With Thanksgiving just around the corner, Wisconsinites will travel near and far for family gatherings and celebrations this holiday season. Kitchens and dining room tables will serve as the centerpiece for these get-togethers. If you're still trying to think of ways that you can put unique and delicious dishes on the table, consider foods that are Something Special from Wisconsin.
The next time you weave your way through grocery store aisles, be on the lookout for the red, circular Something Special from Wisconsin logo. When you see products with this logo, it guarantees that at least half of the item's ingredients, production or processing are from or occur in Wisconsin. Just like Wisconsin agriculture, the products and companies that are part of the Something Special from Wisconsin program are so diverse. You can find everything from meats and cheeses, jams and salsas, to soaps and candles and much, much more. By purchasing these products, you're not only supporting our state's farmers, food processors and agribusinesses, but you're also keeping that money in our communities and ultimately supporting the Wisconsin way of life.
If you're looking to cook outside the box this year and want something a bit different than the traditional Thanksgiving turkey, try pheasant from MacFarlane Pheasants, Inc. The largest pheasant farm in North America, MacFarlane's has been raising pheasants for two generations. This specialty artisan meat has superb flavor and a healthy nutritional profile. Food lovers will enjoy making it perfect for their holiday menu and year-round. It's healthy, too. Pheasant is a protein-rich power food, packed full of nutrition. To learn more about a Thanksgiving pheasant and gather some tasty recipes, log on to www.pheasantfordinner.com.
There are many ways to complement your meat of choice before putting it on the grill or in the oven. Grill experts, Mad Dog and Merrill, spice it up for thousands each year with their unique grilling sauces, marinades and spice blends that add zest to any holiday meal. To dazzle your taste buds this Thanksgiving, try the saucy assortment on chicken or shrimp cocktail. Another way to add to the interest to your Thanksgiving meal this year is to serve sauerkraut from Sconnie Foods. You can now enjoy your sauerkraut conveniently as ketchup, mustard, relish and other squeezable condiments with less mess, less hassle and less waste.
A get-together is not complete without delicious sides. Dawn's Foods, based out of Portage, has been producing quality, great tasting homemade salads and dips for over 45 years. They use quality sour cream and cream cheese in their dips and spreads, creating a taste that can't be beat. Treat the kids in your family to classic potato chips, produced by Wisconsin's finest potato and vegetable growers. And for the kids at heart, top those delicious Wisconsin potato chips with sweet salsa from Sanchez Specialties. As the company slogan says, "first you taste the sweet, then you feel the heat." The salsa is available in mild, medium and hot. Whatever the temperature it will leave your taste buds begging for more. Wash down that salsa with a glass of egg nog or TrueMoo® chocolate milk. Dean Foods operates two fresh dairy producing plants in Wisconsin, Verifine Dairy in Sheboygan and Morning Glory Dairy in De Pere. The two plants combined have over 150 years of experience producing quality, delicious and nutritious dairy products.
It wouldn't be Thanksgiving in Wisconsin without wine and cheese. There are dozens of products and companies that are Something Special from Wisconsin and produce high-quality wine and cheese year-round. Cedar Creek winery in Cedarburg has many decorated, award-winning wines to choose from. Try Cedar Creek Rose, an innovative style of wine produced with notes of pomegranate balanced by a juicy sweetness. Another Wisconsin winery, Wollersheim Winery in Prairie du Sac, produces award-winning wines, including its Dry Riesling, which was named Wine of the Year at the 2013 San Diego International Wine Competition.
To complement that wine, add some fun to your appetizers with cheddar cheese cutouts from Jim's Cheese in Waterloo. Jim's offers fun and unique ways to enjoy its award-winning cheddar, with over 400 different shapes of cut-out cheese to choose from. If you enjoy cheese produced by happy goats, try Never-Enuf Dairy's latest product, GoEdder. Introduced during the summer of 2013, GoEdder is a yellow cheddar made out of whole goat milk and is perfect for the cheese lover in your family.
Top off your delicious Thanksgiving feast with some of Wisconsin's finest baked goods. Auntie Pam's Bakery in Madison is a 5-year-old company that specializes in breads and whole wheat cinnamon rolls. From cheesebreads to pies, Auntie Pam's has something for everyone, whether you're looking for a salty snack or sweet dessert. For more dessert options, enjoy Wisconsin's official state pastry, the kringle, baked fresh at some outstanding Racine companies. O&H Danish Bakery features kringle topped with delicious Wisconsin cream cheese, cherries and cranberries. You can also try O&H's holiday cake with a hand-decorated Christmas theme. It is sure to please every guest in your home. Racine Danish Kringles also features tasty kringles topped with some of Wisconsin's finest agriculture products.
To learn more about ways to garnish your Thanksgiving Dinner with products produced right here in Wisconsin, log on to www.somethingspecialfromwisconsin.com. Remember, Wisconsin agriculture is yours. Today, tomorrow and always.
Wishing you all a very happy, safe and blessed Thanksgiving season. Happy cooking!