11.22.10: the dirty dozen, part I {conspicuous consumption}

hipster baking

01 say, have you heard of orphan thanksgiving? it's not actually especially orphan-related, though i'm working on that: it's an "i made this" flickr group in which photos of tasty thanksgiving dishes from around the world rub elbows on the internet. it's a tapestry of calorie-dense magic, if you will. college friends and i started it a few years ago, and it remains surprisingly satisfying to stop by and check out each other's potatoes. come on in!

02 speaking of potatoes, emily gould has intrigued me:
[C]eleriac may look weird, but it is a great addition to mashed potatoes. Make sure you peel off all the hairy parts, then slice it into chunks and boil it with five or six potatoes. When the potatoes and celeriac chunks are all fork-pierceable, mash them with some cream cheese, milk, garlic butter and scallions. People will be amazed by the potatoes and won’t know why.

The farmer’s market shopper seemed skeptical but I think that was because of my evangelical zeal and the fact that she hadn’t initiated an interaction with me. “That was really something to share with the Internet, not a specific human,” I remember thinking as I walked away.

03 i'm not in charge of potatoes this year; i'll be defrosting the cheese pumpkin i squirreled away a few months ago to make throwdown pumpkin pie (i'm already excited about making the bourbon-maple whipped cream, which is the sort of topping which could trick one into eating one's own hand) and summoning either dark salty caramels or homemade twix bars (or both?) from the sugary ether. my relationship with caramel remains problematic, but tomorrow is another day - and even inchoate candy is better than no candy at all.

04 takae mizutani's my egg & soldiers. more breakfast-related castles, please.

imaginary reading group discussion questions

01 where will you spend this thanksgiving? are you in charge of any of the cooking?

02 have you any experience with this celeriac-in-mashed-potatoes business?

03 do you think national opt-out day will really happen on wednesday? are you concerned about travel?

04 what did you have for breakfast?


prac, schmac said...

1. the berkshires of western massachussets with the in-laws. i'm in charge of mashed potatoes which leads me to...
2. no celeriac nonsense. boil yukons in chicken broth, throw em in the kitchenaid, dump heavy cream & real butter in. voila!
3. we're flying north wednesday and will be opting out. no radiation and i get to 2nd base, win-win!
4. pineapple atop brown rice and loads of cuban espresso :)

jacob said...

01 either at home or in the hospital cafeteria. the ultimate unplanned (unplan-able) thanksgiving.

02 yes. it gives a pleasant bite to run-of-the-mill potatoes.

03 given that the amount of radiation you receive from the machine is equal to 2 minutes in a flying plane, i find this deeply misguided from a health standpoint. also, taking it out on federal employees who have no say in the matter (and are already sniped at enough) is aiming rather at the wrong target. protest to people who actually make policy.

04 the usual - some kind of natural flakes cereal w/milk, and black coffee. 

valya said...

1. for the first time in a few years, we'll be at my parents' house. i think i'm only responsible for sweet potatoes -- because i'm the one who insists we have them -- and a dessert.  plus maybe an appetizer if we're feeling ambitious.

2. nope.  i oppose putting extras in mashed potatoes (hold the wasabi, chipotle, roasted garlic, bacon, leeks, rutabagas, cranberries, or whatever).  if celeriac is more of a flavor enhancer than changer, though, i'd be willing to try.

3. i dunno; most of the bloggers i've read are more upset about the pat-downs than the machines, but that's probably because most of them are on parenting blogs.  i'm glad i can wait a while to travel, until the TSA has (hopefully) worked out the kinks in the system and/or come to their senses.

4. the usual. coffee (decaf starbucks christmas blend), followed by oatmeal with cinnamon and maple syrup.

i missed orphan thanksgiving last year; there was no internet at our remote location. looking forward to it!

anonymous said...

1. Mom's home for 1 pm dinner, stepsister's home for 4 pm dessert. Joys of divorced families (but actually, truly joyful, because I love my massive family)
2. YES. Amazing. But make sure the celeriac is fully cooked. No lumps.
3. Luckily I'm driving, but I'm voting it won't really happen. Too many people want to get to their turkey. Or maybe I'm just cynical?
4. Day old coffee, left on the counter from yesterday, reheated. Leftover slices of cheese and salami from a party on Saturday. Why did you have to ask this question today?

rachel (heart of light) said...

