i'm thankful for...

11:36 AM sians 0 Comments

the first thanksgiving story started in 1621 at Plymouth, Massachusetts which was a joint celebration between the pilgrims and the native americans. traditionally, it is celebrated to give thanks  for bountiful harvest.

taken from http://sarahramsingh.com/wordpress/index.php/2010/11/big-birds-first-thanksgiving/

in the united states, thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth thursday of november since 1941. thanksgiving is also fondly known as turkey day...well because turkey is the main highlight of the day (those poor turkeys). i find it interesting though that apparently turkey was not even on the first thanksgiving dinner table (found out from the next iron chef finale). there are few stories on how the turkey became the thanksgiving bird, so if  you are interested, google search is your friend (too long a story to type out). in fact, you might find some other interesting stories about this fowl along the way.

taken from http://nubbytongue.blogspot.com/2010/11/happy-thanksgiving.html
this year, ryan headed back to louisiana to celebrate it with his family but i decided to spend my thanksgiving here in chicago on my own. i guess it didn't bother me much cos we don't celebrate thanksgiving in malaysia. but i was craving for turkey since two weeks before thanksgiving (i blame food network.. lol) so i was super excited when christina invited me to her place for turkey day dinner party! :)

chefs are hard at work. thanks for the dinner!

christina and her bf, lyle prepared the whole thanksgiving meal which included traditional dishes such as dressing/stuffing (whatever you wanna call it), salad, roasted vegetables, green beans, cranberry sauce, homemade pumpkin pie and of course the turkey with gravy. i think this was my first traditional thanksgiving dinner since in the past three years i've been celebrating thanksgiving, southern style.

enough talk,  i'm gonna let the pictures tell the story :)

deviled eggs | a lil different from how ryan's mom usually makes them. christina's version is more of the classics with the mayo, mustard and paprika mixed in the egg yolk.

salad | lyle came up with the idea for this salad and it was yummylicious. the combination of the peppery flavor of the arugula combined with the sweetness of the roasted beets, freshness of the honey crisp apples. creaminess of the goat cheese and the crunch of the candied pecans and all these topped with a balsamic honey vinaigrette. love love love! :) it was quite funny cos i actually found a recipe in the latest food network magazine with similar ingredients.  

stuffing / dressing | so there's always a debate on what this should be called - stuffing or dresing? basically, stuffing is when you put it in the turkey and cook it and if you bake it outside the turkey like this one it should be called dressing. this is my first time having stuffing/dressing. it's lyle's mom's recipe and i can tell there was some meat, mushrooms and other stuff on top of the bread. you can call it whatever you wanna call it, all that matter is that it's good :)

green beans | green beans blanched in salted water, tossed in butter, garlic, salt and pepper and finished off with some fried onions. very fresh, light and tasty - cooked just right.

turkey | star of the day! turkeyyyyyyyy!! with a side of roasted vegetables - combination of onions, parsnips, carrots and potatoes. lyle and christina spent a few days prepping this turkey for this glorious finished product. the turkey was injected with rosemary infused olive oil and the skin was crisped up wonderfully.

no one has actually carved a turkey before so it was quite fun to find out how to do it right.. i vaguely remember from a food network show where they said to remove the legs and the wings first and then move on to the turkey breast where you start from the breast bone and cut out the whole breast piece before slicing them. we looked it up online to be sure and somehow managed to get it done about right. i think it was a successful first attempt at turkey carving :)

i was the lucky girl who got the turkey leg! (patricia got the other..hehe) i am a dark meat kinda gal. :) my huge plate of yumminess - a lil bit (if that) of everything.

enjoying the night view of chicago from christina's apartment while we gobbled up our dinner.

although i was almost stuffed to the brim, i gotta save some room for dessert.

pumpkin pie | christina is quite the baker. usually, i don't like pumpkin anything but surprisingly i enjoyed this immensely. lyle and christina said this was probably the most effort intensive out of all dishes that they made for this dinner party. we had to guess what the secret ingredient was in the pumpkin pie just from tasting it and ronit managed to guess that it was candied yam (sweet potatoes). this pumpkin pie had 50/50 ratio of sweet potatoes and pumpkin..maybe that's why this was really good..

at the end of the meal, i was stuffed, happy and was experiencing a lil bit of food coma. haha.

thanks christina and lyle for such a wonderful thanksgiving dinner party! and i'm also thankful for such a great company of friends making my thanksgiving in chicago such an awesome one. :)

p.s. some photos are taken from patricia since her photos are so much better than mine! :) thanks patricia.

p.p.s.  watch out of next blog update about pasta making class!