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Thanksgiving, a holiday that dates back to the 1600’s has evolved from when the Pilgrims hosted their first feast in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Today, all over the country, many homes celebrate Thanksgiving in different ways. From the new couple hosting their first Thanksgiving feast for their combined family, the entertaining novice looking to impress guests, to the thanksgiving guest at a loss for a special dish to bring; Event Planner Rachel De Marte (nee Schwanz) shares some helpful Thanksgiving entertaining tips and Pump Room Executive Chef Moosah Reaume shares personal family favorite recipes.

Turkey! Can’t live without the turkey – but what if….and hear me out….you serve turkey the night before – after all, family & friends are gathering then too. And on Thanksgiving Day you switch it up with an East Coast Thanksgiving. Think Fish & Chips, Clam Chowder, Lobster Rolls, Tuna Tartar….you get the point. Such a fun way to surprise and delight guests, 2 nights in a row! -Rachel De Marte

Guests are arriving and Cocktail Hour is upon us.  What are you serving?   Seeing that dinner usually means some heavy lifting, make it easy on yourself and go Raw Bar style. Think Shrimp,  Oysters, Crab Legs,   even caviar.  Don’t for get Cocktail Sauce, Mignonette, Horseradish, lemon wedges, and hot sauces!  A very fun, interactive was to do cocktail hour food, without having to pay attention to hors d’oeuvres baking in the oven.  Nor do you need to worry about keeping things warm.  And let’s face it, a cheese spread is great, but so overdone.  Now go focus on dinner! -Rachel De Marte

Make your own Pot Pie Bar.  Give guests baked pie shells to fill with classics; turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans and gravy.  Get crazy by adding options like Lobster and Truffle.  Top with a pastry lid. -Rachel De Marte

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Pecans and Avocado -Chef Moosah Reaume

Serves 4:

3 tblspns Olive oil
2 c brussel sprouts, trimmed, blanched, shocked, cut in ½1
1 tsp thyme leaves
¼ c pecan ½’s, toasted,
1 ea ripe avocado, peeled, medium dice

Salt/black pepper
Aged balsamic vinegar

Heat a sauté pan with evo until smoking and add brussel sprouts. Season with salt and pepper and cook until crispy and deep golden brown. Add thyme, then pecans and avocado and toss gently to warm. Spoon into a serving dish and drizzle with balsamic.

Cranberry Compote -Chef Moosah Reaume

For the cranberry compote:

1 c fresh blood orange juice
¼ c red wine vinegar
¼ c fresh lime juice
½ c h2o
4 c honey
50 g(1.7oz)young ginger, peeled, fine julienne
Zest of 4 blood oranges, pith removed, fine julienne

See Also

4 #(lbs) cranberries

8 grams salt (approx 1.5 tsp)

Combine 1st set and bring to a simmer. Add cranberries and simmer for 15 minutes until tender and popped. Stir in salt and pour into a hotel pan and let set in the walk in.

Morning after: Roast Turkey Parfaits with Stuffing, Green Bean Casserole, Cranberry Sauce, and Baby Carrot Garnish? Adorable and delicious, and easily something you can make yourself. Just make sure you find a cute glass to use!

Hope you are able to impress your guests with these tips and recipes.
If you prefer someone else to do it, call Entertaining Company (312.829.2800 ) they know how to do it all. Trust me.
If you prefer to eat out on Thanksgiving make reservations at the Pump Room (312.787.3700).

Be sure to share your Thanksgiving entertaining ideas on FACEBOOK TWITTER OR PINTEREST
images: Rachel De Marte

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