One day, in the distant and intangible future, I will most likely be an adult with a family, a house and frequent flier miles. Adulthood is a period in my life that I am really looking forward to because I am going to be AWESOME. My awesomeness, in all its geeky glory, will mostly manifest in my interpretation and execution of holiday events. Luckily for you and for this site (which likes to present topical information and not just my unprompted ramblings for some reason) Thanksgiving presents the perfect opportunity to maturely let your geek flag fly while gorging down pie (maturely because infants should not operate ovens).
SO! Here is a mini-Thanksgiving cookbook for the Martha Stewart magazines we have next to our pile of comics. I’ve compiled most of the recipes from a trip I took around the Internet on the Google express. In other words, none of the recipes are mine (unless you’d like my special college ramen noodle and peanut butter and jelly recipe) and the links to the blogs that they came from will be included in the article. Be sure to check them out because some of the things these food geniuses came up with are MUST tries.
Pentoshi Honey Duck w/orange snap peppers
Okay so it’s not turkey, but at one point it most likely had feathers. The first dish comes from the A Song of Ice and Fire series, which Leia, Kimmie and I have read and love enough to make a strange squeaking noise whenever it is mentioned (ok, maybe only I do that). The ladies over at The Inn at The Crossroads are attempting to create every delicious dish mentioned in the series. If you have ever seen George R. R. Martin, you know that he looks like King Henry the VIII, if the English King had ever taken a seasonal position as a mall Santa. This means that he talks about feasting A LOT in the five books that he has released so far. Be sure to check out the site if you are a fan of the series or if you just like food drenched in butter.
Honey Duck Recipe
Cook’s Notes: Once you have picked your duck clean at dinner, consider boiling down what’s left for an incredible broth. It adds depth and richness to any dish; we turned ours into a risotto that was out of this world!
- 1 (4 pound) whole duck, rinsed
- 1 tsp cardamom
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger root, or powdered ginger
- pinch of white pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 orange, quartered
For the sauce
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- pinch of Aleppo pepper
- several thin slices of lemongrass (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a small bowl mix together mix together the cardamom, ginger and salt and sprinkle mixture on inside and outside of duck. Stuff duck with orange quarters and lay in roaster. Add water.
- In a small saucepan combine the honey, butter, lemon juice and orange juice concentrate. Simmer together over low heat until syrupy; pour a little of the mixture over the duck, saving the rest for a sauce. Cover roaster.
- Bake/roast ducks in preheated oven for 30 minutes. Turn duck breast down, reduce heat to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C) and roast covered for another 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until very tender. If desired, turn duck breast up during last few minutes of cooking, to brown.
Request: Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess – Yeto’s Soup
I’m really not familiar with Zelda at all, except that I know that I’d rather take a bowl of this soup with me on a dangerous and lonely quest than a sword. Yes, I’m clearly the Sam of the Fellowship and I’m PERFECTLY fine with that. The soup was created by blogger at Gourmet Gaming in England that runs a site which makes dishes from video games. There’s a delicious looking Amazing Apple Pie from Fable II, though if you eat it you may become fat and no one will marry you (Fable made me very insecure).
What you will need:
A large pot, grater, baking tray, frying pan, baking tray, blender or hand blender.
For the Soup:
50g / ¼ Cup Butter
300g / 0.7lbs Pumpkin (Skinned and Choppped)
200g / 0.5lbs Sweet Potato (Skinned and Chopped)
2 Shallots (Chopped)
1 Small Clove Garlic
½ Teaspoon Grated Ginger
500ml / 2 Cups Vegetable/Chicken Stock
1-2 Tablespoons Goats Cheese
70 ml / ½ Cup Cream
75g / ½ Cup Smoked Haddock
75g / ½ Cup Pollock
Salt & Pepper
For the Pumpkin Garnish:
3 Pumpkin Wedges
1 Tablespoon Butter
Salt & Pepper
½ Teaspoon Dried Chilli Flakes
For the Potato Croutons:
1 Medium Potato
Salt & Pepper
For the Carrot Tops:
5 Small carrots (Stalks On)
1 Tablespoon Butter
Preparing the Soup:
- In a large pot on a medium heat melt the butter. Add the shallots, garlic and ginger and cook until soft. Add the pumpkin and sweet potato chunks and stir well, allowing to cook for another 10 minutes.
- Pour in the vegetable/chicken stock, bring to the boil and simmer until the pumpkin and sweet potato has cooked through. Once cooked transfer to a clean bowl and blend (or use a blender). Return the soup to a clean pot, if it’s too thick then slowly add more vegetable stock until the desired texture is achieved. Set the soup aside while you prepare the garnishes.
Making the Pumpkin Slices:
- Preheat the oven to 200C/392F. Chop the pumpkin wedges into chunks and lay them onto a baking tray, cover with the butter, season and add the chilli flakes. Cook until soft and golden.
Making the Potato Croutons:
- Dice the potato into small cubes and heat some olive oil in a frying pan on a medium heat. Add the potatoes and season to taste, fry until crisp and golden brown.
Making the Carrot Tops:
- Heat the butter in a frying pan on a medium heat. Add the carrots and allow to cook until slightly soft.
Finishing the Soup:
- In a warm frying pan add a little olive oil and heat. Add the smoked haddock and pollock and fry for 1 minute. Pour in the cream and season with salt and pepper, allow the fish to cook for about 5 minutes in the cream.
