Tag Archives: Side Dishes

Roasted Fennel and Carrot Salad with a Balsamic and Yuzu Reduction Chicken and Gnocchi Surprises

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This is a nice warm salad that’s fresh and seasonal. I usually don’t make warm salads but this dish was a reminder of how good they are and I think I will be doing this again soon! It’s great as a side dish or main meal.

Prep: 20 min

Cook Time: 45 min

Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts, fresh
  • 5-7 Carrots, sliced in half long ways
  • 2-3 Fennel bulbs, quartered
  • 1 C. Gnocchi (cooked as you like) I do butter garlic and parsley
  • 4 C. Mixed Spring Salad
  • 1 Shallot, sliced into 1/4 inch slices, long
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1/8 C. Balsamic (for carrots, shallots, and fennel).
  • 1/8 C. Chicken stock (for carrots, shallots, and fennel)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1/8 C. Yuzu (for chicken breasts)
  • Balsamic and chicken stock (for chicken breasts) I’m not giving amounts on these so just have the containers available because you will have to eye ball it.

Instructions:

For roasted carrots, fennel, and shallots: Pre heat oven to 425 F. Cut produce and lay out on a large baking dish or pan (It’s helpful to line well with foil) add garlic, then drizzle with:

  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1/8 C. Balsamic (for carrots, shallots, and fennel).
  • 1/8 C. Chicken stock (for carrots, shallots, and fennel)
  • Sprinkle with salt and pepper

Bake covered with foil for 20 and uncovered for 10-20 more min until done.

For Chicken:

  • Clean breasts and trim fat.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • In a large skillet heat 1-2 TBS of olive oil on medium high and add breasts.
  • This is where you will start with 1/8 C. Yuzu, 1/8 C. Balsamic, and 1/8 C. Stock all equal parts into a measuring cup.
  • Add a dash at a time coating the breast it will reduce and get thick.
  • Though out the duration of cooking the chicken until done you will keep adding balsamic and stock when it starts to diminish. Make sure your last time you put a bit more in so you have some reduction left to pour on top of salad.

Enjoy and Cheers!

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Roasted Leg of Lamb Stuffed with Pesto and Kale

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Last night I decided I’d make Evan a “special” dinner for a special occasion (all meals are special when you make them with love). He did so well as work this past year I decided we’d celebrate him last night by breaking out some leg of lamb (one of his favs) we had frozen left over from Christmas. I was saving it for a special occasion and this was one of those for sure 🙂 I even did the dishes afterward…

I served this with a wonderful Rutabaga Au Gratan and Roasted Brussel Sprouts 🙂

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 50-70 min depending on how many lbs your leg is.

Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs Boneless leg of lamb, butterflied long ways.
  • 1.5 C. Kale, stem removed
  • 3 TBS. Pesto, homemade or from a jar
  • 8 Pink peppercorns
  • 1 tsp. Sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. Granulated garlic
  • Hemp or twine

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Lay out lamb flat it should be thin from butterflying, (I wish I’d taken a pic of this but my hands were lamby). Season with salt, black pepper, garlic, and pink pepper, saving a little bit for after you have rolled it up.
  3. Add pesto, smearing it evenly all over the area you just seasoned.
  4. Add kale pieces to the top of the pesto.
  5. Carefully roll up you lamb, fairly tightly. Tie up lamb roll with twine. (I use hemp).
  6. Dust with remaining seasonings.
  7. Bake for 60-70 min or until internal temp reads 140 F (this will result in medium rare meat, cook longer if desired but not too long).

Enjoy and Cheers!

Zesty Black Bean & Chicken Nacho Mammas

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I’ve been craving nachos lately, good nachos, not the nasty greasy restaurant kind (although there is a time and place for those as well). 🙂 I figured I’d make us this today for a good Saturday lunch at home. It’s super easy and ALMOST impossible to f’ up! 😉  

Prep Time: 10-15 min

Cook Time: 15-20 min

Serves: 2-3 (Pictured: is just one plate, it makes two).

Ingredients

  • 1 Chicken breast, cubed and cooked in the seasoning of your choice. I do a chili powder, granulated garlic, salt, pepper, and cumin. Lime is nice too.
  • Tortilla chips
  • Cheese, your choice. I like a blend.
  • 1 C. Black beans, cooked
  • 1/2 C. Tomato, diced
  • 1 Serrano, sliced (you can use japs if you like less heat).
  • 1/4 C. Onion, diced
  • Green onion, chopped
  • Limes

The rest is simple:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Cook chicken until done.
  3. Lay out chips on an oven proof plate or pan. Sprinkle lightly with cheese, add beans, chicken, and more cheese.
  4. Bake for 10-12 min.
  5. Top with veggies and squeeze lime on top.
  6. Serve with your fav sauce or crema.  We used our friends award winning Salsa Verde, she was in the Taco Experiment with us and placed first audience pick, and for good reason! 

