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November 23, 2022

A Worksgiving Feast

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Thanksgiving began as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. As the story goes, the Wampanoag Native Americans and 53 pilgrims, survivors of the Mayflower,  gathered in 1621 to celebrate the bounty of their harvest. Each contributed the foods that reflected their food traditions. This year idgroup team members decided to create our own version of this multi-cultural celebration as we gathered around the table to give thanks with dishes that represent our family recipes. Our feast reflected the diverse roots of our team. We thought you might enjoy getting to know us through our food traditions. In the spirit of the season we are sharing the idgroup 2022 Thanksgiving Feast recipes with you. Enjoy!

Seven-Layer Salad

This American dish showcases a colorful combination of ingredients, which can vary depending on taste.

Ingredients: Iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, onions, sweet peas, sharp cheddar cheese, bacon pieces, and a mayonnaise-based dressing.


  1. First layer: In the bottom of the bowl, spread the shredded lettuce
  2. Second layer: A thin layer of chopped red onion
  3. Third layer: Chopped tomatoes
  4. Fourth layer:  Sweet peas
  5. Fifth layer: Spread the mayo over everything and sprinkle with a little sugar
  6. Sixth layer: Shredded cheddar cheese
  7. Seventh layer: Crispy chopped bacon


Retrieved from Just One Cookbook

Ingredients: ¾ lb Pork, 5 oz Cabbage, 2 green onions, 1 clove garlic, 1 knob ginger, Gyoza Wrappers, ¼ cup water, 1 Tbsp neutral-flavored oil, and 1 Tbsp roasted sesame oil.

To Make the Gyoza Filling

  1. Optional step: As cabbage leaves are thick and hard, we use different ways to wilt them. You can blanch or microwave the leaves for a minute or two. You can also sprinkle them with salt to dehydrate the cabbage, then squeeze the water out. Or you can skip the entire process altogether.
  2. Discard the thick core of the cabbage leaves; mince the leaves into very small pieces.
  3. Mince the green onions and shiitake mushrooms into small pieces.
  4. Combine the ground meat, cabbage, green onions, and shiitake mushrooms in a large bowl.
  5. Add the minced garlic and grated ginger to the bowl.
  6. Add the seasonings to the bowl.
  7. Mix well and knead the mixture with your hand until it becomes pale in color and sticky.

To Fold the Gyoza

  1. Take a wrapper and place it in the palm of your non-dominant hand. Use a teaspoon to take a small amount of filling and put it in the center of the wrapper. Dip one finger in a bowl of water and draw a circle around the outer ¼ inch (6 mm) of the wrapper with your wet finger until it’s wet all around.

Folding Method (Pleats Leaning Toward the Center)

  1. Fold the wrapper in half over the filling and pinch it in the center with your fingers, but don’t seal it yet.
  2. Using the thumb and index finger of your right hand, start making a pleat about once every ¼ inch (6 mm) on the top part of the wrapper from the center toward the right side, making 3-4 pleats. Tip: As you fold each pleat, press the folded pleat tightly against the back part of the wrapper using your left thumb and index finger.
  3. Continue with the left side of the gyoza, making 3-4 pleats with your left hand, starting in the center and moving toward the left side.
  4. Press the pleats and shape the gyoza. Repeat folding the remaining wrappers.

To Cook the Gyoza

  1. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot, place the gyoza in a single layer, flat side down in a circular pattern (or place them in two columns).
  2. Cook until the bottom of the gyoza turns golden brown, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add ¼ cup of water to the pan. Immediately cover with a lid and steam the gyoza for about 3 minutes or until most of the water evaporates.
  4. Remove the lid to evaporate any remaining water. Drizzle 1 tsp sesame oil around the gyoza in the frying pan.
  5. Cook uncovered until the gyoza is golden brown and crisp on the bottom. 
  6. Transfer to a plate and serve with the dipping sauce. For the dipping sauce, combine the sauce ingredients in a small plate and mix together. 

Crème Du Barry

This is a traditional French soup. This particular recipe comes from a chef my parents had the privilege of using when hosting dinners while my dad was the Marine Attaché at the American Embassy.

