I cook almost every meal in our house, not that the Cakes can't cook, she can, does all the basics very, very well. But, sorry baby, I'm way better than you.
Tomorrow morning our house will be filled with the 1st smell of the season, the aroma of dressing getting its start on the stove. I'm making a bacon-sausage-apple dressing this year, when I add the celery and onions those old Thanksgiving memories will fill the kitchen and my head. I can see Grandma Franklin with a rag on her head making dressing early on Thanksgiving morning. It actually wasn't a rag it was a pair of cotton underwear, rather modest underwear since Dodie couldn't even imagine a thong! Although from seeing pictures of her when she was a young hottie I'm sure Grandpa would have liked thongs, a lot!
Those early Thanksgiving memories always feature a huge turkey, 20 plus lbs! The one I'm cooking tomorrow weighs 8 and a half. We won't be sitting at a table with 2 leafs and 12 people around it so 20 lbs would be over kill in my house.
In the fifties we were expected to dress up for Thanksgiving dinner, my mother would make me wear a tie and jacket like the "men" wore.
Thanksgiving was always great until I was about 15, at that point all I wanted to do was eat and get the hell out of the house so I could hang with my friends. When I was 16 all I wanted to do was eat, get the hell out of the house and go make out with my girl friend.
Depending on where the Thanksgiving feast was held, there were either cocktails or no cocktails, never any wine that I can recall. Tomorrow I have 4 bottles of wine ready to be uncorked. I started drinking wine with meals in the early 70's and somewhere there is picture of me at the head of the table at Thanksgiving in Boston, a daughter on either side of me and wine glasses on the table. I have a moustache and my hair is almost at my shoulders. There is another taken the same Thanksgiving in the front yard of our house, the girls are wearing matching dresses and parked in the background is my '70 MGB (the coveted split bumper year) I still have the girls, I wish I still had the MGB.
Back in paleolithic times when I was a kid, pro football was barely on the radar unless you lived somewhere that had a team, we didn't even have the Vikings in those days. So the meal was uninterrupted by "what's the score?" or freaking Al Micheals droning in the background. Tomorrow I'm timing our meal so I can sit down at 5 pacific and watch my Pats give the Jets the ass kicking they deserve.
My friend George says he never cared about the Thanksgiving dinner itself, what he remembers as the best part is what he calls "turkey hash". mashed potato, dressing, sweet potato, veggies, turkey meat all cut up, mixed together on a plate and doused with gravy. He spent a Thanksgiving with us and he gave my version his stamp of approval.
One Thanksgiving in Boston, Benevolent Bill Freeman*, one of my air staff came for the feast. Bill drank about 5 beers, a couple of whiskys, smoked a few doobies on the deck. He sat down after all that and proceeded to fill his plate with a layer of mashed potato that covered the entire plate, layered on turkey meat, sweet potato, more turkey, then dressing and poured gravy over the 3 lb pile of food. Bill removed a bottle of Louisiana hot sauce from his flannel shirt pocket and covered the plate with it. The bastard did it twice! He went back on the deck and smoked another doobie and started in on dessert. I believe we were listening to Iggy and the Stooges before dinner, during dinner it was the Grateful Dead's first live album. Whew, those were the days! Too bad Grandma Dodie wasn't there!
Have a killer Thanksgiving!
*Bill and I had lunch one day at a little Italian joint. Bill ordered a large house special pizza and 6 Michelobs. The waitress said 6? Bill said, "You got it sister and bring them all at once!" He did the hot sauce routine when his pizza came. I had a meatball sandwich and one Mich. Bill finished before I did. The guy was as skinny as a rail.