Enjoy and Cheers!

Pizza Pizza! Chicken, Broccoli Greens, and Shallot Pizza

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I have decided that I will post a new pizza recipe every week! Since I love pizza and love experimenting with different options this will be a great way to do it 🙂 Pizza just may be one of my favorite things, just maybe… I’m also in LOVE with broccoli greens…

Prep: 1 hr

Cook Time: 20-25 min

Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

Toppings

  • 1 Chicken breast, sliced into somewhat of  medallions, cooked in your fav herbs.
  • 8 oz Fresh Mozzarella, sliced into medallions.
  • 1-2 Shallots, sliced
  • 1 Bunch of broccoli greens, take stems off and wash leaves and pat dry.
  • Olive oil, about 3 TBS
  • Salt, pepper, fine herbs (whatever you like).
  • 1/4 C. Parmigiano reggiano, the GOOD stuff!

Crust/Dough

  • 1 (1/4 ounce) Package active dry yeast
  • 1 C. Warm water
  • 1 TBS. Sea salt
  • 2 tsp Olive oil
  • 2 1/2-3 1/2 cups Bread flour
  • 1/4 C. Cornmeal

Instructions:

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water in warmed bowl.
  2. Add sea salt, olive oil, and 2 1/2 cup flour.
  3. Attach bowl and dough hook, turn to speed 2 and mix 1 minute.
  4. Continuing on speed 2, add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough clings to dough hook and cleans sides of bowl. Knead on speed 2 for 5 minutes. If making 2 pies split dough into 2 balls.
  5. Place in greased bowl, turning to grease top.
  6. Cover, let rise in warmest place in house away from draft until doubled in bulk (about 1 hour).
  7. Punch dough down each ball.
  8. Roll out dough as you like and place on your cooking surface. (stone, tin, pan, etc.)
    To Top: lay down oil, herbs, sprinkle with salt and pepper, lay down brocolli greens, mozzarella, shallots, chicken, and sprinkle with parm.
    Bake for 20-25 min until bubbly and golden!
    Cheers!

ZBD Style Osso Buco with Homemade Twisted Bread

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This is a very rich and comforting dish that is best enjoyed with friends and family. It takes a decent amount of time to prepare and cook but is worth the trouble and wait. Anything done with love is worth doing… and eating! 🙂 I suggest drinking the remainder bottle of wine you didn’t use in the recipe while you are cooking for the best results 😉 Please note there are several methods out there for Oso Buco, this is my own version, ZBD style 😉 By no means am I claiming this to be traditional. My Blogger Friend Chica Andaluza inspired me to make this and I’m glad I did!

Prep Time: About an hour

Cook Time: 4 hours

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs Veal shank, about 4-5 shanks (Please find local or humanely raised veal or use beef).
  • 1/2 C. Carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 C. Diced onions
  • 1/2 C. Diced celery
  • 1 Clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 C. Flour
  • 1 C. Red wine
  • 1 C. Chicken Stock
  • .5 C. Tomato puree
  • 3 TBS Tomato paste
  • 1/4 C. Olive oil
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 4 Thyme strands, fresh
  • 6 Green peppercorns, whole
  • 6 Pink peppercorns, whole
  • Cheese cloth
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Preheat large oven proof braising skillet on high on stove. Add oil until just about smoking.
  2. Toss washed and dried veal shanks in flour, dust with salt and pepper, and fry in 1/4 C. olive oil for 3 min on each side. Set shanks aside on a separate plate.
  3. Add veggies: Celery , onion, carrot, and garlic to pan and cook until onions are translucent and mixture is fragrant.
  4. While the veggies are cooking make your herb sachet: Cheesecloth, bay leaves, peppercorns, and thyme. Tie up in a nice little bundle and throw it in the skillet.
  5. Add wine and reduce to medium high, scraping the bits off the bottom of the pan for about 3 min.
  6. Add the stock and tomato puree and paste and mix well. Keep simmering for about 5 min. You will want to salt and pepper to taste on this dish since your stick may be more salty than mine. But go ahead and start with a 3/4 TBS of salt and pepper and stir. This is the point where I add another dash of wine from the bottle (for good measure). 🙂 I probably use about a cup and a half all together…
  7. Cover brasier or dutch oven with it’s lid and pop in the oven for 3.5 hours.
  8. Taste the sauce and add more salt if needed when done. It shouldn’t need it… but just in case. Remove sachet and serve it up with lots of the gravy/juice veggie mixture. 

