Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Appetizers for Turkey Dinner

We are going out of town for Thanskgiving, so I have to pack up the entire turkey feast, plus food for three more days. Last night, I had fun putting together some simple items that will make our meals tastier; none of them took more than ten minutes, and most of them are better for being made ahead. Best of all, there will be less work on Thanksgiving day.

For a dip to eat with veggies and pita slices at lunch, I blended:
Half a small head of garlic (about 3-4 cloves)
1 jar of roasted red peppers, including the oil
4 oz of feta cheese

For appetizers before the turkey, I have learned to serve things like dill beans and olives, instead of rich cheeses. I made up marinated olives, by draining the juice off a container of kalamata olives and adding:
1 bay leaf
Some dried rosemary
2 parts red wine
1 part olive oil
I will let it marinate until Thursday, then pour it into a baking dish and heat at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

Another appetizer I will serve is marinated goat cheese:
Slice a log of goat cheese into 1/2" disks, or cube. Layer in a jar with a selection of herbs and peppercorns; I used preserved lemon slices, garlic, and peppercorns this time, but I have used rosemary and bay leaves in the past. Fill the jar with olive oil and refrigerate at least 24 hours, then serve with crackers. The left-over olive oil is tasty in salad dressings.

For Friday night, I am serving a New York roast with blue-cheese butter. To make the butter, blend 1 stick of warm butter, 4 oz of warm blue cheese, and 1 tsp of Worchestershire sauce together. Form into a log shape on tin foil, roll, and refrigerate overnight. To serve, slice into disks and place on slices of beef or piles of mashed potatoes. Or both.

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