Date: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Time: 7:30 p.m
Number of guests: 13 pax
Location: Bandar Utama
Hosted a Thanksgiving dinner of sorts over Awal Muharram holiday. I figured Thanksgiving would be a perfect theme to try out different dishes using ingredients associated with the Fall, and I also wanted to challenge myself and see if I could pull this off. Truth be told, without the help of my two awesome sous chefs – my mom and Kak’mbang – I probably would have dropped dead and my guests would have to settle for a few dishes short. But in the end, all is well, and I managed to stick the last dish (dessert) into the oven as guests started appearing at the door.
5 kg turkey from Turkey Point
Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup
Caramelized Carrots and Corn (courtesy of Tiff)
Emerilized Green Bean Casserole
Twice-baked Potato Casserole
Just Right Stuffing
Deep Dish Apple Pie
Vanilla Ice-cream (courtesy of Merv & Viv)
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins (courtesy of Yaz)
Camembert Cheese with Grapes (courtesy of Henry & Yen)
Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup
In a large pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, and cayenne and cook, stirring, until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms, thyme, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring, the mushrooms give off their liquid and start to brown, about 7 minutes. Add the apple juice, bring to a boil and cook until glazed, about 2 minutes. Add the stock and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and puree with a hand-held immersion blender, or in batches in a food processor (I used a blender). Add the cream, return to a simmer, and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and adjust seasoning, to taste.
Emerilized Green Bean Casserole Recipe
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 pounds green beans, ends trimmed and cut lengthwise into thin strips and blanched
- 2 1/4 cups Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup
- 2 tablespoons Essence, plus 2 teaspoons
- 2 cups grated Fontina
- Substitute Emmental OR Gruyere OR Provalone – I used Emmental
- 4 to 5 cups vegetable oil
- 2 large yellow onions, peeled and thinly sliced (about 1/16- inch thick)
- Hot pepper sauce
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 176 degrees C. Grease a 2-quart baking dish with the butter and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the green beans, Wild Mushroom Soup, 2 teaspoons of Essence, and 1 1/2 cups of the cheese, and stir well. Pour into the prepared dish, sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top, and bake until bubbly, 35 to 30 minutes.
In a large saucepan, add enough oil to come about 3 inches up the sides, and heat to 180 degrees C.
Pat the onions dry. Drizzle hot sauce on the onions and toss. In a bowl, combine the flour and 2 tablespoons of the Essence. Add the onions and toss to coat evenly. Shake the onions to remove any excess flour and add in batches to the hot oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp and golden brown, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Top casserole with fried onions and serve.
Just Right Stuffing
1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened, plus 3 tablespoons (40 gm), melted
2 cups Chicken Stock (dilute 1 chicken stock cube in 2 cups hot water)
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley (almost the entire pack)
- 1/4 cup finely sliced green onions (about 1 stalk)
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves (didn’t have sage on hand, so I used 2 tsp dried rosemary)
- 12 to 14 cups 1/2-inch cubes day-old French bread (about 2 medium-sized loaves)
- 1/2 pound bacon (about 8 slices), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 cups chopped yellow onions (about 3 medium onions)
- 2 cups chopped celery (about 4 stalks)
- 1 tablespoonChicken Seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt (used 1/2 teaspoon since stock is salty)
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
Preheat the oven to 205 degrees C. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with 1/2 tablespoon butter.
Combine the Chicken Stock, eggs, parsley, green onions, heavy cream, and sage (I used rosemary) in a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add the bread and stir to combine; reserve.
Heat a large skillet or medium pot over high heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring frequently, until crisp and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add the onions, celery, Chicken Seasoning, salt, and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and add to the bread mixture. Stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Drizzle the remaining 3 tablespoons melted butter over the top of the bread mixture. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Cool if using as stuffing or serve warm as a side dish.
Twice Baked Potato Casserole
- 10 large russet baking potatoes (about 7 pounds total)
- 8 tablespoons (105 gm) plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream (about 1 200-gram tub)
- 1/2 cup heavy cream (or whipping cream)
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 pound bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled (didn’t have enough bacon, so I added Italian sausages, sliced and cooked)
8 oz sharp white Cheddar, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (2 cups)
- 12 oz mild Cheddar, grated (3 cups)
1/2 cup finely chopped green onions (about 1 bunch)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
Preheat the oven to 205 degrees C.
Scrub the potatoes well and rinse under cool running water. Pat dry with paper towels and prick the potatoes in several places with a fork. Place the potatoes in the oven and bake for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until tender. Remove from the oven and set aside on a wire rack until cool enough to handle.
When the potatoes have cooled, cut each potato in half and, using a spoon or a melon baller, scoop the flesh out of the skins, leaving as little flesh as possible. Place the potato flesh in a large bowl and add the 105 gm of butter, the sour cream, whipping cream, salt, and pepper and mash until chunky-smooth. Add the bacon and sausages, cubed white Cheddar, half of the grated Cheddar, the green onions, and eggs and mix thoroughly.
Butter a 9 by 13-inch casserole with the remaining tablespoon of butter and reduce the oven temperature to 190 degrees C.
Place the seasoned potato mixture in the prepared casserole and top with the remaining grated Cheddar. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until bubbly around the edges and heated through and the cheese on top is melted and lightly golden. Serve hot.
Deep-Dish Apple Pie
- 3 tablespoons (40 gm) butter
- 2 pounds Granny Smith apples, sliced 1/2-inch thick
- 2 pounds Macintosh Apples, sliced 1/2-inch thick (I used Royal Gala)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 lemon, juiced (about 3 tbsp – I just used Lazy Lemon)
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Pinch ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup pecan pieces
- 1 recipe Pie Dough, recipe follows
- 1 egg, beaten
- 4 ounces Wisconsin Sharp Cheddar, grated (I used red sharp cheddar)
- 8 scoops vanilla ice cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C).
In a large saute pan, melt the butter. Add the apples and saute for 2 minutes. Add the sugars, lemon juice and flour. Continue to saute for 2 minutes. Season the apples with nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt. Mix thoroughly and remove from the heat. Mix in the pecans. Cool the mixture.
Lightly dust a surface with flour. Cut the dough in half. Roll out each half to 12 inches in diameter and about 1/8-inch thick. Fold 1 circle of dough in fourths. Carefully lift the dough and place in a 10-inch deep-dish pie pan. I only had a 9-ish pan, so I used that. Unfold the pie dough and spoon the apples into the pie shell. This recipe makes a lot of filling, and I had leftovers. Place the second round of dough over the apples. Using a sharp knife cut away the excess dough. Using your fingers, crimp the edges of the pie firmly to seal the dough completely. With the same sharp knife, make 3 slits, about 4 inches long and 2 inches apart, across the pie dough. Brush with the beaten egg, place the pie in the oven, and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Remove the pie from the oven and sprinkle the cheese over the top. Return the pie to the oven and continue to cook for 8 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly. Let cool to room temperature before slicing, about 1 hour. Serve with vanilla ice cream.
Sift the flour, sugar, and salt into a large bowl. Using your fingers, work in the butter and shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add 4 tablespoons of ice water and work with your fingers until the water is incorporated and the dough comes together. Add more water as needed just until the dough comes together, being careful not to over mix. Form the dough into a disk, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.
Yield: enough for 1 double crust pie