• Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Thanksgiving Recipes

A Galavante Thanksgiving
By , CYJ Contributor
November 21, 2012

Whether you’re the Griswolds or the Rockwells, Thanksgiving is a time of year to appreciate all that you have. At Galavante, our philosophy is a marathon runner’s, not a sprinter’s and we start the festivities out with champagne and a long cocktail hour, which somehow doesn’t spoil our dinner. Next up is a chess tournament and puzzle that even the family naysayers enjoy. Then there’s the afternoon graze on seafood in honor of the first Thanksgiving dinner, albeit with a modern spin. The king crab dip is usually the highlight, so Galavante has included the recipe below, along with a full menu of our favorite dishes.

King Crab Dip and Crudités


Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 15–30 minutes

1 1/2 to 2 lbs fresh king crab, in shell
1 Meyer lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
4–6 shallots, depending upon taste, finely chopped
2 sticks Neufchâtel cream cheese
1/2 container low-fat sour cream
10 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons butter
4–6 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs
Cayenne pepper
Fleur de sel
Bread, crudités, and chips


The key to this dish is the fresh king crab, which is worth the effort and cost.

Yield: 6–8

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. To prepare the king crab, de-shell and allow water/juices to drain into a colander.  Squeeze a quarter of the Meyer lemon on the crab. Next, in a medium deep skillet, sauté the shallots in olive oil over medium heat for 4 minutes or until they just start to brown. Add the Neufchâtel cheese and blend well with the shallots. Add the sour cream, and continue to stir, ideally with a spatula. 

When the cream cheese and sour cream are blended with the shallots, add the paprika and cayenne pepper to taste and a generous sprinkle of the fleur de sel. Next, fold in the crab and 7 tablespoons of the Parmesan cheese. Squeeze the rest of the Meyer lemon (or your preferred amount) into the crab mixture, followed by 4–5 tablespoons of chive snipped directly in. 

Transfer the dip into an oven-proof, lightly greased flat dish. Spread the dip evenly throughout the dish. For the top layer, melt the butter in a skillet and add the breadcrumbs, stirring until lightly toasted. Add in the remainder of the Parmesan cheese and spread the mixture evenly over the top of the dip. Heat the crab dip in the oven for 20–25 minutes if refrigerated overnight or 10 minutes if cooking immediately. Switch the oven to broil and allow the top to brown for 3–4 minutes. Serve immediately with fresh French bread, crudités, or even potato chips.

Mulled Wine


Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 3 minutes

2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks
5 star anise
3 black peppercorns
4 whole cloves
2 allspice berries
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1 bottle dry red wine
1 orange, thinly sliced
1 lemon, thinly sliced


Warm up for the feast with a cup of spiced wine – the perfect accessory to a hearty meal.

Yield:  8–10

Wrap cinnamon sticks, star anise, peppercorns, cloves, and allspice in cheesecloth and secure with a string. In a 5-quart pot, bring sugar and water to boil, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Add spice bag, wine, and fruit. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Keep warm for service.  

Butternut Squash Soup with Dried Cranberries and Crème Fraîche


Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 1 hour

2 lbs butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4–5 cups chicken or vegetable stock, heated
2 tablespoons dried, sweetened cranberries or cherries; minced
4 tablespoons crème fraîche or goat cheese, if desired
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste


Thanksgiving dinner can be quite the undertaking, so incorporating dishes like this soup, which can be made several days in advance, is the perfect solution.

Yield: 4

Preheat oven to 425˚F. Place squash on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Drizzle olive oil on top and toss squash until coated. Season well with salt and pepper. Bake until tender, about 50–60 minutes. Remove and cool for 5 minutes. Place half of squash in the bowl of a food processor. Add 1 cup of stock and purée until smooth. Add another 1–1 1/2 cups of stock depending on desired consistency of soup. Repeat process with rest of squash and stock. To serve, reheat soup on stove, pour into individual bowls, and garnish with dried cranberries and crème fraîche.

Roast Turkey with Apple and Sage


Prep time: 30 minutes
Inactive cook time: 1 hour
Cook time: 3 hours 30 minutes

1 (14 to 15-pound) turkey (brined – see procedure below)
10 fresh sage leaves
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 orange, halved
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, end trimmed
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 medium red onions, peeled and quartered
3 medium Pink Lady apples, cored and halved
Freshly ground black pepper


The star of the show gets a little upgrade with sweet Pink Lady apples and earthy sage.

