New Year's Eve

New Year's Eve Seafood Gumbo....along with Grilled Ginger Teriyaki Salmon, Grilled Crabmeat Stuffed Tilapia, Grilled Lobster Tail, and Steamed Crab Legs! (Can you tell I'm in Florida with my sister-in-law, bro-in-law, and my adorable nephews!!! Poor hubby still in Indiana)! Recipes coming when I get home....

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So we remembered our camera when we went traveling to Indy & Chicago for Thanksgivings with the family....but we forgot the memory card :(   So sadly no pictures of the amazing tasty food that I made. We had 2 Thanksgivings this year, one with my family in Indy and one with my husband's in Chicago - so double the cooking! WooHoo!!!! Let me lay out the menu's from each and I'll * the ones that I made.

Indy Thanksgiving:
White Castle Stuffing (in the turkey)
Bacon Apple Stuffing*
Parmesan Green Beans & Kale*
Mashed Potatoes
Apple Rings
Sweet Potatoes w/Marshmallows*
Canned Cranberry Sauce*
Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake

Chicago Thanksgiving:
Herb Roasted Turkey*
Herb Stuffing*
Green Bean Casserole*
Fresh Cranberry Sauce*
Sweet Potato Casserole
Cabbage & Ribs
Spicy Cabbage
Pumpkin Pie

I won't be putting up all the recipes (unless you ask for one that I don't put up). But I will share a few with you.

 Herb Roasted Turkey
This is one of those you can play with it and do whatever you want in the way of spices etc. kind of recipes!

I took half a bunch of fresh parsley and roughly chopped it. I put that in a bowl and added dried sage, dried thyme, dried dill, some sea salt and a generous amount of fresh black pepper. Then I poured olive oil in it, enough to mix it well and have a decent sort of paste (you could put it all in a food processor or small blender and pulse it until you have a smooth paste...but my MIL did not have a food processor!). Then I loosened the skin of the turkey away from the meat carefully at the opening of the body cavities, loosening the skin all through as much as I could access with my hands, or a chopstick, including the drum stick. Then I took the paste and spread it liberally all over the meat under the skin. I then rubbed the outside of the turkey with any remaining paste and some more olive oil. I then put the stuffing in the body cavities and trussed the turkey, placed it on the v-rack in the roaster breast side down and slide it into the oven (which was set at 325). I roasted it breast side down for about an hour and a half. Then I took out the Turkey, flipped it and placed it back in the v-roaster, poured some chicken broth (you can use turkey stock if you have any!) over it and put it back in the oven for another 2.5 hours. I ended up putting a tinfoil tent over around hour 1.5 so that it did not become too crispy/brown. The turkey needs to reach an internal temperature of 160 F when tested at the thickest portion of the thigh. The Turkey turned out super tasty and very moist and full of the wonderful herb flavor!

Parmesan Green Beans and Kale (adapted from Giada De Laurentiis)


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1/4 pound cremini mushrooms, trimmed and quartered (about 14 mushrooms)
  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed and slice into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup white wine 
  • 1 bunch Kale (1/2 pound), rinsed, stemmed, and roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (about 1/2 a lemon)
  • 1/4 pound finely grated Parmesan 


Warm the olive oil in a large, heavy saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent. Add the mushrooms, green beans, salt, and pepper and cook for 2-4 minutes. Add the wine and continue cooking until the green beans are almost tender, about 5 minutes. Add the kale and continue cooking until the kale has wilted, about 5 - 8 minutes. Put everything in a large serving bowl, straining any of the water/wine left in the pan. Add the lemon juice and the Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat and serve immediately.

Fresh Cranberry Sauce

1 bag fresh Cranberries
1 Orange (you will need the skin & juice)
1/2 cup sugar
Water - enough to not quite cover the cranberries.

Put Cranberries in a pot. Cover with water until they are almost but not quite covered. Add sugar. Zest the entire orange (grate all of the skin off the orange) into the cranberries. Cut the orange in half and then squeeze the juice from both halves into the pot with the cranberries. Stir well. Place on a stove over medium-low heat and cook for approximately 45 minutes. Stir continually. The cranberries will pop (so watch out!), keep stirring until the mixture has reached the sauce consistency you would like. Pour into a bowl and place in the fridge to chill some.

The Bacon and Apple Stuffing will be posted shortly (the recipe is not with me right now!)

Happy Eating!

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