The Astronomer and I are celebrating Thanksgiving twice this year thanks (pun intended) to the Caltech Alumni Association. In addition to gorging with our families tomorrow, we attended an unofficial Turkey Day gathering two weeks ago at the Caltech Alumni House.
The dinner took place in the garden on a warm evening that was made even warmer due to the raging fires nearby. Attendees included first year grad students (like The Astronomer), guests (like The Gastronomer) and alumni (like NASA rocket scientists).
Barbara West Catering did a great job bringing autumnal flavors to the unseasonably warm table. After a bit of schmoozing and cocktails upon arrival, everyone lined up to get some grub. The spread consisted of classic Thanksgiving foods that I wouldn’t mind eating year round. While everyone around me was piling a bit of everything onto their plates, I decided to course my meal with appetizers first, then entrees and sides, and lastly desserts.
My first plate was greens intensive. On the left, a salad comprised of mesclun mix, candied pecans, goat cheese and a light vinaigrette, and on the right, perfectly prepared haricot verts with carrots and caramelized onions.
My second plate was piled with turkey topped with chunky cranberry sauce, dried cranberry stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy, and candied yams with marshmallows. With the exception of the canned candied yams, which tasted unnaturally firm, everything was great. So great, in fact, that I had seconds!
After I polished off my second plate of turkey, stuffing and potatoes, I went for some pumpkin pie and apple crumble with fresh whipped cream. Two words: buttery heaven.
Happy Thanksgiving!! And don’t forget to work out. Ha!