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DECK THE HOLIDAY'S: 11/20/12

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

THE NOT SO ANCIENT HISTORY OF 10 OF THANKSGIVINGS FAVORITE DISHES!!


  On Thanksgiving, more than any other day of the year, Americans sit down and eat the same meal as their neighbors and countrymen. It’s tradition, after all! But we know our history: most of the Thanksgiving dishes we enjoy today weren’t at the original Pilgrims’ feast in 1621, or at least not in the way we enjoy them. How did we come up with the modern menu on so many tables?




1. Candied Sweet Potatoes






   Sweet potatoes are native to the Americas and their consumption goes back about 5,000 years, so it is no wonder they are associated with the American holiday, even though the Pilgrims didn’t have them in Massachusetts. But when did we start adding sugar to make them even sweeter than they are? The earliest recipe found is from 1889, in which sweet potatoes are made into candy.
The candied sweet potato is a Philadelphia confectionery. It is nothing but sweet potatoes carefully boiled and quartered, then candied in boiling syrup, but it is said to be dainty and tender and of a delicious flavor”.
   By 1895, recipes for sweetened sweet potatoes as a dinner side dish were showing up. Some call these recipes candied yams, although actual yams are a different plant altogether. “Yams” is an American nickname for the softer varieties of sweet potato.





2. Cranberry Sauce






   Cranberries were probably a part of the original Thanksgiving feast. The Native Americans used them for food, medicine, and even dye. Most importantly, cranberries were used as a preservative because they contain benzoic acid, so they added the fruit to meats and grains to extend their shelf life. General Ulysses S. Grant ordered cranberry sauce to be served to his troops in 1864, probably to prevent scurvy during the winter. It was first put into cans in 1912 by a company that eventually came to be known as Ocean Spray, a term that originally was used only for their canned cranberry sauce. .




3. Brown and Serve Rolls






   Although not confined to Thanksgiving, “brown and serve rolls” are sold by the ton by various manufacturers for the holiday. They originated in 1949 when baker Joe Gregor of Avon Park, Florida tried to please his customers who wanted their rolls warm for dinner. He worked on the problem for months until he accidentally produced a batch of half-baked rolls. He left the “ruined” rolls in the oven while he responded to a fire alarm (Gregor was a volunteer fireman) and when he returned, he reheated the rolls and realized what he had produced. Gregor sold half-baked rolls to his customers to take home and finish baking  before dinner. General Mills bought the process for $25,000, allowing Gregor to retire from baking. Recipes are available so that you can make your own rolls ahead of time and brown them just before dinner.




4. Apple Cider






   It is not known when the first actual apple cider was produced, but the invading Romans discovered it in use in the village of Kent when they invaded England in 55BCE. Cider spread through Europe during the Middle Ages. English settlers brought apple seeds to America, where the trees thrived. Other drinks, especially beer, became more popular, but cider is traditionally consumed in the fall to celebrate the apple harvest. That is how cider, especially spiced cider, came to be associated with Thanksgiving and Christmas.



5. Deviled Eggs






   The concept of deviled eggs goes back to at least Ancient Rome, when boiled eggs were topped with spicy sauces. Removing the yolks from boiled eggs, adding spices, and then returning them was common in medieval times. The word “deviled” was first used in print to describe a highly spiced recipe in 1786, and came to be used for any food that was “hot” like the devil’s domain.

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6. Roast Turkey





   There are only a couple of accounts of the Pilgrim’s feast written by participants, and at least one never even mentioned turkeys. The most famous remembrance was written twenty years after the fact by governor William Bradford and was confiscated by the British during the Revolutionary War. It was not recovered until 1854. Meanwhile, turkeys were roasted during the winter months by any Americans who had access to the birds. When the Bradford document became available, roast turkey became associated with the Thanksgiving meal. After all, the birds are much easier to raise on farms than the deer, swans, partridges, and  seal meat that were also on the Pilgrims’ menu.




7. Stuffing or Dressing





   Stuffing animals for roasting goes back to ancient times, with old recipes surviving from the Roman Empire. After removing the organs, the big hole left behind is an opportunity to add seasoning from the inside, and filling the cavity helps to even the cooking over a fire. In modern times, the Thanksgiving turkey is the only large animal that most people ever roast whole in their homes, so the custom of stuffing is linked to Thanksgiving turkey. However, it is often served without ever actually being inside the turkey. Modern instant stuffing is even served with no turkey at all! Stovetop Stuffing was invented in 1971 by Ruth Siems for General Foods (now Kraft Foods). The convenience of instant stuffing was an immediate hit when it was launched in 1972. The company sells around 60 million boxes every Thanksgiving.






