Thanksgiving Day is the time to give thanks for all that you have and help those who are not as fortunate as yourself. Whether you are jogging in a Turkey Trot race at dawn, helping out at a soup kitchen, or visiting with family and friends, make the day special for someone by creating memories that time and distance will never erase. Since the day largely centers around food, bring out all the stops! If you are hosting a meal in your home, do all the preparations you can in advance. Don't be embarrassed to ask for help. People love to bring a dish and it helps to make your day a little easier!
Most Southerners enjoy the Thanksgiving meal around the dining room table. Decide if you want to serve plated-style, English-Butler Style, or family-style. I will be serving Thanksgiving Dinner plated-style at the dining room table. The food will be portioned onto the plates in the kitchen area and served directly to each guest at the table.
Well here they are--all lined up and ready to perform on the big day!
Thanksgiving Day Menu
I have chosen a beautiful cornucopia as the centerpiece, on an ivory damask tablecloth, surrounded by pilgrim candleholders, some pumpkins, and a few little turkeys. The dinnerware colors of green, mustard, and terra cotta are mixed at each place setting and were purchased at Harry and David a few years ago. You can find similar leaf plates at Williams Sonoma. The green damask napkins are held by festive little turkey napkin rings which I have had for many years.
The dining table is set for a Thanksgiving feast "Pilgrim" place cards mark the place for each guest and the colors of the plates are mixed at each place setting...
The Autumn tree glows in the corner
After the big meal, adjourn to the living room, family room, or parlor and enjoy dessert and coffee/punch. Remember that you should always serve a "signature beverage" at your event. To complement the desserts, I will be serving a sparkling Harvest Punch as my signature beverage, and of course, coffee.
Desserts, Harvest Punch, and coffee--served in the parlor
Harvest PunchAlda Ellis's Pecan Pie
Alda Ellis's Pecan Pie*
Pumpkin Spiced Coffee
48 oz. apple juice
1 can frozen orange juice (prepared)
32 oz. cranberry juice
32 oz. club soda
1/2 cup honey
2 cinnamon sticks broken into pieces
4 tsp. whole cloves
Orange slices, for garnish
In a large sauce pan, combine all ingredients except club soda and orange slices. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, strain and discard spices. Allow to cool. Pour into a large serving vessel. Add chilled club soda just before serving and stir. Garnish the beverage with orange slices floating on top. Serve over crushed ice.
*Recipe for Alda Ellis's Pecan Pie
3 eggs, beaten
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 tsp. salt
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup maple-flavored pancake syrup
1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
1 cup pecan halves
Combine eggs, sugar, salt, butter, and syrup in a medium-sized bowl and mix well. Pour mixture into shell and top with pecan halves. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Very Southern...very decadent.
And, take it home, in style, please...
"Hospitality is a gift of your time. The most treasured gift you can make for your family and friends is a memory."
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving y'all!