Yield: 8–10

Preheat oven to 500˚F. Remove turkey from refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature. Discard giblets, but reserve the neck. Rinse turkey (including cavity) and pat dry. Carefully separate the skin and slide the sage leaves underneath. Brush the turkey all over with the melted butter and season generously with salt and pepper (including the cavity). Squeeze one half of the lemon and orange over the turkey and put the other halves inside the cavity with the garlic.

Place the turkey in a large, racked roasting pan and roast until the skin turns golden brown, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce temperature to 350˚F. Place the neck, onions, and apples in a bowl, coat with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Arrange in roasting pan around turkey. Return to oven and baste with pan drippings every 30 minutes. Roast turkey until the internal temperature of the inner thigh reads 160˚F. Remove from the oven and place turkey on cutting board and leave, uncovered, at least 30 minutes.

Do not discard drippings from roasting pan – this will be used to make gravy (recipe below). Remove apples and the onions to a serving platter. Carve the turkey and arrange on the serving platter. 

Turkey Gravy


Turkey drippings
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour 
5 cups chicken broth
2 cups apple juice
3 fresh sage leaves
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper


Add chicken broth, apple juice, and sage leaves to a sauce pot and bring to a simmer.

Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the turkey roasting pan. Heat the pan over medium-high and sprinkle in the flour. Cook about 4 minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the flour browns slightly. Gradually add the hot broth, whisking constantly to prevent lumps. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low. Simmer, whisking occasionally, until the gravy thickens, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. 

Grandmama's Mashed Potatoes


5 large russet potatoes
1 1/2 sticks of butter
Approximately 4 cups of skim or 2% milk
1/2 cup heavy cream or half and half
Table salt
Fleur de sel


Yield: Serves 6–8

What makes these mashed potatoes Grandmama-style is the perfect imperfection of the potatoes, whose strategic lumps and skin makes this recipe interesting. Also, skip the yukons and go for the old fashioned russets, just like Grandmama did.

Peel the potatoes, leaving some of the skin.  Cover potatoes in heavy pot with just enough water to fully submerge.  Add 6–7 tablespoons of salt and bring to a boil. Immediately lower heat and continue to simmer until potatoes are very tender and fully cooked, about 20–25 minutes.  Drain well. 

Pass potatoes through a food mill or potato ricer, leaving some lumps and skin on the potatoes.  Heat milk and cream with about 3 tablespoons of fleur de sel until just simmering. Over low heat, slowly add 1/2 cup milk at a time to the potatoes until absorbed, stirring gently with a spatula.  The secret to the potatoes is slow cooking, allowing the milk to absorb, and constant stirring, almost like a risotto.  When you have only half-cup milk left, add in the butter a quarter stick at a time, alternating with the milk.  Finish with the remaining butter and cream, and salt with the fleur de sel to taste.  Potatoes may be made up to 2 hours ahead of time and reheated when you are ready to feast. 

Brioche and French Bread Stuffing


1 loaf of Brioche bread, cubed, preferably one day old
1 loaf of French bread, cubed, preferably one day old
1 1/2 pounds trumpet and shitake mushrooms
1 medium to large yellow onion, finely chopped
4–5 ribs of celery, chopped
4–5 tablespoons fresh rosemary
3–4 tablespoons fresh thyme
4 tablespoons fresh parsley
3–4 cups of organic chicken broth
1 1/2 sticks of butter, melted
Fleur de sel
Olive oil


This is a decadent stuffing whose secret is quite simple.  It’s the combination of two different types of bread – brioche and French – plus exotic mushrooms.  Our family members love this recipe so much they request it at Christmas again.  

Heat oven to 350˚F and lightly toast the cubed brioche and French bread, about 8–10 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with fleur de sel; and about 1 tablespoon each of the rosemary, parsley, and thyme. Set aside. 

In a very large skillet, sauté the mushrooms, taking care not to crowd them in the pan, otherwise they will not brown.  As soon as the mushrooms are brown, set them aside in a bowl. 

