• Mary Ann

Artists Share Their Thanksgiving Traditions



Ashlyn Grayce

ASHLYN GRAYCE

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? I do Thanksgiving in my hometown, Nashville, with my mom’s side of the family and then my dad’s side of the family either comes to Nashville or I travel to Rome, GA to celebrate with them! So just getting together with my entire family and seeing my grandparents, Aunt, cousins, babies, friends and extended family which is so much fun to all be together!

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Macaroni and cheese!

What is your favorite dish to cook? The past couple years I’ve made honey garlic roasted carrots for part of dinner and then pumpkin pie truffles for dessert!

Honey Garlic Roasted Carrots:

2 pounds thin/baby carrots peeled, tops chopped off or to 2 inches

1/4 cup apricot preserves

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon butter, melted

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1/4 teaspoon Ground Mustard

1/4 teaspoon Thyme Leaves

1/8 teaspoon Ground Cumin

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Either line a baking sheet with foil and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray OR spray your baking sheet with cooking spray. See Note**. Add carrots to the center.. Set aside.


In a medium bowl, whisk together all remaining ingredients and pour over carrots. Toss until evenly coated. Line carrots in a single layer. Bake for 30-45 minutes depending on carrot thickness, until fork tender, stirring after 20 minutes.*** Roast longer for more caramelization. Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.

Pumpkin Pie Truffles:

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup powdered sugar

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1 and 3/4 cup finely crushed graham cracker crumbs

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

4 ounces white chocolate, melted

8 ounces white chocolate, for dipping


Beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Add the pumpkin and beat until smooth. Stir in the finely crushed graham cracker crumbs and pumpkin pie spice. The finer the graham crackers are crushed the smoother the truffles will be. I like to pulse mine in the blender until very fine.


Add the 4 ounces of melted white chocolate and stir until smooth. The mixture will be thick, but still soft. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours until cold and firm. The graham crackers will absorb the moisture, thickening the mixture so it can be rolled into balls.


After the dough is chilled, roll the truffle mixture into 1 inch balls. The mixture will still be soft, but workable. Chill the truffle balls in again until firm, at least 30 minutes.

In a deep container suitable for dipping, melt the 8 ounces of white chocolate in the microwave in 10 second intervals until melted and smooth.

Dip the chilled balls into the white chocolate and place on parchment paper to harden. You may sprinkle with additional graham cracker crumbs for garnish. Store in the refrigerator.


Are you a turkey or ham eater? Honestly, neither...Can I say macaroni and cheese? Ha! If I had to pick though, I’d say turkey!

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? My dad's homemade sweet potato pie! Refer to last year's holiday round up :-)

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? Most likely in Tennessee and/or Georgia! Depends who is going to do the traveling this year!

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? I think anytime before Thanksgiving is too soon, but the day after Thanksgiving, bring on all the Christmas decor!!

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My family, my friends and the gift of music!


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Ashlyn Grayce and her Dad

Paige King Johnson

PAIGE KING JOHNSON

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? My family has celebrated Thanksgiving at my grandparents house my entire life.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? That's a hard one! Probably my mom's sweet potato casserole.

What is your favorite dish to cook? Each year, my family asks me to make the Apple Dapple Cake recipe from our church's cookbook. (recipe attached)

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Both!

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? My Apple Dapple Cake

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? With my family at my grandparents.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Anytime before Thanksgiving is too early! I'm such a stickler about giving each holiday it's own time.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. Good health. Time with family. Creativity in uncertain times.


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Paige King Johnson Apple Dapple Cake



Sarah Harralson

SARAH HARRALSON

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? I always spend Thanksgiving with my family and we will watch the Thanksgiving parade, then the dog show, and then cook a nice meal before the football games begin.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? My mom's Au Gratin potatoes are hard to beat, so I always look forward to that the most.

What is your favorite dish to cook? I am usually the one to bake a dessert during Thanksgiving, because I love to bake. As far as cooking, I usually like to make sweet potato casserole during Thanksgiving.

Are you a turkey or ham eater? I like both, but I really love a good honey ham. We always have both turkey and ham at Thanksgiving.

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Cherry Pie!

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? At my mom's house in Knoxville

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? I always start decorating for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My mom's health, my own well-being during these times, and being able to share more music with everyone this year


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Sarah Harralson -The Pumpkin Roll I made last Thanksgiving.


Christopher Griffiths

CHRISTOPHER GRIFFITHS

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? I’m from Michigan so it has to be Lions football on Thanksgiving.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Cranberry sauce homemade. This year I’m writing a recipe for sweet potato curry.

