1958 Thanksgiving Menu: Main Course

If you missed it, I followed a menu from 1958 that I found in a Cook Index recipe box. On the menu for the main course was roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, deviled Brussels sprouts, and minted carrots. Though there were recipe cards for the turkey and mashed potatoes, it was more of a guide on how to go about cooking them rather than actual recipes. Therefore I will not be including a recipe for either of those.

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The sausage stuffing recipe I used was not actually from the Cook Index recipe box. The reason being it was the only recipe card missing from the set. Not too shabby as these sets usually are missing a few cards due to use over the years. Luckily it was quite easy to track down some menus from this exact year. In a newspaper from 1958, I found a Thanksgiving menu with many stuffing variations. I obviously chose the sausage stuffing variety. This is where I made the first of two tiny little mistakes. I meant to stuff the turkey with the stuffing but I forgot as it is not usually something I do not do. I quite like baking the stuffing to get those crunchy bits on top. It didn’t hurt anything just more annoyed at myself for forgetting!

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The cranberry sauce recipe is an easy and very basic recipe. I tweaked the proportions a bit to work with the standard 12-ounce bag that is most common at the grocery store. You can adjust the water and sugar to suit your taste for thickness and sweetness.

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Deviled Brussels sprouts are where I made my other tiny little mistake. I really should have sliced them in half. The recipe kept the sprouts whole but I ignored my better judgment. Ah well, hindsight….. Also if you did not know “deviled” is just a very old cooking term to make something spicy usually with mustard or horseradish. The Deviled Brussels sprouts, in this case, are tossed in a mustard sauce. I used a strong English mustard in this dish which has a bit more of a kick than the standard American-style mustard. This dish basically amounted to boiling the sprouts till tender, tossing them in sauce, and serving. It is a perfect quick side for Thanksgiving.

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Lastly is the minted carrots. Another really easy dish. Again cook the carrots till almost tender in some water and butter and that is sprinkled with brown sugar and mint. This is then cooked until tender. If one does not like mint, it can be easily omitted.

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This main course meal was quite nice to do and easy to follow. I didn’t feel stressed out trying to get everything done such as with the 1939 menu or not being able to find ingredients as with the 1970s menu. It was doable from start to finish which is what you want from a menu.

Sausage Stuffing

  • Servings: 4 to 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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A basic stuffing with sausage

Ingredients

  • 1 lb pork sausage
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 12 oz package of stuffing mix
  • 1 cup milk or chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sage
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. In a large skillet over medium high heat, cook the sausage until browned and cooked through. With a slotted spoon, remove the cooked sausage onto a plate and set aside.
  2. In the skillet with the leftover oil, cook the onions and celery until they start to soften about 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sausage, cooked onions and celery, stuffing mix, parsley, thyme, sage and salt. Stir in the milk or broth. Add extra if the stuffing mix is not moist enough.
  4. Place in a baking dish and bake for 30 to 40 minutes.
  5. If you rather stuff your turkey, this recipe should be enough to stuff a 10 to 12 pound turkey.

Quick Cranberry Sauce

  • Servings: 4 to 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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A quick and easy cranberry sauce

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (1 pound) whole cranberries
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan over medium high heat, place all the ingredients. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Bring to a boil and boil without stirring until all the berries have popped open.
  3. Remove from the heat and place in a bowl. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for a least an hour.

Deviled Brussels Sprouts

  • Servings: 3 to 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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An easy Brussels sprouts side dish.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Brussels sprouts, cut in half
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 2 teaspoons prepared mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • A dash of cayenne

Directions

  1. In a pot of boiling salted water, cook the Brussels sprouts until tender about 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. While the sprouts cook, mix together the butter, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and cayenne.
  3. Drain the Brussels sprouts and toss lightly with the mustard mixture.
  4. Serve immediately.

Minted Carrots

  • Servings: 4 to 6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

An easy carrot side dish in a brown sugar mint sauce.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb carrots, peeled if desired
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh mint plus extra for garnish

Directions

  1. Cut the carrots in half crosswise. Then each of the two halves cut in half again or in fourths depending on the thickness.
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat, place the carrots, water and butter. Cook, covered until the the carrots are almost tender about 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Uncover and sprinkle with the salt, brown sugar and mint. Cover again and cook until the carrots are tender, stirring occasionally which is about another 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Serve and garnish with extra chopped mint if desired.

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