Heirloom family recipes, prepared with organic and locally–sourced ingredients offer a new take on the traditional Thanksgiving.
For a fun and delicious twist on the traditional Thanksgiving dinner, host a potluck feast showcasing organic and locally–sourced foods.
Invite friends to select a favorite old family recipe and then adapt it to contemporary tastes, using only the freshest ingredients they can find. If guests prefer, you can assign recipes — we've included several from our Senior Vice President, Clay Ide's Great–Great–Grandmother, Abigail Billings Smith.
Adapting old recipes often requires creativity and some fun "trial–and–error" experimentation. Ask each cook to prepare something to share about his or her dish — perhaps the history of the recipe, a story about its author, or the changes they made to improve upon the original.
With a focus on adapting old recipes for the contemporary palate, this potluck gathering is a natural choice for food lovers. Conversation flows easily as guests put the finishing touches on their dishes and discuss the challenges they faced in selecting and adapting their family recipes.
Set the tone for your gathering with an invitation printed on parchment–hued paper, in a script font that evokes the first Thanksgiving.
Whether guests will be working from their own family recipes or from ones you provide, assign each person a different type of dish, and encourage them to visit a local farm stand or organic market to find the freshest ingredients. Also, ask guests to bring their dishes in portable containers, so that you can transfer the food to your own serving pieces for a cohesive look.
Create a table setting that captures the party's blend of tradition and innovation. Our stylists combined rustic elements, with luxe accents, for a look that's both festive and eclectic. At the center of the table, leafy autumn garlands wrap around a grouping of mixed faux pumpkins. Mercury glass pumpkins bring sparkle to the display, while the antler–shaped candelabra adds a dramatic flourish, and pays homage to the rugged lifestyle of the American pioneers.
To make your Thanksgiving especially memorable, create festive parting gifts for your guests. Collect the recipes before the feast, and make a ribbon–tied booklet for each guest to cherish for years to come. For another great memento, print a menu listing all of the dishes you and your guests have prepared. Use our template to create one with a scripted font, and gently roll and burn the edges of the paper for a timeworn look. Suspend the menu from two ears of maize using natural rope. Use rustic, burlap chair backers to guide guests to their seats, and to hold their take–home recipe booklets.