Spice company McCormack has just released it’s 2015 Flavor Forecast — a prediction of what foods and flavors will be especially popular in the coming year. Here is a sampling:
– Shichimi Togarashi, a Japanese 7-spice blend built on a foundation of dried chilies and orange peel, Sichuan peppercorns, sesame seeds, dried ginger, and seaweed.
– Shawarma, a Middle Eastern sandwich of sliced meat, vegetables, and tahini, wrapped in pita bread.
– Mezze, a Mediterranean and Middle Eastern appetizer of small plates, featuring foods like marinated olives, grilled bread, labneh, and hummus.
– Fancy salt blends with sour ingredients, such as pickled ginger salt.
– Smoked spices
– Umami, a Japanese word to describe a pleasant, savory taste. Considered the “fifth taste,” it should incorporate all four of the palate’s primary taste senses: sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. The term is also sometimes used to describe a food or dish with meaty/earthy flavors, like mushrooms.
I’m excited by some of the selections! What about you?
Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday. You don’t have to buy and wrap presents, you don’t have to put up an oversized Thanksgiving tree, and you don’t have to send Thanksgiving cards to everyone you have a current address for. You just eat a great meal in the afternoon and then pile up with the TV remote and watch football games. So let’s give thanks for Thanksgiving and give it the respect it deserves….by talking about the leftovers. All those tasty leftovers.
I don’t know about you, but I’m honestly more excited about Thanksgiving leftovers than the actual Turkey Day itself. My mind keeps wandering to all the mouth-watering possibilities. Like you, I adore having one main feast to honor tradition with familiar and much-loved recipes, but the day after Thanksgiving I like to expand into different flavor-profiles. Here are the recipes that I’ll be trying this year:
Turkey bahn mi? Bahn yes! I love the brightness that the cilantro, jalapeño, and pickled veggies add, especially after a heavy Thanksgiving feast. I might even add a smear of cornbread dressing on the bread. No judging.
Mexican spices can really kick-up turkey leftovers. Try fail-safe recipes like a simple posole, tostadas, nachos, or even tamales:
Indian flavors work perfectly with the Thanksgiving leftover menu, too. Just wrap leftover peas, mashed potatoes, and turkey in phyllo dough, bake, and serve with a spicy (maybe cranberry?) chutney.
For the less globally-inspired, you can’t go wrong with stuffing-stuffed mushroom caps. Frankly, I could eat these all year, especially if the dressing is full of sausage….and why wouldn’t it be???
What Thanksgiving is complete without the Macy’s Day Parade? I love these vintage photos — and can’t wait to see what figures will be featured in balloon-form tomorrow!
The original Macy’s parade was held in Haverhill in 1854, where Rowland H. Macy ran a dry goods store before relocating to Manhattan. He started the parades on a larger scale in 1924, and three years later swapped out live animals for animal-shaped balloons. It was originally called the Macy’s Christmas Parade.
Felix the Cat (1927)
Felix the Cat led the march in the first balloon parade in 1927. (Courtesy of The Phoenix)
In 1929, the balloons became equipped with safety valves to allow helium to slowly seep out, allowing the balloons to be released into the air at the end of the parade. The balloons would have return address labels attached so if any viewers were lucky enough to find the balloons they would get a special gift from Macy’s. (Courtesy of CNN)
Mickey Mouse (1934)
This 1934 Mickey was hand-painted and measured 40 feet tall. The star on his chest is a nod to the Macy’s logo. (Courtesy of Disney)
Aviator Snoopy (1969)
Mickey and Donald (1972)
Mickey and Donald first appeared together in 1972 to celebrate the first anniversary of Walt Disney World. (Courtesy of Disney)
As you shop and prep for your family’s own epic feast tomorrow, I thought it would be interesting to pass long a short history of the Thanksgiving holiday — and especially the accompanying meal that has become such an important piece of the Thanksgiving tradition. What follows is pieced from a short article posted yesterday on TIME: “Most of what is known about the foods of the “first Thanksgiving” is based on what foods were common at that time in the region, and a letter written by Edward Winslow to a friend in England describing the feast in 1621. Winslow wrote that Governor Bradford of the Plymouth Colony sent men out to hunt wildfowl (most likely goose or duck) while Wampanoag Indians brought deer to the feast. While turkeys were plentiful in New England in the 1620s,historians agree that it is unlikely that they were the centerpiece of the “first Thanksgiving.” Turkeys were hard to catch and the meat was tough. Fish, however, would have been plentiful and almost certainly part of any harvest celebration.
With very little historical basis on which to create a shared national holiday, America needed someone to tell them how the holiday should be celebrated. And Sarah Josepha Buell Hale was just the woman for the job. Hale was the editor of Godey’s Ladies Book, a very popular women’s magazine of the mid-19thcentury.