What is your favorite dish to cook? I make a pretty amazing Turkey. No recipe though, I do it all by feel. Thaw the turkey for three days, dry it, set out your spices, rub it more then you think you need, then inject it if you’re into that. I probably inject every other turkey. Then start it low and slow and as it gets closer to its internal Temperature (use a digital thermometer not the dumb one that came with it) turn up the heat super high to crisp the skin. Pull out when fully cooked and let sit covered until ready to serve. Don’t try to serve it right away you'll burn yourself trying to cut it up.

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin Pie with wayyyy too much whip cream.

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? Probably a quiet one with just my lovely wife at the house and my five animals.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? I think you decorate the day after thanksgiving. My wife prefers July 3rd.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My family, my friends, Jason Isbell.


Website: https://www.christophergriffithsmusic.com/

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https://www.youtube.com/user/Cgriffbass/videos


Bailey James

BAILEY JAMES

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Me and my family just make it a point to have Thanksgiving dinner. That’s our tradition.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? I love mashed potatoes!

What is your favorite dish to cook? I don’t cook at Thanksgiving, but I love the mac n’ cheese my mom makes.

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey over ham!

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin pie is my favorite Thanksgiving dessert.

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? With my family in Pennsylvania.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Never too early. I was listening to Christmas music in early October. Haha! 

Name three things you are thankful for this year. I’m thankful for my family, my doggy Tater, and my music.


Website: www.BaileyJamesGang.com

FB: @BaileyJamesGang 

Instagram: @BaileyJamesGang

Twitter: @BaileyJamesGang


LLOYD CARTER

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays because I do love getting together with the family over a fantastic meal. Once Thanksgiving lunch is over though the wife and I load up the boys and head down to Destin. I am an absolute Gulf Coast junkie and there’s nothing prettier than that emerald coast line in the fall and winter. 

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Well being from the south we call it turkey and dressing, other parts of the country may call it stuffing. I’ve tried stuffing and I like it but growing up in the south there’s something about that southern dressing with some giblet gravy. 

What is your favorite dish to cook? My family loves when I do smoked Mac and Cheese here’s one of my favorites from CountrySmoker.com


INGREDIENTS

4 BACON STRIPS, DICED

1/2 STICK BUTTER, MELTED

2, BEATEN EGGS

½ CUP GRATED PARMESAN CHEESE

TO TASTE SALT AND PEPPER

3 CUPS SHREDDED SHARP CHEDDAR CHEESE, DIVIDED

1 CUP SMOKED GOUDA CHEESE

2 TO 2 1/2 CUPS UNCOOKED MACARONI NOODLES

MILK

COOKING INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat your Smoker to 350°F.

Cook the macaroni per box instructions and drain.

Add the milk, eggs, melted butter, 2 cups of the shredded cheddar, smoked Gouda and grated parmesan cheese and mix in a cast iron skillet with the drained macaroni. Top with remaining shredded cheddar, bacon bits, and parmesan cheese. Add desired amount of salt and pepper.

Cook on the grill at 350°F for 30 minutes.

Increase temp up to 425°F and cook for another 15 minutes to form a golden crust.

Remove from the grill, serve and enjoy!

SPECIAL TOOLS

Cast Iron Skillet


Are you a turkey or ham eater? I love both, I will normally smoke 2 hams and 2 turkey breasts. One each for my tribe at home and one for my mom and sister. 

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Normally I have to circle back around to dessert later in the afternoon as I’m normally too full after my second helping of that Thanksgiving day feast. Look for me about 3:30pm wanting a nice chilled piece of pecan pie. 

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? The night before and Thanksgiving day we are at home and with our family. Black Friday you can find me sitting in the sand at Miramar Beach or floating in the Gulf of Mexico. 

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? If it were up to my wife Katie as soon as we’re done with Halloween she would love to start putting the tree up. Honestly I don’t mind it, actually I get a little bummed out after New Year’s Day when we take it all down.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My Family, our health, and the wonderful people who have taken time out of their lives to listen to our music. 

Website: https://www.lloydcartermusic.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lloydcartermusic/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lloydcartermusic/

YouTube:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-1a2n7v2ZcKP4CG6UbH_CA/featured

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2qzSxykyikekzlhqNutpIw?si=z87XtkOaROWnsN14dmBOwQ

Apple Music: https://music.apple.com/us/artist/lloyd-carter/1481621797


Karen McCormick

KAREN MCORMICK

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? I talk everyone into watching the parade while my Dad cooks the main dishes, and then we all have the desserts during the football game. What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? It's a tie between the stuffing and the pies! What is your favorite dish to cook? I like helping with the desserts--the pumpkin pie is my personal favorite. Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey all the way! What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin pie. Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? In Tennessee, with my family. (this is my first!) How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Too soon for me is skipping Thanksgiving. As soon as the buzzer goes off in the final quarter of the Thanksgiving football game, it's go time. Name three things you are thankful for this year. My family, my health and the ability to continue to create and connect with listeners. 


