Hope you all had a great weekend! Over here, it was Canadian Thanksgiving (and “Anti-Candida Thanksgiving,” all in one!). For a great tongue-in-cheek summary of the Canadian version of the holiday and how it came to be, take a look at Willie’s explanation, here. 😉
Rather than visit with my family in Montreal or head over to a friend’s house for Thanksgiving this year, the HH and I decided to spend the time at home, just us and The Girls. And after a truly lovely, restorative weekend, I am feeling rather thankful indeed. Great weather, great food, great company (“Thanks, Mum, we think you’re lots of fun to spend time with, too”) and–best of all–an entire day off work! Whoo hoo!
Although the pile of marking perilously perched on the corner of my desk might protest otherwise, I knew it was essential that I take at least one day off over the weekend; I’ve been feeling bombarded with work lately and yearned for some down time. Since Environment Canada deemed Sunday the most meteorologically-friendly (though not pronunciation-friendly) day of the three, that’s the day I chose. And so glad I did!
On Sunday morning, The HH and I rolled out of bed at the leisurely hour of 8:14 AM (“You said it, Mum! We were waiting, like, over an hour for you two to get up!“). The HH rightly pointed out that it was probably the last weekend this year that we’d be able to stroll along the boardwalk at The Beaches** (a hip area of town abutting Lake Ontario), as the temperature was 21C (70F), the skies were clear, and the sun was brilliant. So we decided to treat The Girls to a little spontaneous jaunt downtown.
We piled in the car, drove down the Don Valley Parkway, and an hour later–voilà–there we were! As soon as we began to stroll toward the lake, however, I discovered two things: 1) Chaser, having been raised pretty much in the (suburban) area where we live, has never encountered a surfeit of squirrels such as wanders freely over those grassy knolls in the older parts of the city (needless to say, she went ballistic); and 2) I am not nearly as strong as I used to be (to wit, a 43-pound lab-border collie-shepherd mix was able to topple me without too much trouble at all as she raced after myriad unperturbed squirrels on the grassy knolls).
Clearly, the squirrels have been through this routine several thousand times and didn’t even twitch a whisker until Chaser was fairly on top of them, at which point they scooted up the closest tree trunk without a backward glance. After several near-misses, a nearly-twistsed ankle (mine, not Chaser’s) and some heavy-duty yelping and whining (both mine and Chaser’s), we all piled back in the car, drove north on the Don Valley Parkway and an hour later–voilà–we were back home again.
Our Thanksgiving feast that evening was a perfect end to the day. On the menu were tortière (recipe next post), greens with walnut-miso sauce, stuffed squash and pumpkin-chocolate mousse for dessert (seems I’m on a mousse kick these days). And though our meal was both substantial and filling, I am pleased to report that, at the end of it, I felt perfectly fine–not in the least bit stuffed. Could it be that these last 19 months on the ACD are finally beginning to teach me to pay attention to my body’s fullness signals? Now, wouldn’t that be a perfect end to an idllyic Sunday?
Which brings me to Thanksgiving Monday and. . . pancakes! I’ve been fiddling with a vegan coconut-flour pancake recipe for ages with mimimal success. But for some reason yesterday (perhaps it was my relaxed state of mind after the day off) all the stars–and gluten-free flours–aligned, and the cakes turned out perfectly! The HH and I each enjoyed a couple of high protein, grain-free pancakes while sipping on our respective hot beverages (his: hazelnut flavored coffee; mine: matcha green tea) and reading the newspapers (his: National Post; mine: Globe and Mail), basically just chillaxing as much as possible. The pancakes were topped with this quick and easy cranberry-apple compote (which the HH also smeared as a sauce over his leftover Thanksgiving turkey).
The inclusion of fresh apple (which is more ACD friendly than jarred applesauce) adds natural sweetness to mitigate the overpowering tartness of the cranberries. The compote cooks up quickly and was perfect slathered on the pancakes, but would be equally good on toast, rice cakes, or baked into muffins. All in all, a great way to close out the weekend.
