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Thanksgiving Menu Ideas

Here are a few Thanksgiving recipe ideas to serve with your turkey next week. Have a Happy Thanksgiving! 

Sarah Sundin's Candy-Cane Cookies

Sarah Sundin is the author of six historical novels, including In Perfect Time (Revell, August 2014), plus a novella in Where Treetops Glisten (WaterBrook, September 2014). Her novel On Distant Shores was a double finalist for the 2014 Golden Scroll Awards. In 2011, Sarah received the Writer of the Year Award at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. Sarah lives in northern California with her husband and three children. When she isn’t ferrying kids to tennis and choir, she works on-call as a hospital pharmacist and teaches Sunday school and women’s Bible studies. You can find her at

Sarah's Latest Book Release: Where Treetops Glisten 

The crunch of newly fallen snow, the weight of wartime. Siblings forging new paths and finding love in three stories, filled with the wonder of Christmas.

Turn back the clock to a different time, listen to Bing Crosby sing of sleigh bells in the snow, as the realities of America’s involvement in the Second World War change the lives of the Turner family in Lafayette, Indiana.

In Sarah Sundin’s novella I’ll Be Home for Christmas, World War II fighter pilot Lt. Pete Turner is running on empty, but coming home for Christmas doesn’t help him fill his tank. When he encounters a precocious little girl in need of his friendship, can he convince her widowed mother, Grace Kessler, that he’s no longer the bully she once knew? And will Pete’s Christmas gift fill the empty places in their hearts?

The stories in Where Treetops Glisten are bound together by the Turner siblings’ Grandma Louise, who loves to bake. Despite wartime shortages and rationing, she makes Christmas cookies a priority! Linnie Kessler, the six-year-old daughter of my heroine, is very fond of the famous candy canes from Glatz Candies in Lafayette, Indiana (now called McCord’s), so she’d adore these candy-cane cookies. My family certainly does! This is always a fun recipe to make with kids—they love rolling out the ropes. Purchase the book HERE. 

Sarah's Candy-Cane Cookies

1 egg
1 cup butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon peppermint extract
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¾ teaspoon red food coloring
Red sugar sprinkles
Egg white

Beat together first five ingredients until fluffy. Add flour and baking powder, and beat well. Divide dough in two equal portions. Mix food coloring into one portion. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat oven 375˚. For each cookie, roll 1 teaspoon of each color dough into 4-inch ropes. Twist one red and one white rope together, bend into candy cane shape, and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Brush with egg white and sprinkle with red sugar sprinkles. Bake at 375˚ for 8-10 minutes. Makes about 36 cookies.

Chicken and Rice Casserole

Here's a simple recipe to make for your family when you're craving some comfort food. 

6-8 chicken breasts, boneless skinless
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup water
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 1/2 cups rice

In large bowl, mix together butter, water, creamed soups, vegetables, and rice. Pour half into a greased oblong baking dish. Place chicken on top of rice. Cover with remaining rice mixture. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 3 hours at 275 degrees. Serves 6-8.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Jodie Bailey's Russian Tea

Jodie Bailey writes novels about freedom and the heroes who fight for it. Her novels include Freefall and Crossfire, from Love Inspired Suspense, as well as Quilted by Christmas, from Abingdon Press. Her devotions have appeared in Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home and Sweet Freedom with a Slice of Peach Cobbler. She is convinced a camping trip to the beach with her family, a good cup of coffee, and a great book can cure all ills. Jodie lives in North Carolina with her husband, her daughter, and two dogs. Learn more about Jodie and her writing HERE. 

Jodie's Latest Book Release - Quilted by Christmas 

Taryn is keeping a secret she never should have kept.

You’re needy. Manipulative. You used me. In Taryn McKenna’s last conversation with high school sweetheart Justin Callahan, his angry words rooted themselves deeply into her heart. After Justin abandons her to join the army, Taryn vows to never love again. And she decides to keep a closely guarded secret from him—forever.

Focused on being completely independent, Taryn pours herself into teaching high school in Hollings, North Carolina and helping her spunky Grandma Jemma. But when Jemma’s health takes a turn for the worse, and Justin reappears, Taryn’s emotions get more tangled than a knotted piece of thread. A hand-stitched Irish chain quilt holds the message of healing Taryn needs. But will she realize the depth of God’s unconditional love for her? Purchase the book HERE. 

