As Thanksgiving seems to be on everybody’s minds right now (at least all those who celebrate it), it thrilled me that my menu planner was a huge help to many of you. Furthermore, I am glad that recipes for Turkey Roulade with Cranberry Mushroom Stuffing and the Roasted Thyme Jerusalem Artichoke, Kohlrabi and Butternut Squash seemed to hit the right note with several of my readers.
Quite a few emails came fluttering into my mailbox with requests for more tips and helpful ideas. A few also asked why do I celebrate Thanksgiving? A very good question considering the fact I am Indian, married to a German and living in Germany – where does Thanksgiving fit into this picture?
Well it actually is something that goes back to the time we were living in Doha. We were going to a British school but had several American friends. My parents’ social circle also consisted of several American expatriate families and each year we were invited to celebrate Thanksgiving with them. One year my mother suggested that everyone come over to our place for Thanksgiving. It was the least she could do to show her appreciation of all the lovely kind gestures these friends had shown to us.
I think at first everyone was a bit stumped. How radical - the idea of celebrating Thanksgiving at an Indian family’s home! However, my mother as many of my regular readers will know, is a unique and talented person. She was certainly not going to let a dead bird get in her way. Although she had never prepared a turkey before she was bold enough to take on the task of inviting what I remember as an army of friends.
I also do remember the slight panic attack she had as she pondered over recipes and I very well remember how she convulsed when she actually saw the size of the bird. At that time I was not any help at all! The kitchen was a waste of time for me and I was far too busy with other activities to even consider asking my mother if she needed any help. Today I know what a task it must have been for her.
But my mother pulled the dinner off successfully in her own unique way. Ever since then we made it a point to celebrate every year. My parents told us that there were several things that we should be thankful for and this day officially became a way for us to be grateful for the simple and not so simple things in life.
In Germany the American Thanksgiving is not really a concept. I sometimes got the feeling it was even ridiculed as just another "Ami" holiday! However, over the years it bugged me and I started inviting close friends to a elegant gathering every year. I made it a point that everyone said a few words about what they were thankful and soon this became a highlight for my close friends.
I have moved from city to city here in Germany, the coolest thing is it seems like I have left a trail of the Thanksgiving feeling behind. My friends call , telling me they miss the gatherings, a few even celebrate on their own. Here in Weimar I have found a very intimate circle of friends who have become as close as family to me. Celebrating with them each year is a joy and we have become a very efficient team, each knowing what to do.
I am thankful for all these friends who were a part of my life and helped me feel a little at home away from family. To my ever inspiring mother, who always injected the world around her with vitality, I am forever indebted.
And so it came to be that this Indian girl living in Germany with her German husband and son, celebrates this American holiday with all the gusto, frills, turkey and stuffing.
What caught my eye about this recipe, from one of my favorite German food magazines, for mushroom cream soup was not only the crispy thyme Parmesan chips but also that it was a perfect way to start off the meal with my turkey roulade and roasted vegetables. While mushrooms are present in the stuffing for the turkey roulade, thyme adds its aromatic flavor to the roasted vegetables. Both ingredients are also highlighted in the soup.
Mushroom Cream Soup with Thyme Parmesan Chips
Printable version of recipe here.
400g potatoes, diced
20g dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 1 1/4 l warm water for 30 minutes, reserving water
750g Crimini mushrooms, half thinly sliced, half coarsely chopped
2 onions, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
150g Parmesan cheese, grated
8-10 stems thyme, finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
150g cream cheese
In a large pot heat olive oil on medium heat and sauté onions until transparent. Add the chopped mushrooms and quickly stir-fry for a further 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Add potatoes, porcini mushrooms including soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for approx. 20 minutes.
In the meantime line a baking tray with waxed paper. Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C.
Mix half of the thyme with grated Parmesan cheese in a bowl. Using a tablespoon place small heaps of Parmesan-thyme mixture on he wax paper, leaving a few cms space in between each heap. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes until parmesan has melted and look like flat discs. Set aside to cool.
Heat butter in skillet on medium heat and sauté sliced crimini mushrooms for 5-8 minutes, then add remaining thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Melt cream cheese in the soup, then using a puréeing machine, purée soup until smooth and thick. Salt and pepper to taste.
Serve soup in warm bowls, with sautéed mushrooms and Parmesan chips.
Rich, strong and full of flavor, this soup is a perfect way to start off an elegant dinner. The parmesan chips are a great alternative to bread, which makes it not too filling for the rest of the meal. Spoon for spoon, one can literally smell the comforting earthy aromas of mushrooms and thyme. A pure joy!
Next up on WFLH the perfect dessert, fruity, creamy and spicy all in one. Stay tuned!
You might like these aromatic soups from WFLH:
|Ginger Carrot Soup with Lemon Cream||Porcini Cream Soup with Parmesan||Red Bell Pepper Soup|
Soups from around the blogs:
- Split Pea Soup with Barley - Spatulas, Corkscrews & Suitcases
- Vibrant Broccoli Soup - Confessions of a Cardamom Addict
- Chicken Soup with Lentils, Ginger and Cardamom - Coffee & Vanilla
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