Thursday, November 14, 2013

Black Friday Lunch

I think I might be more excited about our Black Friday lunch gathering than Thanksgiving itself. Some people look forward to midnight shopping or hitting the doorbuster sales first thing in the morning on Black Friday, but not me. Every year we have a low-key, informal lunch on Black Friday at my parents' house with my aunt and uncle and a few cousins. This year there's a new baby joining us - can't wait to meet her! Anyway, it's a fantastic day after Thanksgiving tradition that I've grown to really love. We have turkey sandwiches, leftover pie, delicious sides and beer.

In early October I wrote about the amazing turkey wrap I had in Cape Cod, complete with cranberry sauce and a generous heap of stuffing. It's safe to say that ever since then I've been salivating at the thought of day after turkey sandwiches.

Then I got to thinking about the side dishes. If you're in Charlotte, you've GOT to check out the Wolfgang Puck Pizza Bar at Philips Place in South Park. The pizza is darn good - but for me the star of the show is the spinach salad. This salad is a doozy - fresh baby spinach, paper thin slices of red onion, crispy, warm smashed potato "croutons," and a generous helping of sliced smoked mozzarella, all topped with a warm bacon dressing. Is your mouth watering yet? I set out to recreate this sinfully delicious salad. It turned out so well that we gobbled it down before any pictures could be taken.

Spinach & Smoked Mozzarella Salad
-Baby Spinach (I used a bagged Spinach and Arugula mix)
-Red onion, sliced very thin (use a mandolin if you've got one!)
-Red potatoes, for croutons (I used this recipe but used red potatoes and left the skin on.)
-Smoked Mozzarella cheese, cut into long, thin strips
-Bacon dressing (I used this recipe) If you don't eat bacon, use whatever dressing you prefer.

I also got a random craving a few weeks ago for a tart but sweet dessert and started searching Pinterest for a good cranberry dessert recipe - finally stumbling upon a cranberry shortbread bar. I haven't tested these yet, but I feel like you can't go wrong with this combination!

Finally, if you know me in real life, you know my love of the Boston based Harpoon Brewery. I've visited many a time to take advantage of the free tasting at their Inner Harbor brewery in Boston. Whenever they release a new beer, I'll search far and wide to find it. Earlier this Fall, we drove to South Carolina to get their new Pumpkin Cider (which only sounds dramatic, it was a 25 minute drive.) They've recently released a cranberry ale called Grateful Harvest Ale, which I've been searching for these past few weeks. The Harpoon website has a beer finder and I've lost count of the number of times I've search my (and my parents') zip codes trying to find it. Luckily we still have a few weeks before the big event.

Do you have a Black Friday tradition?

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