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Holiday season culinary contest

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Following the huge success of our musical contest, where you posted your favorite music and we chose what we liked best from your suggestions and awarded the winner a complete portfolio review, we've got a new contest with the same prize.

After long hours of debating over cold coffees, we've come up with a quite simple, yet mouth watering subject: Holiday season dinner recipes.

Join our culinary contest with your own version of a traditional dinner, add a little story about what it means to you and how it is celebrated in your family and, if possible, illustrate with images from your portfolio (if no images are available it's OK, we will still love your story/food recipe).

We have our very own chef here, at Dreamstime, in the person of Catalina who will give an expert opinion on each recipe, but all the other editors will be virtually tasting your food for a final decision.

As mentioned, the big prize will be an extensive portfolio review containing critique and improvement ideas on what is good, what is great and what can be changed in your images.
300v (film), assorted lenses...
Edited: 11/23/2011, 06:20:41 AM by Admin
We don't have Thanksgiving here in the UK.......how about Christmas dinner recipes?
Edited: 11/09/2011, 03:12:32 AM
Well, they could work as well as they also involve turkey, if I am not mistaken (in Romania they involve a lot of pork, oink oink).
300v (film), assorted lenses...
Posted: 11/09/2011, 04:32:38 AM

Hunter`s chicken stew (or Pollo all cacciatora)

1 x 2kg chicken, jointed, or use the equivalent amount of chicken pieces

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 bay leaves

2 sprigs of fresh rosemary

3 cloves of garlic, peeled (1 crushed, 2 sliced)

½ a bottle of Chianti

flour, for dusting

extra virgin olive oil

6 anchovy fillets

a handful of green or black olives, stoned

2 x 400g tins of good-quality plum tomatoes

Season the chicken pieces with salt and freshly ground black pepper and put them into a bowl. Add the bay leaves and rosemary sprigs and the crushed clove of garlic and cover with the wine. Leave to marinate for at least an hour, but preferably overnight in the fridge.

Preheat your oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. Drain the chicken, reserving the marinade, and pat dry with kitchen paper. Dust the chicken pieces with flour and shake off any excess. Heat an ovenproof pan, add a splash of olive oil, fry the chicken pieces until browned lightly all over and put to one side.

Place the pan back on the heat and add the sliced garlic. Fry gently until golden brown, then add the anchovies, olives, tomatoes (broken up with a wooden spoon) and the chicken pieces with their reserved marinade. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid or a double thickness layer of foil and bake in the preheated oven for 1½ hours.

Skim off any oil that’s collected on top of the sauce, then stir, taste and add a little salt and pepper if necessary. Remove the bay leaves and rosemary sprigs, and serve with a salad, or some cannellini beans, and plenty of Chianti.

So, this is a recipe that I always make in the cold season. I can wait for the weather to get cold so I can cook this one :P I never cook it in the warm season because it`s too "heavy" combined with the heat outside. The recipe it belong to Jamie Oliver, so it`s not my invention, but still it`s delicious.

In my country(Romania) we don`t usually celebrate Thanksgiving day, for us (me) everyday it`s Thanksgiving day, especially because I like to cook very much :)

So, I hope you`ll like this recipe and try it this year. It`s easy to cook and very tasty.

Here is a picture from my portfolio with one of my Pollo all Cacciatora dishes. Enjoy!

   Hunter's chicken stew (pollo alla cacciatora)   
Posted: 11/09/2011, 05:20:08 AM
So, it`s just me? That means I`ll be the winner :P Come on people, wake up!!! You don`t eat anymore?
Posted: 11/11/2011, 06:21:46 AM
Here in Italy we do not celebrate Thanksgiving but I would like to propose a very simple and tasty recipe made ​​with turkey.


2 turkey legs (1Kg and a half /2Kg)

2 onions

100 g of dried porcini mushrooms

1 glass of white wine

2 knobs of butter

2 tablespoons of oil

1 liter of vegetable broth



black pepper

Soak mushrooms in warm water for 20 minutes then squeeze and set aside. In a saucepan large enough, fry the onion, cut into slices with the butter and oil. Rinse the turkey legs and brown them for about 10 minutes in the pan with the onion. Add the mushrooms squeezed, chopped sage, salt and pepper and sprinkle with white wine. Add the hot broth, cover with lid and cook for about an hour. When cooking is finished, lift the legs and place them on a serving dish and then to narrow the mushroom sauce. Pour the sauce with mushrooms on the turkey legs and decorate the dish with a few sage leaves.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, an alternative to the traditional stuffed turkey.

