I'm finally getting around to the details of our turkey-free Thanksgiving. There were just four of us, which was spectacularly stress-free and wonderful. Western One took the lead with the steaks and made potato-leek-tarragon soup and a side dish of sauteed-grape tomatoes with basil. I played around with the apps and realized my vision of blue chees
e mashed potatoes. Yeah, I said blue cheese mashed potatoes. They were out of control decadent but oh so good.
I caramelized about 3 onions and set them aside. I always heat up my milk and butter before mixing in with the taters, so I just added chopped up blue cheese to the saucepan and let it all melt together. When the potatoes were cooked I mashed them up with the cheese-butter-cream/milk combo, folded in some finely chopped rosemary and the onions and seasoned w/ salt and pepper. The blue cheese flavor was subtle, but just right.
We put away a few nice bottles of red wine, munched on cheese, smoked salmon and other goodies. I am pretty proud of my lovely cheese board and goat cheese-stuffed dates wrapped in prosciutto. I can't pretend I really did anything special to make the dates awesome, it's really pretty hard to screw up with goat cheese and prosciutto. One good tip though - wet hands are helpful when trying to manipulate goat cheese.
The steaks were perfect and all in all it was a lovely way to spend our first holiday entirely in our own home. I have to admit, I was a little wistful about not having cold turkey sandwiches or my mom's stuffing but I can always do a mocked up turkey day sometime soon.
So in addition to figuring out how to make great potatoes and learning that steak makes a fantastic substitute for turkey, I learned one other important lesson: drunken wii bowling with a rambunctious 60 pound pup is a potentially dangerous proposition!