1970s Thanksgiving Menu: Appetizers

So as I mentioned here, I made a 1970s Thanksgiving menu from Southern Living: The Holiday Cookbook. Today I will be talking about the appetizers or starters if that is more your jam. On the menu was originally smoked salmon, cream of pumpkin soup, and hot spiced vineyard cup. As I mentioned in that last post, I had to cut the cream of pumpkin soup due to the lack of pumpkins at the grocery store. The other two appetizers were super easy to put together.


First up was the smoked salmon. Due to the name being only smoked salmon, I thought I would be making my own. Nope, it really is just a smoked salmon platter. It was so easy to do I am not even going to take the time to write out an official recipe. All you need to do is arranged sliced smoked salmon on a platter with capers, fresh parsley, softened butter, lemon wedges, and slices of pumpernickel bread. That is it.


The next is the hot spiced vineyard cup. This was another fairly easy one as it was just adding the ingredients to a saucepan and letting it first come to a boil then letting it simmer for 15 minutes. I will admit that this recipe has potential with some tweaks but as is, it is just ok. I think the first thing is it just needs to simmer more for the recipe to really get the full effect of the cinnamon stick and cracked whole nutmeg. Maybe adding a clove or two would also help deepen that “spiced” flavor they were trying to go for. The second thing is I think maybe I would do half grape juice and maybe half apple cider. The grape juice was a little one-note. It was still tasty just did not live up to expectations.


All said and done, this part of the meal was super easy and quite fun to put together same as with the last year’s appetizers I made for the 1963 Thanksgiving menu. I will be making the cream of pumpkin soup at a later date when canned pumpkin is back on shelves at the grocery stores in my area. Also if you are interested in the appetizers I made for my 1963 Thanksgiving menu you can find them here.

Hot Spiced Vineyard Cup

  • Servings: 8 servings
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Hot spiced vineyard cup recipe from the Southern Living: The Holiday Cookbook which is grape juice simmered with spices.


  • 4 cups grape juice 
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 nutmegs, cracked
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • Juice and grated rind of 1 lemon
  • Juice and grated rind of 1 orange
  • Optional: lemon slices for garnish


  1. Combine all the ingredients except the lemon slices in a saucepan and then bring to a boil while stirring until the sugar has been dissolved.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. 
  3. Strain and pour into cups. Garnish by floating a lemon slice in each cup.


  • Don’t worry about not being able to get the whole nutmeg and cinnamon sticks. You can just substitute a couple of teaspoons of each of the corresponding ground spices. 


3 thoughts on “1970s Thanksgiving Menu: Appetizers

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