Ingredients: 1 Head of Cauliflower, 2 Yukon Gold Potatoes, 2 Tb+ Better Than Bouillon Chicken (divided), Salt, White pepper, 2 C Heavy cream, and Nutmeg.


  1. Trim off the flowers of the cauliflower and add to your pot. Discard the stem.
  2. Cover with water.
  3. Add peeled and chopped potatoes.
  4. Add salt and white pepper to taste.
  5. Add 2 Tb Better Than Bouillon chicken.
  6. Cover and boil, then simmer, until vegetables are soft.
  7. Mash, then use an immersion/stick blender to make silky smooth.
  8. Taste and add salt, pepper, bouillon as needed.
  9. Let cool slightly.
  10. Add 2 c of heavy cream.
  11. Stir gently and use an immersion/stick blender to silken again.
  12. Add a pinch of nutmeg when serving.

Pecan Pie with White Chocolate

Ingredients: 1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust, 2 coarsely chopped cups pecans (save a few whole pecan halves to create a decoration on the surface of the pie), 3 large slightly beaten eggs, 1 cup light corn syrup, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 tablespoon molasses (unsulphured), 4 melted tablespoons unsalted butter, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and 1/2 cup white chocolate chips.


  1. Preheat oven to 375 
  2. Mix the filling: mix together the eggs, brown sugar, corn syrup, molasses, melted butter, vanilla, and salt, until smooth. Add white chocolate chips. 
  3. Fill pie shell: Spread the chopped pecans over the bottom of a frozen pie shell. Pour the filling over the pecans. Don't worry about burying the pecans, they will rise to the surface. 
  4. Bake the filled pie: Bake at 75°F for 28-32 minutes until the filling has set. The pie should be a bit wiggly in the center.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. 

Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients: 4lb medium potatoes, 4tsp kosher salt, 1 1/2 cups whole milk, 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1 head of garlic, 3 sprigs rosemary, and 2 sticks unsalted butter.


Skin, chop and boil potatoes until a fork can easily be inserted. Drain, mash and mix ingredients!

Ginger/Soy/Hot & Sweet Pork (HOME FOOD STYLE)

This can be made with thinly sliced beef as well.

Marinate *VERY* thinly sliced pork for at least 30min to 1 hr with the below ingredients.

  • A handful of minced garlic & onion
  • several squeezes of ginger paste
  • Pour a generous amount of soy sauce (be mindful of saltiness)
  • A few scoops of red chili paste
  • Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds
  • Dash of sesame oil
  • 2TBS of brown sugar
  • 1TB of mirin
  • A cup of pear or apple puree (to tenderize the meat)

Cook it.

  • Version 1: Stir-fry in high heat
  • Version 2: Grill
  • Version 3: Sear it on an iron skillet and oven bake at 400 just until the pork is cooked through.
  • Sparkle some toasted sesame oil & chopped green onion before serve. 

You can keep this in the refrigerator for days!

Bacon Smokies

Ingredients: Smokie Sausage, Bacon, Seasoning (Tony Chachere's Creole)


  1. Cut the bacon into thirds
  2. Roll bacon third around one smokie and stick toothpick in to keep the bacon in place
  3. Once the smokies are wrapped, place on pan and sprinkle season of choice
  4. Place pan in the oven at 350° for 30 to 50 minutes. Periodically flip smokies to cook evenly.

Lebanese Tabouli

Ingredients: ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil, 3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice, ¼ cup extra fine bulgur wheat, 2 bunches parsley (about 2 cups chopped), 1-2 vine-ripe tomatoes, 2 green onions both green and white part, 1 tablespoon dried mint or ¼ cup fresh mint leaves (chopped finely), and salt and pepper.


