Friendsgiving!

twenty five guests | twelve dishes | one make-your-own aperitif bar | 900 sq ft 

 the first big gathering in our tiny house

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There's so much I have to be thankful for this year. The biggest thing that I couldn't get off my mind while we prepared for this year's Friendsgiving was how different it was last time around. Just one year ago on the same day, we were hosting this gathering in a completely different home, with a completely different outlook on what was ahead in the year to come. Robert gave a toast that summed it up pretty perfectly, 2017 has been a strange year for us for a lot of reasons, but where it led to is exactly where we're supposed to be, and for that I am forever grateful.  

So how did we pull this one off? You got me! Well actually, first of all- we had a lot of help this year, and are so grateful for the friends and family that pitch in to make sure these gathering go off with a bang.  

When we moved in here a couple of month back, as much as we wanted to squeeze in a proper housewarming right away, we had a feeling that Friendsgiving would be the more realistic debut to share the progress we had made with a bunch of our friends.

We managed to fit 25 guests, 2 dogs, an aperitif bar and a ton of food into this 900 square foot shoebox, and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out. Friendsgiving is our absolute favorite get-together of the year. Probably because the planning process is so collaborative, particularly this year. My girl Alex, prop stylist extraordinaire, styled the most gorgeous greenery that I've ever seen. Are you feeling super inspired by what she put together? I feel you. Alex shared which greens she picked for each set up below, so you can recreate these arrangements in your home. 

For the "make-your-own-aperitif" bar the crowd favorites were Cynar, Lillet Rouge, and Campari. Lillet Rouge over ice is definitely my new go-to. Delicious, and definitely not as dangerous as some other drinks. The other exciting thing for me and our other gluten-free guests was that this year's menu is almost entirely gluten-free. The only thing here that isn't is the everything bagel stuffing. You're welcome, GF clan.

We hope you find some last minute menu inspiration from these dishes, and have an absolutely lovely holiday.  


 

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the décor details

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window garland
Pine + Mimosa Purpurea

table greens
Cedar, Seeded Eucalyptus, Baby Blue Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Mimosa Purpurea

Bar Cart
Cedar + Ornamental Kumquats

tabletop
Astilbes, Cedar, Seeded eucalyptus, Baby blue eucalyptus, Veronica Flowers

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honey butter pull-apart rolls

gluten-free


makes one dozen rolls
 

2 3/4 cups GF Flour (Cup 4 Cup is recommended)
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1 ¼-ounce envelope active dry yeast (about 2 ¼ teaspoons)
1/2 cup whole milk, heated to 110°
2 eggs, at room temp
2-3 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons honey
flaky sea salt, for sprinkling on top

 

  • Preheat oven to 375°, and prepare a 9” round pie plate or baking dish with butter and set aside.
     
  • Using a stand mixer, combine the flour, sugar and salt. 
     
  • In a small sauce pan over low heat, warm the milk to about 110° (use a thermometer for precise results to ensure you're not over or under heating the yeast). Remove from heat, stir in yeast, and let sit until bubbly, about 5 minutes.
     
  • Using the dough hook attachment on the stand mixer set to a low speed, add the yeast mixture and eggs to the bowl and stir to combine, scraping down the side of the bowl as you go. Add water one tablespoon at a time. If the dough feels a bit dry, add all 3 tablespoons of water
                                                                      full recipe post available here

                                                                      full recipe post available here

  • Drop 2" round spoonfuls of dough into the prepared baking dish, to make 12 you can place 3 drops in the center, with 9 on the outside. If the dough is seeming overly misshapen, you can smooth out the tops by putting a little bit of water on your fingertips.  
     
  • Lightly cover the dish with a towel and set aside to rise for 1 hour.
     
  • In a small sauce pan over low-medium heat, melt the butter and honey together, whisking until smooth. Remove from heat. 
  • Using a pastry brush, coat the tops of the risen dough with the honey butter mixture, and a generous sprinkle of flaky sea salt. 
     
  • Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown on the outside.
     
