Share the Tucker family traditions with these recipes


Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

The Tucker family enjoys three food traditions at every Thanksgiving.

Taylor Tucker, Staff writer

Families serve traditional food every Thanksgiving. In my family, there are three dishes found every year on the table: candied yams, homemade stuffing, and sugar cookies.


Candied yams (from my mother)

4 large sweet potatoes

1 stick unsalted butter

2 cups white sugar

¼ cup heavy whipping cream

3 teaspoons cinnamon

½ teaspoon nutmeg

A couple of dashes ground clove

1 tablespoon real maple extract

½ tablespoon real vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350º. Wash and dry yams and cut off the ends. Peel the yams and cut them into thick slices. Place them in a casserole dish and set them aside.

In a medium pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add sugar and stir until well blended. Add whipping cream and stir. Stir in cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, maple extract and vanilla extract.

Pour mixture over the yams. Cover with foil and put into oven for 40 minutes.

Remove foil and back for an additional 20-25 minutes.


Homemade stuffing (from my grandma)

She just started making it from scratch a couple of years ago, but we’ve made it a tradition.

2 baguettes, country, or sourdough bread (1 lb.)

8 tablespoons butter

1 large onion, diced

4 stalks celery, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup freshly chopped parsley

1 tablespoon freshly chopped sage, minced

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, minced

½ tablespoon freshly chopped rosemary


Ground black pepper

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

2 large eggs, beaten

Slice bread into cubes and leave out overnight to dry out, or place on baking sheets and bake at 200 º for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350º and butter a large baking dish.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add onion and celery and cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Stir in garlic, parsley, sage, thyme, and rosemary, and cook for 1 minute more. Season with salt and pepper.

Place bread in a large bowl and add skillet mixture. Mix.

In a medium bowl, whisk together chicken broth and beaten eggs and pour over bread mixture. Season with salt and pepper until completely coated.

Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish and cover with foil. Bake until cooked through, about 45 minutes. Then remove foil and cook until bread is golden, about 15 to 20 minutes more.


Sugar cookies (from my aunt)

We make these cookies not only on Thanksgiving, but on Christmas, too.

2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

1 cup butter, softened

1 ½ cups white sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 375º. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda and baking powder. Set aside.

In a large bowl, stir together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla.

Gradually blend in the dry ingredients. Roll into balls and place onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 8 – 10 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven and let stand two minutes before removing.

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