Local chefs share their holiday recipes

The Halloween sugar comas have passed and attention now turns to Thanksgiving, the holiday of home-cooked meals featuring family recipes from generations past.

The Chef’s Market

Bonnie Jones and Phil Anderson opened The Chef’s Market to share their love of food with the community. Featuring local artisans and farmers in Winchester, the Chef’s Market provides local produce, dairy, meats and cheese in a grab-n-go eatery style. Anderson shared a few of his favorite Thanksgiving recipes:


Stuffed Mushrooms with Lump meat Crab

Yield: Makes 10 Servings

1 cup lump meat crab

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon lemon juice

2 dashes Worcestershire sauce

1/4 teaspoon basil

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 green onions, minced

1/8 teaspoon lemon pepper

24 large mushrooms

1/2 cup Vermont Black Wax Cheddar cheese, grated

2 tablespoons freshly grated Reggiano Parmesan cheese

Wash mushrooms well, remove stems, and set caps aside. Finely chop about half of the mushroom stems.

Mix cream cheese, crab, chopped stems, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, basil, garlic powder, onions, and lemon pepper. Fill mushroom caps with the crab mixture and place in a large, lightly greased baking dish. Top with the grated cheddar and Parmesan cheese. Bake at 450 degrees for 15-20 minutes and serve warm.


Tenderloin steaks

Yield: Makes 4 Servings

1 1/2 cup dry red wine

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 3/4 cup Chef’s Market beef broth

1 1/4 cup Chef’s Market chicken broth

1 1/2 tablespoon tomato paste

1 bay leaf

1 fresh thyme sprig

8 ounces bacon, cut into 1/4 inch pieces

1 tablespoon all purpose flour

1 tablespoon butter

4 (3-inch thick) beef tenderloin steaks

1 tablespoon bourbon

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Boil wine and garlic in heavy medium saucepan until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 15 minutes. Add next five ingredients; boil until reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Set sauce aside. Can be made a day ahead. Cover; chill.

Cook bacon in heavy large skillet over medium high heat until crisp, about 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon drippings from skillet. Add flour to drippings in skillet; whisk to blend. Cook one minute, whisking constantly. Gradually whisk in cool sauce; bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer until sauce thickens, about two minutes.

Meanwhile, melt butter in another heavy large skillet over medium high heat. Season steaks with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and cook to desire doneness. After sautéing four to five minutes on each side. Transfer steaks to plates. Mix bacon and bourbon into sauce. Spoon over steaks. Transfer steak to cutting board. Let steak stand 10 minutes to allow juices to set for easier slicing. Meanwhile, heat reserved marinade. To serve, thinly slice steak and serve with cooked marinade.


Strawberry Tarts

Yield: Makes 16 Servings

1/2 cup butter, softened

1 3 ounces package cream cheese, softened

1 cup all-purpose flour

3 cups small fresh whole strawberries

1 1/3 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon orange zest

1/3 cup semisweet chocolate pieces

1 teaspoon shortening

whipped cream

Beat butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl until well mixed. Stir in flour. Divide dough into 16 pieces. Press into 16 – 2 1/2 inch muffin cups, pressing dough onto the bottom and halfway up sides. Bake in 400 oven for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden. Cool on a wire rack. Remove tart shells from muffin cups. For glaze, combine 3/4 cup of the strawberries and the water in a blender container or food processor bowl. Cover and blend or process till smooth. If necessary add enough additional water to make 3/4 cup. Combine the sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Stir in pureed strawberry mixture. Cook and stir over med. heat till mixture is thickened. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Stir in orange zest. Cool for 10 minutes.

Melt chocolate and shortening in a small saucepan. Drizzle chocolate mixture into the bottoms of the cooled tart shells. Cut any large berries in half. Arrange whole or cut strawberries, stem ends down in tart shells. Spoon glaze over berries. Chill for 1 to 2 hours. Serve with whipped cream.

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Valley Pig Pickin’

A common staple on a southern Thanksgiving table, macaroni and cheese is more than a comfort food, for many, it’s a way of life.  Josh Holloman, manager and pit master of Valley Pig Pickin’ in Woodstock shared his BBQ style mac-and-cheese, a great addition to any Thanksgiving table.

 Smoked Macaroni and Cheese

Quantities for a full size “hotel” pan

Serves approximately 45

Reduce to 1/3 for a typical 9×9 pan

Stir together well in large bowl:

6 beaten eggs

2 cans of evaporated milk

1 large container ricotta cheese

Salt and pepper

Boil water and cook/drain 3 pounds of elbow macaroni. Cook to just past al-dente. Add cooked/drained macaroni and mix with 2 sticks butter –  heat from macaroni will melt butter, stir to evenly spread melted butter over noodles.

In hotel pan, combine the ricotta cheese/milk/egg mixture in to the buttered macaroni. By hand, mix shredded Mexican-blend cheese (approx. 2 lbs) and shredded mozzarella (approx. 2 lbs) throughout the buttered noodle and egg/ricotta mixture. Mix approximately 6 to 8 cups of whole milk to the pan of cheese and noodles…this is a very subjective amount, enough milk to make it “Jello-esque,”not soupy, but close.  Top noodle/cheese mixture with shredded cheddar cheese (approximately two pounds) for topping. Bake uncovered for approximately three hours at 250-275 degrees in smoker using hickory and/or oak…or until done when cheddar cheese is melted and “toasted” on top and most (if not all) liquid is absorbed.

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Gore’s Meats

Nothing quite says Thanksgiving like dressing. Whether it’s light and airy, served in the bird or as a savory side dish, dressing is a Thanksgiving must.

For over 50 years, Gore’s Meats in Stephen City has been providing meat and services. Known for their sausage, Gore’s sells its dressing to help local schools with fundraisers and serves it at Winchester Kiwanis Breakfasts.

Sausage Dressing

1 pound Gore’s Mild Sausage

1 large bag of diced bread

2 cans evaporated milk

1 can chicken broth

1 stick butter

½ onion diced

4 celery stocks diced

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

Sauté butter, celery, and onion in a medium pan until tender. In a mixing bowl beat three eggs, add salt and pepper. Than add onion. In a sauté pan brown sausage. Once browned add to the previous mixing bowl. Then add bread and mix well. Add evaporated milk and chicken broth. Place in a large baking pan. Cover with aluminum foil and back at 375 degrees for about an hour or until the top is browned.