Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving eve........

'Tis the eve of Thanksgiving and I have not prepared one pie, chopped a single onion, unwrapped one stick of butter. My turkey is still partially frozen. I know all you Martha Stewart wannabes have already made your pies in advance, made your own bread for stuffing last week, starched your table linens, and painstakingly prepared adorable centerpieces for the table out of fall leaves and pine cones. Well, la-di-dah for you.

I'm tired and I have a new job and I've been doing a lot of Christmas shopping these past few days. I bought all my Thanksgiving dinner supplies last Sunday so everything is here in the house. I'm sure I'll have some semblance of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, green beans and homemade rolls put together by tomorrow around dinner time. I might make a dessert if I have time, but if not, I was proactive and bought two pies. They're in the freezer.

I never understood why my mother got up before dawn on Thanksgiving day to put the turkey in. A turkey does not take all day to cook. But we always ate really early on Thanksgiving day. Why? Why, if it's called "Thanksgiving dinner" did we eat at 2 in the afternoon? And who decided we had to have all those traditional foods anyway? I love me some mashed 'tatoes and gravy, and sweet potatoes are delish, but honestly, the turkey is just "eh" and stuffing is gross.

I think all festive holiday meals should include "feast", my favorite dinner of all time. Feast is when you have a bunch of different foods. Ideally it would include several different appetizers, dips and fancy cheeses and crackers. Then, there would be all manner of fruits and veggies arranged in colorful displays on platters. There might be chocolate to dip the fruit in, and some savory dips for the veggies. In short, there would be many choices, some sweet, some savory, all delicious. Who wants to cook and clean all day for one heavy, fatty, greasy meal that leaves you bloated and tired?

I guess I'd feel differently if we were having company. Then, I'd feel obligated to clean, and set the table all fancy and serve up a feast. But it's "just us" and I'd rather just enjoy time with my family than cook. I don't like to cook anyway. I love preparing appetizers and desserts, but preparing an entire meal feels like drudgery to me. Especially one that involves a twenty pound turkey. I say the new Thanksgiving dinner is this: shrimp platter with cocktail sauce, Little Smokies in barbeque sauce, sausage balls, something made with Pillsbury crescent rolls, Beecher's Flagship cheese and fancy crackers, fruits (perhaps something fancy - figs?), veggies and dips, bruschetta, parmesan crisps. Dessert would be chocolate fondue with fruits and cake to dip, homemade chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter balls, and mini pumpkin pies. Everything would be served on super cute paper plates with matching napkins and cups. We'd sit around and watch old family videos, look through photo albums, play some games, maybe watch a movie. We'd take lots of pictures, and get in our jammies early and watch TV. That would be a day I look forward to. Not one that involves taking a gizzard out of a turkey. Maybe it's time for a new tradition..........

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