  • Serve warm with extra butter, or honey for dipping.  
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classic green bean casserole
with wild mushroom bechamel

gluten-free


 

adapted from Bon Appétit


3 lbs green beans, washed and trimmed
1 lb shitake mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 lb oyster mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 shallot, sliced
2 tbs gluten free flour
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup parmasean cheese
5 sprigs thyme
4 tbs butter, divided
2 tbs olive oil
1 cup gluten free (or French’s) fried onions (Whole Foods has GF!)
salt and pepper
 

  • Preheat oven to 375°. In a large mixing bowl, toss green beans with oilve oil. Arrange on baking sheet and roast until beans are wilted slightly, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
     
  • In a large skillet over medium high heat melt 2 tbs butter. When butter is bubbling, add mushrooms and shallot and cook stirring infrequently until browned, about 10 minutes. Remove mushrooms and set aside. 
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  • Return skillet to medium heat and melt additional 2 tbs butter.
     
  • Whisk in flour and cook until mixture is golden brown, about 3 minutes.
     
  • Add milk and cream and whisk continuously until sauce begins to simmer and thicken, about 5 minutes.
     
  • Remove from heat and add parmesan cheese, whisking to combine fully. Season to taste with salt and pepper
  • Combine green beans and mushrooms in a 13x9’’ baking dish.
     
  • Top with mushroom sauce and thyme sprigs. Cover with foil. Bake covered for 30 minutes.
     
  • Remove foil, and continue cooking an additional 15 minutes. Top with fried onions and cook until slightly browned, about 5 minutes more. 
     
  • Let stand 10 minutes before serving. 
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everything bagel stuffing with slab bacon and brussels sprouts


6 everything bagels, halved
3/4 lb thick cut bacon, sliced
2 cups brussel sprout leaves
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup butternut squash, diced
2 eggs
2 cups turkey stock
salt and pepper
 

  • Preheat oven to 300°. Cut bagels into approximate 3’' chunks and bake on baking sheet until toasted, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.
     
  • Increase oven temperature to 350°. In a large skillet over medium high heat, cook bacon until rendered and crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove bacon and set aside. Using rendered bacon fat, cook onions, celery, carrots and brussels sprouts until softened, about 5 minutes. Return bacon to skillet, toss to combine and set aside. 
     
  • In a large bowl, whisk two eggs and add 2 cups turkey stock. Pour in vegetables and bacon and add bagels.
     
  • Toss to combine and pour into an oiled casserole dish, cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 25 minutes until top is golden brown.
     
  • Cool and serve. 
     
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red kale + radicchio salad
with honey mustard vinaigrette

gluten-free


1 head red kale, stems removed and chopped coarsely
2 heads raddichio, coarsely chopped
1 bulb fennel, fronds reserved
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted and crushed
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
Honey Mustard Vinaigrette (recipe to follow
 

  • Using a mandoline or very sharp knife, shave fennel bulb into thin slices. 
     
  • In a large bowl, combine red kale, raddichio and shaved fennel. Toss with vinaigrette and massage dressing into kale. Top with hazelnuts, pomegranate seeds and fennel fronds. 
     

Honey Mustard Vinaigrette 

2 tbs dijon mustard
2 tbs honey
2 tbs champagne vinegar
1 tsp minced rosemary
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper

  • In a small nonreactive bowl, whisk together mustard, honey, vinegar, rosemary and garlic.
     
  • Working slowly, drizzle in olive oil and whisk until emulsified.
     
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper. 
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roasted beets with micro greens
+ ricotta salata

gluten-free







4 lbs beets, scrubbed
2 tbs cooking olive oil
3 tbs finishing olive oil
1/4 cup microgreens
1/2 cup ricotta salata
salt and pepper
 

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Toss beets with cooking olive oil and transfer to a 13x9’’ baking dish.
     
  • Add water to fill bottom of pan, cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake until beets are tender when pierced with a sharp knife, about 60 minutes. 
     
  • Let beets cool completely and remove skins.
     
  • Cut into rough 2’’ chunks and toss with finishing olive oil.
     