Wait, why was I not logged in? I'm a guest here, apparently.

Addendum to 1 - I am in charge of very nearly everything, because my control freak tendencies make it difficult for me to allow other people to cook my favorite foods. I delegate the turkey, the gravy.

jamie said...

1. i think we are going to the nathan's. kind of our adoptive familt. shit. i don't know. should i email the matriarch of the nathans and see what i can bring?
2. wait, what is celeriac? why is it HAIRY?

3. i prefer this question to be about candy.  DARK SALTY CARAMEL candy.  

4. chai with almond milk. two cookies (i baked last night and they came out PERFECT). a mini apple. an orange. a small slice of thin crust pizza.

kidchamp said...

@prac: long ago when the earth was flat i had to write press releases for country living, and i'm pretty sure every last one of them was in some way about the awesomeness of the berkshires. i envy you. 

@jacob: if you add a picture of baby smishook to the orphan thanksgiving pool you will be my hero forever.

@valya: i'm normally the same way, but this flavor enhancement thing does sound interesting. in related news, since potatoes are my thing at thanksgiving, should i have volunteered to make them? faux pas? 

@rachel: i look forward to your spreadsheets! i'm one of those people who ends up going back to the store seven times (joe doesn't plan well either, and i shop for both of our dishes), and i tell myself every year that i'll channel your organizational skills. (you too, valya.) 

@jamie: i believe celeriac is celery root? it's hairy in a root way, not in a kiwi way. (i'm suspicious of kiwis.) i've been eyeing it at the store after reading emily's post because 1) aforementioned feelings about potatoes and 2) i only need to cook with one more "new" ingredient to knock an item off of my 101 in 1001 {II} list

anonymous said...

01 Surrounded. By my family. With the love of my life at my side. I'm crossing my fingers. I feel very lucky. And I'm in charge of Thanksgiving, which has led to a set of Google docs addressing this exact issue. This year, Asian-inspired Thanksgiving. Five-spice turkey, fried rice with lap cheong, also Western stuffing, braised yams with ginger, bao if I can figure out how to make them
02 Even for Asian-inspired Thanksgiving we are having mashed potatoes a la Brit, i.e. with butter, boiling water, and salt. Nothing else. I've heard of using celeriac, which is the same as celery root, but I see no need to improve on God's food.
03 I didn't even know national-opt-out-day was threatening.
04 The same as always. One piece of La Brea Whole Grain toast and two cups of tea with a lot of milk. The question is, what did I have for SECOND breakfast, which is the meal one eats once one's stomach wakes up enough for digestion.

anonymous said...

hi!  this is celia.  your little comment box is doing something weird. :/

01 at my mom's house in LA.  thanksgiving is the one day i refuse to cook.  i guess my mom's just going to have to live forever.

02 yes, it's bomb.  however, i would skip the scallions.  i've got major issues with crunchy bits in what should be creamy mashed potatoes.  garlic is a nice addition, but ROASTED garlic will give you and your guests major boners.  oh, and why use milk in your mashed potatoes when you can use half and half? 

03 i'm not too concerned.  

04 oatmeal AND buttered toast.  i've been hungry lately.  

05 homemade twix bars, obviously.  

G said...

1. At the in-laws.  it's a terribly inconvenient 45 seconds up the road.  I think i'll be roped into a general-purpose sous role.  GPSC?  That's me.

2.  Um, no?  But i do like lumps. And skins, too.  With potatoes, rustic texture is king.

3.  I'm guessing certain airports will have bigger problems with it than others.  I'm guessing the big college towns (SF, LA, BOS, NYC, etc.) will have the biggest challenge, with a higher population of people willing to make trouble to make a point.

4.  "Chex mix" cereal!  And a granola bar!  And witty banter with a preschooler.

east side bride said...

i obviously v. late. but i quite enjoyed reading all these comments.