(KRON) — We are now just weeks away from Thanksgiving, and it is never too early to start planning your feast. Lesley Dabney, The Vineyard Mom, speaks with KRON4 Anchor Stephanie Lin on how to start planning and preparing Thanksgiving appetizers.

Rosemary Cashews

2 cups raw cashews
1 Tbs. melted butter
1 Tbs. brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbs. finely chopped rosemary


Place cashews into a dry non-stick sauté pan. Sauté on medium high heat for five minutes. Shake
the pan to move the nuts around several times while they are warming up. Do not let them burn!
In a mixing bowl, add melted butter, brown sugar and salt and combine. Put hot cashew
immediately into the bowl. Sprinkle in the finely chopped rosemary. Stir to combine. Serve hot
or at room temperature.

Baked Brie

1 puff pastry sheet defrosted
1/2 cup of all-purpose flour for dusting the puff pastry sheet
1 8 oz. wheel of brie
1 1/2 Tbs. brown sugar
1/4 finely chopped pecans
1 egg
1 Tbs. water


Set the oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Whisk together egg and water to make an egg wash.
Remove the sheet of puff pastry from the sheet.
Dust pastry with a little flour if feels sticky. Roll pastry out to 11 inch square.
Place the wheel of brie in the middle of the puff pastry. Top the brie with brown sugar and
smooth sugar out to cover the top of the brie evenly and completely.
Top the brown sugar with finely chopped pecans making sure the pecans are evenly covering
the sugar.
Bring one corner of the puff pastry up and over the brie, brush with egg wash. Continue to wrap
the brie, creating a pleated like design. Lightly press down to remove air and brushing the
pastry with the egg wash so the puff pastry sticks to itself.
Brush the top and sides with egg wash.
Make several shallow scores with a knife about 1 inch long on the surface of the pastry to create
vents. Pastry will still puff, but it wont be too puffy.
Bake 30-35 minutes.
Let cool at least 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve with crackers, apples or a baguette.

Thanksgiving Day Cocktail


.5 oz Cointreau
1 oz vodka
.5 oz fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs. cranberry sauce
Top with Sparkling wine
Fresh sage leaf for garnish


Add all the ingredients except the sparkling wine to a shaker. Add ice and shake really well for
30 seconds. Pour mixture from the shaker through a fine strainer into a martini glass. Finish
with sparkling wine. Garnish with a fresh sage leaf.

Recipes courtesy of: Leslie Dabney, The Vineyard Mom @thevineyardmomliving on Instagram.

Tips for entertaining during Thanksgiving

  1. Prep ahead of time. Be organized and ready for guests. Serving dishes/platters and
    appetizer napkins that are holiday themed out on the counter. Have your dinner table
    set before guests arrive. If you don’t have a separate table for entertaining and dining,
    have everything stacked for each place setting on a separate counter or sideboard so you
    can easily set the table when it’s time to eat.
  2. Have your hosting bar ready for cocktails. Make sure you have plenty of ice for
    cocktails, clean glasses that are appropriate for whatever drinks you are serving. If
    serving white wine, sparkling wine or having mixers for a cocktail, make sure they are
    refrigerated three hours before guests arrive.
  3. Don’t make too many appetizers! The dinner is the big event. You don’t want your
    guests full before Thanksgiving dinner. Two to three small appetizers are enough.
  4. When your guests ask if they can bring something, say YES! Make a list of what
    your guests are bringing so you don’t have duplicates.
  5. Enjoy yourself!
    Tips courtesy of Leslie Dabney, The Vineyard Mom @thevineyardmomliving on Instagram.