The TBR List: Turkey Talk

Turkey talk |

It's coming, guys. The turkey extravaganza of the year. But I'll be eating chicken.

Growing up, we always went to my aunt's house for Thanksgiving and she always served chickens. Yes, several of them. That's just what most people in my family like.We also had a number of sides, some of which I had no idea weren't traditional. Sure, there were mashed potatoes but there was also always my uncle's mushroom in cream sauce. I can't describe it better than that because I never thought to ask what's in it.

Thanksgiving is about eating, not talking.

I tried cranberry sauce for the first time only a few years ago, when another of my aunt's cooked us a Thanksgiving feast in the summer. She needed us to know experience a traditional Thanksgiving.

Last year, we celebrated Thanksgiving with my in-laws. The spread featured Thanksgiving fare (including a monster turkey, pictured above) and Pakistani favorites. Next week, we're heading back to my aunt's house, to the Thanksgiving I grew up with. I look forward to our non-traditional traditions. What are some of yours?


Makerbot x Martha Stewart.

- This kitchen reno is seriously lovely.

Sriracha donuts? Will the mashups never end?!

- There's no "right" way to organize your bookshelf.

100 questions. Pick one and kickstart a conversation.

- Drooling over these onion-based Thanksgiving side dishes.

- Pistachio shells as an eco-friendly energy source. Fascinating.

- Sweet potato soup with cauliflower croutons. Dang. Nik's at it again.

- Molly Yeh teaching Sam Sifton how to make lefse is sure to make you smile.

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At The Table With... Abby Thompson of The Frosted Vegan

An interview with Abby Thompson, The Frosted Vegan |

Today we're digging in with Abby Thomspon, the 26-year-old Milwaukee blogger who writes The Frosted Vegan! The blog's title is misleading and not: While the recipes are all vegan, a few of them lack frosting. Admittedly, it's Abby's savory recipes that most often catch my eye — can we pause to appreciate this olive bread? — but some sweet stunners like the vegan chocolate espresso pots de creme (see below) haven't gone unnoticed either. 

What is your all-time favorite book, and why?

Oh goodness, this is a hard one. Well, they aren't works of fiction, but the last few years The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch and An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler have been books I refer back to every few months. They may seem like very different books but each offer a perspective on life and the art of making the most of what you have. I actually own very few books, but these two deserve a place on my shelf at home.

What meal do you love to cook, and why?

I love to cook a full, slow meal complete with pasta, bread, veggies and dessert. I have fond memories of having meals like these on Sundays growing up, so anytime I take the time to make multiple dishes that I am not rushing to photograph is a relaxing and favorite meal for me. The more carbs, the better, that just gives me permission to nap afterwards!

What is your favorite food scene from a book, and why?

Probably any food scene from My Life In France by Julia Child. Julia has such a masterful and enticing way of writing about food that can make anyone weak in the knees. I remember reading this book on an airplane and my stomach was growling something ferocious. From her descriptions of classic French cuisine to depicting her creations in the kitchen, Julia has a way with words about food that I can't deny.

Coffee or tea?

Coffee! I didn't even like coffee very much until a few years ago, when I started drinking a special blend from a coffee shop back home in Illinois. The flavor is called 'Marie's Cake' and is a perfect blend of strong coffee notes while also making you feeling like you are drinking a slice of cake. It's based on a New Orleans-style cake recipe and I'm ruined for most other coffees by it.

What is the last book you abandoned, and why?

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss. I have heard wonderful things about this book, but at the time, I just couldn't get into it! I'll probably revisit this book after a while, but for now, it sits half read on my Nook app.

Author you'd most like to meet for dinner, and your order?

Shel Silverstein, I would order something with grilled vegetables, roasted potatoes, and lots of bread from the bread basket.

Where do you go to find new recipes?

The countless inspiring food blogs I follow, the ever growing collection of cookbooks taking over my china cabinet, or throwing together something with inspiration from my new favorite, The Vegetarian Flavor Bible.

Where do you go to find new reads?

I'm a big believer in lists that are put together by bloggers with suggestions from readers! Recently, I've read a lot from Joy the Baker's 'What We're Reading' Lists that she puts together from reader suggestions and her own personal favorites. I found Wally Lamb from these lists and it has never guided me wrong.

Tell us about your blog — the inspiration for it, why you blog, and your favorite aspects.

I first started my blog as a way to share vegan recipes with my family, who also went vegan a couple of years ago. I came to find that I have a passion for creating delicious, accessible vegan desserts and recipes that use whole food ingredients. My inspiration comes from travels, restaurants, cookbooks, you name it! Sometimes I think of recipes while commuting to/from work and other times I just have a huge desire to re-create a favorite family recipe, inspiration can come from anywhere!
Blogging has been a huge creative outlet for me, uncovering a passion for photography and connecting with people through food. I also love that I have met some amazing and incredibly inspiring people through blogging who I would have never met otherwise. I feel really lucky that I get to be part of this supportive online community that also turns out an insane amount of creative content everyday.

What are your favorite blogs, and why?

Oy, this is a hard one! I follow so many that it's hard to count, but some of the blogs I look to for inspiration in cooking and my own blogging include Joy The Baker, The First Mess, and Oh She Glows.

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