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WE RECOMMEND:

Thanksgiving Gathering of Foodie Friends

November 01, 2011

When having the best tasting—and fabulous looking—food at your Thanksgiving dinner is a must, here's a menu with plenty to offer discriminating guests. And, it's a menu easily divided so friends can share in the cooking and baking. Vegetarians are at home with this all-inclusive feast.

ThanksgivingGatheringofFoodieFriends_Beauty

Make It Special!

  • Be a copycat. Find centerpiece ideas you like in magazines or online. Take them to your favorite florist to customize for your home and dishes.

  • Print the menu restaurant style on autumn-inspired stationary. Have copies guests can take home to remember your day together. Even better, send guests home with a custom booklet of the menu with recipes and wine selections!

  • Put together music you enjoy, including selections that include giving thanks. Send guests home with a custom CD.

Vegetarians at the Feast

  • Remember there are vegetarians and vegetarians—ovo-lacto and vegan—so ask, don't assume, you know what foods and wines work and don't work for them. They'll appreciate it.

  • With some easy adaptations and substitutions—maple syrup for honey, vegetable broth for chicken broth—all the recipes in the menu, except the turkey, of course, can fit most vegetarian eating. Ask your friends for help or consult online sources.

  • There are many ways to enjoy the flavors of the season. Put your creativity to good use. Praline Apple Crisp in place of Ginger Pumpkin Tart for dessert without eggs? What's to give up?

Share the Cooking

  • Accept all volunteers for help!

  • The appetizer, salad, chutney, desserts and wines are the logical choices for family and friends to help supply. Just make sure that the one who always arrives late isn't who brings the appetizer!

  • Make two shopping lists, one for items that can be purchased up to two weeks ahead and the other for items to purchase one or two days before Thanksgiving.

  • Sit down with your spouse or friend who cooks with you. Go through the Preparation Guide. Divide and conquer, including those jobs like housecleaning and setting the table.

Menu

Partner apple cider with cranberry juice for a new flavor twist on a popular hot drink.
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (31 ratings)     Member Reviews (11)
When you're asked to bring a cheese tray to share, making it spectacular is easy!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (14 ratings)     Member Reviews (3)
Creamy and rich with a hint of curry, homemade organic squash soup is ready in 30 minutes!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonhalf spoon (15 ratings)     Member Reviews (3)
Make heavenly homemade bread without ever needing to knead.
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (13 ratings)     Member Reviews (1)
You don’t have to be a vegetarian to enjoy this herbed vegetable combo!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (14 ratings)     Member Reviews (0)
Win raves with this fun, colorful winter salad!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (14 ratings)     Member Reviews (0)
You're just 30 minutes away from a creamy veggie risotto side dish.
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (30 ratings)     Member Reviews (7)
Make your next turkey the most moist and succulent one you've ever tasted!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (106 ratings)     Member Reviews (23)
With sweet pears and tart cranberries, chutney adds fresh flavor to a variety of roasted meats.
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (4 ratings)     Member Reviews (1)
A simple combination of two favorite flavors is all wrapped up in a tasty custard pie!
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoon (1 ratings)     Member Reviews (0)
A ginger-kissed cousin to pumpkin pie--you'll love this updated taste adventure.
full spoonfull spoonfull spoonfull spoonempty spoon (31 ratings)     Member Reviews (4)
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