The season of thanks is upon us, and the REACH team has plenty to be grateful for this year. As an organization, we are thankful for the opportunity to support our partners in driving change for a cleaner, healthier planet for us all. We are passionate about our work in electrification and renewable energy. We are thankful that we get to do what we love every day.
When we think about the season of thanks, it’s a reminder of the time we spend with our loved ones and the delicious meals we share this time of year. We can almost taste it! The REACH team shares what they are most thankful for and their favorite seasonal dish below. We hope this brings some inspiration to your menus this season. Enjoy!
I am most thankful for the health and happiness of my family, including our four legged furry kids.
Favorite Dish: Stuffed Mushrooms. I can’t share my recipe, that would be giving away my secrets!
This year, I’m most thankful to have moved closer to my Dad, spending more time with him working on awesome projects like starting bonsai from live oak saplings.
Favorite Dish: My first fall away from home, my Dad sent me a small cube shaped box with a lone pomegranate inside. Delight! My two favorite pomegranate recipes are my Mom’s jelly (sorry, it’s a secret!) and guacamole.
- 3 avocados, ripe
- 1/2 small red onion, diced
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt or celery salt to taste
- 3/4 cup pomegranate seeds
I am thankful for my family, friends, dog, and coffee.
Favorite Dish: Apple Pie
I am most thankful for my supportive friends and little pups.
Favorite Dish: From my Italian Mother who goes by taste and not measurements, Italian Crab.
- Chopped onion and garlic sauteed in olive oil
- Tomato sauce
- Italian seasoning (Oregano, Basil, Sage, Thyme, Marjoram, Rosemary)
- A bay leaf
Let it boil and simmer, “the longer it cooks the better.”
I am thankful for all that we are allowed to accomplish and the people that we get to do it with, during our day jobs and in the rest of our lives.
Favorite Dish: Jury’s still out on this one.
I’m thankful for my warm, loving home and family.
Favorite Dish: I like most pies but for pumpkin pie I don’t like crust. I used to eat the custard out and leave the crust! Then I discovered this crustless pumpkin pie and I’ve never gone back.
Crustless Pumpkin Pie
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 can pure pumpkin (15 oz.)
- 1 can evaporated milk (12 oz.)
- Preheat oven to 350 °F.
- Spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Mix sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in a bowl. Add eggs. Stir in pumpkin and slowly add in evaporated milk.
- Pour into pan.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes or until knife comes out clean.
- Allow to cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate
This year, I am thankful for the opportunity to work at REACH and that my kids have found their groove in the new city that we now call home.
Favorite Dish: My favorite seasonal recipe is cheesy green bean casserole. Because, cheese is life.
Cheesy Green Bean Casserole
- 1 can French-fried onion rings
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups fresh green beans (cut)
- ½ cup fresh mushrooms
- ⅓ stick butter
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or more to taste)
- Fresh garlic (1 clove, minced)
- Garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Place chicken broth in a large pot, bring to a boil.
- Add green beans and cook for 10 minutes, drain and set aside.
- Melt butter in a large pan.
- Saute garlic for about a minute until it begins to golden.
- Add onions and saute until softened.
- Add mushrooms.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Saute until mushrooms are cooked, not too soft.
- In a large bowl, combine green beans, sauteed mix, mushroom soup and onion rings.
- Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste and mix well.
- Transfer to a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven, top with cheese.
- Return to oven and bake for 10 more minutes or until cheese is melted.
This year, I am thankful for my amazing kids, and how they continue to blow me away with their kindness with others.
Favorite Dish: This is one that my son and I started making a few years ago.
Cranberry Meyer Lemon Pie
For the Crust:
- 2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs
- 6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 3 tbsp. light brown sugar
- ¼ tsp. salt
For the Filling:
- 1 12 oz. package fresh cranberries
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar, divided
- 3 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2 tsp. finely grated Meyer lemon zest
- ½ cup fresh Meyer lemon juice
- Pinch of kosher salt
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into pieces
- Fresh whipped cream, for serving
- Sugared Cranberry Garnish (optional)
Make the crust:
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Add gingersnap cookie crumbs, butter, brown sugar and salt to a food processor. Pulse until the crumbs are moistened, then transfer to a deep 9-inch pie dish. Use a measuring cup to press the crust firmly into the bottom and up the sides of the dish.
- Bake for about 12-13 minutes or until crisp and slightly darkener. If the crust falls off the sides, use the measuring cup to gently press it back into place while still hot. Let cool.
- Crust can be baked up to 1 day ahead. Wrap tightly and refrigerate until needed.
