November 23, 2010

Today’s the day. Relatives arrive and will move into the guest room for four days. Thanksgiving isn’t just the big dinner on Thursday. It’s meal after meal after meal.

In the spirit of the last few posts, here it is. The List – menus, with links where possible. Often, I’m just making it up – or combining techniques, recipes and ideas.

Last year's turkey. Pretty bird.

And finally – the perfect recipe for a little tart. Something sweet that serves as dessert, breakfast or a teatime treat. Back in July, I canned apricot halves in vanilla syrup. (And yes, I already knew I would make this very tart on this very day.)

If you didn’t can this summer, look around for excellent jars of fruit – I love apricots, but peaches, cherries, and ripe, wine poached pears work perfectly and make a gorgeous tart.


Apricot Tart

10″ tart pan with removable bottom
one pie crust, blind baked*
one or two pint jars of apricot halves in vanilla syrup
2/3 c heavy cream
1/2 c sour cream
2 eggs
4 Tbls melted butter
1/4 c sugar

*To blind bake: Roll out the crust and fit it into the tart pan. Line the pastry with foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Chill for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 400°. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil and weights and dock – pierce all over with a fork – the crust. Bake again for 10 minutes.

Increase oven temperature to 425°.

Mix together the cream, sour cream and eggs. Whisk in the butter and sugar.

Drain the apricots in a colander over a small saucepan.

Place the apricots decoratively around the crust. Depending on how many I’m feeding, I’ll add more fruit – that will allow you to cut smaller pieces!

Put the tart in the oven. Now, pour the cream mixture into the tart pan. (Really, don’t try this on the counter, then moving the pan to the oven. There’s that removable bottom on the tart pan, right? Experience speaks.)

Bake at 425° for 25 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool fully.

Reduce the leftover syrup from the jar by half. Brush the syrup across the top of the tart to make it all shiny.

Serve at room temperature. Store in the refrigerator.


And here are the menus for the next several days. From here on, it’s in the hands of fate. Party on.


Mt. Tam, Soprasetta, Tapenade, Stecco
Miso crusted Salmon (grilled) with bok choy and shiitake braise, herbed basmati.
Apricot Tart


Bagels, smoked salmon, scrambled eggs with chive oil

Lunch – out

Assorted homemade sausages, grilled
Smothered cabbage and onions
Roasted carrots and parsnips
Arugula, goat cheese, avocado, pomegranate salad
Dried Cherry, White Chocolate, Pistachio Cookies (recipe coming soon, I promise!)


Butternut sage scones, bacon

Country ham, wild boar salume, assorted cheeses, condiments, apples

Thanksgiving and Dead Poultry Society menus

Crab dip
Gravlax, roasted beet salad, dill vinaigrette
Chopped liver on challah
Dill pickles, sweet pickles, pickled green tomatoes, pickled red onion
Celeriac remoulade
Carrot currant salad
Cucumber side
Cheese platter
Heritage Turkey, herb butter, grilled (spatchcocked)
Broad Breasted White – Cider Glazed (and rubbed with bacon fat)
Vegetarian Stuffing
Mushroom Gravy
Giblet Gravy
Mashed Potato
Bourbon Sweet Potato
Duckfat roasted pearl onions with lardons
Grilled brussel sprouts (smoked pancetta optional)
Butternut squash and spinach gratin
Tofu Kale casserole
Turkey Pho
Tuscan onion confit
Cranberry sauce
Buttermilk biscuits

Sour cherry pie
Apricot tart
Chocolate crusted pecan tart (still making this one up)
Gingerbread cake with cream cheese frosting and candied pistachios
Pumpkin Cheesecake with gingersnap crust and sour cream topping


Buttermilk pancakes
Gingered peaches (canned this summer)
Homemade ricotta

Sandwiches to go

9 Responses to “the pressure’s on. menus and an apricot tart.”

  1. Aviva Goldfarb

    Are you kidding me? You must be the best hostess ever! Your guests are going to be in heaven but I hope you don’t collapse. Good luck and I hope you get to enjoy, Cathy!

  2. Jayne

    Unbelievable! What an amazing menu! I hope you get some rest time in-between all that cooking!

  3. Elizabeth@ MyCommunalTable

    Bravo! Sounds fabulous. You haven’t missed a detail. I hope your quests like to do dishes. I usually make Turkey pho the next day. I am stealing your duckfat pearl onion roasting with lardon idea. OMG. What wouldn’t that go with? Have a great holiday! You rock, girl!

  4. Bridget

    HA! I love that nothing’s listed for Friday. I imagine you all sitting around in a food coma for that day, just “recovering” from that huge menu of the day before! It all sounds wonderful, have a great holiday!



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