Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. You know I love to cook, love to

eat and I try to be thankful a little bit every day so added all

together it’s a bonanza of happiness for me. This will be our 6th

Thanksgiving away from home. I’ve had ingredients shipped, cooked very

badly while unknowingly preggers, searched high and low for corn meal

and shared two Thankful meals with wonderful Irish friends.

This year should be no different. We are Americans after all.


I’d heard that it’s not such a snap to find turkeys here in November. As

in Ireland the best birds are being fattened up for the big

show…Noel. But you don’t think a little turkey finding trouble is

going to put the ixna on number six do you?

Having written the word for turkey phonetically on the palm of my

hand–DEND, I always mispronounce it–I went to the butcher to ask for a

bird. I had to talk on the phone with the turkey farmer Nadine. In

French. In front of butcher and her husband, who kept chuckling. I think

the way I say, ‘une dinde noire’ must be super hilarious. In the sunny South they have a tendency to put a flourish on the end of feminine words like, ‘une’ and ‘dinde’ and ‘noire’. And so it sounds a bit I-talian when you put it all together. And hearing me do it, avec flourish, must have been more than butcher husband could take.

I got a noire turkey because from what I could piece together, the blanche turkeys are tres fat, right now…already up to 7 kilos. They are also tres expensive at 15 euro per kilo. Ouch. Not wanting a turkey that bad after all.

So it was that Nadine suggested the smaller noire lady. At a

perfect four kilo and a bit less than 15/kilo I agreed. I think what’s

going to happen is this: my little turkey will live her last couple of

days, today and tomorrow, happily on Nadine’s farm, basking in the

lovely crisp days resplendent with sunshine, gobbling a happy turkey

song and kicking up dust; then thwack!, kapow! she gets it.

I keep referring to ma dinde as a girl. I don’t know if she

really is but with the feminine noun, adjective and article, I can’t

help thinking of her that way.

So when she arrives Thursday morning I will butter, garlic and herb her

up, pop her in the oven and serve her to my American family for

Thanksgiving. Along with my mother’s famous cornbread dressing. I’m from

Texas, ya’ll. There won’t be cream of mushroom soup in the green bean

casserole but a homemade version of same with my new-found ability to

make mushroom bechamel sauce. The ham isn’t coming out this year

so it only makes sense that the broccoli-cheese casserole will be

omitted too…those two are just made for each other. But I will have

cranberries a la ma soeur and pumpkin (fresh) and chocolate meringue pies too.

What are your Thanksgiving favorites? Any you just could not live without no matter where in the world you lived?

Thankfully yours.