Easy Thanksgiving Recipes the Whole Family Will Love

The holidays are in full swing which means traveling near and far, gathering all of the necessary groceries, and getting the kids ready for time with family. We sat down with Ashley Hutchings, mom and blogger behind Mom Uptown and we asked for her tips on how to stay sane during this chaotic time of the year and what are her go-to recipes that the whole family will love. Tune into her Tinybeans Takeover on our Instagram page on November 27, 2019 to learn more tips in real time! 

Tell us about yourself.

Hello! I’m Ashley, an NYC mama of two little ladies. We’re originally from Connecticut, but my husband and I moved to New York City last year after living over in London! I started my blog, Mom Uptown, to share my passions for travel and cooking, while I navigated my new life Stateside as a stay-at-home-mom.

What are your go-to tips for parents as they prepare for the holidays?

I try to stay on schedule as much as possible! Skipping naps during an already crazy time makes for very wild kiddos. I try to always travel during nap time so my kids can sleep in the car. If I’m hosting guests, I always provide a basket of granola bars, dried fruits, pretzels, and other snacks, in their guest room. No hangry people allowed in my house!

Can you give us some of your favorite recipes?

After spending the past few years in England, and hosting EPIC expat Thanksgivings, all by my myself, I’m now getting a reprieve as a guest! I’m only tasked with bringing pies, which are one of my favorite things to bake!

Sweet Potato Pie with Peanut Brittle and Cream

Serves 8
Active Time: 1 hour
Total Time, Including Chilling, Baking, and Cooling: 6 hours, or Overnight

Ingredients-

Crust-
1 1/2 cups Flour
1/4 tsp Salt
2 Tbsps Sugar
1 stick cold Salted Butter, cut into small pieces
1 Egg Yolk, lightly beaten
1/4 cup cold Water


Peanut Brittle-
3/4 cup Sugar
1 1/2 cups Roasted Salted Peanuts
Kosher Salt


Filling-
2 large Sweet Potatoes
1 can Condensed Milk
2 Eggs
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Ground Ginger
1/4 tsp Salt
Pinch of Ground Cloves


Whipped Cream-
1 cup Heavy Cream
2 Tbsps Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla


Method

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Scrub the sweet potatoes and prick all over with a fork. Place on a sheet of parchment and bake until tender, about an hour. This can be done the day before with the pie crust dough and kept in the refrigerator overnight. Once cool enough to handle, remove skins.

Make the pie crust. Mix together dry ingredients in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse until crumbly. Stir the egg with the water, then add to the dough, pulsing until just combined and starting to form into a ball. With your hands, form into a ball, then flatten into a disc. Wrap in plastic and place in the refrigerator, and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

Meanwhile, (again, can be done the night before and stored at room temperature) combine the sugar and water in a skillet and heat over medium. Swirl occasionally, about 10-15 minutes until the sugar is a golden-amber color. If the sugar starts to crystallize too much, add a splash of water and swirl as needed. Once amber, (pay close attention–this can escalate quickly) fold in the peanuts. Quickly transfer to a sheet of parchment paper, sprinkle with salt to taste, and set aside to cool.  

Once ready to make your pie, preheat the oven to 425° F. Take the pie crust dough out of the refrigerator and roll it out on a lightly floured surface to about a 12″ in diameter. Transfer and press into a 9″ pie plate, folding and crimping the edges. Blend all of the filling ingredients in a food processor until smooth and transfer to the pie plate. Bake in oven for 15 minutes, reducing the temperature to 350° F for 40 minutes more, or pie is set and a knife comes out clean. If you crust starts to darken too quickly, add a pie crust shield or even foil around the edges. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to the refrigerator.

When ready to serve, combine the whipped cream ingredients in a mixer and whip on high speed for about two minutes. Smooth overtop of the chilled pie. Chop the reserved brittle and sprinkle overtop of the pie.


Apple Cranberry Pie

Serves 8
Active Time: 1 hour
Total Time, Including Chilling, Baking, and Cooling: 5 hours, or Overnight

Ingredients-

Crust-
3 cups Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 cup Sugar
2 sticks cold Salted Butter, cut into small pieces
2 Egg Yolks, lightly beaten
1/2 cup cold Water


Filling-
5 large Apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced (I used Honeycrisp)
1 cup Cranberries
3/4 cup Sugar
1/2 of a Lemon
2 Tbsps Instant Tapioca
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Vanilla
1/2 tsp Salt
2 1/2 Tbsps Salted Butter, cut into small pieces


To Assemble-

1 Egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup Water
1 Tbsp Sugar


Method-

Make the pie crust. Mix together dry ingredients in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse until crumbly. Stir the egg yolks with the water, then add to the dough, pulsing until just combined and starting to form into a ball. With your hands, form into a ball, divide into two, then flatten into two discs. Wrap in plastic, place in the refrigerator, and chill for at least an hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 425°F. Roll out the first disc on a lightly floured surface to about 12″ and lay onto a 9″ pie plate. Press into the plate allowing the excess to hang over the sides. Trim so it is even all the way around, if necessary. Place the plate in the refrigerator while getting the filling together.

For the filling, combine all of the ingredients, but the butter. Remove pie base from refrigerator and pour in filling. Top the filling with the butter pieces.

Roll out other disc of dough and place over top of the filling. Allow for an overhang and, with wet fingers, marry the two layers, fold under, and crimp. Trim any excess or if too bulky. Let set in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes.

Once ready to bake, remove from refrigerator, cut 4 large vents, and add decorative pastry pieces, if desired, attaching by brushing on the egg mixture first. I like to use festive stampers, and my daughter loves to add her handprint! Brush the entire pie lightly with the egg mixture. Sprinkle with the sugar.

Bake for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F. Cover the pie with foil or a pie shield if necessary at this point (or later). Bake for another 60-80 minutes, until the crust is cooked and golden. Let cool to room temperature, or just warm, before serving.

How do you tackle cooking for family members who are at different eating levels, like babies who aren't ready to indulge in turkey and the fixings?

I will bake extra sweet potato for my baby alongside what’s needed for my pie! I also refuse to waste anything. If we have leftover muffins. I’ll make a yogurt parfait and sprinkle the muffin overtop for my toddler. It also works with a granola bar she maybe didn’t finish the day before.

What are some of your go-to products in the kitchen?

Mrs. Anderson's Pie Crust Shield - Amazon $5.99
WeBake Ceramic Pie Weights - Amazon $13.99
Large Silicone Baking Mat - Amazon $13.98
Pyrex Pie Plate - Amazon $11.78
Fall Leaf Stampers - Amazon $10.66

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