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When only two are at home for Thanksgiving dinner

By Beatrice H. ComasSpecial to The Christian Science Monitor / November 19, 1981



It is a fallacy to suppose that a festive and traditional Thanksgiving dinner requires a group of 6 to 12 or more. Even people with families cannot always be together on holidays, because of distance or other circumstances.

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There are also times when couples, both young and old, prefer to dine together. Other single folk enjoy sharing a meal with a relative, friend, or neighbor who may also be alone on that day.

If this Thanksgiving finds you puzzled about preparing a traditional meal in small quantities, be assured that you can cook for two, even in a small quarters , without sacrificing those dishes that are memorable favorites.

Your meal need not be limited in variety, and the following recipes have been selected so that you will not be left with many edible ''odds and ends.''

Cranberry Ice is a refreshing opener and will whet your holiday appetite. Cranberry Ice 1 8-ounce can jellied cranberry sauce 1 or 2 drops pure red food coloring 1/2 cup lemon-lime carbonated beverage

Turn cranberry sauce and food coloring into mixer bowl. Beat until smooth. Slowly pour in lemon-lime beverage. Mix gently. Pour into small refrigerator tray. Cover. Freeze until firm.

Remove from freezer and break mixture into chunks. Turn into chilled mixer bowl. Beat until fluffy. Return to tray. Cover. Freeze. Spoon into sherbet glasses. Serves 2.

Golden brown Rock Cornish Game Hens look attractive, and the mincemeat stuffing makes them especially appropriate for the season. Rock Cornish Hens With Mincemeat Stuffing 2 11/2-pound Rock Cornish Hens 1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted 4 slices whole-wheat bread, cubed 3/4 cup orange juice 1/2 cup prepared mincemeat, drained 1/4 cup diced celery 1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove giblets and necks from hens. Rinse and drain hens. (Use giblets and necks for broth if you like.) Tuck neck skin under wings to secure it. Place hens, breast side up, on rack in open roasting pan. Roast hens, brushing occasionally with melted butter or margarine, about 1 to 11 /2 hours, or until a leg can be moved easily up and down.

To make stuffing, combine in a 1-quart casserole the bread cubes, orange juice, mincemeat, celery, and salt. Toss lightly. Bake mixture along with the hens for the last 30 minutes of roasting time. Sweet potatoes are plentiful in November, and this casserole eliminates the need of cooking white potatoes and squash. Sweet Potato Puff 2 cups mashed sweet potatoes 2 tablespoons butter or margarine Salt and pepper to taste 1/4 cup milk or cream 1 egg, separated

Combine mashed potatoes, melted butter or margarine, seasonings, and milk. Add beaten egg yolk and beat until light and fluffy. Fold in stiffly beaten egg white.

Place in greased casserole and bake in a 350-degree F. oven 30 minutes or until puffy and browned. If desired, 1/4 cup walnuts may be added. Serves 2 to 4 . Green Beans and Celery is a light vegetable combination to colorfully complement the Cornish hens and the sweet potato casserole. Green Beans and Celery 1/2 pound green beans 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced Salt and pepper 2 tablespoons butter or margarine Parsley for garnish

Cut beans in 1-inch pieces. In saucepan over medium heat, in 1 inch of boiling water, heat beans, celery, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to boiling. Cover and cook 10 minutes or until tender-crisp. Drain. Stir in butter or margarine and salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serves 2. Pumpkin-Pecan Sundaes 1/3 cup sugar 2 teaspoons cornstarch 1 teaspoon finely chopped candied ginger or 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon salt Dash nutmeg 1 cup canned pumpkin 2/3 cup milk 1 teaspoon vanilla Butter pecan or vanilla ice cream 1/2 cup pecan halves Whipped cream or whipped topping

In medium saucepan combine sugar, cornstarch, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Stir in pumpkin, milk, and vanilla. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Scoop ice cream into two sundae or dessert dishes. Pour some hot pumpkin sauce on top. Sprinkle pecan halves over each serving. Top with dollop of whipped cream. Serves 6.