Ahhhh...Thanksgiving. You are my favorite holiday. I like you too Halloween, but I'm really not a "sweet" lover. I'm all about the savory. The youngest spawn once said to me, "Mom, you're not sweet. You're spicy." He's a player that one.
I am on the fence about you Christmas. I love decorating for you...but only AFTER Thanksgiving. I like giving the people in my life truly thoughtful gifts. I absolutely despise the greedy, materialistic, maniacal spending spree that you have become. I won't step foot near a mall anytime after Turkey Day. I'd rather lay down in the driveway, and you can just back over me. Something about you Christmas makes otherwise rational, sane people go batshit crazy. It's like a rabid frenzy.
Anyway, Thanksgiving you are here next week and you make a hypocrite of me. Let's talk about Green Bean Casserole. I like mine homemade all the way. I make my own Cream of Mushroom Soup, use fresh green beans and french fried onions. Nothing comes from a can because that is nasty. Hey, if you like the Cambell's Soup recipe, more power to ya'. It's just not for me.
So, how does this make me a hypocrite? I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce from the can. I actually get disappointed if I am at someone else's house for Thanksgiving and they have made their own cranberry sauce. I've also been known to bring my own can when I know that's the case. I can't help it. I have a canned cranberry sauce problem. Stop judging me. I only ever eat it once a year to celebrate the harvest holiday and the week after when we plow through a mountain of leftovers.
Cream of Mushroom Soup (for you Aly)
Instead of chicken or vegetable broth, I make mushroom broth. I pretty much just boil down brown button mushrooms and onions with some salt and fresh garlic to make a really earthy broth and strain out the solids. Then I chop up a variety of mushrooms, anything interesting that is available (hen of the woods are really good if you can get your hands on them, so are lobster mushrooms) and mince a scallion. I saute this in olive oil until tender, and then I ladle in some mushroom broth (just enough to cover the mushrooms) and let it come to a boil. I throw in some thyme, a bay leaf, salt and pepper and simmer until the shrooms are really tender. Then, I add fat free half and half and a little bit of heavy cream and stir until it comes to a light boil. Dissolve some cornstarch or flour in some of the mushroom broth and add, bring back to a light boil and stir until thickened to the proper consistency.
Now, if I'm serving this as soup, I swirl in a gorganzola cream sauce. If I'm using it for green bean casserole, I make a light roux and add it to make sure it gets nice and thick.
I nixed this week's Herb Smackdown poll, Basil was totally owning Chives. Tell us how you feel about your Cranberry Sauce.
Next...Farmer Ted's Oyster Cornbread Stuffing will make your panties fly off. If you wear panties that is.