- Once the fish has cooked pour the cream mixture into the pumpkin soup, add the goats cheese and stir gently. Warm the soup through on a low heat so the goats cheese can melt.
- Serve and garnish with the potato croutons, roast pumpkin slices and glazed carrot tops.
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion – “S’Jirra’s Famous Potato Bread” with a Nirnroot Salad Recipe
As hard as I tried, I could not find a recipe from Skyrim. So here’s another recipe from the gourmet gamer to hold you over until the internet at large catches up with the times.
What you will need:
Large baking tray, a pot, two large mixing bowls, a sieve and a little oil for greasing.
For the Potato Bread:
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 ½ Teaspoons Salt
2 Tablespoons Sugar
225g Mashed Potatoes (approx. 2 medium potatoes)
400g Strong Bread Flour
1 ½ Teaspoons Fast Action Yeast
For the Nirnroot Salad:
½ A Fennel Bulb
For the Dressing:
50 ml Olive Oil
4 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
Making the Potato Bread:
- Peel and boil approx. 2 medium potatoes that are suitable for mashing – I used Vivaldi baking potatoes. Once mashed, do not add anything to them!
- In a pot, gently heat the water, milk and butter until the butter melts.
- Pour the mixture into a large bowl and add the salt, sugar and mashed potato. Mix thoroughly until the sugar has dissolved.
- Sieve in half of the flour (200g) and mix well to form a kind of paste.
- Once the mixture is lukewarm sprinkle in the yeast and mix thoroughly again.
- Sieve the remaining 200g of flour in and mix until a ball of dough forms.
- Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and kneed for 10 minutes until it is soft, smooth and no longer sticky. This may take a while, and you will have to re-flour the surface several times but keep at it and it will come together.
- Grease a large bowl with a little oil, place the ball of dough inside top surface down, then turn it over so that both sides are lightly coated in oil.
- Cover the bowl with a damp tea-towel, put a plate on top and set in a warm place to rise for about 40-45 minutes.
- Once the dough has risen and doubled in size – grease a large baking tray.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a floured surface. Punch back the dough to knock out any air.
- Form the dough into the desired shape, a kind of rustic bloomer, slice the top several times across to create the pattern and place on the prepared greased tray.
- Leave in a warm place again for 40-45 minutes.
- Once doubled in size – pre-heat the oven to 190C.
- Sprinkle a little flour over the dough and cook in the oven for 35-40 minutes until the loaf turns a golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
Preparing the Dressing:
- Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper together and stir well.
Preparing the Salad:
- Wash and dry the Rocket, Baby Spinach, Watercress and Parsley.
- Wash the Fennel and trim the base, then slice it in to fine strips and add to the salad.
- Pour the dressing over the salad and mix well until all the leaves are coated.
- Finely grate some parmigiano-reggiano over the salad.
If you don’t know what it is, then you have nothing to be thankful for this year. Hobbits eat it. Now go buy the special editions of Lord of the Rings and educate yourself. Hell, the bluray set is going to be 50 bucks on Black Friday on wbshop.com so go take care of this ignorance right now.
6 TBSP butter or margarine, slightly softened
2 cups self-rising flour
1 TBSP granulated sugar
½ cup raisins (optional)
1 egg, well beaten
½ cup milk
4 TBSP heavy cream
With a pastry blender of fork, cut margarine into the flour in a mixing bowl until the mixture resembles cornmeal. Do this rapidly so the butter does not melt. Add the sugar and if desired, ½ cup of raisins. In a small bowl, beat the egg and milk together until mixed. Reserve 1 TBSP of this mixture to brush the tops of the Lembas. Add the cream and egg mixture to the flour and mix just until combined into a stiff, soft dough. Knead three or four times on a lightly floured surface. Roll dough to a ¾” thickness and cut with an oval or leaf shaped cookie cutter. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet, leaving 1″ of space between Lembas. Brush the tops of the Lembas with the reserved egg-milk mixture. Bake for 12 -13 minutes in a preheated 400 degree oven.
For safe keeping, wrap each Lembas individually in a fresh, clean Mallorn leaf. If these leaves are unavailable in your area, store the Lembas in a tightly closed container. Makes about 1 ½ dozen Lembas.
Here’s a good instruction guide on making the leaves: HERE
A favorite of many a Hogwarts student, these nummy treats were served on the Hogwarts express. I’m pretty much a fan of anything pumpkin and I’ll be making these when my baking skills catch up to my eating skills. These were created by the Geeky chef, who has made a number of dishes from several very different fandoms.
2 eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups fresh sugar pumkin (or 1lb. canned)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tbs. melted butter
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/2 t. allspice
1 can evaporated milk
9 oz. pie crust pastry (enough for two single standard pie crusts)
Add eggs and sugar to a mixing bowl and mix until well blended. Stir in the pumpkin, butter, salt and spices. Add evaporated milk and mix well. Bake the filling in a large casserole dish that has been buttered or sprayed with pam. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees and continue baking for 45 minutes or until your fork comes out clean. Let the filling cool completely. Make or purchase pie crust pastry. Roll pastry thin and cut into circles about 4 inches in diameter. Put a spoonful of the pumpkin mixture towards one side of the center of the circle. Fold over the crust into a half-circle and firmly crimp the edges closed. Cut with a paring knife three small slits in the top for venting. Place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees only until crust is a light golden brown, around 10 minutes. Dust with cinnamon and serve at room temperature.