Chef Chris Georges Recipes from Hollywood
By: Chris Georges
This month, we’ve enlisted the help of celebrity chef and Hot Mom Chris Georgas. This diva has developed recipes for Whole Foods, and has created meals for Hollywood’s biggest celebrities including Shonda Rhimes the producer of Grey’s Anatomy and from watching the show, you know she’s get fabulous taste!
Chris whipped out her family holiday side dishes to make your Thanksgiving dinner something worth talking about!
Here are a handful of fresh ideas to elevate some familiar favorites:
7 quick Appetizers for crackers and crostini:
1. Thinly sliced ham with crisp apple and slightly melted Gruyere
2. Oil packed tuna, chopped olives and hard boiled egg
3. Sliced roast beef with horseradish cream and red onion
4. Sliced pear and soft goat cheese drizzled with honey
5. Pepper jelly and natural cream cheese
6. Chopped dried figs with cream cheese and honey
7. Caramelized onions with bacon and crumbled blue cheese
Mashed Potato Heaven
Mashed potatoes are a staple side dish a lot of cooks use to fill out a meal.
“With so many unique tastes in the Thanksgiving meal, I recommend keeping the mashed potatoes simple, adding too many seasonings or garlic over stimulates the palette, the Secret to making the creamiest mashed potatoes… add Mayonnaise, yes a few tablespoons will make them taste absolutely delicious!!
Creamy Parsley Mashed Potatoes and Bacon
This side dish is a spin on the traditional mashed potatoes.
What you’ll need:
2 _ lbs of potatoes peels and cut into 2 inch pieces
2 teaspoons of vegetable oil
4 oz. bacon, diced
2 cups lightly packed very coarsely chopped fresh parsley
_ cup of hot water
1 cup of chopped green onions
_ cup buttermilk
_ cup unsalted butter
_ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon of salt
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a shallow 2 to 3 quart glass ceramic baking dish.
Boil the potatoes drain and reserve pot.
Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet over medium heat until hot. Add bacon, cook until crisp, and stir frequently. Pour out half of the drippings, add parsley and hot water, cook 5 minutes or until liquid evaporates and parsley is tender. Add green onions and cook for 30 seconds.
Place buttermilk, butter, salt and pepper in the pot with potatoes; bring to a simmer over medium heat. Buttermilk will look curdled. Mash then stir in parsley mixture. Spread potatoes into the baking dish, leaving top uneven so potato peaks brown. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until edges are peaked brown and crispy.
(This can be made one day ahead, cover and refrigerate)
“There is nothing more beautiful on the holiday table than lush, dark leafy spinach-tossed with flaming orange persimmons and mahogany pecans. This salad is a wonderful combination of tastes and textures as well as colors, and balances nicely with the rich foods of the Thanksgiving table.”
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
_ teaspoon salt
_ teaspoon ground ginger
_ teaspoon of ground cayenne
pinch of nutmeg
1 cup of shelled pecan halves
1 lb of baby spinach
3 Fuyu persimmons cut in quarters lengthwise and sliced thinly into little discs
1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons of white wine or champagne vinegar
7 tablespoons mild flavored olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Melt tablespoon of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add water, brown sugar, salt and spices. Stir until sugar dissolves. Add nuts to the sugar mixture and cook until nuts are coated, stirring for about 5 minutes.
Butter baking sheet and transfer nuts to the baking sheet, bake in preheated 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes, until golden. Set aside to cool.
Wash and dry spinach leaves and place in a large bowl with persimmon discs. Set aside. Combine the shallots, lemon juice and vinegar in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until well blended. Season with salt and pepper. Combine together for a fabulous salad!
Super Side Dish:
“This is an all time favorite of mine and has been popular with many clients”
_ cup real maple syrup
1/3 cup apple cider
2 tbs. butter
_ tsp salt
2lbs parsnips, peeled and cut into 3, _ inch sticks
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a saucepan, bring maple syrup, cider, butter and salt to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for 5 minutes. Spread parsnips in shallow 9×13 inch ovenproof dish and pour syrup mixture over them, tossing to coat well. Cover dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes more stirring occasionally, until tender and nicely glazed, serve hot! Yum!
Deliciously different desserts:
Pumpkin Mousse Parfait
This easy-layered dessert is something like deconstructed pumpkin pie. It’s enough to please the traditionalists, but it’s a definite time saver and can be elegant when served in a nice stemmed glass.
1 can solid pack pumpkin
1 cup mascarpone
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
_ teaspoon ground ginger
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon sugar
2/3 cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup roasted and unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
Place the pumpkin in a large mixing bowl. Add the mascarpone, the spices and the maple syrup and whisk until blended and fluffy.
In a medium bowl, with a hand-held or stand up mixer beat the cream, vanilla, and sugar until soft peaks form. Fold about 2/3 of the whipped cream into the pumpkin mixture, reserving the rest.
Layer _ the pumpkin into 6 glasses or a large bowl, smoothing the top with a spatula. Sprinkle _ of the cranberries and _ of the pistachios over. Layer the second half of the pumpkin over the cranberries and pistachios, smoothing the top. Top each glass with the remaining whipped cream. Serve chilled.