Southern-Touch Thanksgiving
October 20th, 2018 by Jennifer Brown

Pumpkin Pie Parfaits – Photo by Brandon Pomrenke

These dishes marry rich Southern flavors for a twist on traditional holiday food

Pumpkin Pie Parfaits

  • 12 ounces fresh or canned pumpkin purée
  • 2 24-ounce cans heavy cream coconut milk, unmixed
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • ½ cup pecans, crushed
  • ½ cup almonds, crushed
  • 1/3 cup dates, chopped and mashed or blended in a food processor
  • ¼ cup cashews, chopped
  • Dash of sea salt

Open the cans of coconut milk and gently spoon the top layer of heavy cream into a medium mixing bowl. Using a fork, whip the cream with 1 tablespoon orange juice and the maple syrup. Refrigerate to set firm. In a large mixing bowl, pour a splash of the remaining coconut milk into the pumpkin purée and combine. Discard or save the rest of the coconut milk for another recipe. Mix all remaining ingredients with the pumpkin purée, except the nuts, salt and dates. Set the pumpkin mixture aside.

Toss together the crushed nuts, dates and salt until evenly combined. Layer the ingredients into parfait glasses by gently spooning each mixture into the glass so as not to soil the sides. Begin with the nuts, then add the purée and top with the coconut cream. Garnish with a dash of cinnamon. Chill before serving.

Collards and Beans With Eggs and Hollandaise


  • 4 egg yolks
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • Fresh-squeezed juice of ½ large lemon
  • ¼ to 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • Crushed black pepper for garnish

Combine the egg yolks, spices and lemon juice in a blender. Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until fully melted and slightly bubbling. Remove from heat.

Slowly pour the butter into the egg yolk mixture. Use an immersion blender to immediately whip the mixture while pouring, so the hot butter does not coagulate the egg yolks. Finish adding the butter, and blend until the sauce is fairly thick and creamy.

Prepare up to an hour before serving. Hollandaise does not reheat well.

Collards, green beans and eggs

  • 1 large bunch collard greens, chopped
  • 2 cups fresh green beans
  • Fresh-squeezed juice of ½ large lemon
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 4 eggs
  • Dash of salt
  • Splash of white vinegar

Steam green beans until tender but not mushy. Fill a separate pot—large enough to submerge the collards—two-thirds full with water. Add the collard greens. Blanch over high heat until fully cooked and tender, usually about 5 minutes after water begins boiling. Drain the green beans and collards. Just before serving, toss the beans and collards with olive oil and lemon. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, poach four eggs in water, adding a dash of salt and a splash of vinegar to keep the egg whites from dispersing. Serve green beans and collards on a platter topped with the eggs and hollandaise. Garnish with pepper.

Scalloped Baby Potatoes

  • 3 pounds multicolored baby fingerling potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 5 sprigs fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ medium red onion, diced
  • 2 jalapeños, diced
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 5 tablespoons butter, sliced
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2½ cups milk, warmed to room temp

Heat oven to 375 F.

Toss the potato slices with olive oil, herbs, onion and jalapeño. Spread a thin layer of half of the potatoes on the bottom of an oiled 9-by-13-inch dish. Sprinkle lightly with a layer of flour, using only half of the flour. Layer with half of the butter slices. Repeat the layering process using the remaining ingredients. Once complete, gently pour the milk on top of the potatoes. Bake for about an hour, until potatoes are cooked through and the top is crisp and golden.

Spicy Cajun Oven-Roasted Turkey

  • 10-pound turkey, thawed
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • Small handful of mushrooms, chopped
  • ½ bell pepper, chopped
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons pink Himalayan sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons crushed black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons poblano or paprika
  • pepper powder
  • 1 tablespoon crushed rosemary, dried or fresh
  • 1 tablespoon crushed oregano, dried or fresh
  • 1 tablespoon crushed thyme, dried or fresh

Toss all spices together in a small bowl. Pat the turkey dry and season with the spice mix by sprinkling and patting the spices inside and outside the turkey. Refrigerate the turkey on a roasting pan rack overnight.

Let the turkey sit at room temperature for one hour while heating the oven to 375 F. Meanwhile, fill the turkey with the mixed, chopped vegetables. Brush the turkey with oil before placing in the oven.

While roasting, baste occasionally for about an hour. After an hour, flip the turkey and repeat the basting process. Roast until the internal turkey temperature reaches 165 F. The entire roasting process usually takes 2 to 2½ hours. Let the turkey cool for 30 minutes before carving.

Orange Mint Cranberry Relish

  • 12 ounces frozen cranberries, thawed and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 large orange, peeled
  • 4 tablespoons sugar, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger root
  • Dash of black pepper, to taste

Chop the orange and retain all juice that drains out. Add chopped orange and drained juice to cranberries. Toss with all remaining ingredients. Chill in the refrigerator for one hour to blend flavors before serving. Garnish with fresh mint.

Recipes by Chelsea Glanz