrim and Indian Game—Scurvy, Small Pox or Syphilis” (not available in stores).

This year we will be serving a brined, free-range, corn and chardonnay fed, highly educated and well-bred turkey named Hank. We had to pay extra for his pedigree, but what the hell,  the holiday only comes once a year.

My pumpkin ice cream

There will also be chestnut, sausage and sage stuffing, mashed taters made with love and loads of butter, brussel sprouts, orange cranberry relish, pumpkin pie, homemade pumpkin ice cream and caramel apple cheesecake. What’s For Dinner writer, Lisa Davis and family, will be coming to my house and bringing kale, pecan pie and other culinary surprises. I’m sure someone will bring mac and cheese no matter how much I protest. And it’s Holly’s house, so there will be wine, hard cider and cocktails!

Here is what the other Barista ladies will be dishin’ up:

Liz George: Christmas is my big cooking day, but years ago we used to do Thanksgiving, too. One year we actually tried to return a defective turkey because we couldn’t get the “neck” out — we were actually trying to pull something out of the wrong orifice. Thankfully, we got better at it once we got used to the bird, and successfully made the Martha Stewart turkey a few times using a whole bottle of wine and lots o’ butter. This year, we will bring the desserts: pecan pie and a cranberry nut torte. If you want a cranberry sauce with some kick, we love Martha Stewart’s homemade cranberry relish with jalapeno.

Georgette Gilmore: I always make my mom’s Southern Sweet Potato casserole topped with roasted marshmallows, roasted brussel sprouts, homemade cranberry sauce with orange zest, cornbread stuffing with sausage and lots of pies: apple pie, pumpkin pie, and chocolate pie! This year I’m roasting a huge bone-in turkey breast, instead of a whole turkey. No one, but me, likes the dark meat, so I’m making life easier.

Hank brining away

Annette Batson: Here’s what I’m planning to serve for 3 families, 14 people:

  • 2 Fresh herb/lemon seasoned turkeys, brined,
  • Home made gravy
  • Fresh cranberry sauce
  • Mashed potatoes with celery root
  • Wild rice with cranberries and hazelnuts
  • Arugula-endive-radicchio salad  with goat cheese
  • Sweet potato and maple casserole
  • Oven roasted brussels sprouts w pancetta & onions
  • Corn bread
  • Broccoli au Gratin
  • French cut Green Beans with mushrooms and crispy shallots
  • Sausage, cranberry, chestnut bread stuffing
  • Desserts : some homemade*, some store bought
  • Pecan Pie
  • Apple Pie*
  • Pumpkin Pecan Squares
  • Caramelized Pear Upside Down Spice Cake*
  • Spiked whipped cream
  • Dry Gewurtztraminer
  • Weissbeer
  • Australian Shiraz

and TUMS!

Lisa Davis: As well as turkey I do a kick-ass nut loaf (yes there is such a thing). I love a good pecan pie. As a child in a small village in Wales, we had onw American family living there and the introduced me to your nutty pies and have been hooked ever since.

Jenn Schiffer: I’m not sure what I’m doing yet, but yes, there will be delicious Tofurkey with veggie gravy. Mashed turnips and potatoes are a must. The night will end with me asleep at some (hopefully hot and male) friend’s home, covered in pumpkin pie crumbs, a fist full of stuffing, and surrounded by tiny bottles of cinnamon whiskey — IF I’M LUCKY.

Lisa Romeo: Nothing too exciting for me. We are going to my sister-in-law’s in South Jersey as we always do, and my assignment every year is the same—make baked sweet potatoes swimming in sticky sauce and covered with marshmallows and a few loaves of homemade Italian bread, show up on time and try not to blow a gasket when there are two TVs with blaring within 12 feet of one another. Now Christmas, when the gang comes to my house, is another matter.

Christina Gillham: Usually the basics: Turkey with gravy, stuffing, roasted vegetables (sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, etc.), peas (maybe), mashed potatoes (maybe) and probably a pecan pie.

Kristen Wald: I tend to keep holiday meals low-key, but my husband really wants a traditional meal this year. I’m a vegetarian, my kids are picky eaters, and we’re having my in-laws. Probably a large turkey breast, and some other entree, maybe Lisa Davies’ nut loaf!

Dana Hawkins-Simons: I’ll roast a turkey breast using a fresh thyme, sage and butter rub, whip up mashed potatoes with roasted garlic, make stuffing (my own recipe, with raisins plumped in brandy, wild mushrooms and spicy sausage), cook fresh cranberry-apple cider sauce, and roast sweet potatoes, squash, and as many other veggies as I can fit into the oven — plus pie!

Tara Williams: Luckily (for me and my hubby’s family), I will not be cooking this year; dinner will be served by the brave professionals who work miracles with stale bread.

Erika Bleiberg: Tomato soup with home made pesto, a Whole Foods free range turkey and the res, I’ve ordered from Anthony’s Cheesecake! Anthony said he does “Everything but the Turkey”. So, I’ve ordered vegetarian ravioli, a portabello mushroom quiche, roasted brussel sprouts and stuffing — oh and an assortment of desserts.

So Baristaville what are you serving up this Turkey Day?


  1. POSTED BY herbeverschmel  |  November 21, 2012 @ 12:14 pm

    Herb just kicked the Holdiday season off with a session the Pearl Oyster Bar. yummmmmmmmmmmmm

  2. POSTED BY herbeverschmel  |  November 21, 2012 @ 12:17 pm

    I’ll raise glass to Hank and all ye’ baristners, have a nice Thanksgiving.

  3. POSTED BY cathar  |  November 21, 2012 @ 12:39 pm

    Funny, I wasn’t wondering at all what the Baristas would be serving for Thanksgiving. It never entered my mind.

    I do hope, however, Holly, that you weren’t trying to make a weak “funny” (in the great but so far short-lived tradition of Spiro T.) at the expense of the Pilgrims with your references above to smallpox, syphilis and scurvy.

    Neither Amerinds nor Pilgrims understood the origins of scurvy, and neither group had much access to citrus fruit. Smallpox may well have existed in pre-Columbian America (especially if one buys theories of cross-Atlantic contact with Africa). And as much scientific opinion exists that syphilis in fact has New World origins as does the version that blames Europeans for it.

  4. POSTED BY Mrs Martta  |  November 21, 2012 @ 1:03 pm

    Going to Tom’s son and DIL’s and it’s pretty much a potluck to take the burden off my of my DIL of having to all the cooking. I am bringing pumpkin-apple strudel cinnamon muffins.

    Also, if it was up to me (and it’s not, unfortunately), the TV would remain off during Thanksgiving.

  5. POSTED BY sandwich  |  November 21, 2012 @ 2:30 pm

    I wish I was that side sauce Jenn was talking about

  6. POSTED BY Jenn  |  November 21, 2012 @ 2:38 pm

    Yeah, well it turns out I’m not so lucky – I’ll be at a Japanese restaurant in Bay Ridge with my dad, uncle, and their father. Cinnamon whisky be damned.

  7. POSTED BY jerseygurl  |  November 21, 2012 @ 2:43 pm

    I’m out grouse hunting.

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