It’s here!  It’s really here!

The holiday season is upon us, as evidenced by the non-stop running of “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” on our DVD player and my kids’ endless perusal of the deluge of holiday catalogs that keep showing up in our mailbox despite my best intentions to put a stop to junk mail.  P. spends most of his time these days alternating between screaming “Aaauuuggh!” as he takes a pratfall, emulating poor Charlie Brown’s ill-fated meeting with the football; and following me around the house with a toy catalog, pages open to the electric Polar Express train set, saying “Hey, Mama!  I have an idea!”  The sounds of the season, indeed.

But I love November.  I love everything about November, from the crisp turning of the weather towards true sweater days to the heightening anticipation of all the celebrations to come.  And certainly, I love the RECIPES…the food at this time of year is getting to its most indulgent.  I may truly adore the peak season of summer produce, and consider that to be the best time of the year for foodies; but there’s something glorious nonetheless about the sheer hedonism of holiday food.  This is one season when I truly and unabashedly allow myself to wallow in smothering the world with food as love, and don’t bother feeling guilty about it.

Tonight, I’m replacing the usual Monday Menu with a Thanksgiving Edition so I can share the love a bit.  In fact, we’ll be doing a whole week of Thanksgiving recipes here on the blog, so you can look forward to a few more nights of holiday inspiration.  After lots of arduous testing (cue hand to forehead here as I wearily slump against the countertops), I’ve come up with a set of fun and delicious feast items to share.  We’re beginning the series with soups and starters — one of each, to be precise — and I promise you, both of these recipes are so good, you won’t want to confine them to Thanksgiving Day.

On the Menu:
Sweet Potato-Leek Soup with Pumpkin Seed Gremolata





Spiced Cranberry-Pecan Cheese Ball