Thanksgiving Wrap Up

 Have you all recovered from your Thanksgiving food comas?  Thankfully I have and here is my wrap up on my Thanksgiving projects this year.  I had really high hopes for this years’ Thanksgiving, given my blog and wanting to share all my great ideas (both original and found) with you.  Unfortunately, due to an intense two week work schedule leading up to Thanksgiving… I had to triage my plans and scale back significantly so that I could actually function the day of Thanksgiving.

First up, one of two appetizer tables.  Since it is a huge family function for us we each have our job, mine is appetizers which is my favorite.  For the decorations you will notice I went with a non-traditional black, silver and purple color scheme.  I like that it is something different and I like it even more that these are all objects I had in my holiday decor stash!  That owl I found in the Target dollar spot at Halloween, who says owl’s can’t hang around for Thanksgiving?

Here is my signature dish of Thanksgiving (you know similar to what I was looking during the Jewish Holidays?)  It is a round braided challah that I use my brother-in-law’s family recipe ( I am not sure if I am at liberty to share ;)  Before I bake it I braid it and shape it into a circle.  I then make my spinach dip in a regular glass pyrex.  When the bread is done I just drop the dish right in the middle of the bread.  Then people just pull off the challah and scoop themselves some dip.  It is delicious!
Next up is a super simple but eye catching vegetable crudite   I have this theory that if you include some healthy food in the mix you can eat more food and longer, since the bad for you stuff gets outweighed by the good stuff.  Completely unscientific, but it works for me!  To make the display I used small vases I had in my collection and four small drinking glasses.  I used a fruit/veggie cutter to make the cucumbers into the flower shape.  The trick with this type of display is a variety of shaped containers but similar in material and to make sure you have colorful veggies.
I think the find of the holiday was this Bacon Cheese Ball.  While the recipes I find on Pinterest are yummy, they often need a little doctoring to give them more flavor, not this guy!  It was super yummy and can be served with a variety of crackers or veggies.  Another great perk is you can mold it into any shape you want – I chose a simple ball with a stem but you could flatten it out and shape it like an acorn or a cornucopia or even a ship or pilgrim hat.
Here is a look at the second appetizer table.  A fruit platter (again to be healthy and give both my 21 month old daughter and 10 month niece something to eat)  Little smokies in a pillsbury dough crescent roll and red peppers with hummus.  For the display I used two silver platters I picked up awhile ago at Party City and then two pearly white plastic plates also picked up at Party City.

Just because you are putting out fruit doesn’t mean you can’t make it look appealing.  Chop the fruit into an interesting shape or put very colorful fruit next to one another to create a good looking contrast.

To get the hummus on here nice and neatly, I scooped some into a plastic ziploc bag and snipped off the corner to make a piping bag (like you would use with cake or cupcakes)

Okay now onto desserts (since I don’t really cook much beside a side dish or two for dinner)  If you have been on Pinterest lately you will see this amazing caramel apple idea.  Well once you finally click through and find the recipe you will find it is actually for a vodka shooter.  Since that was not my purpose I used the recipe anyways.  I should have known when it said to add a pack of gelatin.  I have  a serious aversion to jello and then to make caramel flavored jello… UGH!  I could barely bring myself to eat one slice of this great idea.  I do resolve to tinker with the recipe and find a way to make it less jello like and a more kicked up caramel flavor.

Last but not least… Peanut Butter Hershey Kiss acorns!  In my book you can never go wrong mixing chocolate with peanut butter and add a super cute mini Nilla wafer and you are in business.  Again, I made my own Ziploc pastry bag with some peanut butter and a snipped corner.  It worked really well and they were super yummy to eat.  The only downside… peeling off all those Hershey Kiss wrappers!

That’s my Thanksgiving wrap up!  While scaled back it still was tasty and got the job done.  I am already plotting about next year and how I can manage to make sure I have enough prep time!  Don’t forget to check out my Thanksgiving Ideas board on Pinterest.
Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!
Rene

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