She first wrote about the Thanksgiving meal in her novel Northwood: A Tale of New England,published in 1827. She described a “lordly” roast turkey at the head of the table, “sending forth the rich odor of its savory stuffing.” Her meal included “a sirloin of beef, flanked on either side by a leg of pork and a joint of mutton,” and “pies of every description known in Yankee land.”
This vision of the overflowing feast represented mid-19th century ideals of the woman’s role in creating a perfect home and her writings created the “classic” American Thanksgiving ideal. As the United States was divided by the Civil War, Hale wrote a letter to President Lincoln urging him to make the day a national event, one that would bring Americans together. On October 3, 1863, Lincoln did just that.
As America entered the 20th century, Americans tweaked their Thanksgiving food traditions to reflect the modern vision of America. Progress, innovation, and technology all became part of the Thanksgiving table. Cranberries too delicate to transport long distances from New England started getting packaged and canned in 1912, under the name Ocean Spray Preserving Company. Now cranberries could enjoy a longer shelf life and become fixtures on the Thanksgiving table far away from cranberry bogs. The vast majority of pumpkins grown in America today are turned into canned pumpkin puree, which takes away the need to bake and mash a real pumpkin for pie. So nowadays our Thanksgiving feast is as much a tribute to the mid-20th-century modernist ideal as it is to a 19th-century idealized view of our 17th-century origin story.”
Susan Evans is program director of the American Food History Project at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She originally wrote this piece for What It Means to Be American, a national conversation hosted by the Smithsonian and Zócalo Public Square.
Here are some ideas to make your Thanksgiving buffet spectacular:
Using a beautiful ribbon is a great way to tie silverware pieces together for a buffet dinner:
I like to feature a grand arrangement on a buffet table. On the dining table itself you are constrained by making sure that people can see across the table for conversation, but those rules don’t apply on a buffet. Embrace the drama!
Other Thanksgiving tabletop displays:
For more Thanksgiving tabletop inspiration please visit our Pinterest page:
Thanksgiving is the perfect time to pull out your favorite china and silver pieces and set a bountiful, beautiful table celebrating the fall harvest. Here are some inspirations for creating an elegant feasting table featuring layers of special details and rich colors. Trying mixing tapered candles with your votives, persimmons and pears with your pumpkins, and parrot tulips and roses with your mums for a more exciting tablescape!
For more Thanksgiving tabletop inspiration please visit our Pinterest page:
In our headlong rush into the frenzied Christmas Holidays, Thanksgiving Day is being squeezed out. Perhaps you agree with us that Thanksgiving Day should have a bit more more respect. Not only is Thanksgiving a great time to take a few minutes for personal and familial reflection on all our many blessings, it is a uniquely American and patriotic holiday. On this day we remember how the founders of our great country celebrated their bounty and expressed their gratitude to God.
Perhaps this week is the perfect time to take the Anne Voscamp challenge and start a journal of thanksgivings. Contrary to a prayerjournal, this is meant to be a simple exercise in daily gratitude were you chronicle everything from the whimsical opalescent soap bubble floating from your kitchen sink to a sky-wide sunset with blazing colors. You will quickly begin to notice blessings of all shapes and sizes laced throughout your life, even on the most mundane of days.
Here are some journals to help you get started — and keep you coming back:
Any fashionista would love one of Christian Lacroix’s chic notebooks (Lacroix, $13.00) :
This supple leather-bound notebook from GreatRedSpot on Etsy would be perfect for an adventurer ($55.00):
These journals feature bold stripes or polka dots (Kate Spade, $13.00+):
These quilted journals are made even more Coco-perfect when paired with one of Everyday Haute’s camellia clips(Zazzle, $13.95):
Everyday Haute Clip-on Polka Dot Camellia
For those who prefer a simpler style, Moleskin offers a collection of basic journals in rainbow of colors:
Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season. This time of year is meant to pause from the “everyday” and celebrate the three F’s: Friends, Faith, and Family. Let’s kick-off our countdown to the Thanksgiving holiday with a tribute to the front door and ideas to help you welcome your guests to your home in style:
Is there anything more festive at Thanksgiving than pumpkins and mums on the front door steps? We don’t think so. Here are some display ideas:
For those who want to adventure further, fresh corn stalks and lanterns are a lovely addition:
A simple display with gilded gourds for the more minimalist (but no less festive) home:
Who wouldn’t want to spend Thanksgiving at this inviting home, featuring haystacks, pumpkins, corn stalks, and just the right amount of multi-colored leaves are the doorstep…
For additional photos please go to our Pinterest page:
We spent most of yesterday in the garden centers at Lowe’s and Home Depot, stocking up on spring flowers for our Florida HQ’s garden. After a long winter and lots of travel our pots and planters are in terrible shape, so finding enough plants was quite a task.
The rows of flowering plants on display in the Lowe’s garden centers reminded me of the tulip fields in Holland. Minus the windmills, of course. Such a lovely rainbow of colors!