8. Green Bean Casserole






   The green bean casserole that many people serve for Thanksgiving originated in 1955 with a recipe by Dorcas Reilly of the Campbell’s Soup Company, in collaboration with Olney and Carpenter, who were trying to promote their french fried onion business. The recipe caught on, and ensured the future of canned fried onions and the trend of using cream soup instead of homemade white sauce. Of course, you can make it from scratch without the processed name-brand ingredients.





9. Mincemeat Pie






   Mincemeat, a combination of meat, fruit, and spices not only tasted good to those who developed it, but preserved the meat for later consumption. Believe it or not, early mincemeat pies were baked in a coffin shape! One account has mincemeat brought back from the Crusades in the 11th century. Spiced meat was made into a pie for Christmas. The meat was combined with three spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves) to represent the three gifts of the wise men. The oblong coffin shape was meant to represent the cradle of the Christ child, and a representative doll was placed on top when the small pies were presented. Another account has the original pies shaped like coffins to represent Osiris, the Egyptian god of the dead who was celebrated on the winter solstice. Christians co-opted this tradition along with the other solstice celebrations for Christmas. Over the years, the amount of meat was diminished as we developed other methods of preservation, and now most mincemeat recipes contain only a bit of suet along with apples, raisins, and spices. However, you can still make it the traditional way with this 1796 recipe.





10. Pumpkin Pie





   The Pilgrims may have eaten cooked pumpkin, but they didn’t have it in a pie. The first recorded pumpkin pie recipe was published in France in 1653, where the fruit was called pompion. It spread to England and then to the New World, where the first American pie recipe (now called pumpkin) was published in 1796.

STARBUCKS CARAMEL APPLE SPICE, A COPY CAT RECIPE!

   This recipe comes from www.budgetsavvydiva.com .   Give it a try and see how it tastes.  Good luck.






This is my favorite drink from Starbucks – but I am not a fan of the price tag. Below is a recipe that I developed that is spot- on. My husband whom works for Starbucks says it taste just like Starbucks.


What You Need
Drink:
Bottle of Treetop Apple Juice
Topping:
Whipped Cream
Caramel Topping
Cinnamon Dolce flavor – you can either buy it for $7 at Starbucks or make your own for pennies
1/2 Cup of Water
1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar
About 1/2 to 1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
What To Do
Make the Cinnamon Syrup. In a pot add all the ingredients ( sugar, water; cinnamon).
Stir
Let the mixture simmer for 5 minutes – it should reduce in half.
While that is cooking in a large stockpot add apple juice – Each serving is 12 oz so heat up as much as you need.
Once the apple juice is heated and the syrup is done – add 3 Tablespoons of Syrup to 12 oz of Juice.
Stir – should look like
Add whipped cream and caramel drizzle
Enjoy :)
Recipe type: Drink
Author: Sara @ Budget Savvy Diva.com
Cook time: 5 mins
Total time: 5 mins
Serves: Varies
Taste Just Like The Drink From Starbucks but WITHOUT The Price Tag
Ingredients
  • Drink:
  • Bottle of Treetop Apple Juice
  • Topping:
  • Whipped Cream
  • Caramel Topping
  • Cinnamon Dolce flavor – you can either buy it for $7 at Starbucks or make your own for pennies
  • 1/2 Cup of Water
  • 1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar
  • About 1/2 to 1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Make the Cinnamon Syrup. In a pot add all the ingredients ( sugar, water; cinnamon).
  2. Stir
  3. Let the mixture simmer for 5 minutes – it should reduce in half.
  4. While that is cooking in a large stockpot add apple juice – Each serving is 12 oz so heat up as much as you need.
  5. Once the apple juice is heated and the syrup is done – add 3 Tablespoons of Syrup to 12 oz of Juice.
  6. Stir – should look like
  7. Add whipped cream and caramel drizzle
  8. Enjoy :)

PUMPKIN PIE WHITE HOT CHOCOLATE! YUUUUMMMMYYYY!