Bread:

Prep Time: 1 hr and 10 min

Cook Time: 20-30 min

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2.5-3.5 C. of Bread Flour
  • 1 PKG Rapid Rise Yeast
  • 1/4 C. Greek yogurt
  • 1 TBS Canola oil
  • 3/4 C. 160 degree water.
  • 1 Salt
  • 1 tsp. Canola oil for greasing bowl
  • Corn meal for dusting pan.
  • 1 Pad of butter

Instructions:

  1. In your mixer add 2.5 C of bread flour (save the rest for reserve). Add yeast to flour and mix while dry.
  2. Heat up yogurt, water, and 1 TBS of oil to 160. Mix well. Transfer to a pourable measuring cup or regular cup.
  3. Turn mixer onto speed 2 and slowly mix in liquid mixture. Mix for approx. 5 min. From here add flour if needed until doudh is cleaned off sides of mixer bowl. (Use that reserve flour for this).
  4. Let dough rise for about an hour in a greased bowl, cover bowl.
  5. Roll out dough into a large rectangle, and roll up long ways. Cut long roll in half and twist up the bread tapering at the ends.
  6. Rub butter on top of bread loaf and place the bread on a baking sheet dusted in cornmeal.
  7. Bake for 20-30 min or until done. 

Enjoy and Cheers! I highly suggest dipping that bread in the osso buco juice and slurping up that bone marrow or also putting it on the bread! Just a suggestion 😉

Bacon Wrapped Quail Stuffed with La Marechal Emmi Cheese and Jalapeno : Pan Seared in Duck Fat Served with Grilled Brussel Sprouts

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This is one of my FAVORITE dishes to make for dinner guests. It’s so incredibly good and is sure to please!  La Marechal Emmi Cheese is so amazing with this dish, it really ties it all together. I served this with grilled brussel sprouts, a potato gratin, and homemade bread. The plates were cleaned (except for the bones of course). This is a great special occasion dinner as well. The quail can be hard to find and are a bit on the pricey side, I pay about $ 3-4 per quail and like to serve 2-3 per person. You can always ask your hunter friends 🙂

Prep: 30 min

Cook Time: 20-30 min

Serves: 4 with 2 quail per person

Ingredients:

  • 8 semi-boneless quail, washed and pat dry.
  • 8 slices of bacon, nitrate free please 🙂
  • 1 block of  La Marechal Emmi Cheese, about 8 oz or so.
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and sliced into 8 long slices
  • 2 TBS rendered duck fat, you can buy it here via Marx Foods
  • Sea Salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 1lb of brussel sprouts, halved
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced for brussel sprouts
  • 1 TBS butter for brussel sprouts
  • 1 lemon, zest on top of sprouts

Instructions:

  1. Clean quail and stuff with one piece of jalapeno, one chunk of cheese, and wrap with bacon. Repeat until done with all 8.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  3. Gather 2 large skillets. One for quail and one for sprouts, use a griddle if you have one for the sprouts to “grill” them. Bring skillets to medium high then add 2 TBS of duck fat to the quail skillet and 1 TBS of butter and garlic to the sprouts skillet.
  4. Add quail and sprouts to respective skillets: Cook quail for about 3-4 min on each side and season with salt and pepper lightly. Then transfer to the oven in a shallow baking pan for 5 more min. Do not over cook. Cook sprouts until nice and browned (tossing occasionally), season lightly with salt and pepper. Keep warm in a covered dish.
  5. Once quail are done in the oven plate your food and serve with a big red like Chocolate Block

Enjoy! Cheers!

Happy New Year from Zestybeandog and Co! Yard Birds with Agave Garlic Citrus Jalapeno Glaze, Black Eyed Peas, and Sun Dried Tomato Bread

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Happy 2012 to Everyone! It’s been a crazy couple of weeks but all is well in Zestybeandog Land! We have successfully had Christmas with both families, packed a 1,700 sqft house into a 10×20 storage unit, moved to Lago Vista from Austin to stay at Evan’s  parents home for the next 1-2 years while they’re in Singapore, unpacked some kitchen stuff, had a low key NYE celebration playing poker and enjoying drinks, and of course cooked up a great New Year’s Day meal for everyone. We are so grateful for our families for all of the amazing help we had… or we’d probably still be packing boxes! Here’s to new adventures and good times in 2012. I wish you all the best of everything not only for 2012 but for all the years to come. Cheers!