Website: http://karenmccormickmusic.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karenmccormickmusic

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/karenlmccormick/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/karenlmccormick


Matt Koerner

MATT KOERNER

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? My aunt burns the yams 🤣🤣🤣

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Mashed potatoes!!!

What is your favorite dish to cook? My mother’s green beans. But I’d have to get the recipe from her. Not sure she’ll give it up.

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey for sure

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin piiiiiieeeeeee. With a healthy serving of whipped cream.

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? Home in California with the fam

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Halloween

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My family, my health, my family's health. BONUS: the unbelievable support an army of people have shown me this year in my music career. You know who you are!


http://www.mattkoernermusic.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MattKoernerMusic/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mattkoernermusic/

YouTube:https://t.e2ma.net/click/f9p4jo/jwe68qb/jc3n38c


Tera Lynne Fister

TERA LYNNE FISTER

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? A Thanskgiving tradition we have is my Grandma Shriley’s house! And my dad is always the one who carves the turkey. No one else!  As we all have gotten older my Aunt Cherie has taken over hosting, but it still feels the same! 

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? My favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table is the green bean casserole. And the mashed potatoes

What is your favorite dish to cook? My favorite thing to cook would be the green bean casserole!

Are you a turkey or ham eater? I like both ham and turkey! There's not a lot of food I don’t like. 

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? My favorite Thanksgiving dessert is the Pumpkin Pie. But I prefer it cold not warm! With lots of whip cream!

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? We are actually doing Thanksgiving this year at our house in Nashville. My brother recently moved his family to Chattanooga and my sister lives about four hours away in Arkansas. Dad is in St. Louis so Nashville is a really great middle area for everyone! I will miss my extended family terribly though. We will probably FaceTime.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!! Although I usually wait until its actually December to start decorating! Lol

Name three things you are thankful for this year. 1. My health 2. My blooming career 3. Those who support myself and my music in any fashion. From those writing the songs with me to those creating the magic in the studio and to the fans listening and sharing with the world. My PR team is pretty dang amazing as well! 


RECEIPE for Green Bean Casserole 

1 can cream of mushroom soup

3/4 cup whole milk

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

4 cups of cooked green beans (2 cans)

1 1/3 cups crispy Fried Onions, Original divided


First, preheat your oven to 350°F.

Mix the cream of mushroom soup, milk, and pepper in a 1 1/2-quart baking dish. Stir in beans and 2/3 cup Crispy Fried Onions. 

Bake 30 minutes or until hot. Stir.

Top with remaining 2/3 cup crispy onions. Bake for an additional 5 minutes until onions are golden brown.

DOUBLE-UP: To feed a larger crowd, you can double the recipe and prepare in a 13×9-inch baking dish.

Use a whole 6-ounce container of crispy fried Onions, reserving 1 1/3 cup for the topping. Increase your cook time to 40 minutes or until heated through.


Website: www.IAmFister.com

FB: @IAmFister

Instagram: @IAmFister

Twitter: @IAmFister


Alayna- Cory Lowry Photography

ALAYNA

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Making sweet potato casserole

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Sweet potato casserole

What is your favorite dish to cook? This is the BEST and easiest recipe for Sweet Potato Casserole, RECIPE

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin pie!

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? Not sure yet…

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Thanksgiving or before!

Name three things you are thankful for this year. Health, friends, and family.


https://www.alaynasmusic.com/

https://www.facebook.com/alaynasmusic

https://twitter.com/alayna924

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Molly Lovette

MOLLY LOVETTE

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Doing a photoshoot with my sister and cousin every year.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Green bean casserole

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Chocolate chip cookies

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? Usually at my aunt and uncle’s house, but I’m not sure if our whole family will get together this year with COVID - we will definitely group face time though if we have to be apart.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Before Halloween…November 1st = Merry Christmas!

Name three things you are thankful for this year. Better health for my grandparents after a rough year for them, My move to Nashville, The support of my friends, family, and fans with my new music.


Instagram - @mollylovette

Facebook - @mol.lovette Website - www.MollyLovette.com Twitter - @mollylovette


Becky Buller

BECKY BULLER

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Getting together with friends and family for food and fellowship.

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? The turkey.

What is your favorite dish to cook? Grandma Malloy’s Yeast Rolls

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Definitely turkey!

