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Giving Thanks: Mixed Nuts Tartelettes, Winter Greens & Squash Gratin and Tomatoes & Roasted Garlic Tartines.

Mixed Nuts Tartelettes

This close to the American holiday of Thanksgiving, I figured it was high time I shared some of the eats that we will have with friends this coming Thursday. It’s not all that we are preparing but when trying these recipes out for the big day, they really stood out. Tomato And Roasted Garlic Tartines as little bites with cocktails. Winter Greens and Squash Gratin as one of the sides and Mixed Nuts Tartelettes instead of the traditional pecan pie.

Tomato & Roasted Garlic Tartines

These recipes were the kind that made B. proclaim "please-please-please-put-these-on-the-Thanksgiving-menu-or-I-will-pout-and-throw-a-temper-tantrum". No, he didn’t really say that. He gestured it while eating another spoonful. So, while planning the menu with my friend Laura, I penciled these down along with tried and true favorites and this Cider Brined Turkey from Bon Appetit. It’s mildly concerning how excited I am about this one!

Roasted Yellow Cherry Tomatoes

Yes. I am cooking. Yes. I want to. Yes. I am completely thrilled about it. Nothing makes me happier than gathering good friends and family around a good meal, good wine and good conversation. That also has me wildly excited about the day. It’s not about buying into the hype. It’s not about food. It’s about making a meal for people you love. It’s about sharing. Making dishes that honor traditions as well as making new ones.

Roasted Garlic

The fact that this meal is centered around Thanksgiving is just icing on the cake. Like many of you, I give thanks everyday for the good fortune I receive and the lessons I learn, bitter or sweet. I think it’s nice however to have another chance to give thanks it out loud. To others. To yourself. There are never too many opportunities for gratefulness and wishing good upon others.

Tomato & Roasted Garlic Tartines

While not making a big production of it, I am very thankful that my friends, here or far, love cooking and prepping this much. Every year has brought a different group together and a different flair.


A while back, we decided to do have Thanksgiving with friends and Christmas with family. It seemed a lot easier on our sanity given B’s family dynamic and the fact that we do have a close knit group of friends we absolutely love hanging with during the holidays. Of course we compare weird family stories! But most importantly, we can keep our shenanigans up and no one will get offended. We can let loose and do exactly what we want. No pressure. I am grateful for that…


I do count my blessings. Everyday. And one of these is to be able to come here and unwind with you guys. What a blessing it is when things go array. Thanks for being part of the stories I write on this blog, the recipes. Thank you for your feedback, your questions and your love of food and photography.

Winter Greens & Squash Gratin

On a separate note, but one for my mama in particular, the newspaper did a full spread feature about my outlook on life, photography, work, etc.. in their Saturday printed issue that they also posted online here. See mom … I am not always noodling around…ahahah!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Mixed Nuts Tartelettes

Tomatoes And Roasted Garlic Tartines:

Makes enough for 6 to 8 people as an appetizer/nibble

2 cups cherry tomatoes (gold or red)
1 whole head of garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
baguette toasts (gluten free or regular slices of bread, toasted to your liking)
oregano or other herb of your liking

Preheat the oven to 375F (convection) or 400F (normal). Position a rack in the middle.
Place the cherry tomatoes in a baking pan and drizzle about half a tablespoon of oil over them. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper and toss to coat. Set aside.
Cut the top of the head of garlic, place it in a piece of baking foil. Drizzle the remaining half tablespoon of oil. Close the piece of foil over the garlic head.
Place both the baking pan with the tomatoes and the foil with the garlic in the oven at the same time. Remove the tomatoes after 20 -25 minutes and the garlic after 30-40 minutes (it should be soft). Let cool.
Rub each piece of toast with some roasted garlic, add a couple of tomatoes on top and sprinkle with some more salt and pepper if desired. Add some oregano to taste.

Winter Greens and Squash Gratin, adapted from Virginia Willis’s Basic To Brilliant Y’all (see the original here)

2 teaspoons unsalted butter, plus more for the gratin dish
1 butternut squash + 2-3 acorn squash, (about 3 pounds total), cut in half lengthwise and seeded
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 large bunch of Swiss chard, cleaned, stems removed and chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 /2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme
1 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons regular or gluten free panko breadcrumbs
2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Preheat the oven to 375F (convection) or 400F (normal). Position a rack in the oven.
Place the squash, cut side up on a baking sheet and roast in the oven until soft and slightly golden brown. Let cool.
In the meantime, heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the chopped Swiss chard and cook until the greens are wilted, another 5 minutes or so. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the nutmeg and thyme and stir well. Remove from the heat and reserve.
Scoop the flash of the different squashes in a medium sized gratin dish. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper. Top with the reserved greens.
Pour the milk and cream over the vegetables and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, stir together the breadcrumbs and cheese in a small bowl. Season with some salt and pepper. Decrease the oven temperature to 350F (convection) or 375F. Remove the foil from the dish and sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top. Continue baking for another 15 minutes.

