Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Survival Plan with recipes from Xanterra chefs

Even kitchenphobics find themselves drawn - or forced - to pots, pans and heating elements this time of year.

If this describes you, it isn't too late to announce to all that it is time to break out of the family rut and try something new like tofu turkey with liverwurst dressing. You may find guests will volunteer to bring the traditional dishes.

That leaves you free to set the table and contribute something else that's easier.

If you love the meal-making marathons, consider these recipes.

While the turkey cooks, whip this up for the family's breakfast.

Monkey Bread, Chef Michelle "Mike" Hanson
Furnace Creek Resort

2 tubes canned biscuits
1 tube canned cinnamon rolls
2 cups honey
1 ½ cups chopped walnuts or pecans
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon

Take biscuits and cinnamon rolls and cut into small pieces. The easiest way is using some scissors. Place in bowl add honey, nuts and cinnamon sugar. Mix well.

Pour dough mixture In a well-greased bundt or angel food cake pan. Place cake pan in a larger pan with two inches of water (this will stop the honey from burning).

Cook for 45 minutes-1 hour at 350.

Run knife around edges of pan and invert on a platter.

No one bringing the sweet potatoes?
Leave the masher in the drawer and try this version.

Raspberry Apple Sweet Potatoes, Chef Kenneth Diederich, 
Salt Fork State Park Lodge, Cambridge, Ohio

3 large sweet potatoes
1 cup frozen raspberries
2 red apples
lemon or orange juice
1/2 stick butter
cinnamon sugar
brown sugar

Wash, peel and cut the sweet potatoes in larger cubes, inch by inch. [Start cutting them small, you'll wind up with bigger ones without thinking] Cook the potatoes in lightly salted water for 15 minutes. Drain well and place hot potatoes in a small to medium sized casserole dish. Place frozen raspberries evenly on top.

Cut the apples into 1/2 inch cubes and toss with lemon or orange juice so they won't turn brown. Place evenly on top. Melt butter and drizzle over entire dish. Sprinkle as you like with cinnamon sugar and brown sugar. Bake for 20 minutes covered.

Family okay with a non-traditional main dish? Try this for something different.

Beer Braised Pork Loin, Chef Ben Theis
Deer Creek State Park Lodge

6-8 lb. boneless pork loin
2 lb. sauerkraut
8 oz. onion, large dice
4 oz. celery, large dice
4 oz. carrot, large dice
3 oz. turnip, large dice
1 oz. grated fresh horseradish
3 12-oz. bottles of beer, dark preferably
Bay leaf
Oil for searing

Rub the pork loin with salt and pepper, then sear over high heat in the pan in which it will be roasted in.

Once the roast is seared on all sides deglaze the pan with two of the bottles of beer. (“The third is for sipping on,” said Chef Theis.)

Add all the chopped vegetables then roast in oven for at least two hours, adding liquid as needed during the braise. Once the pork loin is fork-tender remove from the oven.

Bring sauerkraut up to heat over a medium fire on the stove top. Place sauerkraut on a large platter, slice pork and lay over top. Spoon vegetables and braising liquid over top of pork then serve.

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