As we approach the holiday season, I can’t help but think about the warmth, joy, and togetherness that Thanksgiving can bring. It’s a time to gather with loved ones, express gratitude, and create lasting memories. This month, I want to share a little bit about my family tradition and a super special recipe. Let’s dive in…
Truth is, I’ve got a BIG family. My mother is one of eight children. They all had kids, and their kids had kids, and well, you get the picture. Needless to say, our holidays can be pretty crazy. Despite many years of attempting to host at someone’s home it’s proven best to rent a local church fellowship hall to accommodate the nearly 55 of us! Yes, 55 people. On Thanksgiving…
Let’s all take a deep breath. We need it.
Numbers aside, my mother’s side of the family has deep Southern roots and we have all the traditional fixin’s at the table. I’m talking turkey, dressing, that canned cranberry stuff, fried okra, creamed corn, etc. The table typically satisfies and while I don’t see many of my aunts, uncles, and cousins throughout the year this is one time where I do look forward to gathering.
Speaking of a satisfied table… I want to share my recipe for Southern Cornbread Dressing. This is what I typically take to my family gathering. It’s part dressing, part bread pudding. It’s wholly awesome and I think you’ll love it! I would suggest you use this as a guide. It’s truly more about feel than precise measurements. Give it a try.
Southern Cornbread Dressing
2x batch, cornbread (double the recipe on the bag; includes oil, eggs, buttermilk; bake to manufacturer’s recommendation and allow to cool)
half loaf brioche, large dice or cubes
4 Tbl butter
2 Tbl olive oil
1 ½ cup diced onion
1 ½ cup diced celery
3 Tbl chopped sage
1 tsp, dried thyme
1 Tbl garlic powder
kosher salt, tt
white pepper, tt
1 quart chicken stock
½ can evaporated milk
- preheat oven to 375 degrees; while the cornbread bakes, melt butter over medium heat and let it brown; once brown, add olive oil and vegetables; cook until tender and season with the spices, salt, and white pepper; allow to cool for 15 minutes
- in large mixing bowl, break up the cornbread, add eggs, evaporated milk, stock, brioche, and cooked vegetables
- mix with large spoon until all ingredients are incorporated; mixture should be moist and should hold together when squeezed
- in a greased baking dish, pour mixture and press into dish; cover with foil (you can cool down and store until the next day) and bake for 20 minutes; uncover and continue to bake until top is browned and internal temperature is 155 deg, approximately another 20 minutes (divided into 2 pans if necessary and adjust baking time slightly)
- slice and enjoy
Food For Thought:
Corn, or maize, was a staple crop for many Native American tribes long before the arrival of European settlers. They used corn in a variety of ways, including grinding it into meal to make cornbread. Cornbread, or a similar corn-based flatbread, was a common food item among Native Americans, and it was a valuable source of sustenance for early American settlers.
If you’re following me on social (which you totally should be) you may have seen my announcement recently about plans to scale my meal prep business. I have a quick update to share with you.
Due to some unforeseen events, I have decide to continue with my IN-HOME model and will continue focusing on in-home meal prep and dinner parties in 2024! I’m so excited!
I’m a big believer personal development and I’m part of a mentoring and coaching program called Daniel’s Den. It’s a faith-based program that focuses on 4 key areas of life: emotional, spiritual, relational, and leadership. (Google it. I highly recommend.)
I recently attended a conference with the Den in Atlanta and I want to share one key take-away with you. Consider doing the following exercise with me. (There’s a golden nugget of truth at the end. You can thank me later.)
Consider a penny. Consider a $100 bill. Find one of each and hold in each hand.
Raise your hands and extend your arms.
Now look at your hands. What do you see?
(You should see a penny in one and a $100 in the other.) : )
Which has greater value?
We know the obvious answer. However, do this now.
Pull your “penny hand” closer to your eye. I mean, really close. Now open your eyes. What do you see?
You see the penny. In fact, it’s all you see. You can’t even attempt to focus on the $100.
Moral of the story. How often do we so focus on something smaller, lesser, and ultimately insignificant? It’s the POWER of PROXIMITY, or, what I affectionally call “the penny perspective”.
In order to see the value, rather, OUR VALUE, aka the $100, we must learn to shift our focus. Go ahead and do it now. Open your eyes, remove the penny, and focus on the Benjamin baby! Next time you are stuck or thinking small simply shift your perspective.
Happy Thanksgiving ya’ll! I’m so grateful for my clients, newsletter recipients, and social media followers. Here’s to the seasons bounty!
Making your life better one meal at a time