I’m thankful for Thanksgiving guests. Their good cheer and lies about the delicious taste of that dead bird were welcome after yet another turkey-cooking catastrophe. This year the meat thermometer said the turkey was done an hour before schedule. When the dial shot above 180 in the turkey thigh, I scrambled to rush the vegetables to ready. Early-party activities abruptly ended; appetizers got skipped. The whims of a corpse in a pan tyrannically dominated our party. And for what? When the designated carver began to carve, that turkey bled all over the cutting board. Had the meat thermometer lied again? Or was the thigh truly over-cooked while the breast remained raw? What a ridiculous thing to cook! Great consultations ensued. Each guest and family member offered an opinion about exactly how under-cooked that breast was. How much salmonella does it take to make one sick? My opinion was that if Ben Franklin had been listened to we would be spared from cooking a turkey on Thanksgiving. Eating our national symbol would be unpatriotic and we’d all be free to give thanks with tofu. Yep, you got it, I got grumpy. But the guests saved the day and lubricated my mood with wine and cheese. So back into the oven went the turkey. For the next 90 minutes the vegetables cooled and re-heated and cooled again as we tested the bird’s readiness. We finally got the whole dead animal carved up and served with congealed vegetables and rock-hard rolls.

The best part of the meal was the pie. We ate pumpkin and mincemeat apple. Today Thanksgiving is thankfully over. Time to shop, bake cookies, and get ready to COOK BEEF! Steers are far easier than flighty turkeys.  Click on “continue reading…” for links to some of the recipes I’ll be enjoying in December. (P.S. Don’t you think that turkey in the picture is blowing me a raspberry?)

Continue reading