Thanksgiving recipes from local restaurants

Everyone knows that the turkey isn’t the real star of the Thanksgiving table — it’s the side dishes. Start a new family tradition this year and try our crowd-pleasing Thanksgiving side dish recipes from local restaurants.

Michael Anthony’s Cucina Italiana

Honey roasted butternut squash with cranberries and feta

1 large butternut squash, peeled and chopped
A hearty drizzle of olive oil (1-2 tbsp.)
Salt, pepper, and garlic powder, to taste
1-2 cups fresh cranberries
2-3 tbsp. honey (or extra, to taste)
1/4 cup finely crumbled feta
Ground cinnamon, to taste
Fresh or dried parsley to garnish (optional) 

Directions: Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly drizzle or spritz a baking sheet with olive oil. Add cubed squash to the sheet along with another drizzle of olive oil. Sprinkle with a light layer of salt, pepper, and garlic powder, based on taste. Roast at 400 degrees for 25 minutes on the center rack.

At the 25 minute mark, pull out the oven rack, and add your fresh cranberries to the roasting pan.

Return to the oven for 10-15 minutes or until the cranberries have started to soften and burst a bit, resembling really juicy craisins vs. fresh firm cranberries.

Remove from oven and add a sprinkle of cinnamon (approx. 1/8-1/4 tsp depending on preference) along with feta and honey. Garnish with parsley for a burst of color and dig in while it’s hot!

Michael Anthony’s Cucina Italiana

Sausage, cranberry and apple stuffing

1 loaf sourdough bread, cubed (about 10 cups)
1 cup sweetened dried cranberries
1 medium apple, peeled, cored and chopped
2 (12 oz.) pork sausage rolls
1/2 cup shallots, finely diced
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh sage, finely chopped and divided
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 cup chardonnay wine
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups chicken stock
2 eggs, lightly beaten 

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place cubed sourdough on 2 baking sheets. Bake 10-15 minutes, stirring bread occasionally until toasted, but not browned. Place toasted bread cubes into extra large bowl, add cranberries and apples. Set aside.

Butter 9×13-inch casserole dish. Set aside.

In large skillet over medium heat, cook sausage using spatula to break it up as it cooks.

Add 1 1/2 tablespoons sage. Cook through, but do not brown. Remove sausage from skillet using slotted spoon and add it to bowl with bread cubes. Leave 2 tablespoons of sausage drippings in the pan (drain any extra) and add shallots. Cook until translucent; add pecans, herbs and remaining sage to skillet. Cook 2 minutes stirring frequently. Pour shallot herb mixture into bowl with bread cubes.

Add wine to skillet and scrape browned bits from bottom of pan as it cooks. Add butter and chicken stock. Bring to boil for 3 minutes, remove from heat and pour over bread cubes in bowl. Add eggs. Toss gently until combined and pour into prepared baking dishes.

Cover with foil and bake 40 minutes. Remove foil and bake 15 minutes more.

Alexander’s Restaurant & Wine Bar

Country green beans

2 pounds fresh haricot verts
2 tbsp. country ham, minced
2 tbsp. shallot, minced (yellow onion can be substituted)
2 tbsp. fresh garlic, minced
3 oz. apple cider vinegar
2 oz. chicken stock
4 oz. unsalted butter, cubed
1 oz. fresh thyme, removed from stem and minced
2 oz. blended oil (75 percent canola, 25 percent olive oil)
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste 

Directions: In a medium saucepot, bring 3 quarts of water and 3 tbsp. of salt to the boil. Prepare a ice bath (50 percent water & 50 percent ice) for shocking the vegetables. Snip the stem ends of the beans. Once the water is boiling place the beans in and cook for about six minutes (until “al dente”). Using a strainer, remove the beans from the hot water and place in the ice bath. Once beans are completely cold, remove from ice bath and set aside.

When getting ready to set the food on the table, heat a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the blended oil to the pan. Add the ham and render for 2 minutes. Add the shallot and sauté for 1 minute. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the apple cider and cook until almost evaporated. Add all other remaining ingredients (including the beans) and cook for 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve: Place country green beans in a bowl and serve family style. Serves 4-6 people.

FISH Seafood and Raw Bar

Roasted pumpkin flan with cinnamon caramel

Ingredients For Caramel
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp water
1 tsp cinnamon
Juice of ½ lemon 

Directions: Combine the sugar and cinnamon and then in a pan over medium-low heat combine with the water. Stir with a wooden spoon occasionally until the mixture melts and begins to turn slightly brown. At this point pay careful attention because the caramel cooks very fast from here on. Continually stir and once the caramel has reached a nice golden brown color, stir in the lemon juice and take the pan off the flame. Evenly portion the caramel into 6 oven safe cups.

