Our Happy Thanksgiving Menu

As a three seniors (60+) family, it is hard to find a small turkey that we wouldn’t be eating for the next month. Plus, I found out my mom doesn’t like turkey. What! Who doesn’t like turkey? Well, in my life, this makes two. Oat tolerated it for my love of turkey, and now it’s my mom. Huh!

Dad’s annual Thanksgiving drawing. Loves to draw on newspaper. #jo1drawings

With no help from the parental units, I came up with the menu of shrimp tempura, veggie tempura, and mom’s famous pumpkin shortbread.

Mom’s eyes are close but it’s the only shot of the table: shrimp tempura, eggplant, veggie tempura; Okinawan sweet potato, Hamakua mushroom, three types of tsukemono (Japanese pickles by me), black sesame tofu with ume salt, black soybean natto with shoyu koji

Everyone loves mom’s pumpkin pie even people who hate pumpkin pie. It’s the combination of the creamy custard and the slightly sweet shortbread cookie crust. I have fiddled with this recipe over the years, changing the pan shape and size, using sweet potato, and even trying it with a regular pie crust (not the best). My sweet potato pie is based of this recipe. Here’s my adjusted version.

The corners are the best with it’s caramel edges

Mom’s Famous Pumpkin Shortbread–adjusted

makes 9 x 13 pan, roughly 20 pieces
Pre-heat oven 425º

Crust*

  • 3 c flour
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1 c cold butter, cut into small pieces

Prep pan with a light coat of non-stick spray, be sure to get the sides. Mix flour and sugar, cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, till a sandy texture. Press flour mixture into the pan, slightly up the sides. Refrigerate crust while you mix up the filling.

Filling

  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 t salt
  • Large can of pumpkin about 3 1/2 cups**
  • 1 1/2 c sugar
  • 1 t cinnamon***
  • 1 t ground ginger***
  • 1/2 t grounded cloves***
  • 3 1/2 c evaporated milk
  • 1 t vanilla

Combine all the filling ingredients, making sure it is blended well. 

Pour the filling into the crust—Bake at 425º for 20 minutes. Turn down the oven to 350º and bake for 55 minutes or when the toothpick comes out clean. 

*If you want to use the springform pan instead of the 9×13 pan, half the crust amounts. The baking time will differ because it has a thicker filling. It has a longer bake time at 350, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Test with a toothpick. The center shouldn’t be jiggly. Cool to room temp. Then put in the refrigerator to set.

** I’ve used both can and roasted pumpkin for this pie. The differences would be you can control the caramelization, chunkiness, and you will have pumpkin seeds to roast up as a snack. My preferred pumpkin is Kabocha because of its smooth texture.

*** I use my spice mix. Here are the proportions: 1 t cinnamon and ground ginger, 1/2 t ground cloves, 1/4 t nutmeg. I mix up a large batch and keep it in a small jar in the spice cabinet. I used 3 t of the mix in the pie. You also can use it in apple pie, oatmeal, or whatever suits your fancy.

New Look

So many changes of recent, I decided to add one more. What the hell, why not? A new look–not to me but my blog. I hope I to generate more traffic and post on a more regular basis. I added advertisements to the site as I’m working part-time, and hopefully, I can generate some extra income.

one of the items going into my Etsy shop: knitted market bag, 100% cotton

And speaking of generating extra income, photos have been taken, and I will be posting to my Etsy shop soon (next week, keep your fingers cross). I’d hope to have more of an inventory; I guess I gave away many gifts during the prototyping phase.

The patio area, looking toward laundry room and storage

Another thing I’m aiming for a new look is the patio area of my parent’s house. I need more space. Going from a four-bedroom place to my childhood bedroom, a mere 10 x 10) is an incredible feat on my part.

I decided to enclose the patio and add a full bathroom, storage, and a bedroom. I met with the draft person to get drawings of what I want, and hopefully, 2021 will be the year of having more space—no more piles of stuff. There will be a lot of decluttering to happen. In the meantime, I’ll start a look board for what I love for the bathroom, entertainment area, and the bedroom.

Life: 11.11.2020

Who knew in a matter of two three months, my life would change so much. Here’s what is going on. I started this post on 10.20.2020 and have started on a few things.

me from the trail
  1. Furlough officially turned into unemployed.
  2. Decided only to work part-time 
  3. Staying put in my parent’s house.
I guess I need to look life from a different point of view

I mentioned in my post Moving Forward; I need to update my to-do list. I looked back at my list, and it seems going longer and longer. Hmmm. I thought I made more progress. 

Well, I need to adjust the ever-growing list to make it attainable for me to feel like I’m getting things done. I’m putting out in the universe. 

Do List

  • Clean out my storage unit by the end of the year; last week I cleared out 4 boxes; and I think I found a home for the dehydrator and my imac.
  • Get plans to rework the house: call someone to draw up the ideas.
  • Make a budget; made the budget sheet; need to make an appointment with myself to enter my month expenses
  • Work on projects with scrap materials and yarn
  • Draft a blouse pattern for me and make so clothes for me
  • Start stitching my aloha shirt patchwork quilt
  • Open my Etsy shop; scheduled myself for a photo shoot for my inventory this week
  • Make a sourdough starter and make more bread
  • Experiment with my pickle and jam flavors

This list is my wish list that things I want to do and over time hope to achieve.

Wish List

  • Go on another hiking trip to Japan.
  • Learn how to double knit and brioche stitch
  • Make a batch of miso
  • Make a batch of croissant