1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1 pinch grated nutmeg
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup canola oil
4 shallots, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch rings
In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add onion, and saute until it begins to soften, about 4 minutes. Add bell pepper and mushrooms, and cook until softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Set aside to cool.
Prepare an ice bath: Fill a large bowl with ice and water; set aside. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add beans, and cook until bright green and just tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain, and plunge into ice bath to stop cooking. When cooled, toss drained beans with mushroom mixture; set aside.
Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add 1/4 cup flour, whisk constantly until mixture begins to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Pour in milk, and continue whisking until mixture has thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in cayenne, nutmeg, and the remaining teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Pour over beans, and toss to combine.
Butter a 9-by-13-inch glass or ceramic baking pan. Spread half the green-bean mixture over the bottom. Sprinkle on half the grated Parmesan, and spread with the remaining green beans. Combine the remaining Parmesan and the breadcrumbs, and sprinkle over casserole. Cover with foil, and refrigerate until just before serving.
Heat canola oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Toss shallot rings with the remaining 2 tablespoons flour. Fry the shallots in batches, turning frequently, until golden brown. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Place in an airtight container, and set aside until ready to serve.
Heat broiler, positioning rack about 8 inches from heat. Cook casserole, covered, until mixture is bubbly and heated through, about 10 minutes. Uncover, and cook until top is golden brown, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle fried shallots over top, and serve immediately.
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, (2 lemons), plus 2 lemons, cut in half
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 Cortland or Granny Smith apples
1 cup (6 ounces) loose green grapes, halved and pitted
1 cup (6 ounces) loose red grapes, halved and pitted
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spread walnuts on baking pan. Bake until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Set walnuts aside to cool.
Place Concord grapes in the bowl of a food processor, and puree. Pass puree through a fine sieve set over a small bowl, and discard solids. Add walnut oil and lemon juice to the bowl, and whisk to combine. Season with salt and pepper; set grape dressing aside.
Fill a large bowl with cold water. Squeeze lemon halves into water; add rinds. Using a mandoline or a sharp knife, julienne apples. Place apples in acidulated water. Set aside.
When ready to serve, drain apples. Combine apples, green and red grapes, and dressing in a large bowl; toss gently to coat. Top with reserved toasted walnuts.
Preheat oven to 375. Wrap 1 sweet potato in parchment, and then in foil. Pierce several times with a fork. Bake until tender, about 1 hour. Let cool. Reduce oven temperature to 350.
Meanwhile, peel remaining sweet potatoes. Using a mandoline or a chef's knife, cut potatoes lengthwise into very thin slices until you have 30 slices. Trim each to a 2-by-4-inch rectangle.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add half the sweet potato slices, and cook until tender, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, place slices on a baking sheet to cool slightly. Repeat.
Remove peel from baked sweet potato, and puree flesh in a food processor until smooth. Add cottage cheese, and puree until smooth.
Transfer potato-cheese mixture to a large bowl. Stir in apple, chives, grated Parmesan, salt, and pepper.
Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place 1 heaping tablespoon filling in center of a sweet potato slice, and roll up. Place, seam side down, in dish. Repeat. (Cannelloni can be refrigerated, covered, overnight; bring to room temperature before baking.)
Brush oil over cannelloni. Bake until heated through, 10 to 15 minutes. Sprinkle with walnuts and shaved Parmesan.
4 packages (8 ounces each) bar cream cheese, very soft
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
2 tablespoons pumpkin-pie spice
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs, room temperature
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, with rack in center. Assemble a 9-inch nonstick springform pan, with the raised side of the bottom part facing up.
Make the crust: In a medium bowl, mix cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter until moistened; press firmly into bottom of pan. Bake until golden around edges, 10 to 12 minutes.
Make the filling: With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar on low speed until smooth; mix in flour (do not overmix). Add pumpkin puree, pie spice, vanilla, and salt; mix just until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until each is incorporated before adding the next.
Place springform pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour filling into springform, and gently smooth top. Transfer to oven; reduce oven heat to 300 degrees. Bake 45 minutes. Turn off oven; let cheesecake stay in oven 2 hours more (without opening).
Remove from oven; cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours. Unmold before serving.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread coconut on a small baking sheet. Bake, stirring occasionally, until just beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and let cool.
Ice cupcakes with chocolate buttercream. Dip top of each cupcake in coconut to cover; set aside.
To make the turkey heads: stick the point of a wet toothpick into the side of a marshmallow in two spots, about 1/2-inch apart. Fill the holes with chocolate sprinkles to resemble eyes. Cut a small triangular piece of gummy fish from the head of a fish, to resemble a beak. Cut a small slit in the marshmallow below the eyes, and insert the beak. Place marshmallow head on cupcake. Repeat with remaining marshmallows.
To make the tail feathers: Insert 4 gummy fish, tails first, into each cupcake across from the heads.