  • To serve, top beets with ricotta salata and microgreens and drizzle any remaining olive oil on top. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 
     


spiced Sweet Potato Gratin

gluten-free


5 sweet potatoes, peeled
3 tbs olive oil
3 tbs butter, melted
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp red pepper flake
3 sprigs thyme
salt and pepper

  • Preheat oven to 375° and prepare a 9" round pie pan with melted butter, reserve any butter not used.
     
  • Using a mandoline slicer, or working carefully with a very sharp knife, slice potatoes into thin discs.
     
  • Transfer the sliced potatoes to a large mixing bowl and toss with olive oil, cumin, red pepper flake and salt and pepper. 
     
  • Arrange sweet potato slices into your prepared pie pan vertically, and in a circular shape. Start from the outside and work your way in to achieve the shape pictured. 
     
  • Top with sprigs of thyme and brush with any remaining butter. 
     
  • Bake for 60 minutes, or until potatoes are crispy on top and cooked through and tender. 
     
  • Serve warm.
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roasted brassica + lentil salad

gluten-free


1 head white cauliflower, cut into florets
1 head purple cauliflower, cut into florets
2 heads broccoli, cut into florets
2 cups french lentils (uncooked)
1 cup parsley leaves
1/4 cup + 1tbs olive oil
1 tbs cumin
1 bay leaf
Tarragon Cider Vinaigrette
(recipe to follow
salt and pepper 

  • Preheat oven to 400°. In a large mixing bowl, toss cauliflower and broccoli with 1/4 cup oilve oil and cumin. Season generously with salt and pepper and transfer to two sheet pans.
     
  • Roast for 12 minutes, rotate pans in oven and continue cooking for an additional 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. 
     
  • In a large saucepan combine lentils, bay leaf and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Continue to simmer, uncovered until lentils are cooked through, about 15-20 minutes. Drain and return lentils to pot, season with salt and 1 tbs olive oil. 
     
  • To serve, combine lentils, brassica and parsley in a large bowl. Toss with tarragon cider vinaigrette. 
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Tarragon Cider Vinaigrette

1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 bunch tarragon
1/2 meyer lemon, zested
1 tsp garlic powder
3/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper

  • In a small nonreactive bowl, whisk together vinegar, meyer lemon zest, garlic powder and tarragon.
     
  • Drizzle in olive oil and whisk until emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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Shallot + Herb Dry Brined Turkey 


12-14 lb turkey
6 tbs European butter
2 onions
1 lemon
2 sprigs rosemary
1 small bunch sage, divided
1/2 cup turkey stock, or water
Shallot Dry Brine (recipe to follow) 

  • To prepare turkey, remove from packaging, pat dry, and clean cavity. Rub turkey with dry brine and chill, uncovered on a baking sheet for 6-10 hours. 
     
  • Preheat oven to 450°. Remove turkey from refrigerator and let stand for up to 1 hour as it comes to room temperature. Working carefully separate skin from meat. 
     
  • Rub butter in between meat and skin and stuff with half the sage leaves. Fill cavity with onion, lemon, rosemary and remaining sage leaves. Tuck wing tips under bird and truss legs together. Roast for 45 minutes. 
     
  • Reduce heat to 350° and continue roasting for up to 2 hours additionally, or until an instant read thermometer reads 160° when inserted into the thickest part of the thigh.
     
  • Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes before carving.
     
  • Carve to serve. 

Shallot Powder


To make shallot powder, clean and dice 8 shallots. Set dehydrator to 140° and arrange diced shallots on trays and dry for 8-12 hours. Transfer dried shallot pieces to spice grinder and grind into a powder


Shallot Dry Brine


1/2 cup salt
1/4 cup shallot powder (directions to follow)
2 tbs brown sugar
2 tbs minced rosemary
2 tbs fennel seeds
2 tbs whole black peppercorns
1 tbs crushed black pepper 

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pumpkin pudding with spiced marscapone

gluten-free


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3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 eggs, at room temp
1 15 oz. can pumpkin purée
1 12 oz. can evaporated milk 

  • Preheat oven to 350° and prepare a 9" round ceramic or glass pie plate with butter and set aside. 
     
