Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving

We are lucky enough to have friends from many countries here and today it is Thanksgiving in the USA.  Our friend Jill is from Virginia and loves the holidays (hers was the 4th of July party we attended a few months ago) and has invited us around again to celebrate Thanksgiving.  It was originally a festival to celebrate a bountiful harvest, and judging by the menu she has on offer, it sure will be a bountiful feast!  She's got an enormous turkey (already in the oven I believe) and is making sweet potato mash, pumpkin pie, lots of veg, and so on and so forth.
As is tradition, guests bring a dish too and I've checked with the boss/hostess and have made Cornbread (because I really enjoyed hers last year) plus a cake and some Rocky Road for dessert.  I know that pie is the traditional dessert - especially pumpkin or apple - but I'm not great at pastry/pies as yet.  There's no time like the present, as the saying goes, but time was of the essence and I didn't want to risk a mistake and necessitate a re-bake at the last minute.
So, Cornbread.  I found a recipe at Goodtoknow recipes and got together all the ingredients.  Polenta flour wasn't available at the first store I tried, so I asked Mr Becca if he knew where I may find some.  'Above the stove, in the pasta cupboard', he said.  How very handy, ha ha.  This was really easy to make, and had they been home at the time the girls could easily have helped with all aspects.  It baked up really well, and seemed done at the appointed time.  I cut it up and popped it into the cake tin, to take to Jill's and only tried a few pieces, honest...
The little bits you see are spring onion and red chilli flakes.
Next on to the cake - Lemon & Cream cheese.  This recipe was from a Facebook page called Fans of Cake Baker, which is a lovely community page of home and professional bakers who are kind and helpful with any query you may have.  This cake sounded light and perfect for after a heavy meal, needing as it did the zest of 3 large lemons plus some juice.
It too was easy to make but took ages to bake - 1hour 35mins at 150c.  I couldn't decide how to ice and decorate it, switching between thinking lemon buttercream and lemon cream cheese icing.  Then felt that a simple dusting of icing sugar and neon orange edible glitter would be ideal.
I had wanted to make some Mini pumpkin pies or Pumpkin and Feta filo triangles, both also from Goodtoknow recipes, and even bought a beauty of a butternut squash but felt that they wouldn't supply enough of each to feed the guests.  Another time...  So after checking again with the boss, I made some Rocky Road, sprinkling it with the same neon orange glitter.  After all, if it's from Becca Bakes, it's gotta have glitter!
Most odd, the glitter is blatantly orange in the jar, but seems to have lots of green and some gold in it?  Sorry, perhaps if I were a better photographer?