Bye, Francesca :-)

p.s. I do not have a photo of this recipe, but here are the pictures of the individual ingredients.

   Turkey hen meat       Onion slices  and parsley       Porcini Mushrooms       Glass of white wine       Fat       Broth       Sage       Salt and Pepper   
Posted: 11/16/2011, 03:57:49 AM
Stuffin Muffins.............

One thing there is never enough of is stuffing/dressing.

1 small onion chopped

6 stalks of celery chopped

12 ox of whole mushrooms chopped.

Melt 1/4lb of butter in a skillet, ad 1 tsp of poultry seasoning.

Sautee celery till it starts to soften, ad onion till translucent then ad mushrooms. Cook till you smell the earthiness of the mushrooms.

In a LARGE bown, 6 cups of preparred croutons. Add contents of skillet and mix well.

Add canned/home made chicken broth till you get a dough like consistency. If too wet, add more croutons. (You don;t want this too wet.)

Spray muffin tins with non stick/non flavored cooking spray. Fill each hole 3/4+ full of mixture slightly packed.

Put in over at 350 the last hour or so the turkey is cooking. Watch so it does not burn.

When there is a nice brown top remove and let cool slightly. Serve with the stuffing /dressing out of the bird.

This was EVeryone gets a stuffin ,muffin and the little crusty part that everyone fights for.

This is a good project for your kids to help with.
2.8, Sigma 24-135. Nikon SB800 SB600 Dell Studio17 Laptop...
Posted: 11/16/2011, 06:58:36 AM
This is a fantastic contest and prize. However, I think I'll wait to participate until I have more in my portfolio. I think everyone benefits more from an analysis of ports with greater variety. Let's see some more recipies!
Posted: 11/17/2011, 09:10:13 AM
For those of us who celebrate Thanksgiving, we know that it is so much more than a single dish. It is the combination of smells and tastes from several recipes, mixed with love and shared with family, that makes this holiday so magical.

   Thanksgiving Turkey    It all starts with the turkey. There are as many “family” secrets for making this simple bird as there are families. We like to roast ours on a charcoal grill to get the skin crispy while keeping the meat juicy and tender.

Start with a 14-16 pound turkey. Remove giblets (save for gravy) rinse with cold water and pat dry. Chunk one onion and one stalk of celery and stuff into cavity. Make baste of 8 garlic cloves, ½ cup butter, ½ c dry white wine, 5 dashes dry parsley, 5 dashes celery seed and ground pepper- simmer til melted. Brush turkey with baste. Cook on grill over indirect coals – basting every 30 minutes – until internal temperature reaches 180 degrees (about 11 minutes per pound of turkey). Allow turkey to rest 20 minutes before carving.

It wouldn't be Thanksgiving without mashed potatoes and gravy.

Here’s my favorite Giblet Gravy recipe.

neck and giblets from turkey

3 carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks

2 onions, peeled and quartered

6 c chicken broth

2 ½ Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 Tbsp sugar

1/3 c cornstarch

salt and pepper

Place neck, heart, gizzard, carrots and onions in a metal pan. Add ½ c broth. Bake at 475 degrees for 40-45 minutes (until liquid is evaporated) stirring several times. Add ½ c broth, vinegar and sugar stir. Add liver to pan. Return to oven and bake 10-15 minutes (until liver is no longer pink).

Remove from oven, set liver aside and add 1 c broth. Let stand until brown bits are easy to free. Scrape mixture into pan with remaining 4 c broth. Bring to boil over high heat, cover and simmer for 1 ¼ hours. Pour through fine sieve discarding neck and vegetables. Chop liver and giblets and add to sauce.

Return to boil and cook for 5 minutes. In small bowl combine cornstarch with ¼ c water. Slowly whisk into pan, cook, stirring until desired thickness. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

   Chef Chopping    While the turkey and gravy are cooking, it’s time to start the stuffing. Cooking this dish produces a smell that is unique to this holiday – my favorite smell on earth!