Mixed Nut Tartelettes:

Makes eight 4-inch tartelettes

For the crust:
1 cup Jeanne’s all purpose gluten free mix
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 stick (115g) unsalted butter, kept very cold
pinch of salt
2-3 tablespoons ice cold water

For the filling:
1/2 cup unsalted pistachios
1/2 cup hazelnuts
1/4 cup waluts
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup raw honey
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs

Prepare the pastry. In the bowl of a food processor, (or follow the same instructions if doing by hand), pulse together the flour and the cocoa powder until incorporated. Add the butter and pulse until the butter resembles small peas and is evenly incorporated. Add the salt and pulse on more time. Gradually, stream in the cold water until the flour just comes together. Turn the mixture out onto your work surface and form into a 2-inch thick, round disk. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes (or overnight) before rolling out.

Flour your working surface with tapioca flour (if gluten free) or regular flour and start rolling out the dough to about 1/4-inch thick adding more flour as you feel the dough starts to stick. You can also roll it out in between two sheets of plastic wrap of parchment paper, especially with working with the gluten free version. Cut eight 5-inch rounds of dough and place them inside eight 3 to 4-inch tartlet pans. Place a small piece of parchment paper inside each of them, fill with dried beans and refrigerate for another 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350F (both convection and not) and position a rack in the middle.
Place the tart shells on a baking sheet and bake the tartlets for about 15 minutes (with the dried beans inside). Remove from the oven, let cool for 5 to 10 minutes and remove the beans and parchment paper.

In the meantime, prepare the filling:
Place all the nuts on a baking sheet and toast until golden for about 10-12 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let cool. Remove the skin from the hazelnuts (see my tip at the end of the recipe). Coarsely chop all the nuts. Reserve.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until brown bits form on bottom of pan, about 5 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
Stir together the honey, salt, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Whisk in the eggs, then the brown butter. Fold in the nuts with a spatula or wooden spoon. Divide the filling among the tartlet shells. Bake tartelettes until filling is set around edges and jiggles slightly in the middle, about 30 minutes. Cover with foil over tart if the crust gets too dark. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Tip to skin the hazelnuts:
Place the nuts in a mesh bag like the one you purchase citrus in (lemons, grapefruit) or onion. Over the sink, rub the nuts together in the bag until all the skins have fallen through the holes in the mesh bag. Easy peasy…

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Sneh | Cook Republic November 22, 2011 um 6:49 am

Wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving as well! The food and photos are beautiful, hearty, warm and full of soul! 🙂

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga November 22, 2011 um 7:13 am

Things I love in this post:
the yellow tomatoes, wilted on the bread

the tartines <– WOW!

The vintage silverware that's not too shiny and not perfectly matched.

You wanting to make new traditions while honoring the old.


Happy TG!

Amy November 22, 2011 um 7:46 am

What a wonderful post, as always. 🙂 I'm going to Pin this….Your recipes and pictures are always amazing. Wish you and your family a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving.

Lauren November 22, 2011 um 12:46 pm

Happy Thanksgiving! I am grateful for this blog, for you, and for all that your beautiful photos and recipes have taught me.

chutneyandpice November 22, 2011 um 12:48 pm

what wonderful, rustic looking Thanksgiving fare. I wish we celebrated TG over here in the UK, I have been drooling all week at recipes on peoples' blogs. I love the look of the tar tines.

Vicki Bensinger November 22, 2011 um 1:17 pm

Your recipes and photos as always look and sound luscious. I hope you and your husband have a wonderful Thanksgiving surrounded by family and good friends.

Sofie Dittmann AKA The German Foodie November 22, 2011 um 1:23 pm

Anything w/ hazelnuts in it… And LOVE the tomato garlic things, so simple, so delicious…

Sharyn DImmick November 22, 2011 um 1:42 pm

I so want to make your nut tartelettes — I'll put them on the menu for after Thanksgiving (We are such traditionalists that we eat the same things every year, not a whisper of variation).

SkinnyMommy November 22, 2011 um 2:36 pm

Everything looks amazing-like always! 🙂

Jeanette November 22, 2011 um 2:46 pm

I love the simplicity of the tomato and roasted garlic tartines and the idea of a pecan pie tartelette. Lovely writeup in The Post and Courier – congratulations. Wishing you and your family a wonderful Thanskgiving!

Laura November 22, 2011 um 3:00 pm

Can I come over for dinner? Those dishes look amazing. I want to try the gratin, it looks delicious!

Lovely compositions as always.

Just Me November 22, 2011 um 3:09 pm

Thanksgiving has become my favorite holiday. It's my excuse to make the wild recipes I don't have a good reason to try other times of the year. Plus we end up with such an odd assortment of random orphans that I always have new guinea pigs for my cooking.

I am a compulsive planner, so my menu has been (mostly) set for weeks. But we always do a mussels and spaghetti dinner in December (it's our end-of-running-season celebration) and those tomato and garlic tartines will almost certainly make an appearance there! Plus several times next summer when we get to harvest our own little tomatoes!!

Helene November 22, 2011 um 3:47 pm

Paolita: yes it can. I never use corn syrup but either honey or maple syrup. Heard agave can work too but I have never tried it.

