Sunday, November 25, 2012

Turkey Week Wrap Up!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I hope you all had a very blessed and wonderful holiday!  The abundance of mashed potatoes and gravy aside, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year.  It's wonderful time to remember how incredibly lucky and blessed I am to have amazing family and friends in my life.  And it signals that Christmas and New Years aren't too far behind!  This past week went by fast but we packed in a lot of fun, good times!

I traveled home to my parents on Wednesday with my brother.  My mom was in charge of pies and I was in charge of a Thanksgiving cocktail so we got to work on that when I arrived so we could catch up with family friends later that evening!  Like I told you in my last post I decided to make Apple Cider Sangria so I put that all together to chill in the fridge overnight (recipe below).

Wednesday night we went over to our family friends' house, the Tassis, Holly is one of my best friends from high school and our families always try to get together when us girls are home for the holidays.  Holly now lives in Chicago where she works for Diageo, (talk about a great post grad gig!) she is also my birthday buddy having a birthday the day after mine! Our families have been through the ups and the downs together so its always nice to catch up on everyone's recent happenings over some cocktails!  Holly also would be joining me later in the week in Columbus for the Ohio State v. Michigan game!  Here are some fun pictures of Holly and I over the years (I'm sure she'll greatly enjoy this little blast from the past as I only told her she'd be featured in the blog not what content I'd be using, love ya Hollybelle!)
On our last day of high school
Homecoming, Senior year

Our trip to Columbia, SC to visit our other bestie, Coco!
My most recent trip to Chicago this summer!

Holly told me earlier in the day that they had a yummy surprise for us so we were to come hungry!  By the time the pies were all baked we were just that!  Turns out she and her mom made sushi for us for dinner!  Talk about a yummy surprise!  It was just delicious!  We were so impressed (I mean look at that pretty stuff!) since sushi is pretty notorious for its tricky to assemble nature.  They filled us in on their culinary trick, Sushezi, which is an apparatus that's easier to use than the traditional rolling mats.  They had rolls made with smoked salmon, spicy shrimp and firecracker beef all with different combinations such as with cream cheese, avocado, cucumber, etc. They even made sides of wasabi and spicy mayo for topping.  They paired it with ginger cocktails, talk about perfect planning!  Well done Tassi ladies, VERY well done!
Homemade sushi courtesy of the Tassi women....YUMM!
After a fun evening with the Tassis we woke up early to go to Pennsylvania to see both my parents sides of the family.  We had 18 people at our Thanksgiving table, a family record!  Everything, especially the mashed potatoes and gravy, was delicious it's a major perk coming from a family of fantastic cooks! 
18 people squeezed around one beautiful table of delicious food!
The sangria was a hit as well!  I'm very glad I made a double batch as it was all gone before we got up from the dinner table.  Here's how to make it.

Apple Cider Sangria
(this recipe is doubled, which served 12-18)

- 2 bottles pinot grigio
- 5 c. apple cider
- 2 c. club soda
- 1 c. brandy (original recipe called for ginger brandy, I couldn't find that at the store)
- 2 honeycrisp apples, diced
- 2 pears, diced

- Combine all ingredients in a pitcher and chill for over an hour in the refrigerator (I usually do it overnight) before serving. 
- Enjoy! 

It's as easy as that!  This was perfect for fall, next time I may add a cinnamon stick while it chills to give it a little spice since I didn't have the ginger brandy.  Also note so many sangria recipes call for WAY too much fruit and it ends up just going to waste.  I used less fruit than the original recipe called for and it still turned out good.  Although the booze soaked fruit is a tasty treat I always end up tossing it on the compost pile since it doesn't get eaten.  After eating and drinking we cleaned up then played some hilarious rounds of Catch Phrase!  A great day with family! 

On Friday we relaxed and celebrated my mom's birthday which is next week.  My brother and dad went Black Friday shopping for a little bit but no one was feeling the wake up early with the crazy people vibe.  We usually end up celebrating Momma's birthday early because it is so close to Thanksgiving.  We went to a local Italian restaurant that was delicious per usual!  Definitely had a week of good eats! 

I came back to Columbus with plenty of leftovers for the week and enough time to enjoy an Ohio State win over Michigan!  Holly and I bounced around from bar to bar on campus while Chris went to the game with friends, nothing like rivalry football to get a city excited!  With the abundance of leftovers from both mine and Chris' Thanksgivings it doesn't look like I'll have to cook much this week, maybe I'll feature a new craft instead?  Better stay tuned! 


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