Monster XP Blog
Thanksgiving with Monster and Friends
Thanksgiving often stirs our minds and hearts (and our tummies) with reminders of familiar traditions we share with our families.
We see a full table setting, where instead of TV trays the family gathers around the table with their favorite Publix salt and pepper shakers and fall themed decorations adorning the table. The table becomes the center of the day; the focal point. We know the table conversation will be full of laughs, grateful hearts, and stories. Then, with full bellies, we wander into the living room to watch the parade or whatever football game happens to be on.
MonsterXP would like to invite you to sit at our table in honor of the Thanksgiving traditions that bring us together, even sharing some of our favorite traditions and recipes with you.
Passing on Family Traditions (Kristin, COO):
Let’s start with dessert…the course everyone impatiently waits for and is sometimes too stuffed from turkey to enjoy. For my family, the staple Thanksgiving dessert is the peanut butter pie. In fact, I can’t remember a Thanksgiving where this pie wasn’t present at our table. I’ll even let you in on a little secret ingredient for this pie: Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Last year marked a special occasion for our family as it was the first year my son helped me make it for Thanksgiving.
America’s Team (Chris, President)
Thanksgiving is full of traditions for many across the country. In our household, in addition to turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes being staples on Thanksgiving, so are the Dallas Cowboys. Growing up in the suburbs of Dallas back when the Cowboys were actually winning Super Bowls, Thanksgiving always revolved around football. No matter where we are, we make it a point to watch the Cowboys on Thanksgiving. It’s become fun as my kids have started to watch the game with me – “look, dad – they’re circling up to make a plan to win” (huddling, lol). Something I like to have while the game is on, is a good snack. Seeing as it’s Thanksgiving, we take Turkey leftovers – obviously, we finished eating before the game started and make a killer Buffalo Turkey Dip. Check out our recipe below and Enjoy!
- 2 cups cooked turkey, shredded (gotta use those leftovers, chicken works too though)
- 1 package of Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup of your favorite hot sauce or buffalo sauce (I recommend Texas Pete)
- 1/2 cup ranch dressing
- 1/2 cup shredded cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.
- Pour the mixture into a shallow baking dish.
- Bake 20 minutes.
- Garnish with green onions or maybe some fresh bleu cheese, if desired
- Serve with chips (or veggies if you want to be healthier)
- Watch the Cowboys win!
A Jalapeno for Everything (Angel, SVP Operations)
Coming from a Mexican family, we always ate with some salsa or jalapenos to accompany our meals and Thanksgiving dinner is no exception. My plate always consists of heap of mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, turkey, and sweet potato casserole with a whole pickled jalapeno on the side. I honestly never thought it was out of the ordinary until it was pointed out by wife!
But in the last few years, my wife and I haven’t made it back to Texas to spend Thanksgiving with our families so we decided to start some traditions of our own. Since we weren’t taught to make small meals, we always end up with an excess amount of leftovers and have begun to make a Thanksgiving breakfast that includes my new favorite, stuffing waffles. We simply throw some leftover stuffing in our Death Star shaped waffle maker and use some cream cheese and cranberry sauce as the topping. Its great sweet and salty meal to get the day started and begin decorating for the holiday season!
Thanksgiving Traversing the South (Stefanie, Account Manager)
Until recently, I’ve always traveled around Thanksgiving. As a young child it was to my Grandparents in a small town in northern Alabama. When I got older and my younger brother started travel soccer in grade school it was just outside of Orlando, FL for soccer tournaments. As a young adult, I would spend time with friends for Thanksgiving or even alone. I often would default to pizza or maybe boxed macaroni and cheese as the meal option. If these highlights are any indication, Thanksgiving for me hasn’t been overly “traditional” in terms of meals. However, the one tradition I would say my family has is watching the Iron Bowl on Saturday. No matter where we were, that game would be on. (For those who don’t follow college football, the Iron Bowl is the yearly showdown between the Alabama Crimson Tide and Auburn Tigers).
The Traveling Stuffing (Hallie, Chief Strategy Officer)
Over the years turkey has become synonymous with Thanksgiving in most American households. While it does serve as the primary entrée at our dinner table, in my family the all-star is our “family” stuffing. The tale told by our grandmother (Ruth) was that she found the recipe on a box of Ritz crackers. As you would expect, these delicious and buttery crackers serve as a primary ingredient. My siblings and I have fought over this stuffing since the beginning of time and now as adults we are sometimes known to do the same. Our immediate family of six grew to include in-laws and grandkids which meant more sharing and close monitoring of “portion sizes”. Every year there is an expanded discussion on exact ratios of ingredients and what steps need to be taken to ensure enough stuffing for “the big day” as well as at least 2-3 days thereafter.
As adults, my siblings and I have traveled far and wide, and both of my brothers were stationed overseas at various points in the last twenty years. So as not to mess with tradition, the recipe has followed us along for the ride to include Hawaii, Japan, Thailand and Egypt. It tastes delicious anywhere (and truly any time) but it goes without saying that it is all the better when it is prepared and shared together under one roof. In fact, when all of us finally landed back in the continental US about 8 years ago, we started making treks to the Outer Banks to share the holiday and the food together.
While I won’t be sharing this family stuffing recipe, I would like to share a more “healty”ish recipe for the holidays…
1-15 ounce can pumpkin
1-8 ounce Philly cream cheese (can be lowfat)
¼ tsp ginger
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ cup agave
Mix well and serve with fresh apple slices
You may have picked up that there is a subtle theme in several of our staff’s Thanksgiving accounts: Philadelphia Cream Cheese. We look forward to sharing our upcoming activation with Philadelphia Cream Cheese in the upcoming weeks.