Taking It Easy
More easy Thanksgiving recipes to make the holiday special.
Special to the Jewish News
magine a "one sauce fits all"
that's as perfect garnishing your
roast turkey as it is served over
cinnamon ice cream.
Or a pumpkin-flavored whipped
cream that can be dolloped on pump-
kin soup or over your favorite cheese-
cake. Or a trifle that lets you buy pre-
made ingredients and simply layer
them in a serving dish and transform
into a show-stopping dessert.
It's trouble-free if you can figure out
the shortcuts. I've included some sim-
ple, concise recipes that are effortless
from the get-go — favorites like maple
acorn squash and honey mustard green
beans. Included are recipes that use
pumpkin pie filling, or canned pump-
kin, corn-bread mix and purchased
pound cake and pudding to cut hours
of work during preparation.
In fact, these recipes are so uncompli-
cated and speedy, you'll want to make
these all year long. The best part is that
once you get the hang of these original
recipes, you'll be able to tailor other foods
by adding or substituting ingredients.
Of course, an all-pumpkin menu
can be overkill, as can cranberries at
every course, so choose wisely.
Use this as a topping for your favorite
dessert or as a sauce for turkey, chick-
en or whatever you're serving. It's a
festive ice cream sauce as well.
1 12 oz. bag fresh or frozen cran-
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup berry flavored liqueur,
Stir all ingredients together in medi-
um saucepan over medium-high heat
and bring to a boil. Cook for 5 min-
utes. Remove from heat and cool for
30 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a
blender or food processor and process
until smooth. Makes 8 servings.
PUMPKIN WHIPPED CREAM
Use this to top a pound cake, cheese-
cake, a pumpkin pie or as a final
touch to vanilla or cinnamon ice
cream that's been drizzled with caramel
sauce. You can even serve a dollop of
this floating in your favorite squash or
2 cups heavy whipping cream (not
1/2 cup pumpkin pie filling
2 T. rum, optional
In a chilled bowl, whip cream until
stiff with an electric mixer. Gently fold
in the pie filling and the rum. Cover
with plastic wrap and chill until ready
to serve. Makes 12 servings.
What could be easier than cutting an
acorn squash in quarters, adding a few
seasonings and roasting? Just serve the
quarters — they're colorful and festive.
4 acorn squash (about 1 pound
1/2 cup maple syrup
kosher salt to taste
fresh ground pepper to taste
fresh ground paprika, garnish
Preheat oven to 400F. Cut each
squash in quarters, lengthwise. Use a
spoon to scoop out the seeds. Place
squash quarters, cut sides up, in a
large baking dish. Drizzle maple syrup
over the squash and season with salt,
pepper and paprika.
Cover the dish with foil and bake
for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and
bake 20 minutes or until the squash is
tender when pierced with a fork.
Remove from oven and serve hot,
warm or at room temperature. You
may make this a day ahead and reheat
at 250F for one hour before serving.
Makes 12 servings.
Though there's no honey in the recipe,
the beans taste sweet and savory at the
same time. The best thing about mak-
ing these beans is that you put them
in the oven raw and just bake. They
come out perfect every time.
2 1/2 pounds green beans, stem
ends trimmed, pointed ends
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3 T. Dijon mustard
1 t. dried tarragon
2 t. granulated garlic
1 T. kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 250E Combine all
ingredients except pepper in a large
bowl and toss well — the beans will
be sugar coated, but this will melt dur-
ing cooking. Transfer the beans to a
large baking dish (I like to use a dis-
posable foil pan for ease and its large
size). Cover the dish with foil and
bake for 1 hour — they will be ten-
der-crisp. You may also cook these
faster by raising the temperature to
350F and cooking for 30 minutes.
Toss the beans with the sauce that's
accumulated at the bottom of the pan
and adjust salt to taste; Transfer to a
serving dish and season to taste with
pepper. Makes 12 servings.
CORN BREAD MUFFINS
These are best made the day you
2 8 1/2-oz. packages corn muffin
mix (such as Jiffy)
1/2 t. ground cayenne pepper
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup honey
2 large eggs
1 cup drained canned corn
Preheat oven to 400E Spray a 12-
cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking
spray and set aside.
Combine muffin mix, cayenne pep-
per, milk, sour cream, honey and eggs
in large bowl. Stir well to combine. Stir
in the corn. Spoon batter into the muf-
fin tin. Bake for about 30 minutes until
muffins are golden and a toothpick
inserted into center comes out clean.
Allow muffins cool about 20 minutes
before removing from the pan. Makes
WITH LEAF CROUTON
Canned pumpkin and chicken broth
make this soup a breeze to prepare.
For variety, make this soup with car-
rots (fresh or canned carrots work
great), or winter squash (such as
acorn). If you make this with veg-
etable broth you can also add heavy
cream to the soup for richness.
8 slices good quality sandwich bread
1/4 cup olive oil
3 cups chopped onions
4 medium garlic cloves, whole
3 T. flour
8 cups chicken broth
1 cup white wine
2 cups canned pumpkin puree
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
1/2 t. ground nutmeg, optional
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup orange juice
Preheat oven to 350F. Use a leaf-
shaped cookie cutter (or other) and
cut shapes from the bread slices.
Arrange shapes on a dry baking sheet
and bake for 10 minutes. Remove
from oven and cool. Set aside.
Combine olive oil, onions and garlic
in a large pot over high heat. Cook,
stirring often, until the vegetables are
softened and beginning to color, about
8 minutes. Add the flour and cook,
stirring often, for 3 minutes more. Add
the broth, wine, puree, cayenne pep-
per, nutmeg and salt and pepper (add
just a bit, you can add more later).
Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce
EASY on page 84