Lifestyle

What’s Cooking at Your Thanksgiving Feast 2022?

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apple cake thanksgiving

Apple cake. Photo: CWI ProPhoto.com

By Carolyn Worthington

In spite of the news that the cost of preparing a Thanksgiving dinner is up 20 percent, the holiday is still considered by many to be the best holiday of the year.

Perhaps, it is because the centerpiece is gathering family and friends, cooking together, share traditional foods. It’s all about appreciating what you have, who you are with, and, of course, watching football and the Macy’s day parade.

As famed chef and cookbook author, Jacques Pepin, said recently, it’s ” because it is devoted to cooking and eating and being together with loved ones.”

This is the holiday to keep recipes traditional and not go rogue on the menu.

Yes, it’s true that the average cost of this year’s feast is up by 20 percent. According to the Farm Bureau’s 37th annual survey, a feast for 10 people is $64.05 or less than $6.50 per person. This is a $10.74 or 20% increase from last year’s average of $53.31. Not bad when you think of where you can go for $6.50 a person.

The turkey is up 20 cents per pound in our area ($1.79 per pound), which is still not bad when you compare it to filet mignon at $40 per pound or a spiral-cut ham at $4.00 per pound.

Our Thanksgiving feast starts early in the morning with fruit and sour cream coffee cake. An easy recipe to make to greet early arrivals is also Apple cake. We tried this one from the kitchens of King Arthur flour and had excellent results. The cake is not overly sweet and is more like a torte than a cake. We used a combination of Granny Smith and Pink Lady apples. Perfect for having with coffee when guests arrive. This was our first try with almond flour, and the resulting light, almond-flavored cake was delicious.

Apple Cake. Photo: CWI ProPhoto.com

Mostly Apples Apple Cake

For the pan

1/2 tablespoon butter, softened
1/4 cup (30g) sliced almonds, optional

Cake

3/4 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 cup King Arthur Almond Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs, at room temperature
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3 apples, such as Granny Smith and/or Pink Lady, peeled and sliced about 1/4″ thick

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Lightly grease the bottom of an 8″ or 9″ springform pan or round cake pan. Line the bottom with a parchment round. Generously butter the parchment and sides of the pan with the softened butter. Sprinkle with the sliced almonds, a bit at a time, pressing gently to adhere them to the pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, eggs, sugar, and extract until creamy, lighter in color, and slightly foamy, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Whisk in the dry ingredients until just combined.

Fold the apples into the batter with a rubber spatula until evenly coated.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and use your spatula to nudge the apples into a mostly-even layer.

Bake until golden-brown on top and a toothpick or paring knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 to 55 minutes.

Remove the cake from the oven and let cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack. Run a paring knife or offset spatula around the edges of pan, then, if using a springform, release sides of pan; or, if using a cake pan, invert it onto a rack or plate, remove the parchment, and turn it back over, top-side up, onto a wire rack. Let cool for at least 15 minutes more. For the neatest pieces, slice with a sharp serrated knife, which will help you saw through the apple pieces rather than crushing them.

Storage information: This cake is best served the day it’s baked, but it can be stored, uncovered at room temperature, for up to 3 days (press parchment or plastic wrap directly to cut surfaces but don’t cover the cake, as it will become damp).

Recipe and photo courtesy of Rancho La Puerta

Roasted Vegetables with a Twist

One of our favorite sides is roasted vegetables, alongside, of course, the peas that go with the mashed potatoes.

Try Rancho La Puerta’s “Root Vegetables with Honey” recipe, a heavenly kaleidoscope of root vegetables, parsnips, carrot, chayote squash, turnip, rutabaga, purple potatoes. Rancho La Puerta https://rancholapuerta.com/ is a fitness resort and spa located on 3,000 private acres of gardens, mountains and meadows in Baja California, Mexico. The destination was founded by Edmond and Deborah Szekely in 1940 and is still family owned and operated today.

PumpkinPraline_PieAcademy.

Pumpkin Praline Pie. Photo: (c) Emulsion Studio

Combing Two Thanksgiving Pie Favorites – Pumpkin

There are pumpkin pies for purists and then there are over-the-top pumpkin pies for when you want a showstopper; this is the latter. Pumpkin Praline Pie! The pumpkin filling would make a great pie on its own, but here it’s topped off with a crunchy coating of brown sugar–pecan praline. The pie is a pleasure to slice, first cutting into the crunchy praline and then the soft pumpkin. The recipe comes from Diane Rossen Worthington (no relation) who shared it in this book.

What are your family’s favorite recipes for Thanksgiving? Share with us on our Facebook page or on Twitter.

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