I’d also like to give a personal shout out to my fellow foodie bloggers: Five Reflections, Rufus’s Food and Spirits Guide, Simple Speedy Snacks, Twistedvines, Talinorfali, Bam’s Kitchen, Saffron and Honey, The Kale Chronicles, The Complete Cook Book, Coffee with Caroline,Pure and Complex, Sports Glutton, Charles with Five Euro Food, Tandy with Lavender and Lime, Sweet Caroline’s Cooking,Hotly Spiced, Edible Substance, Food Diary of a Picky Eater, Adesinsa’s Kitchen AND to all I may have missed, I’m still in a food coma 😉

Yard Birds with Glaze

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 3-4 hours

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

  • 2 Whole chickens 4-4.5 lbs each
  • 1 C. Amber agave nectar
  • 2 TBS Butter
  • 1 Jalapeno, minced
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Clementine, juiced
  • 2 TBS Sugar
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt, kosher
  • 1 tsp Green peppercorn, finely ground
  • Charcoal
  • Mesquite wood chips, soaked in water for 20 min
  • Salt and Pepper

Instructions:

  1. Prep smoker, with about 10-12 lbs of charcoal and wood chips.
  2. Make glaze in small sauce pot. Mix all ingredients besides the chicken, and last 3 items on the list. Bring to a simmer and then cook on low for 5 min, stirring occasionally.
  3. Salt and pepper washed chickens, place on smoker and glaze every 30 min until chicken reached an internal temp of 165 F.

We paired this with a Brooklyn Lager 2, it was great!

Black Eyed Peas

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 3 hrs

Serves: 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 22 oz Black eyed peas,  like Melissa’s
  • 5 Thick slices of bacon, cut up into chunks
  • 2 Tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 Jalapeno, diced
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1.5 TBS Better than Bullion Paste
  • 5 C. Water
  • 2 tsp. Cumin
  • 1 TBS. Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Paprika
  • 1 tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. chili powder

Instructions:

Add all ingredients to crock pot and cook for 3 hrs on high.

Bread Recipes coming soon 🙂

Crawfish Étouffée with Jalapeno Cheese Cornbread

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Hey fellow foodies! I was out over the weekend with my husband for our first wedding anniversary! We had a blast, maybe even too much fun 🙂 It started Saturday with some Christmas shopping for our family. Then we went to the lake (where Evan’s parents live and we soon will be living in 8 days… more on that in a moment).

I made us (Evan’s parents and us) a delightful dinner: Quail wrapped in bacon, stuffed with La Marechal Emmi Cheese, Jalapenos, and seared in duck fat. They offered to dog sit for our big day/night out on the town the following day. On Sunday we got up took the dog out for a quick walk and then made our way to downtown. We stayed at the Driskill, one of my favorite places in Austin (we came here after our wedding a year ago on that day). For dinner we went to Uchi and drank and ate far too much, it was incredible as usual! It was the perfect way to celebrate one year of marriage and many more to come!

Back to the whole moving thing… in 8 days (oh my I cannot believe how close it is), we are moving to Lago Vista for at least a year possibly 2. Evan’s parents will be going to Singapore for work and then when they return they will be retiring! We are lucky enough to be staying in their beautiful home while they are away! I would imagine this may be my last blog post until the new year since I will be waist deep in packing the house up. So if you don’t hear from me for about a week, that’s why 😉

This Crawfish Étouffée is simple to make and not very time intensive! For all of you cajun purist out there, beware I have made some modifications so don’t hate 😉

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 20-25 min

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Crawfish- thawed tails, cooked ( I buy the frozen bag already peeled and cooked, just tails when they are not in season).
  • 1/2 Stick of salted butter
  • 2 TBS Rendered duck fat (if you do not have this you can get some at Marx Foods or you can add more butter (2 TBS). I know what you’re thinking… but there’s nothing healthy about this dish so why not add some duck fat!!! 😉
  • 1 Green bell, chopped
  • 1 Red bell, chopped
  • 1 Sweet yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/4 Poblano pepper, chopped
  • 1 C. Chopped celery
  • 1/4 C. Shallots, minced
  • 2 Cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. Green peppercorns, finely ground.
  • 1 tsp. Sea salt, kosher
  • 1 TBS of your fav. cajun spice mix
  • 1 Pinch of cayenne pepper if desired, the poblanos to contain some heat.
  • 2 Whole bay leaves
  • 1/2 C. Chicken Stock,  1/2 C. Water 2 TBS flour, dissolve flour in it.
  • 2 C. Uncooked rice long grain white rice (there will be left over rice).
  • 4 C. Chicken stock for rice and a TBS of olive oil.

