rv-eating-for-the-holidays

DISCLOSURE: This post is brought to you by Lucerne® Dairy Farmstand and Safeway.  All opinions and holiday meals I eat are of my own choosing, but these guys brought a little bit of home (the West coast) to us here in the Florida Keys.

As I’ve shared before, living and traveling in a RV, I can become a little disassociated with what’s going on in the world. I can go days without knowing the date the actual date! Which is why it is especially important for me at this time of the year to create a little holiday atmosphere for Mr. Misadventures and I.

I’ve never been one to decorate or power shop. Being the foodies we are, for the Misadventures household celebrating the holidays means seasonal treats and specialties.  We are a Franco-American couple who likes to travel and eat locally (when we can), so our holiday traditions usually aren’t conventional.

This year for Thanksgiving, we’ll start with a traditional starter in France, foie gras with a nice glass of champagne. At this time of year I like to serve the foie gras with a little bit of cranberries on top.  Those crisp berries not only add a crunchy texture, but also a nice tartness that rounds out the gamey liver taste.

Foie gras and cranberry chutney

Foie gras and cranberry chutney.

Given that we are in Florida with an abundance of seafood available to us, we are going to feast on stone crab claws, followed by whatever fresh fish we can find the day before, probably snapper, it’s in season right now and terrific.

stone-crabs

Fresh stone crab claws. Photo credit: Paige Henderson

If we can’t find fresh fish, we will go with Cornish game hens which will be easy to prepare in our Staub dutch oven.

For dessert I want something more traditional and American. I will never take pumpkin for granted.  While we were living in France it was impossible to find pumpkin baked goods, and finding a can of pumpkin was like finding gold! Since then, I make sure I get as much pumpkin desserts as I can when it’s the season.

pumpkins

We’re not in San Francisco this holiday season (sniff-sniff) so I decided to bring a little San Francisco to me here in Florida. I’ve got two of San Francisco chef, Jeff Anderson’s no bake pumpkin recipes which are perfect for the RV. Jeff is the Executive Chef of Safeway, Vons and Pavilions grocery stores.  Not only has he created some amazing recipes for the holidays, but he’s from San Francisco, so I know he knows good food. Sorry (not sorry) San Francisco peeps are all foodies!

Safeway holds a special place in my heart. When I moved to Hayward in the San Francisco Bay Area at age eighteen to go to school, Safeway was my local grocery store. I grew up shopping at military commissaries and couldn’t get over how much California and this grocery store had to offer in comparison!

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When I started my first corporate job, it was in an office building inside the Safeway shopping center, I bought a lot of lunches there! Also it always put a smile on my face because the store was on the site of the original Hayward High School where my grandmother went to school as a teenager.

My disabled cousin and her disabled husband worked at the same Safeway in San Jose for decades and I always appreciated that the store employees provided the opportunity for my cousin to have a normal life. I didn’t see my cousin often, but when I did it was usually Christmas Eve, so I always think of her around this time of year.

Also Mr. Misadventures used to work for Safeway at the corporate headquarters. It was a good job and he enjoyed his time there. (I enjoyed the employee discount!)

All this to say that I believe Safeway is good company, with good products and good people. People like chef Anderson.

Back to my desserts!

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Lucerne® pumpkin spice dip. Photo courtesy of Safeway.

Since I’ve got limited kitchen space, I am preparing them the day before.  On Wednesday evening I’ll throw together the super easy Pumpkin Pie Dip to snack on pre-holiday while I am making No-Bake Eggnog Cheesecake for after dinner on Thanksgiving.  By making them ahead of time I only have to focus on the main course and side dishes on the actual day.

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Lucerne® Eggnog Pie. Photo courtesy of Safeway.

Do you know what makes these dishes? Good dairy. I can tell you the importance of fresh egg, butter and milk, because when you don’t have them, it’s a disaster! How to make a French husband depressed? Deprive him of butter!

You know we have a serious supply of dry and canned goods in the RV. We also stock our freezer with fresh seafood as we come across it. But whenever we head out on the road for our next trip, we stock up on the essential fresh items milk, eggs, butter (and cream cheese for our bagels!) – usually at a nearby Safeway, Vons or Pavilions store, because as long as we have these, we can create nearly anything from our dry stock.

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Where you get them makes a huge difference and I have been deeply disappointed with most of the large grocery stores we’ve come across in the Eastern part of the United States.  I can’t tell you how happy we are when we see that red “S”!  Shopping at Safeway, I know we’re going to get great high-quality and affordable Lucerne® Dairy Farms products, available exclusively at their stores.

dairy

And don’t get me started on eggs.  I am the ultimate egg eater and I want quality eggs!

Soooo…..that’s Thanksgiving, but what about Christmas?

Well, I am a HUGE fan of pumpkin bread (banana too!) and often ask my mother to send me some whenever she is forwarding mail.

banana-bread

Picnic with Mom’s Banana Bread.

When my mom’s isn’t available, I’ve got Chef Jeff Anderson’s pumpkin bread pudding (I love bread pudding!) recipe, which I can easily adapt for the RV. I can smell it already!

I want to thank chef Anderson for creating such delicious easy to make holiday recipes with fresh ingredients.  I’ve chosen two that are not only RV-friendly and they are going to bring some San Francisco cheer to us on the other coast.

How about you? What kinds of meals do you make for the holidays? If you travel away from home, how do you simplify your holiday meal?  What’s your favorite holiday dessert? What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?

DISCLOSURE: This post is brought to you by Lucerne® Dairy Farmstand and Safeway, but my holiday meal selection and opinions are my own.

I’ve created Pinterest-sized images with chef Anderson’s desserts. Like them? PIN it!

pin-pumpkin-pie-dippin-nobake-eggnog-cheesecake

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