As a kid, I used to love the smells of Thanksgiving. The carefully basted turkey surrounded by roasted root veggies, the cranberry sauce, the sweet potatoes… and, of course, the pumpkin pie.
All of which created the perfect guest experience, as this was being done for a larger cause than just the four of us. Which brings me to the point that Thanksgiving should be about more than impressing relatives and friends with the ultimate spread.
It should also be about giving thanks with your ‘home team.’
Starting with Breakfast
I like to start with breakfast. A bowl of cold flakes may be fine for the mid-week rush to work, but Thanksgiving weekend is time to up your game. Like fixing a hearty plate of eggs, bacon, homefries and toast.
I know what you’re thinking. A kale smoothie alongside a jiggling bowl of high-fibre porridge would be the more sensible option. But try selling that to your kids – or to yourself, for that matter!
Over the years, eggs have wrongly taken a bad rap. We’ve since discovered that although they are high in cholesterol, eggs generally don’t have an adverse effect on blood levels. And studies have shown they raise “good” HDL cholesterol, which is linked with a lower risk of heart disease.
Eggs also contain choline (for building cell membranes), and lutein and zeaxanthin for eye health. Some hens are raised on Omega-3 enriched feeds, which has been shown to help lower triglycerides. Eggs are also low in calories and high in protein. Could anybody design a better food?
Perhaps the one way to raise the bar is to go organic, free-run and free-range.
Free run and free range are similar in that the hens do not live in cages but in an open-concept barn with a variety of nests and perches. Free range birds have the added bonus of an outdoor pasture, where they can freely forage. Organic eggs come from hens given a certified feed, made from non-GMO grains.
You’ll pay a little more for these eggs, but I’ve noticed a richer, darker yolk – almost orange in colour – and the taste is more robust.
Eggs Pair Perfectly with Peameal Bacon
Which could also be said of the perfect egg accompaniment: peameal bacon. It comes from a lean, boneless pork loin, and is lower in fat than traditional strips.
Vince’s Own peameal bacon uses pork that is antibiotic and hormone free, cured a minimum of seven days in a low-sodium brine. Our process delivers meat that is tender, but without excess moisture – which means it doesn’t cook down like regular bacon. Our peameal is then rolled in cornmeal, sliced – and ready for the frypan.
Add crispy, seasoned home fries (any spud will do, but I prefer the healthier sweet potato), some sautéed onions and sweet peppers, and a few slices of whole-grain artisanal bread. Check out Ace Bakery, Stonemill Slow Crafted, and Dave’s Killer Bread in our bakery section. And don’t forget a delicious jam or preserve.
Now that’s a perfect start to the day and should give the entire family enough energy to fire up the vacuum, sweep the floors, and otherwise tidy the house for guests. That includes you, kids!
If you forgot anything for your perfect Thanksgiving weekend, don’t worry! All Vince’s Market locations are open on Thanksgiving Day until 5pm!
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Until next time,