Tag Archives: thanksgiving

Sunday Meatballs and Gravy

This is a meatball post. But it’s also a Thanksgiving post. You wouldn’t think the two go together right?

Cupcakes for Breakfast: Sunday Meatballs and Gravy

My family is celebrating Thanksgiving this year in the Outer Banks. We’ll have two big houses, about 30 adults, and a lot of food. Of course we’re looking forward to the deep-fried turkeys and the corn pudding, but that’s only for one meal, maybe two, if we’re lucky to have leftovers.

But mostly we’re lucky enough to have several amazing meals to look forward to over Thanksgiving weekend. First, let me say, it’s not really about the food. We’re a big happy bunch even eating simple ham sandwiches and potato salad from the grocery store. We’re a big Italian family, so food and family are one in the same. We also happen to be a family where everyone is a great cook and everyone appreciates good food. So the kitchen is really the best place to be during family holidays.

Cupcakes for Breakfast: Sunday Meatballs and Gravy

One of my favorite dishes that my family shares over Thanksgiving weekend are meatballs. I love my Aunt Lisanne’s recipe in which the meatballs are made with white bread soaked in milk and then baked slowly. We make dozens of them and they’re in the kitchen to grab and make a plate or a sandwich whenever you arrive to the house, are hungry, or just want to keep stuffing your face. Games and reading and crafts and football are happening all around. People are weaving in and out of rooms. “Did you see the basement yet?” But the meatballs anchor us. They’re just part of the family. Part of the rhythm. Grab your plate and pull up to the table and catch up with your cousin or in-law who lives 10 hours away. Belly laugh. Go for seconds.

This is the part of Thanksgiving I’m most thankful for.

Cupcakes for Breakfast: Sunday Meatballs and Gravy

I’ve talked to a few friends recently about feeling “Sunday sad.” Maybe we get it because the weekend is over and the stress of Monday lurks ahead. Maybe we’ve been running at full speed for the past six days, that when we finally slow down we succumb to feelings we’ve pushed aside. No matter the reason, we should deal with it. And my favorite way to do so, is to make the food that feels like a hug and I’m surrounded by love. That’s Thanksgiving meatballs. That’s Sunday meatballs and gravy.

I have my own more simple and quicker version of my aunt’s meatballs that I love to make early on a Sunday. (There’s almost as good!) Get them made early, leave on stove, take care of other Sunday duties, take care of myself a little, have some meatballs, watch episodes of Scandal, call home, have a little more meatballs, soak up gravy with bread. Feel the love.

Cupcakes for Breakfast: Sunday Meatballs and Gravy

It goes a little something like this….

In a large bowl combine 1/4 cup grated parmesan, 1/4 cup chopped parsley, 2 minced garlic cloves, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Add 1 pound ground beef and 1/4 cup breadcrumbs. Mix gently and form into about 15 balls. In a Dutch oven, heat some olive oil over medium heat. Add meatballs, and cook, turning occasionally, until browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Add 2 large cans of crushed tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, then cover partially, and cook, stirring occasionally, until meatballs are cooked through, about 10 minutes. Leave on stove on low until ready to eat. Serve with crusty Italian bread and extra Parmesan.

Three Thanksgiving Tables

We had Thanksgiving this year at my aunt and uncle’s house with 26 people. It was a big crowd so we needed three tables for dinner and I had the fun pleasure of decorating the tables. The first table featured velvet leaves and fruit, the second had more elegant natural elements, and the kids table had playful bright leaves and pumpkins. I loved that each one had its own unique feel but they all went together. They were the perfect warm backdrops for a plate piled high with corn pudding, stuffing, sweet potatoes, and turkey.

thanksgiving table 2012 with velvet leaves and fruitThanksgiving table 2012 natural leaves fruitthanksgiving table 2012 purple orange leaves

I also have to thank my cousins Tori and Mimi for helping and my mom for always having so many craft supplies around. I love that this is a whole family holiday from the table to the desserts!

Daily Inspiration

 thankful for what's ahead

Good morning and hello Monday. I’m struggling to start this week off, but I’m looking forward to a great week with family. This is just the beginning of the best time of year. Many things to be thankful for. So many undiscovered adventures ahead to look forward to.

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Our Thanksgiving Table

I wanted to share some scenes from our lovely Thanksgiving table. Most everyone asked me what I was baking, but unlike last year, I kept the sugar in the pantry and instead helped with other tasks. (My aunt brought all of the amazing desserts including a fantastic blueberry pie!)

I set and decorated our tables in purple and gold, with a fruit-filled cornucopia centerpiece and shimmering candles. My mom made beautiful “I am thankful” tags, which each person filled out and hung on the chandelier. For a veggie platter, I took a tip from Martha and wrapped glass bowls in cabbage leaves and made dip bowls from radicchio heads. I loved how this spread turned out! We all noshed on veggies while watching my older brother deep fry a turkey. This was the first year we’ve done this and it was a huge hit. We didn’t burn down the house and we had a lot of fun with it too. After the turkey was done, we deep fried some cranberry sauce…yes, cranberry sauce…and those little “pies” were just incredible.

I had a really nice Thanksgiving with family and friends and I hope you did too. So take a peak…

Thanksgiving table veggiesThanksgiving frying fried turkey cranberryThanksgiving table gold purple fruit