November 23, 2008: Thanksgiving FoodFest

November 17, 2008 1:18:54 PM PST
This year to help viewers get ready for the fun, hard work and stress related to preparing for the Annual Thanksgiving FoodFest we called on expert advice. We invited Executive Chef Michael Reich of the Renaissance Chicago Hotel and Chef Joshua Humphrey of Sam & Harry's Steakhouse at the Renaissance Schaumburg to share their wit, wisdom and culinary skill as the Thanksgiving Holiday approaches!

Thanksgiving at the Renaissance Chicago Hotel
1 Wacker Drive, Chicago
312-372-7200

Thanksgiving at Sam & Harry's Steakhouse
Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Ctr.
1551 N. Thoreau Dr., Schaumburg
847-303-4050

Spiced pumpkin soup with roasted fennel

Pumpkin 1 lb

Fennel bulb 1 med

Chicken stock 1 cup

Half and half 1 cup

Cinnamon 1/2 tsp

Nutmeg 1/2 tsp

Salt and pepper

Roast pumpkin and remove seeds. Toss fennel with a little oil and roast until soft. Add pumpkin, fennel, stock, half and half, cinnamon and nutmeg to stock pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. Puree until smooth. Adjust seasoning. Serve hot.

Pumpkin seeds

Remove seeds from pumpkin. Toss with a little oil, salt, and cayenne pepper. Roast at 300 degrees for 1 hour stirring every 15 minutes. Cool and enjoy.

Cranberry chutney

2 cups fresh cranberries

1/2 cup orange juice

1/4 cup brown sugar

Freshly ground black pepper

1 cinnamon stick

1 bay leaf

Add ingredients to a small saucepan and set over low-medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes until the cranberries are just cooked through and tender. You want them cooked through but not falling apart.


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