Thanksgiving is less than a week away. For many, especially here at AVEC, this Thanksgiving is the first Thanksgiving gathering since before life-before-COVID. If you and friends or family members did happen to gather last year, chances are the chaotic planning ahead of the big feast was less about who is going to bring the green beans and more about “have you gotten tested?” This year it seems that Turkey Day will be a more relaxed gathering, offering us a moment to time to let ourselves indulge in the simple pleasures of baked goods, home cooked meals, and d*amn good drinks. Below are the three ways the AVEC team will be baking, drinking, and cooking this holiday.
1. Bake with AVEC: Spiced Ginger Squash Loaf
Yes, you can even bake with AVEC. Brand fan and side-hustle chef, Mia W, combines squash avec ginger for a delicious, unexpected glazed treat.
1 can AVEC Ginger
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 ½ tsp ground ginger*
1 ½ tsp ground nutmeg (*or you can substitute 2 tbsp of pumpkin pie spice for all of the cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg)
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup lightly packed brown sugar
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
¼ cup olive oil
2 large eggs
¼ cup yogurt
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups peeled and shredded butternut squash
½ cup pecans, roughly chopped (optional)
¼ cup golden raisins, roughly chopped (optional)
For the glaze:
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp maple syrup
¾ cup powdered sugar
2 tsp of the concentrated AVEC mixture
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 ½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9 x 5 loaf pan (or line the pan with parchment paper).
- Add the can of AVEC Ginger in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until it has darkened and concentrated and reduced at least by half, about 10-15 minutes. You’ll use about 2 tsp for the glaze, and the rest for the bread. Let cool and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices and stir to combine. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix sugars, olive oil and butter until well incorporated. Add eggs one at a time, beating to blend after each addition until light and fluffy. You can use a mixer for this but you don’t have to. Add yogurt, vanilla, shredded squash and the reduced AVEC Ginger (except for the reserved 2 tsp to use for the glaze, which you can keep in the small saucepan) and blend. Add flour and mix until just combined (try not to overmix). If adding nuts and raisins, add them at this point.
- Pour batter into a buttered prepared loaf pan. Bake, rotating the pan halfway through, until the top is dark and crackly and a toothpick comes out clean, about 60-70 minutes. Let cool completely.
- While the bread is cooking, make the glaze: in the small saucepan you used to reduce the AVEC, add the butter and maple syrup and melt over medium heat. Take off heat and whisk in powdered sugar and spices. Drizzle over the bread.
2. Drinks as Dessert: Apple Pie-in-a-Glass
Why eat apple pie when you could drink apple pie? We have crafted a cocktail with Du Nord Social Spirits Apple Liqueur that tastes like grandma blended up her famous apple pie and served it up in a cocktail glass with Thanksgiving dinner. Read below for the recipe and to learn more about America’s first Black-owned distillery.
3. Kitchen goods to Impress Any Mother-in-Law: Cooking with Kana Goods and Moonflower Co.
Do you ever feel like family shows up at your house on Thanksgiving just to judge and snoop through your home (looking at you, Mother-in-Law!)? If you want to impress your grandmother, mother-in-law, and whomever else just can’t help from casting a judging eye in the kitchen, bring out the Kana cast-iron cookware. The Milo collection in particular will not only impress even the toughest of critics but will also help make your Thanksgiving meal taste even that more spectacular. The cookware is visually-pleasing enough to serve food out of, plus every pan is sustainably-made and on a day of gluttony, a little sustainability goes a long way.
To accompany your ethically-made cookware, you need to treat yourself and your guests to ethically-sourced saffron. This splendid little spice is the secret to adding a unique flavor to your otherwise traditional Thanksgiving dishes. We recommend a tomato soup with Moonflower saffron or adding saffron to your blend of herbal seasonings for your turkey. Your guests will be left intrigued and delighted by the spice that they just can’t quite pinpoint.
With these three recommendations, you certainly are ready to host a better-for-you Thanksgiving this year. We can only hope that this year’s gathering will be made up of great laughs, drinks, and eats. Cheers to eating better, drinking better, and being better.