Harvest Stuffing

1 c shredded carrots

1 c chopped celery

½ c chopped onion

7 Tbsp butter

1 tsp ground sage

1/8 tsp black pepper

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

8 c dry bread cubes

2 c finely chopped apple

½ c chopped walnuts

¼ c wheat germ

½ c chicken broth

In skillet, cook carrot, celery, onion and butter until tender but not brown. Stir in sage, salt, cinnamon, and black pepper.

In large bowl mix bread cubes, apple, walnuts, and wheat germ. Add cooked vegetable mixture. Drizzle with chicken broth to moisten.

Pour into 9" x 13" pan. Bake, covered in 375 degree oven for 25 minutes. Uncover for last 5 minutes of cooking.

   Eat Veggies    Add your favorite vegetable as a side dish.

   Baking Ladopsomo Bread    And some warm, fresh baked bread.

   Chef    And no Thanksgiving is complete without a

Pumpkin Pie

16 oz canned pumpkin

¾ c sugar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground ginger

½ tsp ground nutmeg

3 eggs

5 ½ oz evaporated milk

½ c milk

Pie Crust

Mix all ingredients in order listed. Pour into pastry lined 9" pie pan. Cover edges with foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake 25-30 minutes longer. Cool and serve with whipped cream.

Check out Holiday Spirits for a tasty cocktail to compliment your desert!

Add family and friends and you have the perfect Thanksgiving. Enjoy!

Edited: 1 minute ago
Porco com Amêijoas à Alentejana

(Portuguese Pork and Clams)

Serve with fried potatoes cubes cooked in olive oil.

1 2-pound boneless pork shoulder or butt, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 cup dry white wine, or as needed

3 tablespoons sweet paprika

1 bay leaf

2 whole cloves

5 cloves garlic, chopped

4 tablespoons lard or olive oil

2 yellow onions, chopped

4 tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and diced

2 pounds small clams such as Manila, well scrubbed

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 cup diced churizo

1/4 lb diced prosciutto


1. Place the pork in a nonaluminum container and add the 1 cup wine, paprika, bay leaf, cloves, and 3 of the garlic cloves. Toss well to mix evenly, cover, and refrigerate overnight. The next day, drain the pork, reserving the marinade. Pat the meat dry.

2. In a large frying pan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of the lard or warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Working in batches, brown the pork cubes on all sides until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate.

3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons lard or warm the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Add prosciutto and churizo and brown slightly. Add the onions and saute until soft, 8-10 minutes. Add the remaining 2 cloves garlic and the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally until the tomatoes are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the browned pork to the onion mixture along with the reserved marinade, cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook until the pork is tender, about 1 hour. Check from time to time and add more wine if the pork threatens to scorch.

4. Add the clams (mussels work great too), cover, raise the heat to high, and cook until the clams open, about 5 minutes.

5. Transfer the pork and clams to a warmed serving dish and sprinkle with the cilantro and parsley. Serve immediately over a bed of fried potatoes.

Hint: get a loaf of crusty, yeast risen bread to go with it. Broa is a wonderful Portuguese bread.

Canon bodies and lenses.
Posted: 1 minute ago
Roasting a turkey is not too complicated. The simplest recipes are pretty good. Garnish can be grapes, oranges and apples.

Roast Herbed Turkey Recipe


3 tablespoon sage

11 pound turkey


pepper, black ground

1 tablespoon oil, olive

1 orange(s)

1 tablespoon honey

sage, fresh, optional

Recipe Tip:

Roast 3 to 3 3/4 hours.


1. Rinse turkey; pat dry with paper towels. Season cavity with salt and pepper. Season cavity with 1 tablespoon of the snipped sage, the salt and pepper. If desired, light pack the turkey with stuffing.

2. Preheat oven to 325°F. Pull turkey’s neck skin to back; fasten with skewer. Tuck the ends of the drumsticks under the band of skin across the tail. If the band of skin is not present, tie the drumsticks securely to the tail with 100%-cotton string. Twist wing tips under the back.

3. Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Brush turkey with the olive oil. Insert an oven-going meat thermometer in the center of one of the inside thigh muscles. Roast 3 to 3 3/4 hours or until meat thermometer registers 180°F and center of stuffing registers 165°F.

