There is so much in life to be thankful for and the recognition of our blessings should be a daily habit.
photograph via Aubergine Photography
Recognizing all that we have and enjoy is one way to add happiness and contentment to our lives. Being grateful takes quiet reflection–something often overlooked in our contemporary world.
Perhaps that is why Thanksgiving is such an important holiday. Whether or not you live in the United States or not, Thanksgiving reminds us to gather together and formally celebrate the richness of our lives.
photograph via Momtoob
I love the fall, so it’s natural to find inspiration in harvest and seasonal colors.
photograph via countrybouquetfloral
This simple bouquet was created using a rich palate of natural hues–orange protea, kale, purple beautyberry, orange twigs, crabapples, artichokes, blackberries, lavender, grass, rosemary and leaves.
Lavender adds a subtle earthy taste to poultry. Years ago, I discovered William-Sonoma’s Herbs of Provence–a lavender seasonings which combines natural flavors from Southern France.
This earthy seasoning contains a blend of thyme, basil, savory, fennel and lavender. It is a must-have for our family’s Thanksgiving feast.
This Herbes de Provence Roast Turkey recipe annually graces our Thanksgiving table.
1 fresh or thawed frozen turkey, about 16 lb.
1 yellow onion, quartered
2 celery stalks, cut into 2-inch lengths
3 or 4 fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs
2 to 3 Tbs. herbes de Provence
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 to 6 Tbs. (1/2 to 3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
Let the turkey stand at room temperature for 1 hour. Do not leave the turkey at room temperature longer than 1 hour.Position a rack in the lower third of an oven and preheat to 425°F.
Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey and reserve for making gravy, if desired.
Rinse the turkey inside and out with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place the onion, celery, parsley and 1 Tbs. of the herbes de Provence in the body cavity, and season with salt and pepper. If desired, truss the turkey with kitchen twine. Brush the turkey with some of the melted butter. Sprinkle with the remaining herbes de Provence and season with salt and pepper.
Place the turkey, breast side down, on a buttered roasting rack in a large roasting pan. Roast for 30 minutes, basting with some of the remaining butter after 15 minutes. Using 2 pairs of tongs or heat-resistant kitchen gloves or mitts, turn the turkey breast side up and reduce the oven temperature to 325°F. Continue roasting, basting with the remaining butter and pan juices every 15 to 20 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, away from the bone, registers 165°F, and into the thigh, 175°F.
Total roasting time should be 3 to 3 3/4 hours.Transfer the turkey to a warmed platter, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for about 20 minutes before carving. Serves 12.
Grind first 2 ingredients in processor until lavender is finely chopped. DO AHEAD: Lavender sugar can be made 1 month ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Generously butter large rimmed baking sheet. Toss pears, lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons lavender sugar in large bowl. Transfer pears, 1 cut side down, to baking sheet. Roast 20 minutes. Turn pears, placing other cut side down. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lavender sugar; roast 20 minutes. Turn pears, skin side down. Preheat broiler. Sprinkle pears with 1 tablespoon lavender sugar. Broil until pears begin to caramelize, about 8 minutes. Arrange berries around pears; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lavender sugar. Broil until berries begin to release juice, about 5 minutes.
Divide pears, berries, and juice among bowls. Top with dollop of ricotta and serve.