Our typical Thanksgivings of massive roast turkey that glitters alongside Aunt Junie’s green bean casserole and mom’s famous sweet potatoes will change a lot this year. But even at this strange time, we have to be very grateful. When you’re having Thanksgiving with smaller company than usual, tapping down the huge buffet can be a Herculean challenge. Fear not: The following ideas will help a smaller, socially distant Thanksgiving festival go smoothly.
Photo by Ryan Christodoulou on Unsplash
Pictures by Stephanie Gupana
The main course
Turkish farmers already fear that they have raised too many large birds this year, and if you only cook for three or four people, the usual 25 pound giants are certainly way too much. But there is nothing to worry about. There are tons of ways you can hack that typical vacation centerpiece.
Why not opt for a smaller heirloom turkey that has the advantage of being tastier and more sustainable? (For best results, salt it in a fragrant apple cider vinegar brine overnight.) You can also swap the turkey whole: capon, guinea fowl, or farm chicken are perfect for a smaller amount (and, in our humble opinion, even more delicious).
They could even get smaller: Cornish chickens or quail make the perfect custom serving. This fried quail with cornbread filling and port sauce is a wonderful way to showcase traditional flavors in a much smaller package. If you are cooking for a smaller amount, you can easily cover the kitchen for a restaurant presentation.
And of course there are innumerable ways for the plants among us to try. Our very own vegetarian shepherd’s cake or a new classic of home cooking, cauli-and-cheese. Or instead opt for cauliflower tree steaks with vegan porridge, which look beautiful on the plate – almost too good to eat!
Image: Kate Gavlick
Part of the fun of Thanksgiving is cooking mountains of pages, but if you don’t want to eat leftover food by Christmas, it’s a good idea to call those back as well.
Choose only two or three really important side dishes and serve them in individual, pre-portioned casserole dishes. Not only does this hack keep you from making too much, thus reducing the possibility of waste, but it’s nice to serve too. Sweet potato mac and cheese, gluten-free sweet potato casserole, and sweet potato puree with turmeric and garlic are easy to shrink for just two or four people. Add in some green veggies like these ghee-roasted Brussels sprouts and homemade corn muffins (leftovers freeze wonderfully!) And you’re off to a great start.
Pecan, pumpkin, apple … how to choose Fortunately, with a little creativity, you don’t have to. Opt for pumpkin tarts and mini pecan tarts instead of the larger classics. Or combine the best of both worlds with a pumpkin pie with pecan praline.
You can also choose a larger number of slightly healthier desserts, e.g. B. spiced apple and cranberry crumble, no-bake pumpkin balls, crockpot baked apples or paleo pumpkin pie. That way, when dinner is over, you’ll still have the assortment and choices you’re used to without being bursting at the seams.
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