Friday Five: Thanksgiving

Here’s the prompt from over at Revgals for the Friday Five:

“This week’s Friday Five is because of my preparations for our Thanksgiving dinner celebration, which here in the US will be next Thursday, November 28th. I hope our RevGals and Pals who are not in the US will play along, particularly as it relates to menus and food!”

I remember spending a Thanksgiving in South Africa, where it was just another Thursday in late spring. That was a little dislocating, but a good memory.

And one year, when Justin was on call until Thursday morning, we drove up to Sun Valley in time for dinner at Sun Valley lodge. Upside–no Thanksgiving meal prep stress. Downside–no leftovers.

I love Thanksgiving as a day when we add the leaves to the table and invite as many people as the house will hold.

Here are the prompts:

1. Turkey: love it? hate it? self-basted? fry it or roast it? Tofu-turkey? Tell me more. (I’ve only had one roasted turkey come out totally delish so I’m fishing for your tips!)

I’ve spent many Thanksgivings as a vegetarian, and always found plenty of food to eat without turkey. But I love turkey as long as someone else knows how to cook it. Too many years as a vegetarian makes me a bad meat chef. And I love turkey sandwiches the next day.

grandpa teaching grandson to carve the bird

grandpa teaching grandson to carve the bird

2. Stuffing: bagged? homemade? sage? sausage? cornbread? oysters? nuts? Got any inspiration for me?

My mom and mother in law both make really great stuffing, so if either of them are around, I tend to defer to their prowess. But the recipe on the stauffers box has worked well for me too.

One year, my friend Julie was joining us for Thanksgiving and she brought the bread for the stuffing. We had such an abundance of bread we could have made stuffing for 100! That was a fun Thanksgiving!

3. Cranberries: When we celebrated Thanksgiving in Europe one year, our French friends thought we were nuts to choose a very sour berry and then load it with sugar. (Let alone the stuff that comes out of a can in a blob of gelatinous ooze!) What do you do with cranberries?

One day I’m going to make Mama Stamberg’s Cranberry Relish that I hear about each year on NPR. I tend to use frozen whole cranberries and combine them with some amount of orange juice, orange zest, and sugar.

4. Potatoes: (Boil ‘em, mash ‘em, stick ‘em in a stew…) What’s your pleasure?

Yes. Potatoes are my pleasure. I mash them, and add sour cream, milk, and butter.

I am also a fan of “funeral potatoes”, so named for the LDS tradition of serving them at funeral receptions. (I do live in Mormon country). Basically, a bag of frozen hashbrowns, a can of cream of mushroom soup, a little sour cream and milk, and grated cheddar cheese.

It’s possible my kids might have had them for dinner last night.

The one thing I will never eat is sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows, which is an abomination unto the Lord.

5. Pie: I’m married to the Pie Man. Anything but coconut pie floats his boat. What do you make? (or buy?) Pumpkin? Pecan? Apple?

Pie. Yes.

Homemade pumpkin pie for sure.

And I knew my inlaws were great people for sure when I tried some god awful tofu pumpkin pie recipe the first year I was married, and they still loved me and let me come back to Thanksgiving the next year and bring food.

I’ll eat other pies at Thanksgiving, after I’ve had the pumpkin pie with cool whip. I will never eat any kind of a banana pie, however. (see above: abomination unto the Lord)

Last year, my nieces went to a cooking class at my friend Titi’s house (Fuel for the Soul is the name of her company. Boise folks should check out their cooking class schedule)  and came home with some really spectacular pies. Best plan ever. Nieces baked the delicious pies in someone else’s home. Win. Win.

Maya, Sophia, and the awesome pies

Maya, Sophia, and the awesome pies

BONUS: A recipe that you’ve tried out and will make it to your table this year.

I’ve made this Beet Salad recipe in the past and may do it again. I love beets.

And the New York Times Food Section this past week had a full section on Thanksgiving recipes.

And these are always good too. Buttermilk Chive Biscuits

I love Kale. So this recipe might make it to the table too, but I’ve not tried it before. Kale Salad with Lentils and Butternut Squash


So, what are your plans for Thanksgiving?

10 thoughts on “Friday Five: Thanksgiving

  1. Well that’s fun. I will try just about anything but the kale — it is not a food that sits well with me. I do not like my sweet potatoes cursed by marshmallows either. And banana pie? Yeah. No.

    I’m doing the bird again this year… we shall see how it comes out. 🙂

    Thanks for playing and for all the links!! 🙂


  2. Marci, Turkeys are the easiest thing in the world to roast save chickens. I am not a sweet potato person unless they are roasted like squash with Brussel sprouts and onion. Have a wonderful holiday.


  3. Pingback: Thanksgiving 2013, scattered thoughts | Me + Richard Armitage

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