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Posts Tagged ‘Thanksgiving Inspiration 2011’

Inspired by Pumpkins, But Not for Pie

Sprinkle Bakes Thanksgiving Inspiration Board

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

Roadside pumpkin stands are one of the first signs of fall, and a welcome sight. They herald the arrival of cool weather, changing leaves and warm spices in my baking. This year’s Thanksgiving table will have plenty of offerings from my favorite gourd, but it’s time for pumpkin pie to move aside. Last year’s Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake is sure to make a repeat appearance this year. It has the all the delicious warmth and spice of a pumpkin pie, but with the added decadence of cheesecake and subtle coffee flavor. A second pumpkin offering will be in the form of a flaky pastry for overnight guests. Easy Pumpkin Cheese Danish is a delicious breakfast and, best of all, low effort, so the chef in charge of the Thanksgiving meal can focus on more pressing preparations.

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Balancing Fall Colors and Bright Dishes on the Thanksgiving Table

What's Gaby Cooking Thanksgiving Inspiration Board

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

Thanksgiving is one of my all-time favorite holidays. Not only is it a celebration that includes quite a bit of decadent and delicious food, but it’s also a time that you get to spend with your friends and family, and really slow down and enjoy each other’s company. The last few Thanksgivings, we’ve asked our extended family members to bring over the mixings for cocktails or their favorite pies and then we take care of the rest.

This year’s Thanksgiving celebration is all about the side dishes and sweets. It’s a given in my house that we will have a beautiful turkey with gravy and all that jazz, but what really gets me excited is being able to pick and choose what kind of side dishes we should pair with the turkey to really wow our guests.

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The More Sweets, the Merrier

Zoe Francois Inspiration Board

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

Thanksgiving dinner isn’t really complete until dessert hits the table. Preferably there will be several to choose from, and at least one should be pumpkin. It is the time of year that this orange gourd graces our plates, and it deserves to be center stage. I adore traditional pumpkin pie, but by no means should you be limited to that alone. It is also fantastic mixed with apples and streusel in a cake, or baked with brandy into a cheesecake and adorned with candied cranberries.  One of my all-time favorites is pumpkin bread pudding, which can also serve as breakfast the next morning. Next to all the pumpkin desserts there should be a caramel spice pear cake, and perhaps a spiky coconut meringue layered torte.

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Inviting Nature to the Table

Cannelle et Vanille Inspiration Board

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

I didn’t grow up celebrating Thanksgiving, as I grew up in the Basque Country, in Northern Spain. However, since I moved to the US, it has become one of my favorite holidays, in part because it brings to mind the foods that my family cooked during the autumn months and, mostly, because it means gathering around a table full of family and friends.

I am always inspired by what the season has to offer and by the colors of nature — in this case red, orange and ochre. We take walks around forests and explore. I long for the wild apple, pear and hazelnut trees that surround my hometown. We used to spend hours wandering and foraging. During autumn, there are always different varieties of apples on our kitchen table ready to be eaten, cooked with or turned into a dessert at any time. I also have a winter squash addiction, “my collection,” as my husband likes to call it. Different types of squash always end up in my recipes these days, whether it be soups, stews, desserts, warm salads or just roasted with some sea salt for an afternoon snack.

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Eat With Your Eyes First

Matt Bites Inspiration Board
When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

Thanksgiving is a favorite holiday at our house, because it’s a time for us to give thanks for all the joys of the year. We are thankful for friends, family, our work, being alive, you name it. We love it so much that we usually host two Thanksgiving meals: a pre-run that we call Friendsgiving, as well as a giant meal on the big day. Yes, it’s double the work, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Even though we celebrate twice, my inspiration and goals for the meal are the same: to create a visual bounty that’s in line with amazingly delicious food. Since I’m a big believer in eating with your eyes first, my table is always thoughtfully planned out around a theme. Last year was a delightful mixing and matching of colors and textures, while this year will be about jewel tones with a focus on purple and orange. These colors have always been so regal and special to me, and they complement the browns and deep greens of the food itself.

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Family, Friends and Heartwarming Comfort Food

CamilleStyles
When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

For me, Thanksgiving is all about focusing on what really matters: family, friends and the most heartwarming comfort food. I’m designing this year’s table with a color palette of warm gold, natural wood and touches of deep teal. Instead of fussing over fancy floral arrangements, we’ll gather around a table adorned with seasonal fruits, pumpkins and branches. The best part is, most of the materials can be found in my own backyard. I’ll add votives and taper candles to make the dining room glow, setting the perfect backdrop as we give thanks for our blessings and enjoy autumn’s finest flavors. I’ll greet guests at the door with steaming cups of apple cider, and we’ll curl up in front of the fire and catch up on life as the turkey finishes cooking. I’ll add a special touch to the table with gilded place cards bearing each guest’s name; after all, a strategically organized seating chart can certainly make for a peaceful family gathering.

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Treasuring Traditions, Old and New

Sweet Fine Day

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

As we fall deeper into and closer to the holiday season, we enjoy the changing light that gives everything a warm glow, picking up leaves that catch our eye on our everyday walks and the golden colors that are in abundance everywhere.

Fragrant stews made from rich broth and chunks of hearty vegetables and seasonal dessert flavors like our Pumpkin Ginger Sandwich Cookies all mark the season. As a multiracial and Asian-American family, our Thanksgiving meals are anything but traditional. While we do have a turkey and some of the usual trimmings, our holiday table also features food from our Korean heritage. Desserts like our Nutella Bread Pudding With Dates and Quince Upside Down Cake are some of the flavors that have been part of our Thanksgivings past and that always inspire our future Thanksgivings as we try to establish new traditions within our own family.

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Finding Inspiration in Warmth

Roost Board

When planning the same holiday year after year, how do you keep your celebration fresh and interesting while maintaining a sense of tradition? We asked our favorite bloggers and food people to share what’s inspiring their Thanksgiving planning this year. From ancestor’s recipes and falling leaves, to beautiful piles of ingredients and thoughtful home decor, there was no shortage of imagination. See what motivates some of the most creative minds we know, and then start planning your annual feast.

When it comes to the fall, particularly Thanksgiving, I can only dwell upon a single word: warmth. Everything about the season exudes warmth, whether it be the earthy colors of autumn leaves, the comfort of family joined together or the late-fall harvest ingredients that make up such satisfying meals. The images above are a reflection of all that I cherish about the Thanksgiving season. Fresh herbs, warm bread, ripe seckle pears, hearty butternut squash soup and a carrot cake sure to trump any pumpkin pie — all of which are gluten-, grain- and processed sugar-free!

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