I love to cook Thanksgiving dinner, and I'm pretty good at it, if I say so myself. I roast a mean turkey, and all the trimmings are made from scratch (except the pumpkin pie, which everyone knows is better if you just make it from the can). So, this has always been my holiday, from the time I graduated from college and had a place with a kitchen. We either have my family or my husband's family in town for the big feast. But not this year. The husband is expecting to defend the PhD thesis next week, so the week of Thanksgiving, we were expecting him to be a basket case (turned out to be true), and we don't want to be entertaining out-of-town guests. So, what does a cranberry-loving freak like me do on the biggest cooking holiday of the year? Was I really supposed to get turkey breast lunchmeat and make a single serving of mashed potatoes? I refused to stoop to that level. I had to cook this meal -- and nothing smaller than a 25-pound turkey was available at the grocery store when I went.
My solution? I cooked everything I would normally have cooked -- turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, peas, cranberry relish, and dressing. For dessert there was apple pie, pumpkin pie, and homemade vanilla ice cream. Mmmmmm.
We had 6 for dinner -- all local folks who weren't going to visit family for the holiday. It was wonderful, I sent home tons of leftovers with people, and I now have 5 cute little pounds of turkey meat in the freezer for future cooking endeavors. I think it worked out fine. Maybe the relatives won't be invited in the future, and we'll just keep doing it this way.
The Monk of Mokha by Dave Eggers
3 months ago