Cooking and giving thanks

By Samantha Baker


Courtesy of Tastes of Lizzy T


I’ll be upfront: I’m not a good cook. When the pandemic first started I tried bread making, like everyone else, but it didn’t turn out well, and when I cook for me and my roommate I always offer a preliminary ‘sorry’ in case I somehow give her food poisoning. Luckily, we haven’t gotten sick yet.

Cooking for someone and sharing food is such a simple way to show love. My family has a large pot-luck Thanksgiving every year, but in the past I’ve never brought anything myself. If my grandmother needed help with one of her dishes I’d lend a hand, but I’ve never made anything that was completely and uniquely mine.

Because of COVID-19, Thanksgiving is probably going to look a lot different for my family. I won’t be able to see many of the people I usually see at this one time of the year. This year, especially, will be a great reminder to always be thankful for what you have, and I think an appropriate way to celebrate that will be to use my own two hands to make something- anything- for my family.

I’ve looked through recipe blogs, some magazines, and those minute long Instagram cooking videos to find things that even I should be able to make. So whether you’re going to be with family or friends this year, here’s five simple recipes you can make to show your love and thanks.


1. Deviled Eggs

Maybe not a staple at everyone’s Thanksgiving, but definitely is one at ours. Not only are these easy to make, but they’ll also definitely get eaten. This is also a perfect dish if you’re on a budget, as the ingredients list is pretty short and simple. Here’s a simple recipe to follow that also offers fun variations if you want to spice up your deviled eggs


2. Oven Roasted Potatoes

As classic as mashed potatoes are for Thanksgiving, they can be pretty divisive. Some people want them completely plain, some people want them seasoned, some people like them with the skin on- the list goes on. People can’t get enough potatoes, so it’s always a good idea to bring more. These tasty oven roasted potatoes are easy to make and will pair well with whatever else is on the table. The majority of the cook time comes from being in the oven and not prepping, so you will be able to spend more time with those you love.


3. Pumpkin Cream Pie

I know, I know. The word pie is scary, but the scary part is usually the crust and this recipe calls for just buying one! This is a fun take on a pumpkin pie, as it’s more like a cheesecake. Not only will everyone love it, but they’ll be impressed by your baking abilities (even if it was super simple).


4. A Salad

This one doesn’t have a specific recipe because there’s so many out there. Just like mashed potatoes, everyone likes their salads a little differently. If you’re on a time crunch, any recipe is going to have a pretty short prep and put together time. When people go to a potluck, they usually bring dishes that can be pretty heavy, so a little green will be a welcome reprieve.


5. Vegan Green Bean Casserole

More greens! This recipe does call for making your own onion topping, but you could easily just buy some at the store. The majority of this recipe is cooking vegetables, which is pretty simple. The recipe breaks it down really well if you’re worried about over or under cooking anything, but there’s really nothing to worry about. This is an easy and tasty dish, and it’s always great to have something that vegetarians/vegan family and friends can also enjoy.

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