November 25, 2020
When it comes to the holiday of Thanksgiving, turkey is what usually pops into the heads of many including myself. You could think of cooked turkey for dinner, a craft or decoration to put in the window or on the table, or watching the president pardon one from being eaten. There are plenty of other important concepts associated with Thanksgiving from the history of exchange between European settlers and Native Americans to the general good will idea of giving thanks for what we have, but the dinner on this holiday is a cornerstone tradition in most homes.
In years past perhaps you had family come over to your house from all over or you travelled yourself to a relative’s home on Thanksgiving Day to enjoy dinner together. This year might be a different experience for many of you in light of current events. In my experience, my family was usually the host for our extended family and my mom would prepare the bulk of the meal with others bringing certain specialty sides and desserts.
We always have a traditional turkey as well as a spiral ham to add some variety for the main course. Some of my favorite side dishes include mashed potatoes, stuffing, corn, macaroni and cheese, and a sweet potato casserole. Of course there is a ton of other sides to choose from like cranberry sauce, brussel sprouts, rolls, yams, and green beans. Then comes dessert. My favorite is chocolate pudding pie, but I know many prefer more traditional ones like apple or pumpkin. Other desserts that usually make an appearance tend to be other pies, cakes, cupcakes, or cookies.
What are your traditions with friends and family? How about your favorite Thanksgiving dish? Dessert? Do you typically host or travel? Whether the holidays bring you stress or enjoyment (usually both), always remember that Thanksgiving should be about family and gratitutde and I hope everyone has a happy and safe holiday.
Check out these other resources for all things Thanksgiving:
Thanksgiving: The Holiday at the Heart of the American Experience by Melanie Kirkpatrick
Thanksgiving: How to Cook It Well by Sam Sifton
Thanksgiving Entertainment by Lou Seibert Pappas
Thanksgiving 101: Celebrate America’s Favorite Holiday with America’s Thanksgiving Expert by Rick Rodgers
Giving Thanks : Thanksgiving Recipes and History, from Pilgrims to Pumpkin Pie by Kathleen Curtin and Sandra L. Oliver
An American Family Cooks: From a Chocolate Cake You Will Never Forget to a Thanksgiving Everyone Can Master by Judith Choate