Circulon Symmetry 11 Piece Set

We hope you enjoyed our 1st Circulon Expert Hour last week with guest, Chef Sally James. We had great questions and discussions all around the subject of Thanksgiving holiday meal preparations with a healthy twist.

We also had a number of winners from our trivia questions at the middle and bottom of the hour, with several people winning new Circulon pans and others, a copy of Sally’s new book, the Little Penguin Cookbook about food and wine pairing.

Below we’ve put together a few of the standout recommendations and recipes that were offered up from Sally and our participants.

Enjoy – and get your Christmas recipes and questions ready because we’re doing this again next month!

On Preparing for Thanksgiving

“My secret is to pre-prepare as much as you can the day before, such as parcooking the vegetables, making the stuffing and having it ready to go in the oven. Also, it helps to step back for a minute and decide what the priorities are – you being fresh and feeling like you’re not too exhausted to enjoy your guests, and needing to have all the traditional accompaniments. Think through everything you wanted to prepare and decide, ‘Do we really need this?’ Makes fewer leftovers to deal with” – Sally James

The Perfect Thanksgiving Dessert

“Lots of ideas – how about some filo pasty fruit parcels. Brush every 2-3 sheets of filo with a light spread of butter or oil, about 6 sheets, then fill with some berries tossed with a touch of brown sugar or apple and pear. Wrap up and fold in edges, then brush with melted butter and bake until golden. Hot fruit soup is really special and flavorsome. Heat red wine and cranberry juice with a cinnamon stick and some cloves until a simmer and simmer for 20 minutes. Just before serving, place chopped fruit such as berries, pear, apple in parfait glasses or cups and pour over the liquid. Top with a dollop of gelato or frozen yogurt. Bon Appetit!” – Sally James

Making those Garlic Mashed Potatoes Lighter

“I have to answer as an Australian as mashed potato to us doesn’t have cream in it and we LOVE it. Try this for a yummy healthy idea. Cook the potatoes, while they’re cooking, heat some olive oil on low, add chopped garlic and heat on low for flavors to infuse and garlic to soften – about 10 minutes. Mash potatoes, and fold flavored oil through, then add buttermilk to bring to desired consistency. I like it with a touch of Parmesan too. Hope that inspires too!” – Sally James

Making Gravy without Turkey Drippings

“I’d suggest buying just some wings or cheap turkey parts, and browning in a pan to get some juices going then proceed as normal. You can also get a demiglace in stores that makes a great gravy – bit expensive but wonderful flavor. I actually now make a wine reduction and throw in some good quality stock and some Worcestershire sauce for my sauce. Hope one works for you.” – Sally James

Drinks for the Evening other than Wine

“I have a favorite that I always serve before a meal where you know you are going to have a fair bit with the meal. It’s refreshing, palate-cleansing and ‘the drink you have when you’re not having a drink.’ Lemon Lime and Bitters – Soda or Mineral Water, with a dash of Rosa Lime and a few drops Angostura bitters, over ice.” – Sally James

Happy Thanksgiving to all of our Circulon friends!