A Very ToT-ful Thanksgiving Dinner

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone! (My sad attempt at Wall Art)
Dinners at home are a major deal for the family. We pull out all the good (Holiday China and make sure things are perfect for everyone. Which means, when my eldest brother announced that HE would prepare the holiday Turkey, everyone panicked. Because, ToT ALWAYS cooks the meals! We were wary, and had a feeling we would go hungry this Thursday.
Proud Chef
I go home from the office, and find my oven PREHEATED (for 30 mins) to 400 Degrees. Hello are we starting a fire here? NO NO NO!  And then my Brother arrives with the bird all dressed, then asks for olive oil n salt. I'm like FTW there's no butter inside and ON the skin? waaaah... I smelled disaster.
 Then, HE LEAVES me with the turkey, and I realized that it was now MY bird. Good thing my Miele oven has a roasting probe that attaches to the oven itself, and when the bird reaches its pre-set temperature (160degrees) it automatically turns off, creating a perfectly moist bird that cooks evenly because you don't open the oven door constantly to check the thermometer. Plus there was a TURKEY setting so it kinda did the job for me. I LOVE you oven.
Still, I was a bit worried for the outcome of the bird, because I'm a little bit controlling when it comes to the kitchen, so I decide to take matters into my own hands and prepare some dishes, JIC (just-in-case). Coz I don't want to eat Lanzones and Chestnuts for Thanksgiving.
This might be the only Turkey I'll be seeing this dinnertime.
 So I render the fat off some pancetta, which is my base flavor for a vegetable dish I wanted to try.
I picked up some Haricot Verts (French Beans) from Santi's Deli
As well as some very fresh baby asparagus stalks. it was so green and perky!
I cook the asparagus and haricot verts in the rendered pancetta fat, put a bit of water to loosen the flavors from the pan, and cover it for a few minutes to steam.
Voila! Top it off with some pancetta & bacon, and you have one tasty and healthy side dish.
 Then I prepared a nice filling salad, so I slice up some pears
Chopped up some pitted plums and Craisins (cranberry raisins!) to add to the sweetness.
 To add some heft to any salad, a protein addition is always welcome. After roasting some chicken, I chop it up into chunks.
 To make it healthier, I used my favorite breakfast food: Turkey Bacon!
 It looks a little weird, but it cooks without any fat and is only 35 calories per strip!
And when it crisps up, it looks and tastes like real bacon! minus the fat!
Get some fresh mesclun greens, and top it off with the pears, plums, craisins, chicken and bacon. And the secret weapon? Stilton Cheese. Briny and tart like gorgonzola, but has a more refined flavor, it all works perfectly with a simple balsamic dressing.
I remembered we still had some Alaskan King Crab Legs in the freezer, so I defrosted some and made my lemon-butter-patis (fish sauce) dipping sauce.
 I thought I did a pretty good job filling the Thanksgiving table... until I found out my MOM had the same fear and decided to order food from Inn Cafe.
 She had Sisig (Pork cheek, ear & meat) done healthier, with more lean meat than cheap fatty parts. The topping of chilis gave it an extra kick, while still tasting like the original beerfood, but less greasy.
 And she also got some Lasagna. Now if you've been to any of The BIG Outlet Sales, or have eaten at my place, you can say that this is THE best lasagna ever. Meaty, Creamy, Cheesy. Nuff said.
Then Mr. S arrived with a PLATTER of Sushi from Kitaro, and I'm thinking... That's an awful lot of food for 15 people...
 And the Roast Probe goes off, and the Turkey was done. It was a little brown, but not burnt. Looked done, and smelled wonderful. I let the bird sit for 30 minutes in a foil tent.
Time to Cut the Turkey?
I was about to cut the turkey when...
I notice everyone pointing at something... what could it be?
FTW. There's a little Lechon De Leche!
 Apparently, my DAD was also a bit worried that we would be eating chestnuts for dinner, that he secretly called our cook to take out one of our piglets in the freezer (yes, we have a STASH of of little porkers on hand), and roast it. At 4pm. WHERE the HELL did they cook this?! How and Where it was executed in 3 hours, is beyond me.
 Bro & ToT doubleteam. Bro does gravy, ToT carves Turkey.
 Damn that's a lot of stuffing... what is that stuffing?
 APPARENTLY, my mom also called my sister-in-law to make her special stuffing with sticky rice, chestnuts, scallions and some other goodies. When it comes out of the turkey, it is moist, almost like Morcon or Suman. Some of the parts were crispy like burnt rice. Nice.
 After the turkey, my job was done and I didn't want anything to do with carving the little Babe.
 Bro decides to take a stab at it.
 The roast piglet was moist and tasty due to the loads of lemongrass and shallots that were stuffed in the cavity. Save for the gnarly teeth, it was a pretty good dish plus there's little fat because it's wild pig.
 The boys surrounding the meat.
 Upon looking at the spread, I realized we had OVERDONE it once more and was good for more than 40 people.
 When I sat down to start my meal, I saw my mom's cute soup bowls and wondered: who cooked the soup?!
 Then I found out: my Aunt also found out my brother is attempting a feat with the turkey, and sent over some oriental fresh fishball soup with cilantro. No faith in my brother!
 Dinner table. I love that the dining chandelier has now been fully installed after 1 month of my standing atop the table, numerous breakages, and an improvised ending.
 Even the Choobear wanted to taste some Thanksgiving Turkey!
 Jimmy shakes my hand and says: I'll hold your hand while I'm fed.
The moral of the day: Have a little faith in people. And don't be so controlling in the kitchen.  It worked out well, because each other's thoughtfulness for one another turned to a very well fed group of gobblers. Happy Thanksgiving!

Want to order the YUMMAYYYY Lasagna? Email me at triportreats@gmail.com!


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. By the way, i placed Jimmy beside the piggy. He is about the same size. Hahaha

  3. Mr. S said...

    Another "famine" feared dinner! But have faith in your brother! Turkey was pretty good!

    Im still amazed on how much food there is in every "event". It seems like the family goal is to stuff you till you cant move. I had an inkling that the we-will-not-over-prepare plan from Zong was just a dream.

    The other food were great too, soup, salad (didnt taste the bacon though, maybe i ate it too fast), 4 choices of main course, and the desserts!

    Good thing my jeans can stretch.

  4. I got virtually stuffed and even got this inkling to take Motilium for impatso. LOL.

    Happy Thanksgiving ToT! I'll devour my turkey tonight :D

  5. Oh WOW!! Everything looked oh so good!! haha! Funny story too! Happy Thanksgiving! :) - Nicola

  6. this really made me laugh! :D hahaha i love how the whole family thought of a back up plan just in case. hahaha

  7. I love this post Jean! I am so envious of your happy family get together's!

  8. hi! where o where were you able to buy that turkey bacon? i've been looking for it in manila. hope you can help! thanks! :) - faith

  9. that sure is a feast! i wonder what kind of food your brother used to serve that made everyone in your family kinda wary about him cooking. hehehe

    anyway, yeah im shooting you an email for the lasagna. ;)

  10. Yes, where do you buy turkey bacon? I love bacon and if there is an alternative that tastes the same with less fat, that'll be better. thanks =)

  11. Hello Turkey Bacon Lovers!
    Would you believe that up until now, I would bring home Turkey Bacon from the States when I travel, then I became a member of S&R and saw that not only do the have the Louis Rich Turkey Bacon (above, in 3 packs), they also had Jennie-O Turkey Sausage, Turkey Burger, and ground turkey! Gobble Gobble!

  12. love the chandelier! :-) and of course the meals.. when i shop for my kitchen, i shall seek valuable advices from you! :-)


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