Hard to believe it was almost twelve years ago that I was offering my own Turkey Tips to InStyle Magazine’s November 2002 issue! But when it comes to discussing tradition and signature dishes, the passage of time doesn’t matter at all. We want the same recipes because they’re emotionally relevant to who we are as a family. Thanksgiving is the one occasion during the year that I allow myself to eat my fill of fabulous food. No limits! Each bite of stuffing I take transports me back to my childhood when I’d be waiting and watching the turkey through the oven door. ”Is it done?” I’d ask, or, “When are we eating?” Frankly, not much has changed. And I’m grateful for that.
What’s on the menu? Pumpkin soup served in a hollowed out pumpkin “tureen”; maple-glazed roast turkey with chestnut-corn stuffing; three-onion mashed potatoes; brussel sprout leaves; baked acorn squash; caramelized pearl onions and peas; and homemade buttermilk biscuits with fennel butter. First, invite your family and guests to be seated for the first course. The pumpkin tureen is not only seasonally stunning, but something that feels old-fashioned and decidedly “feast.” Once you have ladled out the pumpkin soup first course, direct guests to a nearby buffet or sideboard where they can sample a wide range of delicious holiday fare. When it comes to setting the scene, I actually take a page from Colin Cowie’s book of entertaining, in that I bring out all our best china, silver and crystal. Why not? It’s a special family occasion that demands our “best” keepsakes and family treasures. By all means, enjoy your own time with family and friends! Celebrate the little things, catch up on what’s happening in each other’s lives, and who knows, take a walk or play some ball. Whatever you do, appreciate each moment. I know I will. Happy Thanksgiving!