Sunday, November 18, 2012

This time of the year

I love this time of the year. I have such wonderful memories of family holidays and especially the menus for each one. To this day I have almost the same dishes. Yesterday I made Gram's Date and Nut Bread. This was always served at Thanksgiving with a generous slathering of cream cheese. But what is really special about this picture is that the granddaughter made the grandmother's recipe and took the loaves out of the oven with potholders made by her granddaughter.

Gram’s Date and Nut Bread

1 ½ cups boiling water
8 ounce dates chopped
1 ½ cups sugar
2 T butter, melted
1 egg, slightly beaten
2 t baking soda
3 cups flour
¼ t salt
1 t vanilla
1 cup chopped walnuts

Pour water over dates and let the mixture cool. Cream sugar and butter. Add egg and mix. Dissolve baking soda in dates and water mixture.  Add  this mixture, flour, salt and vanilla. Stir in chopped nuts. Bake in a preheated 350º oven for 60 minutes. Makes 2 loaves. You can print recipe from here.

I make 4 smaller loaves and bake for about 45 minutes. Test center with cake tester for doneness.

We shall have 2 Thanksgivings with friends but Jack and I will cook a dinner for us on Monday so that we can have leftovers. I will cook a turkey breast which will be served with stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, turnip and creamed onions. I buy gravy in a jar and add a good glug of Marsala or Madeira. With the leftovers we will make a casserole shared by Rachel Ray a few years back during the Thanksgiving parade on TV. We are not having potatoes with our dinner but we shall have some with the casserole. To make this casserole which is not unlike a Shepherd's pie, layer the stuffing, meat, cranberry sauce, onions and leftover vegetables. Pour gravy over this mixture and top with mashed potatoes. Dot with butter and salt and pepper to taste. I shake paprika on top for a little color. Bake at 350º until done. The timing will depend on the temperature of the ingredients but I usually plan about 45 minutes.

We wish you all a wonderful holiday filled with family and happy memories. Jack and I will miss being with our families but we know that they will be surrounded by family and friends and, hopefully, memories of holidays gone by.


Vee said...

Bet they wish they could be enjoying your baking! I have some ancient dates in the freezer...I should probably toss them as I wouldn't want to ruin a perfectly good recipe. Still I'm wondering...

Vee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vee said...

Sorry about that...I have no idea why comments sometimes go through twice.

EliFla said...

I love this period of the yera too.
Have a wonderful blessed T'Day, hugs, Flavia

The Quintessential Magpie said...

That looks truly delicious, Carol. Thank you for sharing your recipe with us. I'm not cooking this year, and we are both tired. We've been invited to spend Thanksgiving with family/friends, but we have decided to celebrate it together. He is coming back from a long business trip and needs a rest. So we are taking ourselves out to the fanciest restuarant in town to let them do the cooking for us. I got sick one year, and we did that and had a good time with just the two of us. So we are doing it again. I can't wait! :-)

Hope you have a wonderful time celebrating!



Sue McPeak said...

Hi Carol...How yummy the bread looks. Thanks for sharing the recipe and the story of it's history. Love the pics with the potholders...special memories as well as the bread.

So nice to hear from you today on CITexas Gal. I've been on a sewing/quilting/crochet binge for several months, so knitting has taken a backseat for now. In October I started working at a fabric shop part time. It's been inspiring...all that fabric!

Hope you and Jack have a wonderful Thanksgiving. HiHoney and I plan on a quiet day much the same as yours with memories of years gone by to keep us close to our Families.

Snap said...

Carol, I haven't had date bread in years. My mother used to make it every Christmas. She must have gotten the recipe from her Mother. Unfortunately, the recipe didn't get passed down to me. I'm going to use yours!!!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Diane Cayton-Hakey said...

I'll just bet that the bread tastes pretty darned yummy all warmed up in the microwave with a pad of butter melted on top. Oh, my... I need to stop thinking about this! LOL

Mac n' Janet said...

The turkey casserole sounds delicious! Hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving.

very merry vintage style said...

Carol, your date breads look wonderful and what sweet traditions and memories they have! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

podso said...

Love the story of the generations! And I understand the "need" for turkey leftovers, which is why hubby always wants Thanksgiving at our house! Have a happy one!

Maggie said...

Your loaves look delish, I can almost smell them from here.
Wishing you both a wonderful Thanksgiving all week long!

Jenny Short said...

You make me want to bake some. My daughter asked me to bring bread for Thanksgiving dinner. I think I'll add some of thee. Beautiful! xo Jenny

Jackie said...

They look very tasty Carol. If I baked them I would want to eat them in one day while they were still warm. I love Walnut bread, well I like anything nutty!!!

Hope you and Jack have a lovely meal today and have a wonderful Thanksgiving day. Very best wishes, Jackie in Surrey. xox

PS I cannot work out how to show my followers on the wordpress blog and no I don't have a blog button.

When I have more time I think I need to change my layout, but I don't want to rush it and mess it up.J.x

backroadjournal said...

That is a nice tradition to be carried on...sounds wonderful.

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

Happy Thanksgiving

A Garden of Threads said...

Hi Carol, Thank you for sharing the recipe. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

Life doesn't get much better than this when traditions mean something to the younger generation. Just warms my heart.

Happy Thanksgiving Carol from our house to yours.

Diane Cayton-Hakey said...

Love all the breads this time of the year. The nuttier the better!


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