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A Sweet and Savory Thanksgiving

A pair of local chefs gives us a subtle twist on two holiday favorites

Niels van Galen, the chef at Cotton Hollow Kitchen, says he likes this sweet potato recipe because it's light on the palate and pairs well with whatever else you're serving on Thanksgiving."

Orange & Sweet Potato Puree 

8 to 10 peeled sweet potatoes (cut into equal sized pieces) 

1 gallon orange Juice 

1 teaspoon dried ginger 

1 teaspoon cardamon 

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

White pepper and salt to taste 

2 tablespoons honey 

½ pound butter, cubed 

1 cup heavy cream 

Simmer sweet potatoes in orange juice until fork tender. Strain, season with ginger, cardamon, cayenne, salt, pepper and honey.  Add butter and heavy cream, and combine with a whisk until smooth. 

Ed Esneault, Chef De Cuisine at Big Night Entertainment Group, shares this traditional pie recipe and his secret for the flakiest crust! 

Pumpkin Pie 

For the pie filling

3 Eggs 

1 + ½ cup cooked sugar pumpkin puree

1 cup sugar 

½ teaspoon salt 

1 teaspoon  ground cinnamon 

½ teaspoon ground ginger 

¼ teaspoon ground cloves 

1+1/2 cups half and half 

½ tablespoon sugar 

Roll dough and place in pie pan. Cover the bottom with baking paper and add pie weight. Bake at 375 until dough is set but hasn’t started to color, about 12 minutes. Cool shell, remove weight and paper. Beat eggs lightly, stir in pumpkin puree. Mix first measure of sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Add to egg mixture. Stir in half-and-half and pour into shell. Sprinkle remaining sugar on top. Bake at 375, about 50 minutes or until filling has puffed slightly and is firm around edges. 

Flaky Pie Dough 

3 cups all-purpose flour 

1 teaspoon salt 

1 tablespoon sugar 

6 ounces cold, unsalted butter, cut into small cubes 

1/3 cup chilled shortening 

6-8 tablespoons ice cold water 

Combine flour, salt and sugar in a bowl. Add the cold butter and shortening and pinch the fat into the size of hazelnuts with your fingertips or a pastry blender. Add the ice water and mix with your hands just until dough comes together, the butter should still be lumpy. Gather the dough into a ball. Flatten into a disk to help it chill faster. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for at least one hour. The pie dough should rest an additional 30 minutes after it is rolled out to prevent shrinkage as it bakes. 

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