Saturday, November 11, 2017

Of Capitulation, Resignation, and Thanksgiving Mules

Well, folks, I tried to reason with him.  In vain I sought dialogue and dreamed of a compromise that might streamline this year's production of Thanksgiving Chez Moi.  I ransacked my trove of cookbooks for simpler recipes, considered paring down the list of side dishes, and reducing quantities.  Then I sat down with my obstinate German husband and proffered my suggestions one by one, summoning forth all of my patience and carefully laying out reasonable arguments in favor of small changes, just this once, just this year...

And he shot down EVERY SINGLE ONE of my ideas.  He will not give up his buttercup squash soup.  He will not agree to a smaller turkey (and he is already scheming to safeguard the leftovers lest his mother-in-law attempts to run off with all the turkey again).  He will not permit Thanksgiving to be hosted at anyone else's home, and he is vehemently opposed to disposable plates in lieu of fine china.  After an exhausting morning of negotiations with my mule of a man, I am now committed to doing everything exactly like we've done it every other year.  

Me and Bernie, Discussing Changes to Our Thanksgiving Menu
Ah, well.  At least there is no stress of the unknown, since we've been making these recipes for nearly 20 years now.  And the one concession I got is that Bernie is going to do the work of prepping the stuffing on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving so that I can concentrate on pumpkin pies that day.  (Now it's in writing, Bernie, and the whole Internet has witnessed it.  No backing out!)  The stuffing is pretty elaborate and takes a couple of hours what with cooking the wild rice, chopping and browning the apples and vegetables, etc. Last year I ran out of time and had to buy pies from Dean & DeLuca on the way home from church on Wednesday night.  They were nowhere near as delicious as my recipe.  The molasses pumpkin pie is MY favorite part of Thanksgiving, and I'd just as soon serve everyone popcorn, jelly beans and toast for dinner as long as we have my pumpkin pies for dessert!

Popcorn, Pretzels, Jelly Beans and Toast
So far today I've reserved my fresh 22-24 pound organic turkey from Whole Foods and placed a Harris Teeter order for all of my non-perishables and wine, and I'll pick up the groceries later this afternoon.  Hopefully Harris Teeter will have that buttercup squash for Bernie's soup and we won't need to waste time enjoy the hunt of visiting every grocery store in Charlotte looking for it this year.  Because squash soup, herb butter, and spiced pecans all need to get made and frozen this weekend.

Ah, my husband is so lucky he's cute!  It will all be fine, though.  It will be even better than fine -- it's going to be great.  My mom is bringing her green bean casserole and an apple pie, because she is NOT fond of my molasses pumpkin pie (more for me!).  My friend Lisa is bringing a yummy apple salad and I think maybe something with sweet potatoes, too.  And, as I said, I've already selected and ordered plenty of wine.  With the year we've been through, we certainly have a lot to be thankful for.  When all is said and done, gathering friends and family together over good food and good wine is EXACTLY what we all need this year for Thanksgiving.

Let the Culinary Games begin!


Diane in TX said...

At least you know all the recipes, the menu, and how long everything takes to prepare, and can start prepping. You are ahead of everyone that I know,having your turkey and wines etc. ordered already. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

would love to see your molasses pumpkin pie recipe and the stuffing recipe - both sound good - maybe I could do a change up this year - we really do very simple - it is just 4 of us most the time and we aren't fancy - no good china for us - just the regular stuff - I would love to do fancy sometimes - but my family is not into it. (even though Bernie is being very stubborn about this I no you are just so glad that he is not in the hospital)

Chris said...

Oh Rebecca, you make me laugh!! This will be our first Thanksgiving without my parents, both of whom died this last year. I'm thankful for my daughter and her family who will be joining us and who have requested my traditional Thanksgiving dinner. No surprises here, either, but lots of good food and love! Happy Thanksgiving and let the culinary games begin, indeed!

QuiltShopGal said...

Your mom's traditional green bean casserole has been missing from our Thanksgiving meal since my mother passed in '92, as well as her homemade cranberries (vs canned). While I know this is a lot of work, I do hope in the long run you'll enjoy every moment. Hang in there.


Jenny K. Lyon said...

I had a good laugh over this post! You write so well-thank you for brightening my day. You are a wonderful wife to your man!

Rebecca Grace said...

Karen, your wish is my command! The Molasses Pumpkin Pie recipe is here:
And the stuffing recipe is here:

Happy Thanksgiving!