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil and lemon juice until well combined. Then add the bulgur to the dressing and let it soak until it is soft and plumped, about 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, prepare the vegetables by washing, drying thoroughly and finely chopping them. 
  3. Place the chopped vegetables in a large bowl. Add the mint and season with salt and pepper. Then pour the bulgur and dressing mixture over. Gently toss to combine.
  4. Serve at room temperature or cold, with lettuce if desired.
  • Make Ahead Tips: I would highly recommend washing and drying the parsley a day or two days in advance of chopping it. This gives the parsley time to dry properly so that when you chop it, it doesn’t turn into a wet mess.
  • Sourcing: You can find the fine bulgur at Middle Eastern markets, natural-foods stores or even in large supermarkets, often located with other Middle Eastern ingredients. Make sure it does not require cooking for this recipe.
  • Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. If you want to make this grain-free, you can substitute the bulgur for quinoa.

Apple and Pumpkin Spice Fritters

Apple Fritters

From Ree Drummond at The Pioneer Woman

Ingredients: Oil for deep-frying, 2 c. all-purpose flour, 1/2 c. granulated sugar, 2 1/4 tsp. baking powder, 1 1/4 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. ground cinnamon, 2 large eggs, 3/4 c. whole milk, 2 tsp. vanilla extract, 2 tbsp. unsalted butter (melted), 2 whole granny smith apples (peeled and diced), and Powdered sugar (optional, for dusting).


1 1/2 c. powdered sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 c. water or whole milk 


  1. Whisk together dry ingredients. 
  2. Mix eggs, milk, butter, and vanilla. 
  3. Fold together wet and dry ingredients until just combined. 
  4. Fold in the apples - make the batter chunky! 
  5. Drop 1 tablespoon of batter in 350 degree oil for two to two and half minutes flipping frequently. 
  6. Dry on paper towels. 
  7. Dip in glaze or dust with powdered sugar.


Pumpkin Spice Fritters

From Diana Rattray at The Spruce Eats

Ingredients: Oil for deep-frying, 2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour, 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/3 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark), 1/4 teaspoon salt, 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1 large egg, 1 cup canned pumpkin (or homemade pumpkin purée), 3 tablespoons milk, 2 tablespoons butter (melted), 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1/2 cup cinnamon sugar (for coating).


  1. Whisk together dry ingredients. 
  2. Mix the wet ingredients. 
  3. Combine wet and dry ingredients and form into a batter. 
  4. Drop one tablespoon of batter into 365 degree oil for three to four minutes - turning frequently. 
  5. Drain on paper towels and dip in cinnamon sugar.


Ingredients: 1 1/2 lbs ground pork, 2 pieces onion (minced), 2 pieces carrots (minced), 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, 1/2 cup parsley (chopped), 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 1 tablespoon sesame oil, 2 eggs, 50 pieces lumpia wrapper (or however many you want to serve), and 3 cups cooking oil.


  1. Put the ground beef in a bowl and then add in the onions.
  2. Next add in these ingredients in this order: carrots, parsley, garlic powder, ground pepper, and salt.
  3. Add in the sesame oil to add flavor.
  4. Break open one egg and add it into the bowl
  5. Grab a spoon and mix all the ingredients in the bowl together for 5 minutes (You can alternatively wear gloves and mix by hand for a more thorough mix).
  6. Place lumpia wrapper on a large plate and scoop 1 tb-1 1/2 tbs of the mixture. Lightly press the mixture into the wrapper with the spoon to have thinner lumpias.
  7. Fold the wrapper from the bottom, left, and then right. (You'll want to lightly beat your second egg for the next step).
  8. Soak a brush into your second egg and brush the top fold of the wrapper (The egg will help seal the wrapper).
  9. Roll the lumpia all the way up to the seal.
  10. Repeat Steps 6-9 for each lumpia
  11. Once all the lumpias are ready, fry them until they're golden brown.

Chicken Parmasen

Serves 8 

Ingredients: 4 large boneless and skinless chicken breast (organic, free range), 6 eggs, 1/2 cup of milk, 10 ozs italian bread crumbs, 1/2 cup olive oil, 10-12 slices Fresh Mozzarella Cheese, 1/4 cup Grated Parmesan, Homemade or jar red sauce (Micheals of Brooklyn Fresh tomato and basil), and Basil for garnish.


