5 Thanksgiving Traditions to Start This Year

5 thanksgiving traditions to start this year Archadeck of Chicagoland

What better way to kick off the holiday season than with new family traditions?  Here are five ways to make sure your Thanksgiving is festive and full of bonding, laughter, and delicious goodness!

1.  Grill Your Thanksgiving Turkey

Free up your oven, get rid of the mess, and add a delicious smoky flavor to your turkey this year.  Grilling your turkey is a sure fire way to prepare a tender and juicy Thanksgiving entrée!  See recipe…

Grilled Turkey - Thanksgiving Tradition

2.  Decorate the Christmas Tree

Thanksgiving is the start of the holiday season.  What better time to start decorating than when you’re surrounded by friends and family?  Break out the carols, the ornaments handed down through the family, the delicious food, and start a tradition this year that will create years of laughter and memories.

5 Thanksgiving Traditions to Start This Year - Family Decorating Christmas Tree

3.  Create a Memory Video

Looking for a creative new way to share favorite memories and thankful moments from the past year? Grab the camera and make a video, going around the table so every person is included.  Don’t forget to include your aspirations for the upcoming year!  Keep the video to play next year before making a new one.  This is a great way to keep and share loving memories with your family.

 Thanksgiving Memory Video

4.  Leave the Phones at the Door

In this fast paced world, we sometimes forget to slow down and enjoy the time spent with our families.  Try going on a Tech Fast this Thanksgiving, and take the time to bond and connect with your friends and family.   Have a basket handy for the phones and ask your guests to join in.  It’s surprising how much time you’ll have when you’re not interrupted with the digital world.  Read more…

 5 Thanksgiving Traditions to Start This Year - Cell Phone Basket

5.  Volunteer for a Local Charity

Give back to your community and help those in need this holiday season.

  • Food Drive – Bring your neighborhood or community together by organizing a food drive to help support your local food pantry or shelter.
  • Donate toys – Bring a smile and a little comfort to a sick child while they are recovering in the hospital.
  • Visit an assisted living home – Make someone’s day by visiting those who are missing their loved ones during the holiday season.

For more ideas on how or where to volunteer, visit HandsOn Suburban Chicago to locate an charity near you.

Food Drive - Thanksgiving Tradition

tychay via photopin cc
: Another Pint Please… via photopin cc
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Best Fall Recipes

Celebrate the changing of the seasons with the scrumptious desserts and treats, savory dishes, and sweet refreshments!

Best Fall Recipes - Archadeck of Chiacgoland


SCRUMPTIOUS DESSERTS & TREATS

  Soft Pumpkin Cookies with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

These soft and fluffy pumpkin cookies won’t last long, a double batch might be in order!

Soft Pumpkin Cookies with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Apple Cider Bread

Treat your taste buds to the warm, sweet Autumn flavors.

Apple Cider Bread Recipe

Apple Pie Fudge

Decadent fudge + Sweet apple pie = Flavorful explosions!

Apple Pie Fudge Recipe

Healthy Orange Jack-O-Lantern Cups

Delicious and healthy Halloween treat the kids are sure to love!

orange-jack-o-lantern-fruit-bowls

Pumpkin Gingerbread with Spiced Buttercream

Spiced buttercream tops off this sweet and savory blend of pumpkin and ginger.

Pumpkin Gingerbread with Spiced Buttercream Recipe

Spooky Boo Brownies

These adorable little ghosts are too sweet to be scary!

Spooky Boo Brownies Recipe


SAVORY DISHES

 Butternut Squash Risotto

Switch up the flavor of your risotto by adding tasty seasonal flavors!

Butternut-Squash-Risotto

Apple Cider Glazed Pork Chops

Fire up the grill for these juicy and delicious pork chops!

Apple Cider Glazed Pork Chops

Roasted Acorn Squash with Brown Sugar

A Fall favorite recipe – savory and sweet

roasted-acorn-squash-brown-sugar

Easy Roasted Spiced Sweet Potatoes

Healthy and delicious, this recipe will quickly become a family favorite!

Easy Roasted Spiced Sweet Potatoes


SWEET REFRESHMENTS

Apple Cider Sangria

Crisp and delicious, this drink is the perfect refreshment for a beautiful Fall evening.

Apple cider sangira

Pumpkin Spice Latte

These warm and tasty drinks usher in the new season.  Skip the line at the coffee shop and make your own!

Pumpkin-Spice-Latte-at-Home

Hocus Pocus Fizz

Bubbly fizz, colored sugar, floating cranberries….what more could you want in a tasty Halloween beverage?

Hocus Pocus Fizz Drink Recipe

Recipe of the Month: Honey-Glazed Chicken, Sweet Potato, and Peach Skewers

Don’t put your grill away yet! Fall is full of  rich autumn flavors, most of which you can cook on the grill. This delicious fall recipe is quick and easy. Tender chunks of chicken, sweet potatoes, peaches, and onions are grilled with a sweet-tart glaze. Crunchy grilled spiced pecans sprinkled over these tasty skewers bring this dish to absolute perfection.

Grilled Honey-Glazed Chicken, Sweet Potato, and Peach Skewers

Honey-Glazed Chicken, Sweet Potato, and Peach Skewers

Ingredients

1 medium sweet potato (about 3/4 lb.), peeled and cut into sixteen 1-1/2-inch pieces

1 cup sherry vinegar

1/2 cup plus 1 Tbs. honey

2 Tbs. canola oil; more for the grill

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 16 pieces

4 small ripe but firm peaches, quartered and pitted (about 1-1/2 lb.)

1/2 small sweet onion, cut into 1-1/2-inch chunks, layers separated (about 4 oz.)

1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

1/2  tsp. ground cumin

1/2  tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Directions

Prepare a medium gas or charcoal grill fire. Soak eight 12-inch wooden skewers in water.

In a 4-quart saucepan fitted with a steamer basket, bring 1 inch of water to a boil over high heat. Steam the sweet potatoes until nearly cooked but still a bit firm, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the heat; cool slightly.

Put the vinegar, 1/2 cup of the honey, 1 Tbs. of the oil, 2 tsp. salt, and 3/4 tsp. pepper in a 3-quart saucepan. Simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 2/3 cup, 13 to 15 minutes. (The glaze should brush on easily but be thick enough to coat the chicken. If it’s too thick, add a few drops of hot water.) Meanwhile, thread the onion, chicken, sweet potato, and peach onto the soaked skewers.

Reserve half the glaze. Brush the skewers with the remaining half of the glaze. Thoroughly oil the grill grate. Arrange the skewers on one side of the grill grate and grill, covered, until well-marked on one side, 4 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, toss the pecans in a small bowl with the remaining 1 Tbs. honey and 1 Tbs. oil, the cumin, pumpkin pie spice, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper. Put a large piece of foil on the other side of the grill and scatter the nuts on the foil. Flip the skewers. Grill until the chicken is cooked through and the nuts are bubbling, 3 to 5 minutes more. (Keep a close eye on the nuts; stir if they threaten to burn.) Transfer the skewers to a serving platter, brush with the reserved glaze, and sprinkle with the pecans.

Helpful Tips

Make sure your ingredients for the skewers are the same size for even cooking time

For added flavor, the glaze can be used to marinate for the chicken while you’re putting together the rest of the ingredients.

After you assemble the skewers, lightly brush the glaze on to prevent burning due to the high sugar content.

Recipe courtesy of finecooking.com