Jodie's Recipe for Russian Tea

When I was growing up, my Aunt Shirley and my grandmothers mothered me. One of the things I remember is Aunt Shirley teaching me how to make Russian Tea. It’s a super simple recipe, but I make it nearly every year. It’s the perfect blend of spice and warmth and just something that tastes like home. When I was writing Quilted by Christmas, I wanted Taryn to have a simple memory of her mother, much like I have of my Aunt Shirley, who died so young at 43. In one of the early scenes in the novel, Taryn is talking to her grandmother and searching for comfort. She reaches for the Russian Tea her mother taught her to make.

1 cup instant tea powdered mix (WITHOUT lemon or sweetener)
2 cups of Tang or another orange flavored drink mix
1 packet of unsweetened lemonade mix
2 cups of sugar
2 teaspoons of cinnamon
½ teaspoon of cloves

Mix all ingredients together and store in an airtight container. To serve, mix 3 tablespoons (or more to taste) in a mug of hot water. I always add more, because I like mine strong.

Cranberry Muffins

Here's a recipe I like to make during the holidays. They make great gifts for your loved ones. 

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup orange juice
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, cinnamon, baking soda, ginger, salt, and orange peel. Cut in shortening until crumbly. Stir in orange juice, eggs and vanilla until moistened. Fold in cranberries and nuts. Fill paper-lined muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden. Makes 18 muffins.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Pork Lo Mein

Here's a delicious Asian recipe to try for your family. Enjoy! 

12 oz package uncooked linguine
2 tablespoons canola oil
12 oz pork tenderloin, cut into thin strips
1 cup chicken broth
1/3 cup soy sauce
4 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup onion, chopped
2 cups cabbage, chopped
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
5 white mushrooms, sliced
2 small carrots, peeled and julienned
2 garlic cloves, minced

Cook linguine according to package directions, 8-9 minutes. Drain. 

In large skillet, heat oil and cook pork until no longer pink, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Meanwhile, in small bowl, whisk together, broth, soy sauce, brown sugar, rice vinegar, oil, pepper, ginger, and cornstarch. Set aside.

In medium hot skillet, cook onion, cabbage, green pepper, mushrooms, carrots and garlic until tender, about 2-3 minutes, adding more oil if necessary. Add soy sauce and cook, stirring until sauce thickens. Add cooked pork and linguine, tossing to coat. Serves 4-6.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe. 

Pecan Tarts

This is a recipe my mom makes every Christmas. They are so yummy, they practically melt in your mouth! Perfect for the upcoming holiday season.

1/2 cup butter, softened
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup flour

1 eggs
3/4 cups brown sugar
1 tablespoons melted butter
pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, cream softened butter and cream cheese. Add flour. Mix well. Chill dough for 20-30 minutes. Divide dough into fourths and then roll each into six balls. Place one ball in each cup of a mini tart pan. Use your fingers or a tart tamper to press out into a tart shell. 

In medium bowl, combine egg, sugar, melted butter, salt, vanilla, and pecans. Mix well. Fill tart shells 2/3 full. Bake for 25-30 minutes until delicately browned. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and then remove from pan. Makes 24 tarts.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.  

Cookbook Preview ~ My Paris Kitchen

A collection of stories and 100 sweet and savory French-inspired recipes from popular food blogger David Lebovitz, reflecting the way Parisians eat today and featuring lush photography taken around Paris and in David's Parisian kitchen.

It’s been ten years since David Lebovitz packed up his most treasured cookbooks, a well-worn cast-iron skillet, and his laptop and moved to Paris. In that time, the culinary culture of France has shifted as a new generation of chefs and home cooks—most notably in Paris—incorporates ingredients and techniques from around the world into traditional French dishes. 

In My Paris Kitchen, David remasters the classics, introduces lesser-known fare, and presents 100 sweet and savory recipes that reflect the way modern Parisians eat today. You’ll find Soupe à l’oignon, Cassoulet, Coq au vin, and Croque-monsieur, as well as Smoky barbecue-style pork, Lamb shank tagine, Dukkah-roasted cauliflower, Salt cod fritters with tartar sauce, and Wheat berry salad with radicchio, root vegetables, and pomegranate. And of course, there’s dessert: Warm chocolate cake with salted butter caramel sauce, Duck fat cookies, Bay leaf poundcake with orange glaze, French cheesecake...and the list goes on. 
David also shares stories told with his trademark wit and humor, and lush photography taken on location around Paris and in David’s kitchen reveals the quirks, trials, beauty, and joys of life in the culinary capital of the world. Buy the cookbook HERE.