  1. Place one chicken breast at a time in a ziplock bag and pound with a kitchen mallet until about 1/4 thick. 
  2. Cut each chicken breast in half so you have 8 pieces. Mix eggs and milk together in a bowl. 
  3. Pour bread crumbs in another bowl. Dip chicken one at a time in egg mixture then in breadcrumbs. Repeat for a second coating. Repeat until all pieces are coated with the breadcrumb mixture. 
  4. Fill a large skillet with enough oil to come 1/4 up the pan. Heat on medium heat. Fry chicken until golden brown on both sides. 
  5. Place on a baking sheet and cover with mozzarella cheese. Heat up red sauce in a pot until very hot. Plate chicken and spoon sauce over chicken to melt the cheese. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and garnish with basil. Serve alone or over spaghetti. 

Crockpot Turkey

Ingredients: Large Turkey Breast, Large Yellow Onion, Fresh Garlic, Fresh Thyme, Fresh Rosemary, Fresh Oregano, Dry French Onion Soup Mix, 1 Cup of Water, Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder.

Shockingly, I do not measure anything except for the water....


  1. Line your crockpot with a crockpot liner
  2. Chop the onion and dice the garlic (can add as much or little garlic to your liking)
  3. Place the turkey on top of the onion and garlic 
  4. Mix the French Onion Soup mix with one cup of water. Pour on top of the turkey
  5. Add freshly ground pepper and salt to the turkey
  6. Add springs of thyme, oregano and rosemary on top and side of turkey
  7. Cook on low for 8-9 hours

That's it!

Tajarin with Pork Ragu

Tajarin, the Piedmontese dialect word for Tagliolini or Tagliarini, is a long, thin noodle, similar to spaghetti.  Tajarin is much richer, made not from water but egg yolks and a touch of olive oil.

Ingredients: 2 cups of 00 or all-purpose flour, 8 egg yolks (“red” yolks if possible), 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, and 1 pinch of salt.


  1. Mound flour on a clean flat surface and create a well in the center, pushing the flour to all sides to make a ring with sides about 1-inch wide. Make sure that the well is wide enough to hold all the eggs without spilling. Knead the dough by hand (this takes about 30-40 minutes) or add eggs and flour in the bowl of a stand mixer, using the dough hook. 
  2. Mix until ingredients are fully incorporated and can be rolled into a ball. Sprinkle with flour if the mixture is too sticky. Coat the dough with a light layer of olive. Double-wrap the dough in plastic wrap to ensure that it does not dry out. Let the dough rest for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour before rolling it through a pasta machine.
  3. To roll out the pasta using a pasta machine, divide the dough into 4 – 6 pieces. You will roll out one piece at a time, while rolling keep the remainder covered with plastic wrap so it does not dry out. 
  4. Switch to the cutting roller, and feed your sheet through to cut into narrow strips. Place on a floured sheet pan, dusting if necessary with more flour so the tajarin do not stick together. Cover with a slightly damp towel or plastic wrap while you make the sauce (If you don't have a pasta machine, roll out the dough using a rolling pin into thin sheets).
  5. Fold the sheets over. using a sharp knife, cut the dough into very thin strips.
  6. Place the Tajarin into a pot of boiling water with salt and a small amount of olive oil. Boil 2-3 minutes (aldente) don't over cook.

Pork Ragu 

Ingredients: Pork Sausage, Carrot, Celery, Onion, Red wine, Olive oil, Vegetable Stock, and 2 cups of tomatoes (peeled and cored). If you use canned tomatoes, discard the liquid.


  1. Cut pork sausage into small chunks, saute them in a pot with olive oil. Add minced carrots, clery, onion, add red wine and a ladle of stock. Cook for 15 minutes until the liquid has evaporated. Add tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 40-50 minutes, stirring and adding stock as needed the texture should be chunky.
  2. Combine the Ragu with the Tajarin in a serving dish. Top is Parmesan cheese.


At idgroup, we're thankful for everyone in the office and all their hard work this year. We hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!