Thanksgiving feast

2 Dec

Our beautiful Autumn table laid out for dinner

While doing the research for this blog it became apparent that although Thanksgiving is based on the 1621 feast it wasn’t made an official holiday until much later. There had been sporadic celebrations up until this point and although President George Washington did proclaim Thursday 26th November 1789 ‘a day of public thanksgiving and prayer’ it still wasn’t an annual celebration in the US.

Picking out the details

The person who was actually responsible for making the modern Thanksgiving an annual celebration is Sarah Josepha Hale.  Hale was the author famous for ‘Mary Had a Little Lamb’ nursery rhyme; and she spent 40 years petitioning for a national, annual Thanksgiving holiday.  She saw the holiday as a way to infuse hope and belief in the nation and the constitution; this was also shared by Lincoln.  When the US was disrupted by the Civil War he saw it as a way to bring the nation together.

Pumpkin Soup

So with that in mind he set a date of the last Thursday in November. This proclamation was made in 1863 and there has been an annual national holiday of Thanksgiving ever since!

There are many traditions associated with Thanksgiving, not only with the big football games as I’m sure many of you are aware, but also with the food being served.  This year Thanksgiving was Thursday 28th November, and we had a wonderful event where we went all out on the food for our private client’s event.  Keeping with very traditional dishes with our own Purple Grape twists to them.

Brussels sprouts and green bean medley

There was the traditional Turkey (which we of course have at Christmas), and a whole host of other dishes as well (take a look at our menu below).  Most of the time there are so many different dishes and so much food that people start eating at lunch so that they have the whole afternoon to keep eating.

Pumpkin Pie

The menu we put together represents some of the traditional dishes you have with turkey on thanksgiving but different areas of the US, different cultures or religions, and the rest of the world who also celebrate this holiday, have their own signature dishes they serve or variations of the stuffing or other dishes too.  Even families have different traditions that build up over time.


Spiced pumpkin soup with garlic foam- Served with sweet potato and rosemary soda bread and goats cheese and potato bread

Main Course

Whole Apple wood smoked bacon and maple glazed turkey

Cornbread, apple and cranberry stuffing

Roasted garlic squash with crispy sage and brown butter

Brussels sprouts and green bean medley with pancetta, rosemary and pine nuts

Vermont cheddar and buttermilk mashed potato with chives

All served with gravy and Cranberry sauce


Pumpkin Pie served with fresh berries, edible flowers, cream and raspberry coulis.