“Actually, Mum, the perfect way to close it out would be for Dad to give us a big piece of that turkey, since it’s way too much for one person. . . okay, I guess we’ll take another walk on the beach as second choice.”
** a few years ago, the city voted that the official name of this district be changed to “The Beach” (singular). Sorry, but certain monikers–like Prince, SkyDome, Russia or The Beaches–will always remain the same in my mind.
Looking for more Thanksgiving recipes? Here’s my mega roundup of 75+ Healthy, Whole Foods, Vegan & Gluten-Free recipes.
Quick Fresh Apple and Cranberry Compote (suitable for ACD Stage 2 and beyond)
from Diet, Dessert and Dogs (https://www.rickiheller.com)
This makes a great topping for pancakes or spread for muffins, scones or toast. Or head over to the savory side of things and dollop it on burgers, tofu or curries.
2 cups (500 ml) fresh or frozen cranberries
1 large apple, cored (peel if desired, but not necessary)
1/2 tsp (2. 5 ml) ground ginger
2 Tbsp (30 ml) water
10-20 drops plain or vanilla stevia liquid, or 2 Tbsp (30 ml) agave nectar
Place the cranberries in a small, heavy-bottomed pot. Grate the apple into the pot and add the ginger and water; stir to combine. Turn heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Allow to cook, stirring frequently, for 15-20 minutes, until the apple is soft and the cranberries have popped. Stir well to combine the fruits. Add stevia to taste and stir well. Serve warm. Makes about 1-1/2 cups (360 ml). Store, covered, in the refrigerator up to 5 days.
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Two Years Ago: Lucky Comestible 4(2): Cuckoo for Coconut: Gluten Free Mini Coconut Loaves or Cupcakes
You might also like: Gluten Free Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies
© 2010 Diet, Dessert and Dogs
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Happy belated thanksgiving! Your day sounds like it was lovely & who can beat a beautiful compote on pancakes? Yum!
You’re right–especially these days, when I can’t have maple syrup (sob!), I really appreciate my fruit compotes! 🙂
I didn’t even know that they changed it to “The Beach”. I’ve never heard it being called anything but The Beaches! Looks like you’re not the only one who likes to stick with the original monikers 🙂
I love compote, cranberry sauce, apple sauce, and really any type of fruity sauce. Especially if they are not completely smooth and still have chunks of fruit. This compote looks delightful…I also love the sound of coconut flour pancakes.
Yep, there was a public vote and the official name is now “The Beach.” Silly, huh? 😉 I think this one fits your criterion of “chunks of fruit” still in it–I left lots of the cranberries whole and I think it worked really well with the smooth apples!
Oh, I have everything on hand to make this! Hmmm… that’s very very tempting!
You won’t regret it! 😉
What a wonderful sounding weekend – luscious, lazy & lovely! Your dinner sounds fantastic, and woot! for you for not over-stuffing yourself. I don’t think I’ve ever managed to not over-stuff on Thanksgiving.
That compote sounds so yummy – I need to find some cranberries!
Your description covers it beautifully–yes, both luscious and lazy (in a good way)! It’s a whole new experience, this not stuffing myself, but I think I like it. 😉
That compote sounds amazing–and I can’t wait to make it. I’ve been following your blog and I noticed that you always use liquid stevia. I only have powdered; do you know what the conversion from liquid to powdered is?
Marissa, I use liquid stevia because I prefer the flavor–I find that the powder can have a bitter undertaste, but I don’t have the same reaction with the liquid. You can certainly use the powder instead. I found a simple conversion chart here. I generally estimate about 5-8 drops (depending on the brand of liquid) per packet of powder, or about 1/4 teaspoon powder. Hope this helps!
