Monday, October 9, 2017

Recipes for Thanksgiving...and what I wore to cook.

I wore my mother's pearls this Thanksgiving...
it was a bit of an effort but I did it.


It was the first time that I put them on since she gave them to me the week before she passed away...

It felt right wearing them as I worked in the kitchen preparing the food for our family dinner...it was as if she were there right beside me...and knowing that the pearls were a very rare and special gift to my Mother from my Father makes them a treasured family heirloom.


Masai dress 
Mother's baroque pearls
black tights

I plan to wear these with my new denim shirts and jeans too!


As a few of you requested our Thanksgiving dinner recipes...
I tried posting the links for some of the recipes that I used at the Thanksgiving family dinner but due to copyright issues some would not work.
I used Barefoot Contessa Braised Carrots in orange juice from her Foolproof Cookbook.
The recipe is on her site and it is listed as Orange Braised carrots and parsnips
(I omitted the parsnips)

The whipped potato bake is one that I have had and used for so many years that I have forgotten where I got it...I will share my recipe card with you all.




I made an apple crisp using my rhubarb crumble basic recipe...I doubled this recipe so it was enough to serve all the family. I opted to serve it with coconut bliss ice creams...they are lactose free and come in some delicious flavours.

This versatile recipe works for most fruits.



The crab cakes are made by a local company called Mrs. Fridays and I buy them at  Peppers the little shop in Cadboro Bay but I know that they are carried by the larger food chain Thrifty Foods.

The roast beef was a prime rib 3 ribs high and 6 pounds.
I roasted it at 450 degrees for 15 minutes then reduced the heat to 350 degrees and roasted it for about 3 hours and took it out and let it rest tented by foil for 30 minutes while I made the gravy and cooked the frozen peas.

It is important to use a meat thermometer as all our ovens are slightly different and you may want to serve it rarer than we like in which case you would reduce the cooking times.

The weather is so lovely outside and I need a good walk and a dose of fresh air so I will say goodbye for now and please don't be a stranger and do come back again to visit another day...


~ Be Well and Be Kind ~

36 comments:

  1. Brava for you wearing your mother's pearls –– undoubtedly they keep her close to your heart in both ways. and they are beautiful! Your thanksgiving dinner sounds wonderful. I'm going to use your crumble recipe with blueberries and apples. I'm busy tomorrow freezing some wonderful pears that I was given –– small but delicious! happy Thanksgiving!

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    1. Pears are so versatile and having a bounty of them in the freezer would be so handy...have fun in your kitchen!
      The weather here is conducive to indoor projects today...it is windy and threatening rain...

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  2. You look so beautiful in your mother's pearls. I'm glad you wore them. Thank you for the recipes!

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    1. Thank you Patricia...mom loved wearing her pearls...it was probably her favourite signature accessory and I am very honoured to have been given them to keep and pass on to my family.

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  3. What a special Thanksgiving gesture, to wear your Mother's beautiful pearls. They will look wonderful with many of your outfits. I enjoyed reading your recipes, all of which sound so delicious. The potato bake is very different from any I am familiar with, and I would love to try it. Happy Canadian Thanksgiving Leslie.

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    1. The potato bake is quite rich in flavour and calories but I love it...our traditional whipped potato bake is a family staple! I use it with beef roasts and turkey dinners.
      Topped with gravy and its a treat!

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  4. Your hair looks so cute. I'm glad that wearing the pearls gave you a feeling of connection with your mother. The holidays seem to be when we miss them most.

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    1. Thank you Sue...I really enjoyed your recent post about the hand bags and plan to do one of my own about a new to me vintage hand bag.

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  5. Thanks for the recipes. I'm hosting Christmas this year so I'll use your carrot and your potato recipes. I love make-ahead. No last minute mashing just casserole to the table. Your Masai dress with your mother's pearls is très chic. I've got some tiny Eaton's pearls that my grandfather bought my grandmother when my dad was born in Winnipeg in 1929. I've thought of having some set in a silver pod necklace to wear and to pass on to my daughter.
    I'm off to the volunteer orientation for the Vancouver Writers' Festival today. A walk on Granville Island and an excuse to "dress up" a bit. Autumn is a great time! Enjoy!

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    1. Make ahead is the way to do it when there are so many dishes!
      Ina Garten is a firm believer of doing exactly that when she entertains...

      Those tiny pearl strands can be remade into something much more contemporary that your daughter would enjoy wearing. I see some quite lovely transformations of pearls on the Duchesse's blog...passages des pearles

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  6. Your mother's pearls are beautiful and a wonderful way to accessorize while remembering the love you shared.
    The potato recipe is unique and I look forward to trying it out on the next family gathering. Make ahead is the best!

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    1. I so agree Lorrie, It is so convenient to have some make ahead dishes when hosting a dinner...more time to relax with the guests and enjoy the grandchildren!

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  7. The pearls are beautiful. A treasure to have.

    Coincidence - I remember making the potato recipe in high school economics class in the 1960s.

