Frank & Julio share more on organic chic design and delicious recipes for Thanksgiving dinner
Floral designer Julio Sales of Stamford had more to say about his organic chic design in the current issue’s tablescape cover feature. Read and learn more about his ideas, plus a few of his favorite things.
I’ve been in the floral and event design business … for seven years, offering highly personalized expertise in floral décor and event planning, combined with enthusiasm for detail, love of quality and passion for flowers to our work.
My favorite holiday tradition is … to set the holiday table for family and friends.
My favorite color … is orange because it is such a happy color. It reminds me of summer but it’s perfect for all seasons. A touch of orange always adds warmth.
My favorite nightcap is … Glenlivet. Frank likes root beer.
My style mentor is … floral designer Lewis Miller for his enthusiasm for detail and his ability to dazzle using the grandest and simplest materials. I love mixing styles because it shows personality and he mixes styles perfectly.
The biggest challenge with this design was … working with a smaller table than we normally do. I wanted to add candles of different heights but there was no room.
My biggest tabletop pet peeve is … rose petals all over the table. No, no, please!
My favorite dessert is … New York cheesecake.
Need ideas to spice up your Thanksgiving menu? Here are a couple of sweet ideas from Frank Daniele’s recipe box that are sure to wow your family and friends at the table. Bon appetit!
Orange and Brown Sugar Glazed Yams with Caramelized Pecans
4 ½ Tblsp butter
1 Tblsp sugar
½ cup pecans
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tblsp safflower or canola oil
Salt and black pepper to taste
¼ cup brown sugar
1 Tblsp grated fresh ginger
½ onion, chopped
1 blood orange, peeled and sliced
1 cup blood orange juice (or regular orange juice)
2 Tblsp maple syrup
1 Tblsp cornstarch mixed with ¼ cup water
Melt ½ tablespoon butter in small skillet over medium-high heat and add sugar, cinnamon and nuts. Stir constantly until sugar loses grainy appearance, about 5 minutes. Pour nuts onto sheet of aluminum foil and let cool about 15 minutes. This will yield ½ cup caramelized pecans. (These can be stored for up to 2 days in airtight container.)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Peel the yams. Cut them crosswise and then into 1 ½-inch half-moon shapes.
Toss the yams with the oil, salt and pepper, brown sugar, ginger, onion and orange slices. Butter a roasting pan with 2 tablespoons of butter being sure to leave the additional butter in the pan.
Roast uncovered in the oven until a fork or knife almost pierces in, about 20 minutes.
Just before the yams are done, bring orange juice, the remaining butter and maple syrup to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Mix the water and cornstarch and add to boiling juice mixture. Whisk until thickened and pour over the yams in the oven.
Bake at for another 10 minutes or until the yams are easily pierced with a knife.
Top with the caramelized pecans before serving.
Tip: This can be an excellent oven to table dish. Keep this in mind when selecting your baking dish.
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp salt
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup butter, softened
1 cup pureed pumpkin
1 large egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
3 Tblsp milk
1 Tblsp melted butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a cooking sheet with vegetable oil cooking spray.
Mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a medium bowl. Beat sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add the pumpkin, egg and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and mix well. Add flour mixture in 3 stages. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto prepared baking sheets. (The best way to do this is with a cookie scooper. They are available in all supermarkets nowadays and ensure that all your cookies are the same size.)
Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are firm. While the cookies bake, mix the powdered sugar, milk, melted butter and remaining vanilla extract to make a glaze.
Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Drizzle glaze over cookies.
Alternative: Drop the cookie batter onto a sheet pan that fits in your freezer, and freeze them until they are hard to the touch, about 3 hours. Then you can store the individual cookies in a zipper bag in the freezer. Right after dinner, bake the frozen cookies in a 350 degree oven for 18-22 minutes. The aroma of fresh-baked cookies will fill the air