Posted by: scootrah | November 19, 2014

Make it Easy on Yourself Thanksgiving – Tip #3 AND an appetizer!

Thanksgiving is a week away and I’m SO EXCITED!Basic - Crooksville - %22Thematic by%22 - USA

Here are a couple of things to do today to keep you going on your easy and stress-free holiday:

Do a check of your holiday linens – are your tablecloth, placemats or table runner clean? Do you need to pick up more napkins? What about new pot holders or dish towels for the kitchen if your guests will be helping out? All the departments stores run huge sales on linens now, so you can stock up or replace what you need at a reasonable price. Then this weekend I want you to IRON your tablecloths and napkins (If you hate to iron, take it to the dry cleaners and have them do it, really). It may sound silly to do it now, but TRUST ME – this is something you don’t want to be doing at the last second as guest arrive.

And what are you going to eat it on? After you’ve checked your linens, what about your dishes, glassware and cutlery? You might need to fill in a few pieces so add that to your shopping list. And remember, all this stuff is ON SALE this time of year!

Nothing dull about this – the most gorgeously roasted turkey or ham can end up a mess if you’re trying to carve with a dull knife, so get out your carving knives and get them professionally sharpened! I’m not talking about the little whet stone or electric grinder you use once a year for this…take them some place and have it done well. Make sure to include your paring knife and any others you might need for the big day. We are fortunate to have a local grocery store where I live that sharpens them for free in the meat department, but if you don’t, check online for a sharpening service near you. This is probably the most overlooked thing when getting ready for a big holiday dinner, but it’s so important!

Now that you’ve got a couple more of your preparation chores out of the way why not think about serving cheesy BACON STUFFED MUSHROOMS to your guests? My partner Rolland introduced this to our family years ago, and it’s now on the “It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without them” list, so here you go…

Bacon Stuffed Mushrooms

  • 12-18 medium/medium large white mushrooms
  • 6-9 slice bacon cut lengthwise (you need one full strip to make 2 mushrooms)
  • 1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tblsp bread crumbs
  • 3 Tblsp finely minced onion (more if you like more onion)
  • 1 1/2 Tblsp ranch dressing
  • toothpicks

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Spray a broiler pan or wire rack with cooking spray. If using the wire rack, set on top of a cookie sheet.

Wipe off the mushrooms and remove the stems – set stems aside for another use.

Mix the cheese, bread crumbs, onions and ranch dressing together.

Now press some of the mixture into the hollow of the mushroom cap – depending on the size of the caps you have, this will be 1 or 2 tsps…

…place a stuffed mushroom cap toward the end of a bacon slice. You want to have a little bit wrap over the top to the center of the mushroom…


…wrap the bacon around the cap making an “X”…


…end with the tail of the bacon strip on top of the cap – you can stretch the bacon a bit if you need a little more length…


…secure it with a toothpick…


…and place on a broiler pan – now in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes or until the bacon is nice and crispy (add a cup of water to the broiler pan before putting in the oven to make the pan easier to clean)…


…let the caps cool for 5 minutes before serving because they’re really hot….now EAT!



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