(My Leaf Chronicle article for Nov 20th)
Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. One thing I’ve noticed as I get older, a survey of my peers results in the same opinion. Most of us prefer Thanksgiving over Christmas. Further, most of site the same or similar reasons—less hubbub! Not so much to do to prepare for it—just fix some dinner and invite the family and friends over. It’s almost like any other Sunday for many of us—just more food.
Some of us travel. Well, that’s an understatement, being that it’s the most traveled holiday, but as I am retailer, I gave up even the thought of traveling on Thanksgiving! I don’t have those crazy 3 A.M. sales at Hodgepodge, but it’s a busy weekend anyway, so I can’t imagine being away.
So, for the past nine years, Thanksgiving has been at the King Kompound and that makes me VERY happy. My sister, Kendall, and her family are always part of the day and for that I am grateful. Between the two of us, we whip-up some rather tasty dishes that generally leave us quite satisfied.
Every year we try to think of some new dishes to prepare, but we’re hesitant to give up the tried and true recipes that we all enjoy. So, we usually make them all! This has really become a problem, because we just keep adding to an already large menu. Desserts alone are numbering close to the double digits!
One year I ventured on the wild side and made a dish using baby Brussels sprouts. They were amazing—even my youngest went back for seconds. The problem is I have less-than-no idea where that recipe went. I have tried replicating it—with acclaims and adoration pouring forth from Kendall who happily attests, to those being subjected to my experiments, that the original recipe was truly delicious. It’s very frustrating.
Tonight I will sit down with my cookbooks. I’m going to find a new vegetable recipe—one that doesn’t involve Brussels sprouts, but I do want it to be unusual. I’d also like a different green salad recipe. I’m looking forward to perusing my extensive cookbook collection for something mouthwatering.
I also need to do a little preparation for our table setting. I think I’ve written about the fact that I use a painter’s drop cloth canvas for our tablecloth before, but this year I want to make it fitted. I hope to find the time to cut it apart and create the tablecloth I’ve always intended it to be. If it doesn’t get done for Thanksgiving—it will get done for Christmas—even if I have to pay someone to do it for me!
As I think about my plans for my table setting this year, I decided to look back at pictures from years past (Yes, I take pictures of my table settings—when I remember—they come in handy for blogs and newspaper articles.). I really did like the table last year. I used a primitive three-tiered display, loaded down with gourds, pumpkins and Indian corn, as my centerpiece. As mentioned last week, a length of burlap served as the topper on my drop cloth.
I have to say—this was one of my favorite settings. And, true to the nonsense I spew at luncheons and other meetings I’m asked to attend as the speaker, I used the same basic setting for Christmas. I only changed the centerpiece.
(Of course, true to my form of these past few months, I failed to take any pictures of this year’s table. The place settings were almost identical, but my centerpiece was simple. I just used my twelve hole sugar mold with my artichoke votives.)
I’d love to hear about some of you Thanksgiving traditions, trials and tribulations.
Thanks for your indulgence,