Yay yay yay! Yay for Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving is far and away my favorite holiday. In addition to it being all about food, I love that it’s so filled with tradition. For my family in particular, it’s several traditions that have been molded together. Years ago, when Mark and Allison moved back to Savannah after college, they decided to host the holiday to avoid having to choose between families. We combined the menus from our respective family Thanksgivings and have come up with our own perfect meal. There’s something really special about watching my family’s overall Thanksgiving tradition evolve and become this all-inclusive thing.
As always, my job is appetizers. For Thanksgiving itself I ended up making two appetizers I had successfully made before: buffalo chicken dip and crab dip in endive with bacon. They were the perfect appetizers to serve together. One is hot and the other is cool. One is tailgate-style heavy and the other is spa-like. Gotta love that juxtaposition. Side note: the store ran out of endive and tarragon so I used chives and romaine lettuce cups for the crab. It was still fabulous.
As a last minute addition to the appetizer spread, my Mom decided to whip up some nibbles made with sliced granny smith apples, topped with a slice of sharp cheddar and wrapped with prosciutto. I can’t believe this is something she just threw together! It looked beautiful and tasted great. These guys went over really well with the whole crowd until my nephew decided to touch all of them and take the cheese out of the middle of every single one.
Normally I serve one experimental app and one back up at Thanksgiving, but since I served two backups at Thanksgiving, I did all my experimenting at our 4th annual Wine Night. I know I know. Making two recipes I’ve never made before without a backup is risky business, but I guess I just like to live on the edge. Ok fine. The real reason both new recipes wound up together without any backups is because I wanted to make sure what we served at wine night was hearty enough to soak up all that vino. I also wanted to make sure they were cheese-free since we would be serving so much cheese with the wine.
Thankfully, both new recipes turned out great. Phew! The best part: they each only required approximately three ingredients.
For the first recipe, I made these mini hasselback potatoes with crème fraiche and caviar. So simple, but it’s quite the dramatic presentation! Basically, slice mini yellow potatoes like an accordion (just don’t go all the way through). Toss with olive oil and roast at 425 for 20 minutes. Brush on a little more oil and roast them for another 25 minutes. When they come out, sprinkle salt on them immediately then let them cool for a few minutes before topping them with crème fraiche and caviar. The only thing about this recipe is that it takes awhile to roast the potatoes. You’ve gotta set aside a good hour for this. You may need less if your potatoes are particularly small, so just make sure you keep an eye on them. Nobody wants burned taters. If you don’t have crème fraiche, sour cream will totally work.
Recipe number two was somewhat an original. Did you know Eggo makes mini waffles? Those were MADE for mini chicken and waffles. They’re just begging for it. If you can’t find the minis, don’t cry. The full size ones are fine; just quarter them. Cook the mini waffles according to the package directions then skewer on a Chick-fil-A nugget and drizzle with hot honey. You could also find chicken nuggets in the freezer section, but they won’t taste as good. Or you could make your own, but that’s too much work. I recommend you do what I did and send your loving fiancé to the Chick-fil-A drive through to pick up two twelve packs. If you want to make this on a Sunday, the nuggets will reheat well so make sure you get your hiney to the restaurant on Saturday. Now for the hot honey. In the past, I’ve found this stuff called Mike’s Hot Honey and Bees Knees Spicy Honey. It’s so good but not always available too far outside of Brooklyn and I wasn’t going to bring it with me from New York since I was doing carry-on and that bottle is more than 3 oz. Instead, I made my own hot honey using a whopping two ingredients: Tabasco and honey. Simply combine Tabasco sauce and honey (1:2 ratio) in a saucepan. Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally. Put it to the side until you’re ready to use it. This app is the perfect two-bite pick-up!