In the same skillet, add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and heat 1 minute; add the onion and sauté until just translucent, about 4 minutes.  Add in the celery and continue to cook another 3–4 minutes until celery and onion are almost softened.  With a spatula, fold in the toasted bread and mushrooms, including the mushroom juices.   Add in all the herbs except for the parsley.  Mix your sea salt to taste into the chicken broth, and pour the chicken broth over the bread mixture, about ½ cup at a time until fully absorbed.  The stuffing should very moist but there should not be excess liquid in the pan.  Add the melted butter and parsley and stir well.

Fold the stuffing mixture into a buttered baking dish and cover with tin foil.  Bake about 35 minutes, uncovering in the last 8–10 minutes so that the stuffing will brown on top.  Stuffing can be made up to four to five hours in advance and reheated before dinner.  Reserve extra chicken broth to moisten stuffing if necessary.  


Not Your Childhood Brussels Sprouts


2 lbs Brussels sprouts, or about 6 for each person you plan to serve, cut in half
3 shallots, finely chopped
5 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons water
Fleur de sel to taste


Many of us have severe childhood trauma from being coerced to eat frozen Brussels sprouts. We were skeptical too, until we had this recipe at a dinner party about 9 years ago. Since then, we have been addicted.

Heat the olive oil in a large pan, and sauté the shallots about 4 minutes.  Crank up the heat to high flame and add the Brussels sprouts, sprinkling fleur de sel on top.  Brown the Brussels sprouts over high heat, about 4 minutes.  Once browned, turn down the heat, and add the water.  Cover and let them cook until slightly softened but still crisp, about 4 minutes.  Sprouts can be set aside up to 4 hours in advance and reheated right before the meal.  

Whipped Sweet Potatoes


Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes

4 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups heavy cream
Olive oil
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper


Enjoy a forkful of fall with these creamy, perfectly seasoned potatoes.

Yield: 6–8

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Prick the sweet potatoes all over with a fork, drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place them in a roasting pan and roast for 45 minutes until they are very soft. Remove from the pan and allow to cool.

In a small sauce pot, heat the cream with the bay leaves until just short of simmering. Discard bay leaves and keep warm.

When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, scoop the flesh into a large mixing bowl. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, heated cream, and butter. Whip with an electric mixer until smooth. Adjust seasoning to taste. 

Bourbon-Pumpkin Pie


Prep time: 40 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes

Pastry dough
1 (15-oz) can pumpkin
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup sour cream
2 large eggs, beaten
2/3 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup bourbon
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt


It’s amazing what a little dash of liquor can do to a simple pumpkin pie.

Yield: 8

Using your favorite pastry dough recipe, roll out enough to fit a 12-inch pie dish. Place dough inside the dish and gently prick the bottom with a fork. Trim the excess dough and crimp edges with a fork. Chill for at least 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F with rack in middle. Line the pie dough with foil and fill with weights or dried beans. Bake until the edges are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove weights and foil and continue to bake until golden all over, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Combine the pumpkin, heavy cream, sour cream, eggs, sugar, bourbon, cinnamon, ginger, and salt. Whisk until combined and pour into the cooled shell. Bake until the edges are set but the center is slightly loose, about 45 minutes. Cool completely and serve with whipped cream. 

Thanksgiving Tip: Brine Your Turkey


Basic Brine
2 cups kosher salt
2 cups sugar
2 gallons of water
1 large brining bag

Optional ingredients to add flavor:
Bay leaves
Dried herbs and spices (sage, oregano, thyme, basil, etc.)
Cracked black peppercorns
Crushed garlic cloves


Adding the extra step of brining your turkey will ensure you’ll have a moist and flavorful bird. No extra gravy required. 

In a large stockpot over medium heat combine water, salt, sugar, and any of the optional ingredients. Stir until sugar and salt have dissolved. Do not boil. Remove pot from the heat and let cool for 20 minutes.

Find a container large enough to fit your turkey. Spread a layer of ice along the bottom. Place the turkey, breast side down, inside the brining bag and then inside the container with ice. Pour the cooled brine over the turkey (inside the bag) and add an additional gallon of water. The turkey needs to stay at 40°F while brining, so add extra ice to the bag and container to keep cool. Brine one hour per pound. 

Galavante Videos

The Insider Experience
The Insider Experience
A Few of Our Favorite...
By Christine McDonald In fashion-focused New York City, it’s often shoes, watches, and handbags... more>>