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A Southern Thanksgiving Dinner

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Cornbread, collard greens, pecans, sweet potatoes and grits add a touch of Southern flair to the traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

Download a pdf of this menu, including all recipes, shopping list and timeline.

Menu Timeline

Two days ahead

  • Make the tart dough, roll out, and chill.

A day ahead

  • Make the cornbread for the stuffing.
  • Finish and bake the pecan rum tart. Lightly cover with plastic wrap.
  • Make the turkey giblet broth for the gravy.

5 hours before dinner

  • Prep turkey for roasting.
  • If cooking stuffing inside your turkey, make the stuffing and put it in the bird.

4 hours before dinner

  • Put turkey in the oven.
  • Make the biscuits.

3 hours before dinner

  • Flip turkey and continue to roast.
  • Prep all the ingredients for the spoonbread and collards.

2 hours before dinner

  • Make the spoonbread.

An hour before dinner

  • If baking the stuffing separately, put it in the oven.
  • Make the creamy collards, keep warm.

30 minutes before dinner

  • Take turkey out of the oven, and let it rest.
  • Raise the oven temperature to 400°F and put the spoonbread in to bake. If the stuffing is still baking in the oven, it can continue at 400°F, but keep an eye on it; it will be ready before the spoonbread is finished.
  • Make the gravy.

Shopping List

Fresh Produce

  • 2 large heads (about 3 lb. total) collard greens, washed, stemmed, and cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 3-4 large onions
  • 2 medium bell peppers, one red and one green
  • 4 ribs celery
  • 1 small carrot
  • 1 large bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 1 small bunch fresh chives
  • 1 small bunch fresh dill
  • 1 head garlic
  • 1 medium shallot

Meat, Eggs & Dairy

  • One 14-lb. turkey (preferably fresh and natural), with neck and giblets
  • 3/4 lb. sweet Italian sausage
  • 3-1/2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2-1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 2-1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped Smithfield ham, other country-cured ham, or prosciutto

Other Groceries

  • 1-1/2 cups pecans
  • 1-1/4 cups stone-ground grits
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground white pepper

Pantry Staples

  • 6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3-4 cups homemade or low-salt canned chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1-1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Pinch cayenne (optional)
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

The Menu

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