Instructions:

  1. Get rice going with broth and oil. cook accordingly to package.
  2. In a large skillet or dutch oven heat butter and duck fat on high (don’t burn it though), add all of the veggies, garlic, and shallots. Cook for about 10-12 min or until onions are translucent.
  3. Add crawfish and spices cook for 5 min.
  4. Add water/broth and flour mixture and let thicken for about 4-5 min.
  5. Taste and add salt or cajun spice if needed (depending on your broth and cajun seasoning you may need to add something).
  6. Remove bay leaves and serve Crawfish Étouffée over rice with a side of corn bread (recipe coming soon).

Enjoy and Cheers!

Cheesy Bison and Shallot Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms Topped with Zucchini and Parmesan

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I was recently inspired to make these Stuffed Mushrooms when reading a fellow foodies blog post last week from Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide. I had been thinking about stuffing some for about a month and when I saw his post, it sealed the deal. 🙂 I served them with some saffron and tomato rice and some sauteed Swiss Chard. It was a great meal, I’m sure Evan will be asking for this one again…

Also I’d like to thank you all for voting for me in the Marx Foods Fregola Dessert Challenge, I won! Now for the hard part… picking out $100 worth of Marx foods, Aye!!! All the amazing choices!!! 🙂 To say thank you I’d like to share with you a way to get your own free samples, Marx Foods is freakin’ AWESOME!

If you are interested, email Katie: kwallace at marxfoods dot com.   Include in your email your address, full name and blog URL.

Supplies are limited, so first come first served.  And, you don’t really have to be a blogger … if you promise to put the ingredients to good use and take your culinary game to the next level, then they will send some to you anyway.

Prep: 20 min

Cook Time: 2o min

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb Fresh bison, ground.
  • 1/8 C. Minced Shallots
  • 1 Clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 Large portabella mushrooms
  • 3/4 C. Cheese blend, I used provolone, swiss, asiago, and white cheddar.
  • 1/2 C. Light sour cream
  • 2 TBS. Parmesan Reggiano , (the good kind please).
  • 1 Small Zucchini, sliced in thin circles.
  • 1/2 TBS. Butter
  • 1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Zestybeandog Fine Herb Blend

Instructions:

  1. Pre-Heat Oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a medium skillet, brown bison, shallots, and garlic until cooked.
  3. Add in sour cream, most of the cheese blend (save a couple pinches to top the meat on you place in mushroom), and spices, mix well.
  4. Wash off mushrooms if need be. Transfer meat mixture into mushrooms. Put remaining blend cheese on top.
  5. Heat same skillet back up to high (should still be hot) and add butter, and brown zucchini rounds and flip and repeat.
  6. Top mushrooms with zucchini’s (about 5-6 per mushroom). Then sprinkle a TBS of parm on top of each.
  7. Bake for about 20 min.

Enjoy and cheers!

Thanksgiving Wrap Up with a Recipe for Herbed Cornbread!

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I hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving this year, I know I did. I spent days preparing and cooked until my shoulders felt like they were going to fall off! We had a great time with my parents in from Houston, my in-laws (we were at their lake house), and 2 of their friends they met in Seoul that currently live in Houston!

I prepared a wonderfully juicy free range and organic bird that I basted often with herb butter.

Herbed CornBread

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 18-25 min

Serves: 6 Large muffins, or 12 small muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 C. Whole wheat white four
  • 3/4 C. Corn meal
  • 1/4 C. Sugar
  • 2 tsp. Baking powder
  • 1 tsp. Sea salt
  • 1 TBS Fresh rosemary, chopped finely
  • 1 TBS Fresh thyme, chopped finely
  • 1 C. Skim milk
  • 1/4 C. Canola oil
  • 1 Egg, beaten

Instructions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Combine all dry ingredients and sift well.
  3. Add milk, oil, and egg into dry mixture and stir just until dry ingredients are moist.
  4. Grease muffin tin(s) and divid mixture evenly among tins, not filling too high (about half way or 3/4 of the way).
  5. Bake until golden and test with a wooden tooth pick, when it come out clean, they are done.

I used this recipe for my stuffing, I made about 12 muffins 1-2 days before Thanksgiving. I crumbled them roughly and left them out in a pan to get a little hardened. I did the same with a loaf of french baguette and mixed them together to prep for my stuffing.

Stuffing Prep

Homemade Giblet Gravy

Completely unprocessed green bean casserole (even the french fried onions are homemade)

Outside of the bird stuffing

My mother in-law made a great pumpkin curry dish!

Ginger loves the lake, she especially loves chasing the deer…

Best Pecan Pie in the WORLD by my mother-in-law

Mom’s helping out in the kitchen

Evan Carving the Bird

Turkey Talk 🙂

Hope you all enjoyed your holiday!