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    1. The tried and true recipes are frequently the most popular...I took home ec in the 1970's but have forgotten most of what we cooked!

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  8. How many servings do you get from the potato casserole and what size dish should I bake it in?

    Thank you

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    1. I think it depends on how hungry your guests might be!
      I'd guess that you would have 6-8 servings and you can always double it for a bigger crowd...I use a corning ware shallow dish so that it heats quickly and fits easily into the already crowded oven!

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  9. Oh, you look delightful. So glad you had the pearls to keep you company. I have pieces of jewelry that are my mothers and I keep them close to me on holidays, especially. Thank you for your recipes. I need your chambray shirt. I can see it with the pearls. La Contessa had me wear my pearls with another necklace on top. It looked cool. I don't think your pearls are ready for that yet. Happy Thanksgiving.

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    1. The shirt is a Ralph Lauren one and I recently purchased it so you should be able to find it if you are out looking for one.
      You two gals look like you are having such fun on your outings!

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  10. What an adorable picture of you with your Mother's pearls. I love baroque pearls and have a very similiar necklace given to me by my favorite aunt. I really should wear them more often because it is supposed to be good for them.

    I always thought it was so stylish how Helen Dillon, the well-know Irish garden writer wore pearls with her denim overalls while gardening. That's not for me, I am far too careless a gardener! But your should look very chic with jeans and a shirt.

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    1. I think pearls lustre is improved with frequent wearing...
      my former neighbour used to garden in her pearls, a dress and carry her secateurs and a wicker basket!
      I get far too dirty to try that...

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  11. I hope your heart is easing, just a bit, from the sorrow of your mom's going.

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    1. Day to day the memories pop up and I don't weep...its family gatherings like this dinner that are emotional... these feelings are "normal!"

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  12. Your hair is very becoming. I think it's very courageous of you to wear your mother's pearls. I'm happy to hear that you were able to do that and hope wearing them brought you nothing but comfort. I'm very intrigued by your potato dish and will definitely give it a try. Thank you for the recipe.

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    1. Hope you enjoy the potato dish it is one of my favourites!
      I wore mom's pearls twice this week...really love them and feel so much better wearing them than just looking at them!

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  13. How lovely for you to feel as though your mother was beside you as you cooked. The recipes sound very tempting, especially the potatoes. Your version is a bit different from mine and I look forward to trying it.
    I missed you at the Knitting Group this afternoon. It was my first time back since your introduction.

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    1. I had to go to a meeting with my husband and was unable to go to knitting...I had hoped to be there and will try for the next one!

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  14. Your pearls are lovely. Being a family heirloom makes them even more special. Bravo for prime rib roast for Thanksgiving! I too have given up turkey in favor of prime rib. Delicious. Susan

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    1. We used to have beef roasts most Sundays when the kids lived at home but with just the 2 of us it is a lot of food and leftovers for days so I save the roasts for family get togethers now!

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  15. You look beautiful and your pearls are stunning. My mother loved pearls and never met one she didn't want. I now have all of hers and wear them as often as I can. I think of her each time I put a set on. ~Mary

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    1. Lovely to hear that you have some to wear in honour of your Mother too Mary.
      Mom had several strands....she loved her pearls too!
      I also have a freshwater set in pink that is much more "casual" that I hope to wear with a down pink vest I bought for the Fall and Winter.

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  16. I'm glad you wore your Mom's pearls. It'll get easier with time. Cute hair style in you!!

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    1. Thank you Jennifer...this short cut happened when I had frozen shoulder and could not hold the blow dryer in my hand!
      I have kept it like this and so far am having fun with the ease of the cut.

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  17. LOVE THE PEARLS............VERY DIFFERENT!
    ELLIE's cookbook has a similar recipe for baked potatoes.........instead of cottage cheese she used CREAM CHEESE.TIme to get that OUT and I will TRY your version as less calories!
    Waiting for EVACUE's from the NAPA FIRE's to arrive............HOLY MOLY!
    Lots of smoke around us here an hour away!
    XX

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    1. The pearls are very lustrous and have pointed ends which are somewhat unusual...I own a strand of baroque pearls that I found in an antique mall and mine are more bulbous in the middle.
      I have been watching the news about those terrible fires...its so sad that so may have lost their homes. Good for you to open your home to the evacuees...I am sure your kindness will be most appreciated...stay safe Contessa!

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  18. I love baroque pearls--wearing your mother's was and will be a lovely way to keep her memory close during family gatherings. I have a silver bracelet mine wore -- I've been wearing a navy wool coat of hers for the last few years, but it might be time to let it go this season, almost five years later. . . .

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  19. Hope that my mothers' grey cashmere sweater will last as long as your Mom's navy coat...
    I recall your mom bought all the girls a gift...as a keepsake which is rather like my Mom sitting in her chair dividing up her jewellery with my sister and I and insisting that the rest go to the grandchildren and great grandchildren...which we did of course.

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