Recipes for Thanks-gathering
November 10, 2022
By Kelly Moore
Missoula County Extension, Family and Consumer Science Agent
The holidays we look forward to each year can often bring stress and anxiety into our already busy lives. Attempts to please everyone can leave us feeling exhausted and less able to feel thankful. Family traditions and guests can become a dark cloud of dread in our minds as November and December come into view. Re-evaluating traditions and reducing expectations, can pave a rejuvenating path to the holiday season.
Let’s start with the Thanksgiving menu. We know that many things are beyond our control such as turkey prices and turkey shortages (due in part to a summer avian flu epidemic). According to some sources, the average cost of a turkey has increased by 73% and turkeys weighing twenty pounds or more, can be difficult to find.
This information is invaluable, and it compels us to think outside of the shopping/cooking panic box. Consider an alternative main course such as turkey meatloaf or chicken pot pie. Ground turkey is typically less expensive, readily available, and takes less time to prepare. One whole roasted chicken and vegetables in a velvety sauce enclosed in buttery crust, can feed 6-8 people. Home canned or frozen garden vegetables can be a welcome addition to any Thanksgiving table. Creating and serving charcuterie or grazing boards, is an excellent activity for family and friends that reduces preparation time and heat in the kitchen, supplies more colorful nutritious choices, and encourages more multi-generational conversation. It has been noted that kids tend to eat more varieties of artfully displayed fruits and vegetables from a board or platter. Skewers are especially popular for arranging olives and cheese satisfying the pickiest of eaters. A variety of spreads and dips round out the menu. (See recipe link below.)
As we enter a new season of celebration, let us remember to gather reliable information, start new traditions, re-charge our batteries with good self-care, and in thanks-giving, continue to live with gratitude.
Happy Holidays, everyone!
Spinach and Artichoke Dip: