We survived hosting our first Italian Thanksgiving. I was pretty tense this whole week leading up to our dinner and it doesn’t help that I am a perfectionist. I put way too much pressure on myself which in term caused me to be tense and snippy. Just in time for the holidays! Leading up to our dinner I stressed about everything from the sauce to the pie. Simple things but the fact that I expected so much of myself made them bigger than they were.
We started making things on Black Friday. Judd prepped the meatballs which were beef and pork while I tackled the sauce-making. Two hours and two pots my homemade tomato sauce was complete. I love this sauce because it is so light plus it’s easy to make. I decide to whip up my mom’s spinach dip recipe for an appetizer before the pasta was ready. My mom’s dip is delicious and super easy to make! We set the table with my good China and a few festive pieces. We were ready!
Saturday came out of no where it seemed and before we knew it our kitchen was a mad house! Judd began browning the meatballs early while I mixed together the ingredients for Kentucky Derby Pie. We poured the two pots of sauce into our Crock Pot and cooked the meatballs once they were browned. The pie baked for about an hour and once that was done it was time to cook the pasta.
Unlike regular pasta-making steps, this one was interesting to make. I had about 2 lbs. of pasta to cook which meant I had to use an entire bottle of Chianti with about 10 cups of water to dilute the mixture. Getting into said bottle of wine was a task…I broke the cork in half and had to enlist the help of my wine-loving brother to help retrieve the rest of the cork without shoving it in the bottle of wine. He successfully managed it though there were a few pieces of cork in the wine. (Oh well, we drained it anyways!) Judd broke the 2 lb.s of pasta into half and we started boiling the wine/water mixture.
My parents had arrived shortly after the water started to boil but I had planned ahead with spinach dip to entertain them while we finished cooking. Judd’s mom brought a Cesar salad with the world’s best salad dressing. She mixed up her salad and we baked some garlic bread. The pasta took a tad longer than usual to cook but once it was done we were ready to dig in!
For dessert we indulged in my mom’s famous pumpkin roll and my pie. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the sweets! It was really nice having both of our families (minus Judd’s brother) up for Thanksgiving even if it was a few days after the actual holiday. Our families always seem to have a great time together-sharing many laughs and enjoying each other’s company. Next year we plan on hosting another Italian Thanksgiving…maybe with some eggplant Parmesan this time!