To my family, gathering together around food has always been important. So naturally, we do Thanksgiving quite big every year. Something about an excuse to make a bunch of food, share thanks, and wonderful company just gets everyone in the spirit.
There are some pretty interesting and unique dishes that find their way onto our Thanksgiving table every year. We have such a diverse background, so you can imagine what a group full of Filipino, Italian, and Spanish heritage will come up with. Not to mention the love of cooking that has been instilled in our family since my great-great grandparents time. Now that same love of cooking I have passed down to my kids.
So about these Thanksgiving dishes. Deep Fried Turkey and honey glazed ham always has a place on our table. That comes from our Texas heritage. I’ve been in the South since I was 2 months old and all things southern are in my blood. We always make room for traditional Southern Thanksgiving sides like mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach casserole, corn bread dressing, green bean casserole and cranberry sauce as well. Now for the interesting twist. Since we pretty much eat and gather all day long there is plenty of room in the kitchen for a few more dishes.
My mom and grandmother have been making Filipino Eggrolls (aka lumpia) since before I could walk. It’s not a family holiday without them. In fact, it’s the first request I get from my kids anytime we all get together. “Will there be egg rolls?”, they say. My mother taught me to make these egg rolls years and years ago and I have taught my kids this family recipe as well. My mom always whips up a batch of her delicious fried rice as well in addition to these yummy dishes that I’ve already mentioned.
Some would say that this is plenty of food, but of course we are not done here. You have to have appetizers out for everyone to snack on while waiting on the main course. Now the egg rolls usually go pretty fast, but we have pay homage to some of the other crowd favorites.
Two words. Baked Brie. This dish is something I have found to go with any occasion. It’s a wheel of Brie wrapped in puff pastry and then baked to perfection. You can serve it alone in it’s ooey gooey awesomeness, but we serve ours with fruit preserves. Trust me, this bit of sweetness is the best compliment to the melty and savory cheese dish. I like to get creative with my designs on the brie to match the event.
And because you can never have enough cheese, we got creative with some cheese balls and made them into a cute little turkey couple. Served with some crackers and it will keep the hungry ones at bay until the main attraction is served.
The dessert table has to be one of my favorite things on earth. No matter how much turkey we eat, we always seem to find room for dessert and coffee. Pumpkin Pie, Apple Pie, and Carrot Cake were the winners this year.
Thank you for letting me share our Thanksgiving with you, “On and Off The Tracks”!