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Thanksgiving is almost here, so it’s time to start thinking about what to make for the big day! To get some inspiration, we asked Inkers to share their favorite Thanksgiving recipes.

Jennifer J., one of our team environment coordinators, shared her Mom’s stuffing recipe. She takes classic stuffing and makes it her own with the addition of apples and almonds!

Mom’s Stuffing

2 Bags Pepperidge Farms Stuffing mix the crumbly kind – not the cubes
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
2 cups medium-diced yellow onion (2 large)
2 cups medium-diced celery (3 large stalks)
2 Granny Smith apples, unpeeled, cored and large diced
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup sliced blanched almonds, toasted

In a large saute pan, melt the butter and add the onion, celery, apples, parsley, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Saute for 10 minutes, until the mixture is soft.

Combine the stuffing mix and cooked vegetables in a large bowl and add the chicken stock, and almonds.

Stuff in the bird (my choice) or cook in a buttered casserole dish. Serves 10 – 12 stuffing lovers.

We have a really fun Thanksgiving tradition. The Friday after Thanksgiving we all grab our snowshoes and head up to the Campground about 20 minutes from our house. We have sleds full of hot Cocoa, coffee, pastries, and turkey sandwiches. We hike it all up to the top where the camp sites are- dig out a fire ring and picnic table. We usually spend more then half the day, eating, laughing, sledding, and skiing. From there usually a lot of the family has to head home, but with some really good memories!
-Jennifer J.

Check out some more recipes!

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Thanksgiving is almost here, so it’s time to start thinking about what to make for the big day! To get some inspiration, we asked Inkers to share their favorite Thanksgiving recipes.

Chase D.’s, sweet potato goodness will make sweet potato haters do a double take! Outside of his job as a production artist at CustomInk, Chase is a chef who hosts pop-ups, makes guest appearances at some of Reno’s finest restaurants, and is in the process of opening up one of his own. Needless to say, he has a few rad recipes!

Sweet Potato Goodness

Yields 12 Servings so bump it up or down proportionally as you like

4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut in 1-inch chunks
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
5 slices Guanciale or Pancetta (if you don’t have either, smoked thick cut bacon is a decent substitute, but shoot for the other two as they have nice, creamy fat that renders down perfectly for the rest of the dish)
1 pound Spanish onions, thinly sliced not diced
1 cup pure maple syrup (this is where you can’t skimp. Buy the grade A stuff. It’s got way more body than you’d think and offers more depth than the ‘maple syrup’ that you get for pancakes which is pretty much watery corn syrup)
2 tbsp fresh thyme flowers (just pinch the top of the stalk and run your fingers down to the base to easily remove the thyme flowers)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Toss the sweet potato chunks, olive oil, salt, and black pepper in a large bowl, and spread the sweet potatoes out onto a large rimmed baking sheet.

Roast in the preheated oven until browned and tender, about 40 minutes; stir / shake the pan after the first 20 minutes.

Cook the guanciale/pancetta/bacon until crisp and brown in a large skillet over medium heat, about 10 minutes (the lower and slower you cook these products, the more fat that will be rendered resulting in crunchy not chewy fat); transfer guanciale/pancetta/bacon to a bowl, but leave the grease in the skillet. Cook the onions in the grease until browned, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to low, and cook the onions until very soft, brown, and sweet, another 10 to 15 minutes. Stir often. Mix the onions with the guanciale/pancetta/bacon in the bowl, and set aside.

Pour the maple syrup into the hot skillet with the thyme, and bring to a rolling boil. Boil the syrup until reduced by half, 3 to 4 minutes. Place the roasted sweet potatoes and onion-guanciale/pancetta/bacon mixture into the skillet, and stir to coat the vegetables with maple glaze. Transfer to a serving dish.

Feel free to smear on crusty bread, stack some leftover turkey and stuffing on top, and let those stretchy pants do their job.

“This recipe was developed while I was living abroad in Italy. As you know, Italians don’t celebrate Thanksgiving…well not the American holiday. Everyday in Italy is pretty much a feast, but my fellow American friends and I still wanted to explore our country’s tradition halfway across the world and share it with some of our new foreign friends.

I lived in front of an open air market that would start bustling every single morning at about 5 A.M. and they always had the best of the best. Local everything…all the time….always. After having to gather ingredients often for the restaurant I worked at, Tre Re, I was often tasked with coming up with a special for the day. When November came, it gave me an excuse to test out some new ideas to share with guests of the restaurant and my friends. After a few trial runs and a few cases of wine, Sweet Potato Crack was born. It was the perfect dish to show Italians what Thanksgiving in America was like. It’s hearty, warm, inviting, nostalgic, and gives the taste buds all the sweet, salty, and savory notes it could want.

To me this is the perfect dish that can be paired up or down so easily. It’s rustic, yet a little refined, and I hope you all give it a try this holiday season as I promise it won’t disappoint.”
– Chase D.

Check out some more recipes!

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In October 2015, CustomInk and Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic granted the wish of an Arizona teen, whose wish was to design t-shirts with us! Eric Hans, who has autism and a form of Muscular Dystrophy, made the trip to the east coast to be an honorary ‘Inker’ for two days and bring his wish to life.

First, Eric visited CustomInk’s headquarters in Fairfax, where he had orientation (including having his headshot taken, receiving the grand tour and meeting CustomInk CEO Marc Katz) before sitting down at his desk with the art team and getting to work designing t-shirts.

Eric then headed to CustomInk’s In-house Production Facility in Charlottesville for a continued tour, and to personally print the t-shirts he designed!

Watch this video to learn more about Eric and his special visit with CustomInk:

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Halloween

Halloween is right around the corner, so it’s time to plan the perfect party! We’ve rounded up a few of our favorite – and easy – Halloween party ideas sure to please the littlest monster to the biggest ghoul.

Monster-Doors-split-pic1. Monster Doors

Start prepping for your party by decorating outside. Guests will know they’re in the right place when they see these monster doors! All you need is some colored paper, paper plates, and tape to create the eyes and mouth. Add on streamers for hair or some spooky cobwebs for an extra touch.

magic potion2. “Magic Potion” Drinks

Instead of serving the typical party punch, try “magic potion” drinks. Just make and freeze various flavors of Kool Aid then add a cube of each color to a glass of clear soda when the party starts. The magic happens as the ice melts and the drink changes colors and flavors!

veggies3. Jack-O-Lantern Veggie Tray

Take your veggie tray up a notch! With some simple rearranging ordinary veggies are transformed into a jack-o-lantern. Use carrots to make the body, broccoli for the stem, and olives for the eyes and mouth. Fill in the background with cauliflower or another veggie of your choosing.

hand4. Popcorn Hands

Ran out of time to make party favors? Have your guests make their own. All you need is popcorn (popped), candy corn, plastic spider rings (optional), and disposable gloves for your guests to make their own popcorn hand. Guests fill the glove with popcorn and use the candy corn to make the fingernails.

HalloweenKeepCalmPartyOn_5. Custom Halloween T-shirts

Last but not least, it’s not too late to unite your guests in custom t-shirts! Order by 2 pm Tuesday, October 27th, to get your shirts in time for the holiday weekend. Get started by checking out our artist-designed Halloween templates!

Still looking for inspiration? Go to our Pinterest page for more info on these ideas and more. You can also read customer Halloween stories.

Follow CustomInk’s board Halloween Party Ideas on Pinterest.

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For a great Halloween costume, all you need is a t-shirt and a little imagination! Check out these Ink of the Week entries from Halloweens past for some inspiration:

 

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