Side Dishes 2010

Turkey Day

Iíll be preparing a lot of the side dish items in advance also. Especially the gravy. We love this gravy and although it is a little more work than what my Mom used to do the work is well worth the result. And, I love the complimentsÖ..

As soon as I see packages of turkey necks in the store Iíll get them and whip up the John's Gravy. When done, it will go into little freezer baggies and wait quietly until weíre ready for them. When weíre ready, Iíll put the sealed baggies in hot water for a while to defrost them slowly and then into a Dutch oven or other oven safe pot to heat up without burning. (I almost always burn something when I heat it on the stoveÖ)

We will not stuff the bird but Dressing will also be in the freezer in baggies. Larger ones than the gravy. We found that dressing left over from Thanksgiving was good a few months later. This past Summer I made up some gravy and dressing and relish and leftovers were good last month. So, Dressing will also be put together as soon as I see the croutons in the store.

Kayís Momís Cranberry Relish is almost exactly like my moms and Thanksgiving Dinner wouldnít be the same without it. The sight of it and the flavor brings back memories of good times and a great table with all the families and grandparents gathered Ďround.

Iíll maker the Cranberry Relish up on Saturday or (more likely) Sunday before T-Day. It wants at least two days, but three or four are better, to get all itís flavors together and ready to give you a mouth full of joy when you take your first bite.

  Kay's Green Beanswill be easy. Throughout the year I get onions, sautť and freeze them so they are always available. We used to have a case or two of sweet Walla Walla Onions sent to us from Umatilla, Oregon when we were on our way home from Hope, Idaho on Lake Pend Oreille but now will get some from Costco or a local store or use regular onions. If you donít have any onions in your freezer,  get some and prepare them any time. I also buy four to eight pounds of bacon at a time and fry it all up in a morning when it's cool. I take the electric grill outside and put it on the BBQ  and do the frying outside so it doesn't smell up the house. Then we have bacon anytime we want it and it's ready in just moments.  The day before T-Day Iíll put the dish together and have it in the outside refrigerator. On Thanksgiving morning Iíll take it out, bring it in to come up to room temperature and then into an oven to heat for dinner.

There is so much to eat we usually donít have a large leafy salad but we do like a bite of something different and this year it will be a Bavarian Jell-O Salad. Donít know what flavor, yet, but probably a berry.  I'll put it together on Tuesday.  It will keep a few days just fine.

Other snacks for the table will be little finger size sweet and dill pickles, and both green and black olives. We havenít put up pickles or cured olives for years so these will all be store-bought. Not ever as good but thatís the way things change. In Carmichael we lived on about three acres of an old olive orchard and it had a little stream running through it. Weíd cure the olives. Boy would I love to have some good home cured olives and home made pickles again.      Maybe a good project for next summer.  Hmmmmm...I think that's what I said last year when I thought about it. Well, a good memory, anyway.