Saturday, November 08, 2014

Thanksgiving Dinner 2014 | Still usin' what we got...

I am popping in with a photo dump of our Thanksgiving Dinner (albeit crappy iPhone photos, but meh). I've talked about what we do for our spread here, and how we set up our garage dinner here. Since we didn't change many things this year, no explanations required! EXCEPT... you will not see any pictures of a big, beautifully cooked turkey, because we didn't do it this year. Instead of buying a turkey and dealing with a couple days of prep, mess, etc., we decided to buy turkey breasts (lots of them)... we still brined it and then barbecued it. Best.decision.ever. Cooking time was only 20-30 minutes max, no big roasting pans and it was so flavourful and delicious. Gravy was experimental without any drippings! I used this recipe from Bon Appetit and used GF flour for the roux and turkey stock. I think I'll try cornstarch in future and experiment a bit more to work on the texture. You'll see that just about everything we made was gluten free this year, as I have family with Celiac Disease. It really didn't affect our usual menu that much.

Without further ado, here's the prep process:

Bought my flowers from Westcoast Gardens again this year...
 Orange Bourbon Cranberry Sauce - this smelt incredible while cooking! So yum.
 Turkey brine....
The fleurs are my very favourite thing to do... this year I picked up:
  • Feather Eucalyptus
  • Seeded Eucalyptus
  • Skimmia (those gray berry looking things)
  • Silver Bell Eucalyptus Pods
  • Capiscum Black Peppers
  • Brunia
  • Hydrangea
  • Dahlias
  • Spray Roses
  • Kale
  • Wax Flowers
  • Magnolia leaves
As usual, I went overboard. Ooops.
Super simple appies (and all gluten free) - carrot and celery sticks, vegetable chips and rice crackers, red pepper hummus and chipotle cheese dip. We try not to serve anything heavy because dinner is a feast!
Regular stuffing and gluten free stuffing as per my usual recipe (bread crumbs, celery, onions, craisins, apples, broth, white wine, fresh sage, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper)...
 Front door and entry...

And now for dinner in the garage (pardon our garbage cans still being in the first pic... must have been early in the day still)! We expanded our rentals this year and decided to rent all white matching chairs just to make it a bit more cohesive (and reduce our stress from having to borrow, pick up and drop off).
We've expanded Kris' gallery wall since last year, and we still have more to add! You can also see the raw pine builtins that Kris built this summer (his real motivation was so he didn't have to vie for the TV during World Cup). It's also a perfect spot for all his beer paraphernalia. That guy loves his craft beer, and loves to brew it too. For dinner, it was the perfect place to put the wine and coffee mugs.
 Dinner Time!
Dessert Time! We had less people than expected due to some illnesses so we actually set dessert up at the end of the table. That way, none of the dinner food had to be moved upstairs, everyone dished up their leftovers and put it in the garage fridge (which is a massive lifesaver if you are serving dinner in your garage, just sayin'). We also have a bucket under the food table where we put all the dishes. That way, we aren't worried about getting everything out of the way - we can sit, relax and enjoy each other's company!
 After dinner, we took down part of the table and pulled out the giant jenga... many laughs ensued (I think Kris was doing some ninja moves to challenge J lol)
That's it people! If I have missed anything, shoot me questions in the comments :)