Monday, October 10, 2011

happy thanksgiving

Today is officially Canadian Thanksgiving. But to accomodate work schedules, etc we had our dinner yesterday. I chose to do Nigella's ginger glazed ham (from the Christmas book) as I've made it several times and it is a favorite with our family. To go along side I created a potato dish that was completely inspired by a menu item (which I didn't have) at a dinner with friends in Seattle on Friday night - potato, mushroom, leek and goat cheese gratin. Also I roasted some lovely market organic carrots,

vegetables waiting to be roasted

made spinach gunge and roasted a butternut squash. The original intention for the squash was just some cubes for the salad course - to go with market greens, thin pear slices, chopped pistachios and a tuscan style balsamic vinegrette.

salad ingredients
And I did that and it was lovely. But then I was scrolling through some blogs yesterday afternoon and came across this over at Sprouted Kitchen which sounded intriguing so I modified it a bit, using this recipe as inspiration as well and created a roasted squash with breadcrumbs dish that was delicious. For dessert there was plainjane apple pie

this week's plainjane apple pie (it browned too well!)
and a pumpkin pie I bought at the market.

Potato, Mushroom, Leek, Goat Cheese Gratin
6 small organic potatoes, scrubbed and sliced into 1/4" slices
3 small organic leeks, halved, washed and sliced into 1/4" slices
2 big handfuls of organic cremini mushrooms, sliced
a knob of butter
1 garlic clove, minced
3 stems oregano, leaves stripped off and chopped
1 cup mild goat cheese, grated
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 deg F. Melt the butter in a saute pan until melted, add the mushrooms. Saute the mushrooms until brown, add the garlic and a third of the oregano and stir. Set aside.
Into a greased baking dish, layer 2 of the potatoes to cover the bottom of the dish. Layer evenly with half of the mushrooms and then half the leeks. Season with salt and pepper and half of the remaining oregano. Cover with a sprinkling of goat cheese. Repeat. Add the last layer of potato, season with salt and pepper. Pour cream over the potatoes (~ 1 c of cream) and sprinkle the last of the goat cheese over the top. Bake for an hour or more until the top is golden brown and the potatoes are fork tender.

Butternut Squash Gratin (inspired by Sprouted Kitchen and 101cookbooks)
Roast a butternut squash in a 350 deg F oven for about 45 minutes until soft and starting to char slightly.
Remove from the oven and let cool. Cut in half and remove the skin, seeds and stingy bits. Dice the remaining flesh into small cubes. To the bowl of a food processor add ~ 1 1/2 c of coarse breadcrumbs, 1 clove minced garlic, 4 sprigs of oregano leaves, a pinch of cayenne. Pulse this until combined. In a saucepan add  about 2 tbsp of butter and heat until slightly nutty brown. Add the breadcrumbs and toast, mixing well.
To a greased baking dish, add half of the diced squash and cover with about half of the breadcrumbs, adding a handful of grated parmesan to the crumbs before adding. Cover with the remaining squash and then the remaining breadcrumbs. Bake in a 350 deg F oven for 15-20 minutes until hot and golden brown.

butternut squash gratin waiting to be baked

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