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Side dishes make Thanksgiving meal special

Ivy Tech (Indiana) Community College culinary instructor Allen Edwards created this dish of Sautéed Green Beans with Caramelized Onions and Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce.

Ivy Tech (Indiana) Community College culinary instructor Allen Edwards created this dish of Sautéed Green Beans with Caramelized Onions and Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce.

Side dishes can make the difference between a so-so and an over-the-top Thanksgiving.

Turkey and mashed potatoes are mandatory, but side dishes provide the distinct flavors of the holiday meal.

For many, the sides are dictated by generations of traditions. Sweet potatoes are topped with marshmallows because that’s what Grandma Jo served. Others prefer edgy additions, such as a cranberry salad inspired by the Cosmopolitan.

From a traditional corn casserole to a new take on scalloped yams, here are some favorite recipes from cookbook authors, chefs and culinary colleges.

Corn Casserole

2 cans (about 15 ounces each) creamed corn

2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1 cup milk

2 large eggs, slightly beaten

1 package (8 1/2 ounces) Jiffy cornbread mix

1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder or garlic salt

1/2 cup oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix ingredients together and pour into greased 11-inch-by-7-inch baking dish. Bake 45 minutes or until nicely browned on top. Makes 8 servings.

Source: The Arizona Republic.

Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing

3 cups chicken stock

2 cups milk

2 eggs, beaten

12 cups stale cornbread, broken into 1-inch pieces

2 pounds ground sausage

2 cups onion, small dice

1 cup celery, small dice

2 tablespoons fresh thyme, minced (1 tablespoon dried)

2 tablespoons fresh sage, minced (1 tablespoon dried)

Salt and pepper, to taste

Combine stock, milk and eggs, and stir to combine. Pour over cornbread pieces, toss to coat, and reserve.

Brown the sausage until it loses most of its pink color. Add onion and celery; cook until tender and sausage is fully cooked. Stir in thyme and sage.

Combine sausage with cornbread mixture; toss to thoroughly mix.

Place the mixture in a buttered baking dish, large enough that the stuffing mixture is no deeper than 2 or 3 inches. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden brown. Serves 10.

Source: Thom England, culinary instructor, Ivy Tech Community College.

Sautéed Green Beans with Caramelized Onions and Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce

1 1/4 pounds whole green beans, fresh or frozen

1/2 cup kosher salt

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 pound onions, thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce (recipe follows), hot

1 tablespoon parsley, minced

Thaw green beans if frozen. Trim green beans and set aside.

Add the salt to 1 gallon cold water and bring to a boil. Add the green beans all at once, and cook for 30 to 45 seconds. Remove green beans from the water and immediately put into ice water to stop the cooking. Remove beans from ice water as soon as they’re cold.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan until almost smoking. Add the onions, and sauté, stirring or tossing occasionally, until the onions turn a deep caramelized brown color.

Add the green beans to the onions, and toss or stir until beans are hot and thoroughly mixed with the caramelized onions.

Transfer the green bean/onion mixture to a serving platter, top with hot mushroom sauce, garnish with fresh minced parsley, and serve immediately. Serves 10.

Wild Mushroom Cream Sauce

2 ounces onion, small dice

1/2 pound assorted fresh wild mushrooms

1/2 cup butter

3/4 cup flour

1 quart milk

1/4 cup white wine

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon tabasco sauce or to taste

Salt and pepper, to taste

Sauté the onion and wild mushrooms in butter until soft but not browned. Blend in the flour and stir until evenly moist. Add the milk in stages, whisking after each addition, until smooth and lump-free. Add the wine, thyme and oregano; simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream and tabasco. Season with salt and pepper. Makes about 5 cups.

Source: Thom England, culinary instructor, Ivy Tech Community College.

Scalloped Yams with Praline Topping

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

6 medium yams (about 3 pounds), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds

1 1/2 cups heavy cream, heated

In a small bowl, using you fingers, work the brown sugar, butter and flour together until well combined, then work in the pecans. Set aside. (The praline topping can be prepared up to 8 hours ahead and stored at room temperature.)

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the yams and cook until just crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Do not overcook. They should be able to hold their shape when drained. Drain and rinse under cold running water.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Arrange the yams, overlapping in vertical rows, in the prepared dish. (The yams can be arranged in the baking dish up to 8 hours before baking, covered tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerated.)

Pour the cream over the yams. Bake for 20 minutes. Crumble the pecan mixture over the yams and continue baking until the yams are tender and the topping is browned, 20 to 30 more minutes. Serve hot. Makes 6 servings.

Source: “Thanksgiving 101″ by Rick Rodgers (Broadway, 1998).

AndyFood’s Cranberry-Cosmo Sauce

12 ounces fresh cranberries, rinsed

3/4 cup water

1/4 cup limeade concentrate

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup vodka (optional)

zest of 1 orange

zest of 1 lemon

Place cranberries, water, limeade and sugar in a medium pot. Cook uncovered over medium heat until the liquid boils. Stir occasionally.

When liquid boils, reduce heat and simmer until almost all cranberries have burst, about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Remove from heat and stir in vodka, if using. Cool and refrigerate until chilled.

Serve garnished with lemon and orange zest. Makes 6 servings.

Source: Andy Broder, chef/proprietor of AndyFood culinary studio, Scottsdale, Ariz.

Contributing: Karen Fernau, The Arizona Republic; Jolene Ketzenberger, The Indianapolis Star.

Ivy Tech (Indiana) Community College culinary instructor Allen Edwards created this Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing.

Ivy Tech (Indiana) Community College culinary instructor Allen Edwards created this Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing.


Frank Sutherland’s wine selections for Thanksgiving

For wines to serve at a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, Frank Sutherland, wine columnist and former editor of the Tennessean, recommends a gewurztraminer for the white and a pinot noir for the red. Fetzer Gewurztraminer, at $10.99, has consistently won his tastings with turkey, dressing and cranberry sauce, and the 2007 vintage was superb. The red that won this year was the 2006 Montoya Monterey Pinot Noir at $14.99.

Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

In 2010, a power surge fried a server that contained all of videos linked to dozens of stories in this archive. Also, a server that contained all of the databases for dozens of stories was accidentally erased, so all of those links are broken as well. However, all of the text and photos that accompanied some stories have been preserved.

For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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