Pumpkin Mac & Cheese

pumpkin-macaroni

Recipe courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens.

Ingredients

2 cups dried elbow macaroni (8 ounces)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup whipping cream
1 cup whole milk
4 ounces Fontina cheese, shredded (1 cup)
1 15 ounce can pumpkin (or roast and purée your own!)
1 tablespoon snipped fresh sage or 1/2 teaspoon dried leaf sage, crushed
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon olive oil
Sage leaves (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cook pasta in a large pot following package directions. Drain cooked pasta, then return to pot.
  2. For cheese sauce, in a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour, salt, and pepper. Add whipping cream and milk all at once. Cook and stir over medium heat until slightly thickened and bubbly. Stir in cheese, pumpkin, and sage until cheese is melted. Stir cheese sauce into pasta to coat. Transfer macaroni and cheese to an ungreased 2-quart rectangular baking dish.
  3. In a small bowl combine bread crumbs, Parmesan, walnuts, and oil; sprinkle over pasta. Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until bubbly and top is golden. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. If desired, sprinkle with sage leaves.

Spatchcocked Turkey

Recipe courtesy of Serious Eats

Ingredients

  • 3 large onions, roughly chopped (about 1 1/2 quarts)
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and roughly chopped (about 1 quart)
  • 4 stalks celery, roughly chopped (about 1 quart
  • 12 thyme sprigs
  • 1 whole turkey (12 to 14 pounds total), butterflied according to these instructions, backbone, neck, and giblets reserved
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 quartslow sodium homemade or storebought chicken or turkey broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons flour

Directions

  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 450°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet or broiler pan with aluminum foil. Scatter 2/3rds of onions, carrots, celery and thyme sprigs across bottom of pan. Place slotted broiler rack or wire rack directly on top of vegetables.
  2. Pat turkey dry with paper towels and rub on all surfaces with 1 tablespoon oil. Season liberally on all surfaces with salt and black pepper (if using a brined, salted, or Kosher turkey, omit salting step, see note above). Tuck wing tips behind back. Place turkey on top of rack, arranging so that it does not overlap the edges, pressing down on the breast bone to flatten the breasts slightly.
  3. Transfer turkey to oven and roast, rotating occasionally, until an instant read thermometer inserted into the deepest part of the breast registers 150°F, and the thighs register at least 165°F, about 80 minutes.
  4. While turkey roasts, make the gravy. Roughly chop the neck, backbone, and giblets. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a 3 quart saucepan over high heat until shimmering. Add chopped turkey parts and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add remaining onions, carrots, and celery and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables start to soften and brown in spots, another 5 minutes. Add chicken stock, remaining thyme, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and reduce to a bare simmer. Allow to cook 45 minutes, then strain through a fine mesh strainer into a 2 quart liquid measuring cup and discard solids. Skim off any fat from the surface of the broth.
  5. Melt butter over medium-high heat in a 2 quart saucepan. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly until flour is golden brown, about 3 minutes. Whisking constantly, add broth in a thin, steady stream until it it all incorporated. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until reduced to about 1 quart, about 20 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper, cover, and keep gravy warm.
  6. When turkey is cooked, remove from oven and transfer rack to a new baking sheet. Allow to rest at room temperature for 20 minutes before carving. Carefully pour any collected juices from out of the roasting pan through a fine-mesh strainer into a liquid measuring cup. Skim off excess fat and dicard. Whisk juices into gravy.
  7. Carve turkey and serve with gravy.

Cauliflower Gratin

Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten

Ingredients
1 (3-pound) head cauliflower, cut into large florets
Kosher salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups hot milk
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
3/4 cup freshly grated Gruyere, divided
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

Directions
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Cook the cauliflower florets in a large pot of boiling salted water for 5 to 6 minutes, until tender but still firm. Drain.
Meanwhile, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add the flour, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for 2 minutes. Pour the hot milk into the butter-flour mixture and stir until it comes to a boil. Boil, whisking constantly, for 1 minute, or until thickened. Off the heat, add 1 teaspoon of salt, the pepper, nutmeg, 1/2 cup of the Gruyere, and the Parmesan.
Pour 1/3 of the sauce on the bottom of an 8 by 11 by 2-inch baking dish. Place the drained cauliflower on top and then spread the rest of the sauce evenly on top. Combine the bread crumbs with the remaining 1/4 cup of Gruyere and sprinkle on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the gratin. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the top is browned. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Beet and Apple Salad

Recipe courtesy of Food and Wine

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 large beets (2 1/2 pounds)
  • 5 thyme sprigs
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup apple-cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1/3 cup salted pistachios, chopped
  • 1 green apple, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. In a baking dish, lightly drizzle the beets and thyme with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and roast until the beets are tender, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Let cool, then peel the beets and cut them into 3/4-inch dice.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the vinegar with the mustard. Whisk in the remaining 1/2 cup of oil until emulsified. Add the horseradish and season with salt and pepper; toss with the beets and pistachios. Transfer the beets to a platter, top with the apple and serve.

Spiced Sweet Potato Wedges

Recipe courtesy of Real Simple

INGREDIENTS

tablespoons olive oil

tablespoons brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

kosher salt and pepper

pounds small sweet potatoes, each peeled and cut into 8 wedges

3 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the oil, sugar, nutmeg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stir in the cumin and cinnamon. Add the sweet potato wedges and toss to coat.
  3. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet and arrange in a single layer. Roast, turning once, until the edges are dark brown and the wedges are crisp, about 1 hour.