Happy Swank-sgiving: It’s never too late to wow holiday guests
by Deirdre Long
dlong@annistonstar.com
Nov 27, 2013 | 2060 views |  0 comments | 29 29 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star
Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star
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It’s the day before Thanksgiving. The meal is planned, food is prepped and the house is clean and ready for guests.

Yeah, right. Hopefully you’ve taken the turkey out of the freezer (if you haven’t, it’s time!), have at least a general idea of what and how many you’re serving, and the house? Well, that’ll just have to wait.

If you’re still scrambling for ideas, you’re in luck. The grocery stores are open — albeit packed with last-minute shoppers just like you — and we have some simple and delicious recipes to help get you through. We’ll leave the main course up to you, but the Turkey and Turnip Green Soup is a great way to use up some of those leftovers.

The following recipes are from the “Holiday Cooking School” cookbook put out by the Calhoun County Extension Office. Copies are available (but not this week, since the office is closed for the holiday) for $2 at the Extension office in the County Administration Building on Noble Street.



GOLDEN PUNCH
1 (3 ounce) package orange gelatin
1 cup boiling water
1 (6 ounce) can frozen orange juice concentrate
4 cups apple juice
3 cups cold water
1 liter ginger ale, chilled

Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in orange juice concentrate and mix until well blended. Add apple juice and cold water. Carefully pour in chilled ginger ale. Makes about 25 (4 ounce) servings.

CRANBERRY SALSA
1 (12 ounce) package fresh or frozen cranberries
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 navel orange, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 cup sugar
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Pulse cranberries in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a bowl. Pulse the remaining ingredients 3-5 times or until orange, ginger and pepper are finely chopped. Stir into cranberries and cover and chill 2 to 24 hours.

Cinnamon Sugar Tortilla Chips
Editor’s note: This recipe wasn’t found in the cookbook, but these chips are great with the cranberry salsa.
¼ cup butter
½ cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
8-inch flour tortillas

Preheat oven to 375 F. In a small bowl, mix cinnamon and sugar well. Melt butter and use a basting brush to spread it on one side of an 8-inch flour tortilla. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mix. Flip tortilla over and repeat with butter and sugar mix. Use a pizza cutter to cut each tortilla into wedges. Bake for 12 minutes, or until crispy. Remove from pan while warm to prevent sticking.

OVEN-ROASTED SWEET POTATOES AND ONIONS
4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
2 medium Vidalia or other sweet onions, sliced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
¾ teaspoon garlic-pepper blend
½ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 425 F. Combine all ingredients in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish, tossing to coat. Bake for about 35 minutes until tender, stirring occasionally.

BROWNIE BITES
11 ounce box pie crust mix
3-ounce box instant devil’s food pudding mix
½ teaspoon baking soda
⅔ cup sugar
1 large egg
⅓ cup sour cream
Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Combine mixes, baking soda and sugar. Add egg and sour cream. Beat until mixture clings together — it will be thick. Roll into small balls and place 2 inches apart on baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Move to rack to cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

TURKEY TURNIP GREENS SOUP
2 cups chopped, cooked turkey
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 cups chicken broth
2 (16 ounce) packages frozen turnip greens
2 (15.5 ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup sun-dried tomatoes
1 cup diced onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 cup chopped celery
1 teaspoon sugar substitute
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Red pepper flakes, to taste

Sauté turkey in oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add broth and remaining ingredients, bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally for 25 minutes. Makes about 10 cups.

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