Pumpkin Pie White Hot Chocolate



   I certainly have been enjoying a lot of pumpkin lately and in particular I have been enjoying transforming the pumpkin pie flavours into different dishes. When I came across the idea of a pumpkin pie white hot chocolate recently on The Luna Cafe I knew immediatly what my next pumpkin pie experiment was going to be. Not too long ago I had tried a pumpkin pie milkshake and a hot version of a pumpkin pie drink sounded perfect for the chilly weather that we have been having. This drink is pretty much as simple as making some white hot chocolate and adding the pumpkin puree and pumpkin spices and it is so worth making! The pumpkin pie white hot chocolate was excellent! It was nice and hot and the white chocolate added the perfect amount of sweetness that went really well with the pumpkin pie flavours. Lesson learned: Don't try to top a hot drink with whipped cream before photographing it as it melts pretty much right away.



Pumpkin Pie White Hot Chocolate

   Pumpkin and white chocolate is an amazing flavour combination and when used in a hot chocolate makes for a great way to stay warm on cold winter days.

Servings: makes 4 servings

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Printable Recipe
Ingredients
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 ounces white chocolate, roughly chopped
  • pinch salt
Directions
  1. Heat the milk, pumpkin puree, and spices in a sauce pan until it just starts to simmer and remove form heat.
  2. Add the chocolate and stir until it has melted.
  3. Pour into mugs and top with whipped cream and garnish with cinnamon.

HERE'S A LITTLE THANKSGIVING TRIVIA!








    Thanksgiving Day is a very important day in the United States. There are many things that are especially related to the celebrations of the Thanksgiving Day. These include Thanksgiving turkey trivia, pilgrims, thanksgiving proclamation, thanksgiving as a national holiday and other things. Some of such facts are mentioned here which will not only help you enhance your knowledge about Thanksgiving Day but also make you enjoy this day with even more zeal.

1. Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November in the United States.

2. Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the second Monday in October in Canada.

3. The Plymouth Pilgrims were the first to celebrate the Thanksgiving.










4. The pilgrims arrived in North America in December 1620.

5. The Pilgrims sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to reach North America.

6. The pilgrims sailed on the ship, which was known by the name of 'Mayflower'.










7. They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day in the fall of 1621.

8. They celebrated the first Thanksgiving Day at Plymouth, Massachusetts.

9. The drink that the Puritans brought with them in the Mayflower was the beer.










10. The Wampanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate the land.

11. The Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first Thanksgiving feast in the year 1621 and invited the neighboring Wampanoag Indians also to the feast.

12. The first Thanksgiving feast was held in the presence of around ninety Wampanoag Indians and the Wampanoag chief, Massasoit, was also invited there.










13. The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days.

14. President George Washington issued the first national Thanksgiving Day Proclamation in the year 1789 and again in 1795.

15. The state of New York officially made Thanksgiving Day an annual custom in 1817.










16. Sarah Josepha Hale, an editor with a magazine, started a Thanksgiving campaign in 1827 and it was result of her efforts that in 1863 Thanksgiving was observed as a day for national thanksgiving and prayer.

17. Abraham Lincoln issued a 'Thanksgiving Proclamation' on third October 1863 and officially set aside the last Thursday of November as the national day for Thanksgiving. Whereas earlier the presidents used to make an annual proclamation to specify the day when Thanksgiving was to be held.

18. President Franklin D. Roosevelt restored Thursday before last of November as Thanksgiving Day in the year 1939. He did so to make the Christmas shopping season longer and thus stimulate the economy of the state.









19. Congress passed an official proclamation in 1941 and declared that now onwards Thanksgiving will be observed as a legal holiday on the fourth Thursday of November every year.

20. Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national bird of the United States. But it was Thomas Jefferson who opposed him. It is believed that Franklin then named the male turkey as 'tom' to spite Jefferson.

21. The annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade tradition began in the 1920's.








22. Californians are the largest consumers of turkey in the United States.

23. When the Pilgrims arrived in North America, the clothing of the Native Americans was made of animal skins (mainly deer skin).

24. On December 11, 1620 the first Pilgrims (or Puritans, as they were initially known) landed at Plymouth Rock.






25. By the fall of 1621 only half of the pilgrims, who had sailed on the Mayflower, survived. The survivors, thankful to be alive, decided to give a thanksgiving feast.