4. Halve and juice the 1 orange. In a small bowl, combine the orange juice, honey, and the remaining 2 tablespoons snipped sage. Brush on the hot turkey.

5. Cover turkey with foil and let stand for 15 minutes before carving. If desired, garnish turkey with orange halves and sage leaves.

   Roast Thanksgiving Turkey   

Every Thanksgiving my wife tries to come up with something new like this recipe for Apple Bacon Sage Stuffing. Thanksgiving turkey recipes are pretty much the same but this stuffing recipe is a little different than most, the bacon gives it an interesting flavor. Try it and you might like it. Only difference is that we used red delicious apples instead of granny smith apples. This recipe came from online.

Apple Bacon Sage Stuffing


16 oz. crusty, artisan-style bread

1/2 lb. bacon, diced

1-1/2 cups chopped tart apple, such as Granny Smith or Red Delicious

1-1/2 cups chopped celery (about 3 large ribs)

2 cups chopped onion (about 2 medium)

1/2 cup chopped fresh, flat-leaf parsley

1 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme

1 Tbs. chopped fresh sage

3 cups low-salt turkey or chicken broth (homemade or canned)

3/4 tsp. kosher salt, more as needed

Freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup melted unsalted butter (optional)

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

vegetable oil or cooking spray, for baking dish


Tear or cut the bread into 3/4-inch piece until you have 8 to 10 cups. If working a day ahead, lay the pieces out on a rack and leave them uncovered on the counter to dry overnight. Otherwise, spread the bread out on a rimmed baking sheet and bake in a 275°F oven, stirring every 10 minutes or so, until it is crisp and mostly dry; it will continue to dry a bit as it cools. Depending on how moist the bread is to begin with, oven-drying takes 15 to 45 minutes.

In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until browned and fully cooked. Add the apple, celery, and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they're slightly softened but still have some crunch. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

Add the bread to the large mixing bowl, along with the flat-leaf parsley, thyme, and sage, and toss well. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pour 2 cups of the broth over the stuffing. If the liquid isn't immediately absorbed and pools at the bottom of the bowl, you have enough; just toss the mixture occasionally for a few minutes until the liquid is absorbed. At first, the bread cubes may feel wet on the outside and still be dry on the inside, but they'll even out as the stuffing cooks.

If the bread immediately sucks up the initial 2 cups of liquid, add another 1/2 cup of broth and taste the mixture. The bread should be moist but not soggy. Add up to another 1/2 cup of broth if necessary.

Taste the mixture and add salt and pepper as needed. If the mixture doesn't taste as rich as you'd like, add enough melted unsalted butter to suit your taste. Once you're satisfied with the flavor of the mixture, stir in the beaten eggs.

Heat the oven to 375° F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking dish with oil or cooking spray. Spread the stuffing in the dish, cover tightly with foil, and bake until heated through, about 30 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the top is lightly browned and crisp, another 20 to 30 minutes.

   Apple Bacon Turkey Stuffing   

We always fix these apple turnovers during the holidays. The only step we skip is making the sugar sauce. Sprinkling the turnovers with confectioners sugar adds enough sweetness.

Apple Turnovers


2 tablespoons lemon juice

4 cups water

4 Granny Smith apples - peeled, cored and sliced

2 tablespoons butter

1 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 tablespoon water

1 (17.25 ounce) package frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed

1 cup confectioners' sugar

1 tablespoon milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Combine the lemon and 4 cups water in a large bowl. Place the sliced apples in the water to keep them from browning.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Drain water from apples, and place them into the hot skillet. Cook and stir for about 2 minutes. Add brown sugar, and cinnamon, and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes. Stir together cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. Pour into the skillet, and mix well. Cook for another minute, or until sauce has thickened. Remove from heat to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Unfold puff pastry sheets, and repair any cracks by pressing them back together. Trim each sheet into a square. Then cut each larger square into 4 smaller squares. Spoon apples onto the center of each squares. Fold over from corner to corner into a triangle shape, and press edges together to seal. Place turnovers on a baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch between them.

Bake for 25 minutes in the preheated oven, until turnovers are puffed and lightly browned. Cool completely before glazing.

