Thanksgiving WIth Friends

Thanksgiving is a great time of year to spend time with friends and make traditions.  This year was our second in a row celebrating Thanksgiving a week prior to the real deal, with all of our friends!  Rob and Laura hosted in their beautiful new home, which meant they made the turkey.  It turned out so flavorful and juicy, just like the pros- it was perfection! We brought along some Triple Chocolate Pumpkin Pie and the Roasted Garlic and Chive Mashed Potatoes ( recipes below).  Other tasty additions to our meal included Green Bean Casserole, fresh bread rolls, Sweet Potato Casserole, Lemon Almond Broccoli, Mixed Green Salad with Apple and Apple Dressing, Stuffing, Gravy… and then for a dessert cocktail Lauren brought along homemade Irish Cream- which was so good I can’t even put it in to words to do it justice!  Our Chocolate Pumpkin pie was rivaled only with a delicious homemade Pumpkin Pie- the verdict was Chocolate was very rich and almost similar to a cheesecake and the Original Pumpkin pie was perfect, light, creamy and the perfect blend of pumpkinny spices!

Triple-Chocolate Pumpkin Pie
Serves 12
( the filling made enough to fill 2- 9″ pie crusts, go for a store bought graham crust if desired!)
2 cups finely ground graham cracker crumbs (about 16 crackers)
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate (preferably 61 percent cacao), finely chopped

6 ounces semisweet chocolate (preferably 55 percent cacao), chopped
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Ground cloves
1 ounce milk chocolate, melted


1.Make the crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugars, salt, and cinnamon in bowl. Firmly press mixture into bottom and up sides of a deep, 9 1/2-inch pie dish. Bake until firm, 8 to 10 minutes.

2.Remove from oven, and sprinkle bittersweet chocolate over bottom of crust. Return to oven to melt chocolate, about 1 minute. Spread chocolate in a thin layer on bottom and up sides. Let cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.
3.Make the filling: In a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, melt semisweet chocolate and butter, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat.

4.Mix pumpkin, milk, brown sugar, eggs, cornstarch, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and a pinch of cloves in a medium bowl. Whisk 1/3 pumpkin mixture into chocolate mixture. Whisk in remaining pumpkin mixture until completely incorporated.

5.Transfer pie dish to a rimmed baking sheet, and pour pumpkin mixture into crust. Bake until center is set but still a bit wobbly, 55 to 60 minutes. Let cool in pie dish on a wire rack. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 8 hours (preferably overnight). Before serving, drizzle melted milk chocolate on top. Serve immediately.
Read more at Triple-Chocolate Pumpkin Pie – Martha Stewart Recipes

Roasted Garlic and Chive Mashed Potatoes
( Serves 12)

5 pound bag of Yukon Gold potatoes, washed and cut in to cubes
1 stick un-salted butter, cut in tablespoons
1 head of garlic, roasted
1/4 cup chives, chopped
1/2 cup buttermilk, lowfat

Salt and Pepper

To roast Garlic, wrap the whole clove rubbed with olive oil in foil and bake in the oven for 30-45 minutes at 350.  It should be soft and fragrant. 

Place potatoes in a large pot with water to cover.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 30-35 miutes, until potatoes are fork tender.  Drain, return to stove in pot.  To fully dry potatoes, keep flame on under the pot and toss potatoes around until steam ceases.  This keeps your mashed potatoes light and fluffy not pasty. 

Using a fork or hand masher, blend in the whole head of garlic by squeezing each clove out of its shell.  Add in the butter ( save 2 tablespoons), mashing well after each tablespoon.  Slowly add in buttermilk, you may not use all, just mash in till desired consistancy.  Salt and Pepper, add chives and more butter to taste.


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