Sounds like you had a great Thanksgiving, Ricki! And I love reading your dogs’ contributions – if I had a dog, I think I’d do the same on my blog. 🙂 We had an apple cobbler (all weekend, in fact) instead of apple pie, which I believe is more traditional, and it’s so much easier and simple to throw together. Plus, it’s vegan, using coconut oil or Earth Balance. 🙂
Hee, hee! The Girls just sort of started “talking” when I first began the blog, and now I can’t shut them up! 😉 Your cobbler sounds fabulous! I agree, much easier to make than pie (which scares me a little!)
I have cranberries in the freezer year round because I love them so much, so this will be made this weekend. It looks great! And, ummm…pumpkin-chocolate mousse?!? That sounds like a fantastic Thanksgiving dessert!
I keep them in the freezer, too! I do love a good cranberry compote, and even in a smoothie. 🙂 I will be posting the pumpkin-chocolate mousse, too, but didn’t want to overwhelm everyone with two mousse recipes within 2 weeks! 🙂
The compote looks delicious. I just might have to add it to my own Thanksgiving menu.
It was a really nice change from regular cranberry sauce. 🙂
I have been searching for great egg-free coconut flour pancakes. Would love to know your recipe!
jq, it’s a recipe that will be in my upcoming ACD Breakfast E-book. Sorry I can’t post it now (I feel like such a meany!). 🙁
mmmm…looks incredible! I love cranberries and so does my cat. He’ll loves to chase them. Won’t eat them, though.
That’s too funny! But then again, cats are weird. 😉
sounds all good – maybe you were able to eat lots without feeling too full because you burned lots of calories trying to keep chaser from the squirrels.
Ha, ha! I bet that had something to do with it–! I didn’t succeed with Chaser, but at least it worked re: the food. 😉
hooray for one restorative weekend with the girls and HH, Ricki! dan and i are along the same lines in our wanting it to just be the two of us at home this year for our thanksgiving. i hope it happens. fingers crossed! Chaser is one strong pup – and too funny on her chasing all the squirrels. our dog julie is generally disinterested in squirrels, but i think that’s because they’re everywhere around here. the other day she found a toad and it was pretty fun to watch her puzzle over what the heck was hopping around her. ah ha ha! i need to get my hands on some coconut flour, i just always forget. i hear it’s a dream to bake with, and here i am over a year into being gluten-free and i have yet to purchase any. it’s on my list now, fo ‘sho! your quick cranberry apple compote looks lovely and sounds perfect for fall. i can’t wait to give it a whirl and smother on the awesome!
That’s too funny about Julie! I think if one of our girls found a toad, that would be one quick snack! I was glad to have Chaser on a leash with those squirrels, I’ll tell ya. 😉 Coconut flour is great, but very different from other flours. . .you need MUCH less to absorb the same amount of liquid. I’m still playing with it and while I like the flavor/texture, I’m far from feeling as if I know how to use it to greatest advantage just yet.
Pure2raw Twins says
Yumm compote looks awesome. Love the color the cranberries provided it 😉
It really is the most gorgeous shade of red, and the berries pop every now and again in your mouth for a tart contrast–really yummy!
River (Wing-It Vegan) says
Oh, cranberries. *awkward silence* 😀
Your trip to The Beaches sounds like good fun – and good exercise! I can just picture those squirrels totally ignoring Chaser and munching away! 🙂
River, I swear you are the funniest blogger on the Internet! Don’t worry, the cranberries won’t bite (unlike Chaser, if she had caught one of those insouciant squirrels!).
Ricki! Every time I read your posts I think “Oh I have to comment on that…” and then I get further and go “Oh I have to comment on that…” And then by the time I get to the comment section I’ve totally forgotten all of the things from your stories that I want to comment on! Let alone your amazing recipes! Squirrels are super amazingly fast. Ringo has tried many many times to get them, and sometimes I think he will. Nope, never. Cheeky little squirrels.
