How to Make Thanksgiving Recipes 

I learned how to make Thanksgiving recipes when I was young. All those delicious recipes kept entering my mind as I enjoy the crisp fall mornings. The air is cool and crisp, the fall foliage of the Appalachian Mountain area add more color each day and pumpkins and apples are everywhere from the fall harvest. These are all sure signs that the holiday season is right around the corner and it is time for us to do some baking.

I headed to the mountains searching for Appalachian hiking trails and to think about I to make my Thanksgiving recipes. I brought my dogs, Enoch and Malachi, with me on this trip to Tennessee. They are English Mastiffs, each weighing about 150 pounds. I always wanted to take them hiking in the Appalachians so this is their chance. There are hundreds of hiking trails throughout this area. I was looking for a trail that was fairly easy for me more so than the mastiffs. After reading several hiking maps over the past days, I thought I knew where I was going.

I drove for quite a while before realizing that I made a wrong turn and could have saved a lot of time if I knew where I was going. Finally I came upon a parking place for the trails so I decided to park and start walking. I walked up and down the mountains completely emerged in the natural beauty of the area. Bridges took us across the swiftly flowing creeks of the mountains. Occasionally the dogs would stop to drink from the fresh water.

how to make thanksgiving recipesGoing for a Morning Hike on Thanksgiving Day

After walking for about an hour, it was time for us to find a closer way back so we took a different route. Even along this new road, we could see people were gathering their fall harvest, many of which will be used when they learn how to make their Thanksgiving recipes. We even spotted many wild turkeys, nature’s gift to the people of this region serving as the main course of the holiday dinner. As on every other road in this area, the pumpkin harvest was abundant for those great holiday pie recipes.

After hiking through the mountains and thinking about all those great Thanksgiving recipes, of course I was getting hungry. On the way back I came across a really nice restaurant which sets on top of a small mountain overlooking a beautiful view of the valley in Chuckey. As so often found in the Tennessee area, these one-of-a-kind restaurants offer good home cooked foods and good dessert recipes. People here really have down home Thanksgiving recipes. Other traits of this area is that the service it is very good and the prices seem to be much lower than most of the other areas.


Chocolate Lined Pumpkin PieChocolate Lined Pumpkin Pie

Preheat oven to 375F degrees.

  • ¼ Cup finely ground filberts
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 ¼ Cups flour
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 Cup firm butter, cut into pieces
  • 3 Tablespoons cold water
  • ¾ Cup hazelnut spread with cocoa
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Can pumpkin (15 ounces)
  • ¾ Cup sugar
  • ½ Teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 Cup evaporated milk
  • Whipped cream
  • ½ Ounce grated chocolate
  • ½ Ounce chopped hazelnuts

Add the filberts, 1 Tablespoon sugar, flour and salt together. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter until it looks like crumbs. Gradually add the water while mixing until pastry holds together. Spread and press pastry on bottom and sides of a deep 10 inch pie plate or a 10 inch spring form pan.

Spread hazelnut spread over the dough on bottom of pan.

In a mixing bowl on medium speed, beat the eggs. Add pumpkin, ¾ cup of sugar, cinnamon, salt and vanilla. Mix until blended and then slowly beat in the evaporated milk. Pour over the hazelnut spread. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean. Set aside until cold.

Garnish by piping the whipped cream and top with grated chocolate and chopped nuts. This is a great recipe to include in your Thanksgiving recipes.

Chocolate Lined Pumpkin PieChocolate Lined Pumpkin Pie


How to Make Apple Pie with Streusel ToppingHow to Make Apple Pie with Streusel Topping

This recipe would be a hit as part of anyone's Thanksgiving recipes.


  • 1 Cup flour
  • ½ Teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 Cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons cold water


  • ½ Cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • ½ Teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 Teaspoon salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon almond extract
  • 7 Cups thinly sliced peeled baking apples

Streusel topping:

  • ½ Cup flour
  • ½ Cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • ¼ Cup cold butter cut in pieces
  • ½ Cup slivered almonds

Preheat oven to 425F degrees.

Combine the flour and salt for the pastry. Cut in the shortening with a pastry cutter. Sprinkle the mixture with the cold water and toss to blend. Gather dough together in a ball and roll out until larger than the pie plate (make sure pie plate can withstand 425F degrees if glass). Transfer dough to pie plate and pinch dough around edges. Bake 4 to 5 minutes or until dough is dry.

In a large bowl, mix to blend all the filling ingredients except the sliced apples. Add the apples and toss to coat. Spoon them into the partially baked pie crust.

Mix all the streusel ingredients except the almonds. Blend with a pastry cutter until crumbly; sprinkle over the apple filling. Bake 35 to 40 minutes (Cover the surface with foil the last 15 minutes). Sprinkle with the almonds and bake 3 minutes longer to toast the almonds. Cool before cutting.

NOTE: You might want to line the oven with foil to catch the drippings from the pie.

How to Make Apple Pie with Streusel ToppingHow to Make Apple Pie with Streusel Topping


This is one of the best Thanksgiving recipes (or add it to your Christmas recipes) for breakfast. It can be made the day before and refrigerated or it can be made up to a week in advance and frozen. Either way it makes a convenient breakfast for any holiday and the recipe makes enough for a crowd.

  • 9 Eggs
  • 3 Cups half and half
  • 1/3 Cup sugar
  • ½ Teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 ½ Teaspoons rum extract
  • 24 Slices (3/4 inch thick) French bread (about 1 ½ pound loaf)
  • Powdered sugar

Grease 2 baking pans; each 10 X 15 X 1 inches.
Combine eggs, half and half, sugar, nutmeg, vanilla and rum in a large bowl; beat well.
Arrange bread slices in greased baking pans.
Pour egg mixture over the bread slices; lift and move bread slices to absorb all egg mixture.
Cover with foil; refrigerate overnight or freeze up to 1 week.
Preheat oven to 500F degrees; remove 1 pan from refrigerator at a time to bake.
If frozen, do not thaw; remove foil and place in oven.
Bake at 500F degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown; sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Repeat the baking on pan 2. Makes 24 slices.

ROAST DUCK RECIPE with amaretto apricot sauce recipe

This roast duck recipe is a delicious alternative to the traditional turkey Thanksgiving recipes. If you are having guests for the special dinner you may want to double this recipe.

  • 1 Duck
  • ¼ Cup hot water
  • 2 Tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon honey

Prick the duck skin all over; set duck breast side up on steamer rack in large deep pan.
Add 1 inch water and bring to a simmer; cover and steam gently for 1 hour.
Remove duck from pan and pat dry being careful not to tear skin; save broth for stockpot.
Preheat oven to 425F degrees.
Combine ¼ cup hot water, soy sauce and honey.
Once again prick duck skin all over; brush with honey soy sauce mixture.
Place duck on wire rack over a drip pan on oven rack.
Roast duck for 20 minutes or until mahogany brown.
Remove from oven and let rest 10 minutes before carving; serve with apricot sauce recipe.

Apricot Sauce Recipe

  • ½ Cup unsalted butter
  • 1/3 Cup thinly sliced shallots
  • ¾ Cup fresh orange juice strained
  • ¼ Cup lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 Cups washed pitted and halved apricots
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • 1 Cup Amaretto liqueur
  • ½ Cup slivered toasted almonds

Melt butter in saucepan; add shallots, juices, mustard, apricots, salt and pepper.
Cook briefly to soften shallots; add amaretto liqueur.
Bring to a simmer and cook about 35 minutes or until mixture coats a spoon.
Stir in almonds right before serving.
NOTE: This should be enough for 2 ducks.