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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Craving Thanksgiving?

It's November. The weather's chilly. My furnace can't seem to figure out when it's supposed to come on. My feet are cold (must be those threadbare socks). There's something about holiday foods that just warms you from the inside out...:-)

While spending the day bent over the stove is not my idea of a fun time, I am craving some of those Thanksgiving treats.

I last made this roast for Christmas last year, and it was so yummy. Rave reviews from all our guests. I've got a pork roast in the freezer, might be time to fill the house with some crockpot cooking.

Cranberry Pork Roast (original recipe from Mable Hoffman's Crockery Cooking 1995)

1 (3-4 lb.) boneless or loin pork roast
salt and pepper to taste
1 c ground or finely chopped cranberries (my blender does a fabulous job)
1/4 c honey
1 tsp. freshly grated orange peel
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1/8 freshly grated nutmeg

Sprinkle roast with salt and pepper. Place in a slow cooker. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients; pour over roast. Cover and cook on LOW 8-10 hours or until roast is tender. Slice and serve hot.

Notes: The original recipe puts this at 6-8 servings...that's 1/2 lb of meat per person! You could serve many more especially with all your sides (my dressing is a meal in itself!). The last time I made this I did not have grated orange peel or the nutmeg...I skipped them and it came out fabulous anyway! Experiment with the seasoning. It also works well with pork chops.

The original recipe does not suggest it, but this makes an incredible gravy!
  • When the roast is done, take it out and put it under a foil tent to stay hot.
  • Raise your crock temp to HIGH.
  • In a small bowl, mix a couple of heaping tbs. of cornstarch with an equal amount of water (or used liquid from the pot).
  • Carefully whisk the cornstarch mixture into the liquid in the crock.
  • Heat and stir occasionally until it thickens, about 10 mins. (If it's not as thick as you like, repeat).

And what about that dressing that's a meal in itself? OK, this is a special treat, because I have never posted this recipe, or given it to anybody or anything:

Susan's Once a Year Dressing (feeds a whole house full)

1 bag of Pepperidge Farm herbed bread cubes for stuffing (or, cube and dry a loaf of homemade bread)
1 bag of Pepperidge Farm cornbread stuffing (or crumble and dry a pan of cornbread---lay it out on a cookie sheet and dry in a slow oven)
1 stick melted butter
2 Tbsp. butter
2-3 cans of broth (veg or chicken, or I also use homemade-the amount here will depend on how wet you like your dressing)
1 lb. bulk sage sausage
1 large onion, finely chopped
2-3 stalks celery, finely chopped
8 - 12oz fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
1-2 cups walnut pieces
poultry seasoning (1-2 tsps, more or less)

You will need a huge bowl to mix this in (think 4- 5 quarts).

Pour your bread cubes and cornbread crumbs into your huge bowl.

Saute the onion and celery together in a large skillet in a couple Tbsps. butter until wilted and just starting to brown. Remove from pan and pour into your huge bowl.

Brown the sausage in the pan you sauteed the veg in. Drain and add to your bowl.

Saute your shrooms until they are completely sweated and have started to brown. Throw in your bowl.

Add the remaining ingredients (add the broth/stock last, one can at a time so you get the right consistency). Mix well. Pick up the bits that fell on the counter and put them back in the bowl. Mix again.

Pour into a greased 13 x 9 pan. Cover with foil. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, remove the foil and bake another 15 or so minutes until it is brown on top.

All the amounts are adjustable in this recipe, and if you don't like mushrooms or nuts, leave them out.

Linking this up to MamaBuzz's Thanksgiving Recipe Exchange...check it out, there are some great giveaways.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds yummy~loving the dressing~and hey, instead of sausage, ever try cooking chicken on top? Chicken cooked on top of dressing is delish and I guess the way to best make this work would be do decrease the liquid just a bit...THANKS for sharing~made me hungry! hugs!!


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