Thanksgiving 2012

This past weekend the man and I were both pretty wiped out. I was recovering from my week (more so the bus ride home). Though months ago we’d hoped to go away for Thanksgiving weekend (Picton, Ontario is nice this time of year), things changed. The plan was to stay in town and organize the apartment. Organizing didn’t happen as planned, but we did cater (not Thanksgiving related) for 25 on Sunday, a last minute call. The setting was a park. The leaves were beautiful. Driving home along the Don Valley Parkway we noted how the leaves had turned in under 48 hours. I’ve lived in Toronto for most of my life and that’s always been my favourite fall drive. It’s comforting that as much as the city gets built up, the Don Valley remains saturated with trees and in the fall when the leaves turn the hues are breathtaking. The valley comes alive.

In past years each of us has hosted Thanksgiving dinner parties. Last year I was a guest at his, when we were acquaintances more than friends, and Thanksgiving made us friends. We call Thanksgiving a “friendaversary”. I like noting friendaversaries, acknowledging that exact day when you changed from strangers or acquaintances to friends. These are special days. I think people should acknowledge them more often, if they’re lucky enough to know the exact date.

Thanksgiving dinner for 2.

Thanksgiving dinner was rather single-person like. Entertaining was no a viable option. So, late Sunday evening, we found ourselves at a couple of 24 hour supermarkets. His idea: Turkey lettuce wraps. Sounds healthy, right? It mostly was, but this is thanksgiving, which lends itself to some guilty pleasures.

What we have there is a piece of romaine lettuce, cornmeal-crusted turkey, sauteed mushrooms and onions (there was balsamic vinegar in there but I don’t remember exactly was tossed in), stuffing (the processed, unhealthy component) and canned cranberry sauce (his guilty pleasure – I also bought whole cranberries).

On the side: Mashed cauliflower.

I went to Google for a couple of mashed cauliflower recipes for cooking times and other ideas (the cooking times confirmed what I knew) and adapted this one from Nom Nom Paleo, which was nice to find because I’m tending towards incorporating as much of the paleo food lifestyle as makes sense for my body after I’ve completed task of purging extra candida. The two seem to fit together well. My hypothesis is that if I switch to eating mostly grain-free, mostly sugar-free (fruit sugar is out now but will return) and high protein (the right kinds for me) and modify the “paleo” system for food sensitivities and preference to eat less meat, my issues will improve. People knock paleo for the high protein but at its core it’s about eating real food. And yes, I realize that neither stuffing nor cranberry sauce are on either menus but I didn’t really begin in earnest until after.

What this has to do with mashed cauliflower? Many paleo experts say that white potatoes should be avoided because of the high starch, high carb. Some say that it depends on the person. There’s a good article about it at Mark’s Daily Apple, in which he elucidates his point by referring to hobbitses (if Mark’s website interests you, click the Paleo Summit image on the side bar to the left). We made cauliflower instead of potatoes because that’s what the man was in the mood for, and I liked the idea.

Simple instructions for mashed cauliflower

  • Wash cauliflower
  • Steam it until it’s fork tender, along with some sliced garlic if you’d like.
  • Drain it
  • Put in a food processor
  • Add salt and pepper, nutmeg and a couple tablespoons of butter
  • Whirl it until creamy
  • If you’re eating dairy, add some shredded cheese.

You could probably use a blender with some milk (or alternative milk) or put it through a ricer, but I don’t recommend hand mashing.

Original recipe with photos here. I didn’t really deviate, I just gave you a summarized version.

I’ll leave you with an article, since my news roundup hasn’t really stuck in awhile:
How Foodies are Using Online Tools to Find Gourmet and Artisanal Food (Betakit)

More to come. I have things to write about.

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3 Responses to “Thanksgiving 2012”

  1. October 12, 2012 at 12:20 am #

    Happy belated Thanksgiving, Andrea! I lover your “friendaversary” idea. 🙂 XOX

    • October 12, 2012 at 12:22 am #

      *sigh* “love”, of course, not “lover”.

      • Andrea
        October 12, 2012 at 9:33 am #

        🙂 Thanks!