Thursday, November 28, 2013

On the Homefront: Thanksgivukkah Table

Dalmatian pup Pilgrim and his good buddy Wishbone are on the
scene to survey the Thanksgivukkah tablescape.

A Dalmatian named Pilgrim is here
To enjoy the Thanksgivukkah cheer.
While his best turkey pal
Will remain for a while,
When the feast starts he'll want to stay clear!

The inspiration for my Thanksgivukkah table was a honey-colored gravy boat I found at HomeGoods a few weeks ago:

Made in Portugal, it is decorated with a raised turkey and acorn design and I just couldn't resist it.  About a week later, I discovered salad plates on the Sur la Table website that were a perfect match.  I also found a white Turkey Compote Bowl and Turkey Salt and Pepper Shakers, and another Turkey Gravy Boat in white which also had a raised turkey design.  (BTW, Sur la Table does an excellent job shipping and sending their items -- all were well padded and packed so not a single item was broken, and they arrived very quickly.  I will definitely be ordering from them again!).  Honey gold and white seemed destined to be two of the colors on my holiday table, and when I found out that Thanksgiving and the first full day of Hanukkah would fall on the same day this year, blue seemed to be the logical choice for a third color.  There is always a bit of brown on my table, so a happy combination of Hanukkah and Thanksgiving colors was the result!  You will have to forgive the rather dark appearance of my photographs -- our dining room faces northwest, and at this time of year the light is just not very good, especially for my little digital camera:

For some reason I left the fork off of one place setting when I was
taking photos (that has since been remedied!).

Threshold Textured Placemat in Gold from Target; leaves and acorns charger from Walmart several years ago; cobalt blue dinner plate (Hotel Elite from HomeGoods);  Embossed Thanksgiving Salad Plate in Honey from Sur la Table; chocolate coins in gold foil (gelt) from Hobby Lobby; stainless steel flatware; Autumn Harvest Napkins in Wheat from Bed Bath & Beyond; leaves and acorns napkin ring from Walmart several years ago; can't remember where I got the clear glass wine glass or the blue glass goblet.

The brown leaf design table runner is from Kroger, of all places!

Hakkari hurricane from Crate and Barrel last year;
gold acorns from Pottery Barn last year.

The honey-colored gravy boat that inspired my tablescape;
white turkey salt and pepper shakers from Sur la Table;
white oval platter from HomeGoods.

White turkey gravy boat, with the ladle from the turkey compote
bowl, which will be used for the cranberry sauce.
I have a small pewter menorah which happened to fit perfectly
inside my new turkey compote bowl, so I created my very own
Menurkey (I have had the golden yellow maple leaf candle
plates for years).

Our Thanksgivukkah feast will consist of most of our traditional Thanksgiving dishes, with a couple of changes to honor the Hanukkah celebration.  Sweet potato latkes with a cranberry applesauce will start the meal, and I will add challah bread to the stuffing instead of white sandwich bread, but the roasted turkey, the green bean casserole, and the pumpkin pie will remain the same, since my husband dearly loves these traditional dishes.  To roast my turkey, I simply follow the directions on the turkey wrapper, but I never season the bird, not even with salt.  I do stuff our turkey and then simply baste it with oil as it roasts.  This is the way my mother did it, and I happen to prefer the flavor of unseasoned poultry.

Thanksgivukkah Menu:

White Wine/Iced Tea or Water
Roasted Turkey/Gravy
Mom's Sausage Stuffing with Challah Bread
Green Bean Casserole*
Pickled Beets
Pumpkin Pie**/Whipped Cream

*Green Bean Casserole (yes, this is the classic Campbell's soup version)

1 can (10.75 oz.) condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/2 C. milk
1 tsp. soy sauce
dash of pepper
4 C. cooked cut green beans
1 1/3 C. French's French fried onions

Combine the first five ingredients with 2/3 C. of the fried onions in a 1 1/2-quart casserole dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until hot.  Stir, then sprinkle with the remaining fried onions.  Bake five minutes longer.  Serves 6.

**Pumpkin Pie (and yes, this is the classic Libby's Famous Pumpkin Pie)

3/4 C. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. cloves (I usually omit this as I dislike cloves)
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin purée
1 can (12 fl. oz.) evaporated milk
1 unbaked 9-inch deep-dish pie shell (4-cup volume)

Combine the first four ingredients in a small bowl.  Beat the eggs slightly in a large bowl.  Stir in the pumpkin and sugar mixture.  Gradually stir in the milk.  Pour into the pie shell.

Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and bake for 40-50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack for two hours.  Serve immediately or refrigerate (do not freeze).  Serves 8.


In addition to the chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil (gelt), there will of course be Lindt Lindor Truffles on the table, in blue (dark chocolate) and gold (white chocolate) wrappers in honor of Hanukkah colors:

Just a couple more images of Pilgrim and Wishbone:

And one showing the dreidel I forgot to put on the table when I was taking photographs:

A dreidel is a small four-sided top that is used to play a popular children's Hanukkah game with the chocolate gelt, which I have put on my table at each place setting (real coins or other small tokens can be used instead).  An explanation of the rules can be found here.  This game would be a great way to keep children occupied while the Thanksgivukkah meal is being prepared!

Hannukah actually started yesterday at sundown, so that is when the first candle on the Menurkey was lit, but since my husband will actually be in town for the full eight days of this holiday, we will get to light a new candle every night together for once.  While I am not Jewish, I do enjoy celebrating all holidays with my husband, who is Jewish and who is especially fond of Hanukkah.  This year we get to celebrate two holidays at once together, which is truly something to be thankful for!

Happy Thanksgiving/Hanukkah/Thanksgivukkah to you all, and to all of your family and friends as well!

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