Your dinner sounded amazing. Can’t wait to see the Tortiere recipe. My Mom makes one every Christmas just packed with red meat. No thanks, will show her yours for this year 🙂 See, my comments will soon be as long as your posts…
You are so funny! Glad to hear that Ringo isn’t the fastest re: outdoor rodents. Chaser, on the other hand, could easily have caught several. . . hence, my sore shoulder today. 😉 Working on the tortiere post! I hope your mom likes it. 😀 And I’m loving the long comments, too!
Alisa - Frugal Foodie says
Glad you had such a relaxing Thanksgiving! Tony and I are staying home for all the holidays this year and I am really looking forward to it! Perhaps that cranberry compote will be on our pumpkin pancake agenda!
There is something to be said for “at home” holidays, yes. Cranberry compote on pumpkin pancakes sounds perfect–especially for an at-home brunch. 🙂
Kim-Cook It Allergy Free says
Okay, first off, this compote sounds absolutely wonderful!! But I am also hoping you will be sharing that grain-free pancake recipe with us as well. And that Tortiere has me totally intrigued. i am really anxious to see that one!
I so agree with the relaxing stay-at-home kind of holidays. Because I love being home so much during the holidays (and also because I love that if I do all of the cooking I know that my kids and hubby can eat everything at the table) we host Thanksgiving every year. I just spend the day cooking away in my pj’s with a fire going in the fireplace in the kitchen and I don’t shower and change until the fam arrives. And during Christmas, we have started the habit of doing all of the big family gatherings on Christmas Eve, and then on Christmas Day just staying at home all day long and making a nice meal for just us and our parents. Only rule – we stay in our pj’s all day and anyone that comes over must do the same.
Happy Thanksgiving. Thanks for sharing your wonderful day with us.
Okay, signing off. Sorry for the novel. Lol 😉
Yes, will be sharing the tortiere next up! The grain-free pancake is (so far) slated for my next anti-candida ebook on ACD Breakfasts–but I feel like such a meanie keeping it to myself! It’s always a balancing game with cookbooks. . . sigh. I just love your approach to the holidays. Because it’s just me and the HH (and the Girls, of course), we also hang around in PJs or sweats and cook all day, take the dogs for a walk, etc. (only our fireplace is in the room beside the kitchen, not IN the kitchen! Lucky you!!). We used to celebrate Christmas with my older sister in Montreal but haven’t made the trek in quite a few years. . . so it’s often us two for that holiday as well, unless we’re invited to a friend’s house. But I think from now on we should invite people over here and make them wear their PJs!! 😉
gfe--gluten free easily says
It all sounds quite lovely, Ricki. So glad you didn’t get too banged up when the girls went crazy though. Yes, those pancakes look fab! Kudos on not overindulging–that’s really cool. 🙂
I hosted my family’s Thanksgiving last year and it was wonderful. This year it’s our turn to dine with Mr. GFE’s family, who are all feuding. Seriously. It’s ridiculous. So we’ll dine and then Son will immediately return home and we’re heading off on a road trip. No idea where yet, but hubby has “use or lose” leave and that seemed like a good time to take it. Ideally, we’d leave Thanksgiving Eve, but we’d be abandoning Son, and that wouldn’t be right.
I love Kim’s description, too. We used to have a house wiht a little woodstove in the kitchen (that old farmhouse we rented–loved that stove!). I’m one to wait until the last minute to shower and dress, but it’s gotten me in trouble as we have folks on both sides of the family who believe arriving early is cool. NOT! LOL
Thanks, Shirley. And a little impromptu holiday sounds great to me! Although the HH and I don’t have family here, in some ways, I guess it works out well because we don’t have feuding (unless the two of us are in conflict–in which case, there’s no holiday meal at all!) Hope it turns out better than you expect. And enjoy the time away! I love how we all hang about in our pjs. Pajama party, I say! 😉
Ooo I’ve never had cranberry sauce with apple in it! Love that idea. And your Thanksgiving feast sounds amazing. (Yes I am ridiculously behind here on my blog reading!!)