Make the filling:
- Add cranberries, 1 cup granulated sugar, and ¼ cup water to a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring up to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the berries burst open and the mixture thickens, about 15-20 minutes. The texture should resemble cranberry sauce. Puree in the food processor (or blender) until it’s as smooth as possible. This may take a good 3-4 minutes. *Use caution blending hot liquids.*
- Add the eggs, egg yolks, Meyer lemon zest, Meyer lemon juice, salt, and remaining ½ cup sugar to the food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
- Scrape the mixture into a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water) at about medium heat. Stir the mixture constantly with a rubber spatula until it thickens up like a curd and nicely coats the back of a spoon, about 15-20 minutes, or until a candy thermometer reaches 165 degrees. Don’t rush this step – it’s essential to getting the filling to set up.
- Remove the pan from the heat. Set a fine meshed strainer over a bowl, then pour the curd through. Press with a rubber spatula to make sure you get as much of the curd through as possible while leaving the bits of cranberry skin and coagulated egg in the strainer. Let cool until just barely warm.
- Beat the curd with an electric mixer on medium-high speed, adding softened (very important) butter one piece at a time. Be sure each piece of butter is fully incorporated before adding in the next.
- Continue beating the curd until all of the butter has been incorporated and it looks a few shades lighter in color, about 6 minutes.
- Pour the curd into the prepared crust and smooth out the top. Gently bang the pie dish on the counter to remove any air bubbles, then chill until firm, at least 8 hours or overnight is best.
Pie can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled until ready to serve.
This year I am grateful for all of the opportunities I have, both professionally and personally.
Favorite Dish: Apple Bourbon Pie- here’s a similar recipe. I use a lot less sugar and maybe more bourbon!
Apple Bourbon Pie
For the Pie Crust:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, with extra for dusting
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 1/8 tsp. baking powder
- A pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup vegetable shortening (cold)
- 2 sticks unsalted butter (cold), cut into pieces
- 1 tbsp. bourbon, plus more to taste
- 8-10 tbsp. Ice cold water
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- Coarse sugar (sprinkle on top)
For the Apple Filling:
- 4 lbs. assorted apples of your choice
- 2 tbsp. lemon juice (fresh)
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp. bourbon
- 5 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. ginger
Preparing the Pie Crust:
- In a food processor, pulse together the all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and a pinch of salt until well combined.
- Add the cold vegetable shortening and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
- Add the cold, small pieces of unsalted butter and pulse until they’re the size of peas.
- Incorporate the bourbon by pulsing it into the mixture.
- Add the ice water, one tbsp. at a time, pulsing until the dough holds together when pinched.
- Turn the dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap, use the plastic wrap to help gather it together, then divide it into 2 pieces and gently pat each into a disk. Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, but you can chill it for up to 24 hours.
Preparing the Apple Filling:
- Peel the apples, slice them to about 1/4 inch thick, and toss them with the fresh lemon juice and 1/4 cup of bourbon.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt 2 tbsp. of butter. Add half of the apples and sprinkle half of the granulated sugar over them. Cook and stir until the sugar dissolves and the mixture begins to simmer (about 2 minutes).
- Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking until the apples soften (about 7 minutes). Transfer the cooked apples to a bowl.
- Add another 2 tbsp. of butter to the skillet and repeat the process with the remaining apples and sugar. Add them to the bowl and toss with the ground cinnamon and ground ginger. Let the mixture cool completely.
Assembling and Baking the Pie:
- Roll out one disk of the dough into a 12-inch round on a lightly floured surface. Place it into a 9-inch pie plate.
- Roll out the remaining disk of dough into another 12-inch round on a floured surface. Transfer it to a baking sheet, cover it with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Spoon the prepared apple filling into the pie crust, drizzle it with the remaining 1 tbsp. of bourbon, and dot with the remaining 1 tbsp. of butter.
- Lay the second dough round over the filling. Pinch the overhanging dough together and fold it under itself. Crimp the edge with your fingers.
- Create a few slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape. Brush the crust with the beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Place a baking sheet on the lowest oven rack and preheat your oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
- Bake the pie on the hot baking sheet until the crust turns golden, which should take about 60 to 70 minutes.
- Transfer the pie to a cooling rack and let it cool for at least 2 hours before serving. Enjoy your delicious homemade pie!
I’m thankful for all the friends made (and am still making) by just going out and doing things I enjoy.
Favorite Dish: Christmas Steak
- Purchase steak (preferably ribeye) from a local grocery store. Use self checkout to avoid interacting with a cashier.
- Season steak with salt, pepper, and garlic (when you get home, but you can do it during the drive home if you want). Sear every side of the steak (the edges too) on a cast iron pan. When the smoke detector goes off from the smoke emanating from the pan, remove the 9 volt battery from the smoke detector (punishable under California Penal Code with a fine of up to $1,000, and up to six months in jail).
- Finish steak on low/medium heat until preferred doneness (entirely up to you but if it’s not rare then you are wrong).
- Plate. Garnish with seasonal vegetables (optional).
- Enjoy in silence. On or around Christmas. Christmas Steak.