Private chef

Scrumptious savoury side dishes perfect for Thanksgiving!

During my time in New York City, I was lucky enough to spend Thanksgiving amongst my adopted friends and family; my first in a small Brooklyn apartment with an incredible family who welcomed me in after only knowing me for a few months; my second was a huge family affair on Long Island full of food, children and laughter; my third, with my, by then, well established group of best friends and expats with martinis and vodka cranberry jelly for all! The common thread? Delicious food!

Thanksgiving is my favourite adopted holiday because it keeps all the good stuff about Christmas; family, friends, spending time together, but loses the commercial stresses of decorations, obligations and present giving. It really is about feeling grateful about the year gone by, putting down your iPhone and cooking and eating together. What’s not to celebrate?!

So, to bring a little Thanksgiving spirit to all of our friends and family this November 26th, Jake has written up two delicious Thanksgiving side dishes for you to try at home. Do let us know if you attempt them and send us the photos.

In the meantime, to all of our dear American friends, happy turkey day!!!

Cranberry bacon stuffing

  • 150g finely chopped pancetta
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 350g breadcrumbs (gluten free if necessary)
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 150g butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 and 1/2 tblsps good quality cranberry sauce
  • 25ml port
  1. Finely dice the onion and finely chop the rosemary.
  2. Put 50g of butter into a heavy based saucepan and add the onions, rosemary and pancetta.
  3. Crush in the garlic cloves and cook on low to medium heat for 15 minutes until soft.
  4. Turn up the heat and add the port, cook until almost evaporated. Leave to cool.
  5. Place breadcrumbs in a mixing bowl and add the onion mixture to the bowl. Add cranberry sauce.
  6. Melt the remaining mixture and add to the mixture. Mix well.
  7. Add more butter if mixture is dry and doesn't stick together.
  8. Lay out clingfilm flat on the work surface. Spoon mixture onto the clingfilm, pressing it together.
  9. Roll into a sausage using the clingfilm. (Or roll into balls if you prefer). 
  10. Place in the fridge for at least 12 hours. Once hard, cut into discs and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 180 degrees.

Beet-Apple Mash

  • 2 tblsps olive oil
  • 5 large beetroots, peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and quartered
  • 1 tsp coarse sea salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • Pepper to taste
  1. Heat the oil in a large pan on a medium heat.
  2. Add the beetroot, apple, salt and nutmeg. Cover and cook stirring occasionally under almost tender - approximately 15 minutes
  3. Uncover and continue cooking until the liquid has mostly evaporated.
  4. Add 475ml to the pan, cover and simmer until completely tender and the water has mostly evaporated - about 20-25 minutes.
  5. Mash with a potato masher and add pepper to taste.