Our Thanksgiving Eve Dinner!
I hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving and ate delicious food to your stomach’s content!
For Natalya and me, it’s a bit too far to fly home to California for Thanksgiving (plus we work on Friday) so for the past few years, we have just stayed in New York. We decided to host a Thanksgiving Eve dinner for all the homeless stragglers like us who have no choice but to stick around the city during this foodie holiday. We went all out and prepared a ginormous dinner spread for 20+ friends. It was our first time taking on such a task, and it was a bit of mayhem getting the cooking done on time. Additionally, we had never had a proper dining table but we had ordered one that literally arrived while our guests were already there. Did we ask some of our guests to help us out with furniture assembly? Absolutely! That’s what friends are for right? :)
Overall, Thanksgiving Eve dinner was a great success and I can’t wait to host again next year! Our menu is listed below — we cooked the majority of the dishes, but some friends had brought vegetables and desserts. I admit the menu is not very traditional Thanksgiving-y… but… well we like to have fusion meals in our home!
Yes, we love cheese. Cheese shopping at Whole Foods is one of our favorite things to do — we can chill at that counter and just taste different cheeses all day long!
Charcuterie, olives, and cornichons
Good work Natalya on the plating haha
Bruschetta with Harissa Salsa and Housemade Ricotta
I love this unique African twist on regular bruschetta, plus it’s always fun to say you made your own cheese! Well, short of milking a cow or something…
These zesty mushrooms have always been a huge hit — I particularly love eating them chilled
Baked Crab Dip
My favorite appetizer in all the land… family has been making this easy dip for years. It’s sooo good! Just try not to think of the ingredients…
Strawberry Orange Pasta Salad
A refreshing fruit pasta salad that my cousin introduced me to — okay so it’s a bit more of a “summer dish” but I was looking for another pasta that was relatively light to counterbalance the heavier Pumpkin Risotto that I had made
This was probably the only Thanksgiving-esque dish we made (mainly because of the pumpkin). It’s super easy because it doesn’t require constant stirring like traditional risotto.
Whole Roasted Chicken
So why chicken instead of turkey? 1) I figured people would eating plenty of turkey elsewhere; 2) I only know how to roast a chicken so far; and probably the most important reason 3) I don’t have a pan big enough to fit a turkey… I suppose you could buy those disposable foil ones but obviously didn’t think about that until after…
Salmon with Caramelized Leeks and Carrots
This was the main dish alternative to the roasted chicken for my kosher friends, although I admit got a lot more compliments for this dish! Ironically, the prep time for the salmon is 30min compared to 2 days for the chicken haha but isn’t that how it always goes? I put some extra caramelized leeks and carrots on the side and people ate that right up too.
Russian Home-style Potatoes
Natalya included this to throw in some of her culture to our dinner spread. We splurged a bit and bought some chanterelle mushrooms to make it truly a traditional Russian dish!
Garlic Mashed Potatoes
This is probably the only “real authentic” Thanksgiving dish that was served at our dinner… haha but we didn’t even make it! My friend made this for the dinner, and eventually I shall get her recipe and make a blog post for it!
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
I have only made Brussels sprouts one way before (Brussels Sprouts with Mushrooms), but I immediately tried this version after a friend brought this to dinner. And then eventually am going to try to cook David Chang’s Roasted Brussels Sprouts that he serves at Momofuku Ssäm Bar… yum!
I love green beans. I always used to eat it with Chinese dishes (so smothered in fish sauces and soy sauce with beef mhmmm), but have discovered the simplicity of “American style green beans” where you simply sauté the beans with light olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
People brought pie although we decided to have vodka for dessert instead oops. But this pie is quite lovely! I love the dough decoration on top, will try that next time I get into a baking mood..