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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Thanksgiving with friends

The husband and I had a lovely Thanksgiving at the home of our friends Peggy and Larry. I took sweet potatoes cooked in a savory way and the cranberry salad my Mom always made, and our hosts provided the rest. We are planning to reciprocate soon with a traditional Korean supper of bulgogi, a beef barbecue dish (not spicy) that my husband makes especially well. As our house is too small to entertain even 2 people, we'll be bringing it to their house.

After dinner, the men went into the family room and talked politics - having found each other kindred spirits - and the two librarians sat in the living room and discussed work and our favorite crafts. Hers is quilting and mine is knitting. We may be trading a quilt for a sweater one of these days, though both of us lament the lack of time and energy to indulge our respective fiber obsessions.

For people with sugar issues or just wanting something different to do with sweet potatoes, here's that recipe:

Garlic Basil Mashed Sweet Potatoes
(serves 6-8)
1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes
1 1/2 tablespoon basil, chopped (I used dried)
2 cloves garlic (I buy the pre-diced garlic in the jar - I figure a clove is about 1/2 teaspoon)
2-4 tablespoons (to taste) SOFTENED butter.
Salt and pepper to taste.

Boil sweet potatoes as usual (remove peels)
Mash them with the above. That's it. Easy enough for everyday, and not loaded with sugar.

Marge's Cranberry Salad
(serves 12)
1 small box red jello, any flavor. I'm partial to raspberry.
1 small orange, peeled and diced (I use kitchen scissors)
1 small apple, cored and diced.
1 rib celery, diced
1/2 package fresh cranberries, chopped (blender, add a bit of water and use pulse until they're fine enough. Then drain well)
1/2 cup sugar to taste
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or not, as you prefer)

Mix the fruit, sugar, and nuts.
Prepare the jello according to the package. When it's half-set, add fruit mixture and stir. Chill.

This can be made with Splenda and sugar-free jello if you want. Looks as good as it tastes. I took a pic with my dumbphone but can't seem to get the picture off it.


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