Raquel @ Ovenmitts Blog November 22, 2011 um 3:51 pm

Oh my. Those tartelettes look fantastic! Can't wait to try them.

Valérie (France) November 22, 2011 um 4:03 pm

C'est vraiment bien joli et comme ce doit-être bon
Je te souhaite une bonne soirée


Flor November 22, 2011 um 4:33 pm

Gorgeous blog! I do not comment a lot, but read it every week!

I have fallen in love with the mixed nuts tartelette, but have a doubt. What is 1 stick of butter? I guess it's a package or sth, but I am in Argentina and would like to know or the grams or ounces or sth that I could convert.

I do not usually follow recipes, but get ideas. In this particular case, I want to eat exactly what you posted!

Congrats for the blog, it's lovely. Not only the food, but also the pictures.
Thanks for sharing.


la domestique November 22, 2011 um 5:01 pm

Happy Thanksgiving! The recipes look great and I love the tomato tartines for a bit of bright flavor at the start of a heavy meal. Thank you for sharing of yourself here at the blog. It's always an uplifting place to visit!

Shelby November 22, 2011 um 5:51 pm

As always, such beautiful, inspiring photographs and recipes…I am so Thankful for your blog! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.. Enjoy the food & company 🙂

Unknown November 22, 2011 um 6:06 pm

All of the recipes look awesome, thanks for sharing!

Pilarh November 22, 2011 um 7:26 pm

Happy Thanksgiving for you!
I learned so much from your book and I go back and re-read often.
Thanks for that!

tania@mykitchenstories November 22, 2011 um 7:52 pm

Congratulations and happy thanksgiving. These photos are beautiful . Thankyou for the gluten free recipe

mayssam @ Will Travel for Food November 22, 2011 um 10:58 pm

I usually love your sweet creations and these tartelettes are no different but the tartines are really speaking to me! Must make soon!

Unknown November 23, 2011 um 3:06 am

I must say that your blog has really inspired me to begin blogging. I always come here to marvel at your composition and recipes. Happy Thanksgiving to you! And a thank you to you.

Brandon November 23, 2011 um 3:20 am

This looks delicious, and I'm bookmarking it to make next year when my tomato harvest is ready again. Thanks, and great entry!


Dena November 23, 2011 um 1:01 pm

Lovely. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Dena November 23, 2011 um 1:01 pm

Lovely. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Unknown November 23, 2011 um 1:05 pm

Alas, it's too late for tomatoes here in Northern Italy…I can't wait for the warm season to come back again to try your tartines.

I am Italian and have an American boyfriend and we both live in Bra, Piedmont. I know how important thanksgiving is for him but I have to admit that I am thrilled, too, about the idea of cooking traditional recipes that are so new and novel for me. We will have a in-house date on Thanksgiving night and a big Friendsgiving on Sunday. Both cases are a great occasion to bond with people we love, and even if it's not really an Italian holiday, like you I love jumping in whatever holiday that gives me that chance to gather with people around a table with good food on it. I will surely keep into serious account that squash side…Awesome.

Anonymous November 23, 2011 um 5:04 pm

Delicious Tomatoes And Roasted Garlic Tartines.
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Sophisticated Stationery November 23, 2011 um 10:52 pm

These recipes look so delicious!
Thanks for the ideas!

Adriana @mouthtomouthfood November 23, 2011 um 11:55 pm

Another fantastic post! Thanksgiving isn't a holiday I celebrate in Australia, but I have been enjoying reading American food blogs to see what the celebration is all about. Those cherry tomatoes look incredible, simple idea, beautifully captured. 🙂

Gianluca November 25, 2011 um 6:48 pm

Superbe foto, superbi piatti!

Yuri November 27, 2011 um 6:55 am

Beautiful lighting in your photos. Gorgeous food! I never get bored to look at them. Happy thanksgiving!

gina November 27, 2011 um 3:06 pm

all of these look wonderful as i'm sitting here catching up on your blog goodness! thank you for always posting such wonderful recipes shot so beautifully. i wish i had seen your workshop notice for may earlier. i'll have to be more diligent about keeping up. i wold have loved to be there. i'm sure you will have more?

Ilke November 27, 2011 um 10:35 pm

Congratulations on the full page spread!
As always, everything looks delicious.
Hope Thanksgiving was great!

Stacy @ Say it With Sprinkles November 28, 2011 um 12:38 am

Beautiful food & photos!

Vanessa November 28, 2011 um 1:09 am

Those Mixed Nuts Tartelettes look so, so, so good. And I absolutely love the styling- those forks especially. <3

Anonymous November 28, 2011 um 2:54 am

I have to say that one of my favorite things about your photos is the way you use sort of rustic textures and surfaces, combined with delicate textiles . . . and of course, stunning food on top of it all. Just gorgeous!

Anonymous November 28, 2011 um 2:54 am

I have to say that one of my favorite things about your photos is the way you use sort of rustic textures and surfaces, combined with delicate textiles . . . and of course, stunning food on top of it all. Just gorgeous!

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