  • Using a stand mixer on medium speed combine the sugar, cardamom, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves. 
     
  • Beat the eggs in one at a time.
     
  • Add pumpkin, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go.
     
  • Slowly add in the evaporated milk, combining until smooth.
     
  • Pour into prepared pie plate and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the pumpkin has set and a knife cut from the center comes out clean. 
     
  • Cool at room temp for 1 hour. Refrigerate until ready to serve. 
     
  •  Serve with spiced marscapone. *Bonus topping: I added crumbled gingerbread cookies. 
 

Spiced Marscapone Topping

1 cup whipping cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp nutmeg
8 oz. mascarpone cheese, at room temp

  • Using a stand mixer, beat the whipping cream and vanilla on medium-high speed, slowly adding the powdered sugar until soft peaks form.
     
  • Reduce to low speed and add the cardamom and nutmeg.
     
  • Gently fold in the marscapone.
     
  • Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. 
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fudgy Chocolate cookies with sea salt

gluten-free


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makes 22 cookies

2 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 cup cocoa dark cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 egg whites, at room temp
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups chocolate chips
Sea salt for sprinkling on top

  • Preheat oven to 350° and prepare two baking sheets with parchment.
     
  • Grease the parchment with butter and set aside.
     
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar, espresso powder, cocoa powder and salt. 
     
  • Using a stand or electric mixer, beat the eggs whites and vanilla together until lightly foamy, about 2 minutes. 
     
  • Pour the dry mixture into the egg whites and combine on low-medium speed until a very thick batter has formed, and stir in chocolate chips. 
     
  • Using a tablespoon to measure, drop the batter onto prepared cookie sheets, leaving room between each cookie as they will spread while baking.
     
  • Sprinkle with sea salt to finish, and bake for 10 minutes, until slightly crisp. 
     
  • Let cool before serving. 
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maple cornbread stuffing
with sausage, squash + leeks

gluten-free


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1 pan fresh cornbread with maple syrup drizzled on top
(make ahead of time, this recipe is our fav, just replace the honey for maple syrup)
1 lb pork breakfast sausage, casing removed
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 leek, cleaned and diced
1 cup butternut squash, diced
2 eggs
2 cups turkey stock
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tbs oilve oil
salt and pepper

  • Preheat oven to 300°. Cut cornbread into 3’' chunks and bake on baking sheet until dried and crumbly, about 10 minutes. Transfer dried cornbread to a large bowl and set aside.  
     
  • Increase oven temperature to 400°. Toss squash with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast until browned, about 15 minutes.
     
  • Set aside and decrease oven temperature to 350°.
  • In a large skillet over medium high heat, cook sausage until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside.
     
  • Using remaining drippings from rendered sausage, cook onions, celery, carrots and leeks until softened, about 5 minutes. Return sausage and squash to skillet and toss to combine. 
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  • In a large bowl, whisk two eggs and add 2 cups turkey stock. Pour in vegetables and sausage and add cornbread. Working gently to not tear cornbread, toss to combine. Pour into an oiled casserole dish, cover and bake for 30 minutes.
     
  • Remove foil and bake an additional 25 minutes until top is golden brown.
     
  • Cool and serve. 

creamy Herb mashed potatoes


gluten-free

5 lbs Russet potatoes, washed and peeled
4 tbs butter
1 1/2 cup whole milk
1 bunch sage
2 bunches thyme
2 bay leaves
1 tsp white pepper
salt and pepper

  • Cut potatoes into rough 2’’ chunks. Place potatoes in a large dutch oven and fill with cold water until covered. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes, or until potatoes pierce easily with a fork. Drain potatoes and set aside (do not let cool).
     
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over low heat, warm milk, butter and herbs. Let sit, covered as herbs steep in milk.
     
  • Using a food mill, pass the potato chunks back into warm dutch oven.
     
  • After all potatoes have been processed, discard herbs from milk mixture.
     
  • Add the mil back into the potatoes, working in small additions, stirring to combine.
     
  • Season with white pepper, salt and black pepper.
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