Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Food Thankfuls

Thanksgiving is almost upon us. It is this farm girl's favorite holiday, a holiday that gives thanks for the bounty of the earth by gathering to eat it with loved ones. Tomorrow we drive down from the mountains to the "farm" and my parent's house. They have been hosting a large Thanksgiving gathering there for over 30 years straight.

Here are a few food thankfuls:

Last night we ate the last of the summer garden tomatoes. These were the ones that were pulled from the vine green after our first dusting of snow in early October and placed in boxes lined with newspaper to ripen. This year the tomatoes were late to ripen due to unseasonably cold weather into June. It was mid-August before we had our first sweet ones. Then followed 2 months of tomato bliss. We usually can squeeze about 3 months of garden tomato eating out of the year. And then guess what?  Nine months virtually devoid of this beloved fruit. I am thankful for garden tomatoes and the seasonality of them which makes them so precious.

Last garden tomatoes with mashed
avocado dressing, then tossed with lettuce
A lovely young couple in town recently had their first baby. When we were new parents we were lavished with baby clothes, toys, books, blankets, etc. by friends, family, and even acquaintances. It is lovely to be able to return the favor. This particular new mom is also a gardener and has generously shared some of her produce with me in thanks for the things we have passed on to her family. She paid me a visit today. Take a look.

Huge fat heads of garlic and butternuts
I am thankful for this gorgeous produce today. Food has to be my absolute favorite gift! 

For our Thanksgiving gathering I am bringing a cranberry walnut tart and a colorful broccoli salad. Last night I did a trial run on the salad. Check these colors:

So I am certainly thankful for this bright combo but extra thankful for the recipe for the almond butter-based dressing that I found in a recipe for a different salad on Heidi Swanson's lovely food blog 101 Cookbooks.

This dressing would be yummy on any type of vegetable salad.

Almond Butter Dressing

1 clove garlic
scant 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 c. almond butter
3 T. lemon juice
1 t. honey
2 T. olive oil
2 T. hot water

Sprinkle salt over garlic and mash and chop to make a paste. I did this with a mortar and pestle. Whisk salty garlic paste with almond butter, lemon juice, honey, and olive oil. Add hot water and whisk until light and creamy.
My last food thankful for the day is for the cranberry walnut tart I made this afternoon. I won't include the recipe here (ask if you'd like it) but the photo will give you an idea of its festive appearance.

So Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy the company you have and don't forget to appreciate the colors and textures and flavors of the food before you!


  1. Am I ever glad I am going to be at your Thanksgiving table!!

  2. As your lucky parent I got to eat these dishes and fortunately still have some of the salad. Organic is worth it.

  3. Wish I was one of those lucky parents. I might have to recreate that myself if I can get the recipe. YUM!