Ingredients For Flan
2 cups heavy cream
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup pureed roasted pumpkin
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
Pinch salt 

Directions: In a saucepan over medium heat bring the cream to a simmer and whisk in the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, ground ginger and salt. Hold this mixture off to the side warm. In a bowl whisk together the eggs, yolks, and sugar. Whisk vigorously until the mixture becomes fluffy and pale yellow. Temper the cream mixture into the eggs by adding the cream a little at a time to the egg mixture. Once fully combined, pour the mixture into the prepared cups. Bake in a 350 degree oven in a water bath for 25-35 minutes or until the flans have set (when shaken lightly, they should jiggle like Jell-O). Once cooked, refrigerate for 1 hour or until cooled.

To serve: Release the flan from the side of the cups with a paring knife and flip the cup over onto a plate. The flan should release and come out with the caramel sauce. Garnish with candied pecans and serve (yields 6 portions).

ELA’s Blu Water Grille

Oyster and andouille dressing

1 1/4 pounds lean ground beef
1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
3 cups chopped celery
2 tbsp. minced garlic
1 tbsp. chopped fresh sage
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 tbsp. olive oil
3/4 tbsp. cracked black pepper
1 pound diced andouille sausage, coarsely chopped
4 pounds fresh oysters, well-drained and coarsely chopped (for a great twist, use canned smoked oysters!)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 pound cornbread, 1⁄4” cubed. (Jiffy corn muffin mix works great. Just make to package instructions and spread onto a baking sheet instead of muffin tins. This will make cubing easier later in the recipe) 

Directions: Toss diced cornbread in olive oil, sage and thyme and spread out on a baking sheet.

Toast seasoned cornbread in 350 degree oven for 7-8 minutes until cubes reach the consistency of cornbread croutons. Set aside to cool.

Cook ground beef, onion, celery, and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring until beef crumbles and is no longer pink and vegetables are tender. Drain. Stir in sausage, oysters, and parsley. Cook 7 minutes or until oysters are done. Gently fold in cornbread croutons, salt, and pepper.

Spoon stuffing mixture into a lightly greased 13-x 9-inch baking dish. (Stuffing can be made a day in advance. Cover and chill before baking.) Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Serve immediately.











Charlie’s L’etoile Verte

Simple Southern caramel layer cake

Ingredients For the cake
1 box of your favorite yellow cake mix

Ingredients For the icing:
1 stick of butter
½ box brown sugar
¼ cup of milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ box 4X powdered sugar 

Directions for the cake: Prepare your favorite yellow cake from scratch or from a box. Two 8-9 inch round cakes are most suitable. You can make this a day ahead of time allow ample time for the cakes to completely cool. Once the cakes have set and cooled all the way, use a sharp slicing knife to cut each cake in half in order to create four layers.

Directions for the Icing: Blend butter, brown sugar and milk in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Stirring occasionally to avoid burning, bring the mix to a rolling boil, making sure that all the sugar granules have dissolved. Remove from heat, and place in a mixing bowl. Allow the mix to cool for a few minutes, but do not allow hardening. Beat in the 4X powder sugar until the icing is the consistency to spread. If the icing gets too hard, you may add canned milk to thin. Next, assemble the cake by pouring a layer of caramel icing between each thin layer of cake, and then icing the entire cake. Place in refrigerator to set. We think that the caramel cake is best served with Hilton Head Ice Cream Company’s caramel-flavored ice cream, but a nice quality vanilla ice cream works just as well.











The Pearl Kitchen & Bar

Green bean and oyster casserole with ‘tobacco’ onions

Ingredients For the casserole bechamel
2 pounds fresh green beans
1/3 pound butter
1/3 cup flour
2 large shallots, minced
1⁄4 cup fresh garlic, minced
1 pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1 handful thyme, tied in butcher’s twine
1 quart heavy cream
1 tsp. blackening seasoning
1/2 cup smoked gouda
12-15 shucked oysters

Salt and pepper, to taste 

Ingredients For the tobacco onions
1 yellow onion, sliced paper thin
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup blackening spice
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions: In a large pot sauté butter, shiitakes, garlic, thyme and shallots. Do not brown. Add flour and make a roux over medium heat. Add blackening spice and heavy cream, and heat until thickened. Add smoked gouda cheese. Remove thyme and adjust with salt and pepper. Blanch green beans in boiling water until tender. In a baking dish, lay green beans and oysters in rows and pour the béchamel over the green beans. Toss onions in flour and blackening spice mix, then deep fry until golden brown. Top with fried onions and more smoked gouda. Bake casserole at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Bon Appetit!

Got a great recipe? LOCAL Life wants it. Email all the ingredients, the instructions and a photo of the dish to lance.hanlin@wearelocallife.com.

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