To make the glaze, mix together the confectioners' sugar, milk and vanilla in a small bowl. Adjust the thickness by adding more sugar or milk if necessary. Drizzle glaze over the cooled turnovers.

   Home Made Turnovers   

Autoreflex TC 35MM camera and various lenses though I rarely shoot fi...
Edited: 1 minute ago
in my family chrsitmas dinner we intend the night before christmas, 24 december and we usually eat fish, it's the same the night of 24 december???
105 mm macro 2.8...
Posted: 11/19/2011, 03:18:38 AM
My favourite part of Christmas dinner is all of it! But a big discovery has been “posh” veg:

Carrots roasted with chestnuts – cut carrots into batons, mix together some melted butter, olive oil, honey and Dijon mustard, toss carrots in this mixture, season, sprinkle with fresh chopped thyme & roast for about 20 mins in the oven, turning once. Use pre-prepared chestnuts (from a tin or packet), chop in half & add to the carrots for the last 10 mins of the cooking time & serve. If preferred, cook carrots in advance in water on the stove then plunge into cold water, 10 minutes before dinner pop carrots into microwave until warmed through then mix all ingredients together, put into serving dish in oven, stir once.

Sprouts with bacon – the sprouts can be prepared in advance by boiling in water & when cooked plunge into cold water – when dinner’s almost ready, cook the chopped bacon in some butter until almost crispy, pop the sprouts into the microwave for a minute or so until hot, stir the bacon into the sprouts, put into a warm serving dish with a knob of butter & pop into the oven until required.

Very yummy and great that you can prepare both dishes in advance if preferred. And to think when I was a kid I hated sprouts!

Posted: 11/20/2011, 03:38:08 AM
Looking for more recipes so jump in and post yours.
300v (film), assorted lenses...
Posted: 11/23/2011, 06:21:10 AM
   Christmas baked rolls   

Based on the traditional finnish Cinnamon Rolls (Korvapuustit) with my original filling ;) Baked by me.


13 g yeast

75 g butter

250 ml milk

450 g all-purpose flour

60 g sugar

3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)

1/2 teaspoon salt


2 Tbs. butter, room temperature

2 Tbs. sugar

2 Tbs. black sesame


1 Egg, slightly beaten

1 Tbs. milk

Pearl sugar

Directions (not mine) for traditional version is here.
Nikon d200, wacom cintiq, wacom intuos
Edited: 11/23/2011, 11:36:21 AM
This recipe was passed down from my grandmother.Hope you enjoy:

   Pound cake   

Cream Cheese lemon Pound Cake:

3 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1-8 ounce package cream cheese, room temperature

3 cups sugar

6 large eggs, room temperature

1-tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Zest of a lemon or orange

Cream Cheese Pound Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Butter and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar, in three additions, beating well after each addition. Continue beating on medium-high speed until light and fluffy (about 3 - 5 minutes). Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla and lemon zest and beat until incorporated.

Add the flour mixture and mix just until incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.

Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes

Remove the cake from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for about 20 minutes. Remove the cake from the pan and cool completely. (The cake is cooled in the pan first for about 20 minutes so the cake has time to set. The cake may collapse if you try to remove it from the pan too soon

2/3 cup sifted confectioners' sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice, fresh

1. Put the sugar in a small bowl. Add lemon juice. Whisk together until smooth and well blended.

2. Drizzle over pound cake

1.8, Canon 400D ,kit lens, canon zoom macro 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 , 50mm...
Edited: 11/28/2011, 09:00:14 AM
I forgot to add that this pound cake above: was my grandmothers recipe and when we all get together for the holidays we remember her and all the things she taught us,Being with family and giving thanks for everything is what it is all about.
1.8, Canon 400D ,kit lens, canon zoom macro 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 , 50mm...
Posted: 12/01/2011, 07:23:31 AM

24-105 L IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.4 USM, EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM, Ca...
Edited: 1 minute ago
Is this closed?Great recipes
1.8, Canon 400D ,kit lens, canon zoom macro 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 , 50mm...
Posted: 1 minute ago
has anyone won yet?Oh I know you all are still eating! LOL
1.8, Canon 400D ,kit lens, canon zoom macro 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 , 50mm...
Posted: 12/14/2011, 08:53:06 AM
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