Thanksgiving Underdogs

November 22, 2013 | By | Comments (1)

Be honest—there’s at least one dish you keep on your Thanksgiving table out of pity. And if it weren’t for the single outspoken proponent in your family you’d leave it out altogether. Sometimes though, even the unanimous favorite gets left out. For my family it’s the rolls. They’re completely forgotten… until we start eating and notice something isn’t quite right. It’s a McFarland Thanksgiving tradition.

If you’ve been designated the dish everyone loves to ignore, take the opportunity to dazzle family and friends this year—even if you have to personally scoop everyone a serving first.

Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry sauce is my responsibility every year, while my mom mans the cranberry relish. If we never made them again, I’m sure we would be the only two to notice. Cranberries are only in season for a short window, so you need to make the most of them while they’re around. When I say make the most of them, I don’t mean make the most cranberry sauce… I mean make a game changing cranberry sauce.

More cranberry sauce recipes:
Cranberry Sauce with Gin (pictured)
Spicy Cranberry-Chipotle Sauce
Mulled-Cider Cranberry Sauce

Brussels Sprouts
Brussels Sprouts
Life’s tough when you’re a Brussels sprout. Most kids hate you. Some adults hate you only because they hated you when they were kids. Put an end to the stigma this year, and make a knockout dish that garners second and third helpings from the entire table.

Brussels sprouts recipes:
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Garlic, and Shallots (pictured)
Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta
Spicy-and-Garlicky Brussels Sprouts

Dinner Rolls
Dinner Rolls
I wouldn’t dream of speaking negatively about bread, but mine can’t be the only family forgetting about it, right? We use the same store-bought rolls every year, and because they aren’t part of the cooking process they don’t cross our minds until it’s too late. This year, I’m going homemade—all the way down to the flavored butter.
Bread and butter recipes:
Wheat Rolls with Orange Butter (pictured)
Icebox Dinner Rolls
Red Currant Butter

Which Thanksgiving dishes are you tweaking this year? Are there some you could never change? Let us know!

Join us every Friday as we explore trending flavors and off-the-wall ingredients you’ve got to try—even if just once. 


  1. Prepping for Thanksgiving | Life After Reboot

    […] Thanksgiving Underdogs ( […]

    November 23, 2013 at 5:50 am

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