Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

My menu is such a tease. I made nothing on last week’s On the Menu except for chicken cacciatore on Sunday night and my Thanksgiving dishes – Nantucket cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, and maple pecan pie. I should have known. We had plenty of leftover chicken cacciatore, Jim’s venison meatloaf and Thanksgiving leftovers too.

Jim’s sister gave me some turkey wings and other assorted parts, scraps, and bones to take home along with turkey, stuffing, and potatoes. I roasted the bones and wings, made a stock with them, and then made a delicious turkey gravy for our Thanksgiving leftovers. The house smelt heavenly yesterday.

Turkey stock simmering on the stove | Grabbing the Gusto

Turkey stock simmering on the stove | Grabbing the Gusto

Tonight, I swear, I’m finally making Pinch of Yum’s Healthy Mushroom Alfredo Pasta Bake. It’s healthy because her recipe uses cauliflower cream – that’s “cream” made from cauliflower, garlic, chicken broth, and milk – instead of lots of heavy cream and cheese. I’m adapting her recipe by adding onions, spinach, and chicken sausage to the mix.

I’m thinking about using a been-around-too-long head of Napa cabbage for a warm cabbage salad with carrot, sweet potato, fennel, dried cranberries, walnuts, and a warm walnut oil vinaigrette that may have some bacon in it. It’s all one big experiment, so you’ll only hear about it again if it passes muster.

We’ll have leftovers of the pasta bake for sure so that will be dinner again another night along with some CSA green veggies.

It’s been a long time since I’ve made chicken cranberry parmesan. It looks like a weird recipe but I love it so we’ll have that this week too. Cranberries. Say no more. Good news: because we have so much venison meat, we’re getting a chest freezer on Tuesday. Guess what I’ll be stocking up on? Yup, more cranberries.

Nantucket cranberry sauce | Grabbing the Gusto

Nantucket cranberry sauce | Grabbing the Gusto

And maybe this Friday, I’ll finally make Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala from Simple Nourished Living. I know, I know, I said that last week but I think it will really happen this time.

If you want to see what other dishes I’m thinking about, check out my Pinterest boards.

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