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Apple pie.

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? In my adopted hometown of Manchester, Tenn., with my husband’s family.

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? We always wait ’til the day after Thanksgiving to decorate for Christmas.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. I’m thankful for my family, that we’ve stayed healthy and for good friends and great music!


Grandma Malloy’s Yeast Rolls - From Becky Buller

1 pkg. yeast

1/4 c. Lukewarm water

1 t. Sugar

4 c. Milk

1/2 c. Shortening

1/3 c. Sugar

1 1/2 t. Salt

2 egg yolks, beaten

Flour


Dissolve yeast in warm water and sugar. Scald the milk. Add shortening, sugar and salt. Let cool to lukewarm. Add egg yolks and yeast mixture. Sift in flour, 1 cup at a time until dough is soft and light. When dough no longer sticks to sides of bowl it has been beaten enough. Dust board lightly with flour and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Grease bowl and top of dough, let rise until about double in size. Knead. Let rise again. Form into buns or rolls. Put in greased pans. Let rise. Bake at 400 degrees about 20 to 30 minutes until brown.


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Cody Clayton Eagle

CODY CLAYTON EAGLE

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Hunting with my dad and brother

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Grandmas homemade strawberry jam

What is your favorite dish to cook? I’m not much of a cook. I’m more of a taste tester.

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Turkey

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Apple Pie

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? At Grandmas House

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? Before Thanksgiving

Name three things you are thankful for this year. God, Family, & Friends


Instagram - @codyclaytoneagle

Facebook - @codyclaytoneagle Website - www.codyclaytoneagle.com Twitter - @codyclaytoneagle


Zhaklina

ZHAKLINA

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Snapping the turkey wishbone. The person with the longer side gets to make a wish!

What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Chocolate Pudding Pie!

What is your favorite dish to cook? Mac n’ cheese & green bean casserole 

Are you a turkey or ham eater? Typically turkey but I also eat ham (especially with pineapples !)

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Chocolate Pudding Pie & Pumpkin Pie

Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? With mine and my fiancé’s families in Virginia Beach!

How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? I’m a fan of the lights being left out for a while, but I think the tree shouldn’t go up until after Thanksgiving... and it comes down before February.

Name three things you are thankful for this year. My family, my fiancé (we got engaged this year!), and God


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Charly Reynolds photo credit: Kelsey Ead

CHARLY REYNOLDS

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? Going black Friday shopping starting around 11pm after all the thanksgiving festivities! What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Definitely the green bean casserole! I always get about half the pan on my plate! What is your favorite dish to cook? I really am not the best cook, but I do like to bake! One of my favorite fall treats are salted caramel pretzel cupcakes! Here is the link for the recipe!  http://chocolatewithgrace.com/salted-caramel-pretzel-cupcakes/ Are you a turkey or ham eater? I'm not sure why but I seem to be more of a ham eater on thanksgiving! I think I eat turkey a lot year round so it is nice to switch it up with some ham. What is your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? Pumpkin pie is my favorite of course! Where will you spend your Thanksgiving? I always spend Thanksgiving in Orlando with both my mom and dad's family. I love getting together to see everyone. How soon is too soon to start decorating for Christmas? NEVER TO SOON! I genuinely started listening to Christmas music in October this year as it is my favorite season! And I may have already put out my little pink Christmas tree... Name three things you are thankful for this year. Good health, time to work on my craft, and for extra time during the lockdown that I got to spend with my family down in Florida. It was nice to be home for a while even though it was during a rough time!


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Briana Domenica

BRIANA DOMENICA

What is one Thanksgiving tradition you have? When I was younger we always had a huge Thanksgiving with lots of family and friends gathered around the table. The older I’ve gotten the more that’s changed, but the one constant is spending it with my parents.   What is your favorite dish at the Thanksgiving table? Ummm can I skip right to the desserts? Haha but if I had to choose probably the stuffing or green bean casserole! What is your favorite dish to cook? I don’t really consider myself much of a cook... I’m more of a baker! Banana bread and Maple Fudge are definitely are definitely my favorite things to bake this time of year!  

Banana Bread  Ingredients  2 cups flour 3tsp. baking powder  ½ tsp. salt  ½ tsp. cinnamon 1 egg 1 cup sugar ¼ cup orange juice ¼ cup milk  4 tbsp. butter 1 cup of mashed speckled bananas  Directions  Preheat oven to 350. Cream butter. Add sugar and egg. Beat by hand then add in all other ingredients. Do not over mix. Bake in a greased and slightly floured loaf pan at 350 for 75 minutes. Check wit