Tag Archive: apple


How Viola Stole Thanksgiving

Dear World,

After being freshly pressed, I stopped posting altogether. How was I going to outdo myself? How was I going to get thousands (yes, thousands) of views again? Then, I remembered that it didn’t matter. I’m just going to keep blogging the way I do. Just in time for Thanksgiving, I bring to you:

MY THANKSGIVING MENU

That’s right, folks. With the exception of the cranberry sauce, nothing on the table tomorrow will be of my invention. This year, I will trust the experts (Alton, Martha, Rachael, etc.)

WHAT DO TURKEYSHA, MARIE ANTOINETTE AND MADAME MAXIME HAVE IN COMMON?

They all were turkeys of my Thanksgivings past. After I name my turkey (because anything 10 lb or over needs a name), I will BRINE it overnight. This is what makes the turkey juicy and flavorful. *drools* Check out Alton Brown’s recipe here.

When it comes to glazing, however, I will opt for Gourmet’s Maple Glazed Turkey. I can’t believe this gem of a magazine stopped printing! The only magazine that tested every single recipe they ever published! And with the beautiful photographs!

Ok, I’m done now. Check out Gourmet’s recipe here.

GOT GRAVY?

I can’t eat turkey without gravy. It just won’t go down. This year, instead of my traditional white wine gravy, I will spice things up with a paprika gravy,  another stroke of Gourmet genius. The stuffing in this recipe also looks divine. Check out the recipe here.

YES WE CRAN(BERRY)

All my life, I’ve been afraid of fresh cranberries. They are so uncommon in Europe, I didn’t even know what a cranberry looked like growing up! Plus, the stuff from the can looks really neat when you can get it out in its perfect cylindrical shape.

This year, I’m owning my fear: I’m making sauce from scratch! I’ll still buy a couple of cans, just in case things go horribly wrong (you never know). The recipe I found was from Simply Recipes (the photo sold me). Check it out here.

GETTING STUFFED

And now, my favorite part: the stuffing. I used to make three batches of stuffing, the same every year: one with celery and bread cooked inside the turkey, one with celery and bread cooked with turkey giblet broth, and one with just bread and celery, for the poor vegetarians who suffer throughout Thanksgiving.

This tradition of plain stuffing has gotten old, so I will go wild this year with Gourmet’s (again) Wild Rice, Apple and Dried Cranberry Stuffing, which you can find here.

YAM-MA LAMMA DING DONG

Now the sweet potato casserole, I refuse to change. It’s my father’s father’s mother’s (so, my great-grandmother’s) recipe. I usually have a strong aversion to anything labeled “casserole” (tuna, noodle, green bean, you name it), but I’ll gladly make an exception for this one.

You’ll need:

  • yams/sweet potatoes
  • 1 orange
  • maple syrup and/or brown sugar
  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • marshmallows

Peel yams, and cook in boiling water until soft. Mash yams, and mix with some zest and some juice of the orange (start with a little and taste as you go). Add a little maple syrup and/or brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg for flavor. Put in casserole dish, and bake at 350˚F for 10 minutes. Top with marshmallows, and resume baking until marshmallows are toasted.
PINING FOR PIE

I am no pie maker, but this recipe is easy and so delicious, no one believes I actually make it! The secret is tons of corn syrup (I know, I know, but it’s so tasty!). For a beautiful illustrated recipe, click here.
That’s it, folks. Happy Thanksgiving! Safe travel and much merriment to all!

With love,

– Viola –

This morning, I tried a second time to make protein powder pancakes. This time, they were neither oozy nor gooey, and not so hard that you could sit on one without squishing it. But they were still very tough and hard to swallow.

Irritated and upset, I needed to cook something that would taste good. There was a bag of bruised and overripe apples on the table, and with a cheerier disposition (apparently, rotten fruit makes my day), I started making applesauce.

You’ll need:

  • 6-7 big apples, all of the same or mix & matched (a little overripe/bruised is ok, maybe even better!)
  • 2 cups water
  • honey or brown sugar (let’s say 1/3 – 1 cup)
  • cinnamon (1 stick, or 1 tbsp ground)
  • nutmeg (1/4 tsp freshly ground, or 2 tsp ground)
  • cloves (6-10 whole, or 1 tsp ground)
  • optionally: rum or brandy
  • optionally: raisins

Peel and chop apples into little pieces. Cooking tip of the day #1: An easy way to remove the core is to quarter your apples, then cut the quarters in half. The little triangle of core is easy to cut out.

 

 

Place the apple bits in a medium-large

saucepan with about 2 cups of water, and

cook on high heat, stirring frequently.

When the mixture starts bubbling, bring

down to a simmer. The

water will thicken, and the apples will get mushy.

Eventually, your apples will look like this:

When they do, turn off the heat and let them cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a blender. Blend only for 10-15 seconds. If you like your applesauce on the chunky side, only blend half of the apples.

 

Return blended apples to the saucepan, add about 2 tbsp rum or brandy, the spices, and honey or sugar (start with just a little, and taste as you go). The rum/brandy is optional, but it improves the taste, and all the alcohol gets cooked away anyway. Any kind of mulling spice goes nicely in applesauce.


Simmer for 5-10 minutes, and eat hot or cold! It smelled so good, that Sebastian, Fabian and I decided to have a hot applesauce degustation. The boys were very engrossed in some stupid video game they were playing, but I did get a positive review from Fabian without having to fish for it (as opposed to certain boyfriends, who just keep shooting imaginary foes instead of joining the real world).

 

Tasty variant: add raisins to the applesauce after you cook it (raisins get bitter when boiled in the sauce). Though this sauce tastes great on its own, it also goes very well with yogurt, pork chops, latkes and ice-cream.

That’s it for now! Happy daylight savings day! Enjoy the extra hour.

Love,

– Viola –

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