Thanksgiving Menu, Homemade Butter & Cranberry Sauce

I was going to post today about how to make your own chalk paint, but I forgot to take a photo of my chalk paint, so yeah, that post will have to wait. But dont you worry, I wont leave you empty handed today.

This weekend is Thanksgiving in Canada. I know what you’re thinking: already? Yeah me too, I’m not quite sure where September went, but holy crap its October.

This year we’re having Thanksgiving at our house. Its a small group (6 total) so its not a big affair, but we still like to have all the trimmings! So I thought I’d share with you my Thanksgiving menu and some of my tips and tricks.

Thanksgiving Menu

Brie and Lingonberry Puff Pastries

BBQ Roast Turkey
Jamie Oliver’s Bacon Stuffing (although I don’t use sage or celery, I prefer Rosemary)
El Granto’s Mum’s Squash Casserole
Spiral Cut Ham with Maple Glaze
Garlic Butter Green Beans
Balsamic Roasted Potatoes, Carrots, Pearl Onions, Beets, Parsnips and Garlic
Fresh Rolls and Homemade Butter
Fresh Cranberry Sauce

El Granto’s Mum’s Pumpkin Pie
Homemade Martha Stewart Vanilla Bean Ice Cream


You may have noticed we will be BBQ’ing our turkey. If you have a BBQ with a natural gas line (or have a couple ready propane tanks) I HIGHLY advise you to BBQ your turkey. You cook it in the bbq like you would the oven. In a pan (albeit a cheap disposable one) but in a pan none the less. You get a lovely browned turkey AND your oven is left open for everything else.  The one thing to note about a cooking your turkey on the BBQ is that it does cook a bit quicker. Also make sure you use a meat thermometer, you don’t want that turkey overcooked and dry (yuck!).

Speaking of keeping your turkey moist, don’t stuff the main cavity with bread stuffing. Why? Cause that bread sucks up all the turkeys juices. It also makes the turkey breasts cook slower, making the rest of your turkey overcooked before those thick breasts are done. Instead place some halved lemons and herbs in the cavity, and cook your stuffing in the oven. Put some butter under the skin of the turkey and enjoy the most delicious turkey ever!


Do you want to impress your mother in law? Fresh made butter is your party trick. All you need is some whipping cream and a container than seals air tight and that you can see through (like a jar).

Now I find that a really good whipping cream works best, I like to use Harmony Whipping Cream.  If you wanna make extra fancy butter you also will need some fresh herbs.

So here goes. Put your whipping cream on the counter to come up to room temperature. Leave it there for a couple of hours.

Pour your cream into your airtight container. Make sure you don’t fill the container more than half full. Seal your container and make sure it doesn’t leak.

Now take the container in one hand and gently shake it.  By gently shake, I really mean rock it Continue doing this for 5-10 minutes (it takes longer if your cream is colder). Until magically your cream that was once completely liquid will now start to separate and create a lump of butter in your jar. Keep shaking it for a few minutes so the butter stiffens up a bit more, then pour off the liquid (now buttermilk) and the solid. The solid mass of butter will have some buttermilk left in it, so I find its easiest to pour out the butter onto a plate/bowl getting rid of the buttermilk (although you can save it and use it for another recipe such as corn bread) Mash up your butter with a fork, trying to get rid of all the excess buttermilk. Give it a rinse with water. Once you’re left with only butter, add some salt and mix it up again. This will be your plain butter, but its anything from plain, its light, fluffy and delicious! Now what I like to do is crank it up a notch and make a few herbed butters. I like to mix in a couple herbs and seasonings. Like Rosemary and lemon, chive, roasted garlic or chili lime. Anything you can think of! Now go impress your in-laws with your bbq turkey and your homemade butter.


This is waaaay simpler than you’re thinking. Grab a bag of fresh or frozen cranberries from your grocery store. To a medium sized pot, add a cup of water and a cup of sugar and add your bag of cranberries. Simmer at medium heat for 10-15 minutes until your cranberries have softened and start to break down. You can also add cinnamon, orange zest or any other flavors you like. Another tip is to keep your extra cranberry sauce and serve it over some brie for a yummy snack!



Author: Kristen

Kristen & her husband El Granto & their Vizsla Odin live in a converted Storefront in downtown Toronto.

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