Thursday, November 19, 2009

countdown continues: 7 days...

A week ago I never thought whittling down the longlist was possible. But all week in jury duty without Web access and nine menus later, I've landed the following three menu options (in no particular order):

menu one
the drink: Champagne mojitos

the starters: Warm crab dip w/ fresh herbs; Hazelnut profiteroles w/ blue cheese + grapes; and Spinach + tofu dumplings

the soup: Spicy parsnip

the whole turkey: Alsatian-brined turkey w/ riesling gravy

the stuffing: Shiitake mushroom seeduction stuffing

the two breasts: Jalapeno + paprika-rubbed; Tangerine-glazed

the sides:
Heavenly potatoes
Mashed sweet potatoes w/ apple butter
Prosciutto parmesan risotto
Lemony quinoa salad w/ pine nuts + olives
Maple-ginger-roasted vegetables w/ pecans
Roasted broccoli w/ acho butter
Swiss chard gratin w/ toasted bread crumbs
Corn cakes w/ spiced cranberries
Curried peaches + butternut squash w/ ricotta + almonds

intermission: Cafe cubano; Chilled strawberry shooters w/ mint cream + vanilla crisps; and Sweet chestnut + rosemary ice cream

the sweet endings:
Chocolate macadmia tart
Dulche de leche bread pudding w/ juicy baked plums
Fig, blackberry + pear crisp

menu two
the drink: Rose Sangria w/ cranberries + apples

the starters: Porcini tapioca; Baked peaches w/ almond paste; Shrimp + chorizo flatbread; and Curried sweet potato shooters

the soup: Mom's chicken dumpling

the whole turkey: Roasted turkey w/ figs + muscat gravy

the stuffing: Prosciutto-bread stuffing

the two breasts: Maple-glazed turkey breast w/ bourbon-pecan gravy; Hickory-smoked turkey breast w/ apple slaw

the sides:
Mashed potato w/ horseradish cream
Vanilla-bean whipped sweet potatoes
Polenta gratin w/ spinach + wild mushrooms
Butternut squash risotto w/ chestnuts
Grill-roasted vegetables w/ pine nut pesto
Braised kale w/ cranberry brown butter
Champagne-roasted cauliflower w/ gruyere
Cranberry-grapefruit conserve

intermission: Trader Joe's Wintry Blend; Mexican hot chocolate; Blackberry napoleon

the sweet endings:
Rustic pear + hazelnut crostada
Strawberry basil bread pudding
Harvest mousse w/ spiced almond tuiles

menu three
the drink: Blood orange margaritas

the starters: Rosemary flatbread w/ blue cheese, grapes + honey; Coconut-lemongrass chicken spring roll; and Texas smoked salmon tartare

the soup: Chestnut soup w/ grappa cream

the whole turkey: Roasted turkey w/ lemon + chives

the stuffing: Wild mushroom whole wheat stuffing w/ tarragon

the two breasts: Indian-spiced turkey breast w/ cilantro-yogurt sauce; Chile-roasted turkey breast

the sides:
Herbed potato gratin w/ roasted garlic + manchego
Mashed sweet potatoes w/ apple cider
Toasted coconut basmati rice
Pea, mint + feta risotto
Spiced veggies w/ pomegranate seeds
Crisp salmon w/ avocado salad
Creamed spinach + parsnips
Caramelized broccoli w/ garlic
Gingered cranberry sauce w/ spicy pumpkin seeds

intermission: Espresso; Tangy mint + pomegranate refresher; Peach ginger ice cream blondies

the sweet endings:
Fig + raspberry tart w/ chestnut honey
Banana bread + butter pudding
Indian pudding

You'll notice that I didn't decorate any of the menus with fancy dish photos or anything that might campaign for taste buds in an unfair manner. I'll be finalizing the menu choice and its modifications by Saturday morning! Please let me know your thoughts or last-minute recommendations.

Our guest list looks to be settling at 17, so it's time for table measurements and tableware procurement. I'm only a little bummed that Neil's family won't get to see our living room in its natural glory (the table-for-17 will displace some of the current setup), but a huge Thanksgiving is totally worth it.

And when I'm done with eating Thanksgiving, I might be displacing some of it too.


The Salty One said...

I vote for number one and as a newly pregnant chick I am very very picky about food :) I would also like to be first in line for leftovers. You are amazing! I wish I had the initiative and creativity you do!

Nevenka said...

I want all three. Too difficult to decide and I just ate. Let me know what you want me to make. I think the count is closer to 20.