If you guys know me, you know I LOVE Thanksgiving! It is my favorite holiday! Partly because of the food and partly because I get to spend time with family. This year I will get to spend half the week at my parents house with family. That means I won’t be with E for the holiday (unless he drives up 😉 ). So I decided to give us a Thanksgiving meal the week before.
You guys also know I try to stick to a Paleo diet…some of the time. So I thought I would try making Thanksgiving dinner Paleo.
None of these recipes are mine. The majority of them are from Danielle Walker’s Against All Grain: Thankful ebook. Let me tell you guys, if you are not following this lady, go do so now! The Thanksgiving recipe ebook is only $5 and I got all but one recipe from it!
So here goes…this was a three day affair. There is a lot that goes into cooking so much food and I didn’t have much time after work on Wednesday.
E’s favorite pie is pecan…so Monday, I made a pecan pie.
I am NOT a baker. I can follow directions…sometimes. And I can mix things together. I cannot make it look pretty. I made both the crust and pie filling from the ebook. Yes, I made the crust! That’s why it looks like that. I am not good with rolling pins, so I didn’t do the formal rolling it out. I threw it in the pan and smoothed it out with my hands.
Doesn’t look too bad. Now, I don’t really like pie and definitely don’t like pecan pie, so I didn’t even try it. But the verdict from E: good! I’m not sure if he was just saying that to be nice, but he ate the slice and hopefully will eat the rest.
Tuesday, I mixed together a turkey brine. I have no idea what a brine is, what it does to the turkey, but I thought I would try it. Can’t hurt, right?! I mean it was in the ebook, it has to be good and there for a reason. I bought a brining bag from the store. (Brining must be a thing.) I put the turkey in the bag and then the brine.
The turkey sat like this in the fridge for about 24 hours.
Meanwhile, I cooked mashed potatoes and cornbread for stuffing. (And let me be corrected. I always call it stuffing. However, I cook it on the side, so it is actually dressing. The thought of putting it inside the turkey seems disgusting and a lot more work!)
It doesn’t look pretty either. But actually tasted really good. However, it does not really taste like cornbread.
As soon as I got off work Wednesday, I popped that bad boy in the oven. The recipe said to rinse the turkey and pat dry before putting in the oven, however, I didn’t do that. See, I don’t always follow directions. I put some of the brine in the pan along with the spices and onions that were with it.
Turkeys take a long time to cook!
So I waited…and cooked other things.
First, I made the green bean casserole..which I didn’t get a photo of (there’s some on my plate photo below). The recipe came from Against All Grain: Thankful. I’m not really sure what a green bean casserole should taste like, I don’t know what goes into one. But this one was pretty good!
I also made some brussels sprouts. I’m not sure if this is a typical Thanksgiving dish, but I LOVE brussels sprouts, so I made them.
This isn’t much different than I normally make them. Added bacon and a shallot cooked in coconut oil. So yummy!
It was time to finish the stuffing/dressing. I crumbled the cornbread, chopped the veggies, and added the chicken broth. (I left out the bell peppers. I don’t like them. I can tolerate the celery and onion but not the bell pepper.)
It turned out really good! Not dry at all. Besides the brussels sprouts, this was my favorite dish.
After a LONG time! the turkey was finally done!
And it was a little burned. Whoops. I just wanted the golden skin.
I was nervous cutting into it. I hoped it would be cooked all the way, not too dry, and tasted good.
Guess what guys?! It was DELISH!!
I know what the brine is for now! It kept it soo moist and added so much flavor to it.
A paleo Thanksgiving dinner was a success!!
I am so happy (and thankful) it turned out so well.
Now for a little rant, I’m hating all the Christmas decor up. And sorry, but if you have put any up already..I’m hating on you. Can we do one holiday at a time? Let’s not glaze over Thanksgiving. Let’s not skip the family time and being thankful and go straight to the presents. I will admit I have been watching sappy Christmas movies already..buttt I refuse to decorate before. I want to enjoy this holiday. Also, a reason E and I celebrated a week early. Maybe Thanksgiving should be more than one day.
Maybe we should be thankful more.
Everyday I am thankful for my family, for E, for my friends, for my health, for the sky, for the birds, for the weather, for waking up, for having the ability to do the things I want, for ability to run, for the love, for the compassion, for the earth, for writing this blog, for readers, for listeners, for everything really. Life is beautiful and good and I’m thankful for that.
I hope you guys enjoy your Thanksgiving and spend it with the ones you love.
Happy Thanksgiving Y’all!!