I feel a little bit like The Muppets on their journey in “The Muppet Movie”. Moving right along (dooga doon dooga doon)…
Moving right along on the Thanksgiving 2012 journey today I’ll cover the Cranberry Sauce, Irish Brown Bread, and Cornmeal Rolls. Let me tell you now, this is a bit of a journey in and of itself.
So, the cranberry sauce is just one of those things that is “traditional Thanksgiving fare”. So, I made it. I hate that gelatinous jelly that comes out of cans. I love cranberries, though. So, for the past few years I have been making homemade cranberry sauce. It is so easy and takes such little effort that it’s something I can squeeze in while working on other things. Which is another reason I make it. I just wash a bag of fresh cranberries and put them in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. I add a scant 2 cups of liquid and ¾ cup granulated sugar. In the past I have used a combination of water and juice (pomegranate once and orange once) and this year I just used a cran-pom blend. Stir it all together and cook for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Watch out so you don’t get burned by bursting berries! I just love when those little babies start bursting and popping in the pan! Ok, you caught me. This is the real reason I love making cranberry sauce. It’s so much fun!
If you remember from Day One of our journey, D4 said that she wanted me to make Irish Brown Bread like we had in Ireland. I scanned the internet for recipes and found one that I liked. I thought it seemed fairly straightforward (I’m a skilled bread maker) and not too time consuming. The only thing that I didn’t have on hand was buttermilk. I started to make my own, using milk and lemon juice, but thought again. I had heavy cream in the fridge. I would see if D4 wanted to make some buttermilk with me, by shaking the cream in a jar until it separated! She was game. We had a blast doing this, and it was awesome to serve the butter later, too! It was almost like magic happening, when the yellowness separated away! I have attached a link to the Irish Brown Bread recipe that I used. I have to admit that somewhere I must have had a mis-step. It was very dense and not quite what I was going for. Or, as The Hubs put it during dinner; “this bread just wicked every bit of moisture out of my mouth”. Hmmmm. I will try again another day, to see if I can be more successful. http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/irish-brown-bread
Now, to the cornmeal rolls. Ah, cornmeal rolls. Back story…My father worked as food editor for a local newspaper in the 80’s and during that time he had the opportunity to judge a few food contests. The recipe that has become a mainstay for family functions and has even been given to a couple of my nephews as part of their birthday gifts (per their request) was the overall winner of the breads portion of one such food contest. I am sharing the full fat version of the recipe, although it can be made with much less butter (about half) and only one egg.
- 2 cups milk
- 2/3 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 stick butter or margarine
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1/3 cup warm water
- 1 packet instant dry yeast
- 6 cups flour
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine milk and cornmeal in a large glass bowl. Microwave on high for one minute, stir well, microwave another minute, stir, and continue until cornmeal is mushy and milk is absorbed. Remove from microwave oven, add butter and cool to warm stirring occasionally. Add sugar, salt, eggs, and water. In a separate bowl add yeast to cups of the flour and stir well; add to cornmeal mixture. Beat for 200 strokes. Add more flour, a cup at a time, and stir in until mixture forms a soft dough. Let rest a few minutes, then knead for 10 minutes. Let rise in greased bowl, covered, until doubled. Punch down and roll out about ¾ inch thick. Cut into circles with a 13-ounce coffee can*; rework trimmings, roll and cut again, continuing until all the bread is in circles. Let rise, covered, on greased sheet pans until light. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes until golden brown.
These are delicious served with butter, or used as sandwiches for the leftover turkey and fixin’s.
Wow. We are really making progress through our Thanksgiving 2012 road trip! The dinner portion has all been covered and we are ready to move on to dessert! That’s what you have to look forward to tomorrow! Desserts from Thanksgiving 2012…buckle up. This could get wild!