Robyn DeHart
Robyn DeHart

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Jaunty Post

Thanksgiving is early this year and I’m feeling it. How is it possible that Thanksgiving is this week? That means that Christmas is just around the corner, which is super exciting, but I have deadlines in December and I’m not ready. Okay so instead of talking about that and making my hyperventilate, let’s talk turkey.

I don’t think I ever really appreciated Thanksgiving until The Professor and I lived in Tennessee and spent several of them away from family. Now that we’re back near my family, things are back to “normal.” We have lots of traditions in our family, like most families do and it makes for a very warm and family-focused holiday.

The bird – normally we do a regular roasted turkey. It’s yummy, but not my favorite part of the meal. This year my mom wanted to try something else so she’s ordered a smoked turkey form our local BBQ place. They make amazing turkey so I know it will be good, can’t quite decide though how the smoked flavor will mix with the rest of our traditional fare.

Dressing – In our family it’s dressing because we do not put it in the carcass, cause eww, that’s gross. (my apologies to those of you who like to eat carcass stuffing) My mother makes the best cornbread dressing in the world. Seriously. It’s so good, it’s ridiculous. Frankly if we just had that and pumpkin pie, I’d be happy.

Sweet Potatoes – Then I make my sweet potato casserole and I’ve been told by more than one family member that I wouldn’t be allowed in the door without them. They’re so good it’s sinful. I should just put it in a crust and call it what it is. Dessert! Oh yeah, I’m so ready for a big spoonful!

Cranberry sauce – Okay I’ll admit it, my family likes the canned jelly stuff. You know you pop it out in a can-shaped-jelled-blob. And it tastes awesome! So there.

Gravy – even though we’re having a smoked turkey this year, we’re still gonna have to have gravy because it goes on the dressing and the mashed potatoes. So it’s gonna have to happen. I’m just saying.

Pie – for me it’s really all about the pumpkin. I make them, but I don’t do anything fancy with it, no graham-cracker crust, no praline topping, just straight-up pumpkin pie served with cool whip. It’s the way God intended us to eat it. I also make pecan pie some years and I have a super easy recipe. But really let’s just stick with the big orange gourde.

So how about your family? What are your favorites?


10 thoughts on “Turkey day

  1. Pumpkin pie, baby! This year, I’ve only been asked to bring chocolate chip cookies for my little niece and nephew. I think my value as a guest will come during clean-up. ;-)

    1. Wait, Kristan, am I reading this right?? Are you ONLY bringing cookies?? What about your famous pies??

  2. MJ says:

    Turkey, sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce is all I need–though I do like the green bean casserole, too.

  3. Shana Shana says:

    I love pumpkin pie and squash. I don’t eat turkey or cranberries, so for me it’s all about the vegetables.

  4. Kathryn in Montreal says:

    Happy Thanksgiving to all of you… here in Canada we had Thanksgiving in October (and it’s not as big a holiday in Canada as it is in the US). But we do go all out with turkey and all the trimmings. I’ve got to admit, the dessert is what gets me and I make both apple and pumpkin pie… simple and oh, so good. Turkey, gravy, stuffing (not for me), sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and peas. I love this meal!

  5. Believe it or not, I don’t care for turkey. I know that’s strange, but my taste buds changed a few years ago and it just doesn’t taste good to me anymore. I do, however love the smell of the bird cooking. So, we have one every year. I don’t go hungry, of course, because I can make a meal on the sides: the stuffing (not in the caucus, Robyn ;) and it’s my favorite part of the meal ); always, always two kinds of potatoes: sweet potato casserole and mashed potatoes, sometimes with garlic and leeks; cranberries (I love cranberries in any shape or form and over the years everyone looks forward to my Grand Marnier cranberries. It’s become my signature offering ). I’ve learned that if I sandwich a piece of turkey between the spiked cranberries and stuffing it disguises the taste. So, I can pretend I like it. Oh, and I can’t forget the gravy – I prefer mine without “landmines” (giblets) and pie! This year, I’m trying something a little different. I’m making a pumpkin cheesecake. I’m also going to try my hand at homemade dinner rolls. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

    1. Kathryn in Montreal says:

      Would you share that cranberry recipe Nancy please? And I made a pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust a couple of years ago and it was fabulous!

  6. Kathleen OD says:

    Thanksgiving for us Canadians is Octboer. We get a bit of a break between Turkey dinners, Christmas next being the next big dinner of course. Although I could eat Turkey all the time.
    Our Turkey dinner, has Potatoes that must be mashed then whipped with lost of butter and milk. Turnips are a must mashed with a little bit of brown sugar. Other veggies are Brussel sprouts, Broccoli and Green Beans, although not in a casserole. And all of this must have stuffing and gravy.. Mmm my mouth is watereing. And for desert on Thanksgivng we have a few pies, usually apple and pumpkin.

    To all of my US friends please have a Very Happy Thanksgiving… Enjoy your time with family and friends. May you be blessed with all things wonderful.

  7. catslady says:

    Stuffing and dressing lol. I like to put the giblets in mine but the rest of my family isn’t thrilled so I always make a separate outside the turkey dressing lol.

  8. I’m not a big fan of meat – I’m not a vegetarian, I just don’t eat meat often. But I do like a couple of bites on Thanksgiving, and all the other goodies (although not cranberry sauce. That’s just gross, lol). I am a pie-maker, and even though I am hosting (24 for dinner!!!) I am making pies tomorrow. 2 pumpkin and 1 apple.

    Robyn, I would love your mom’s recipe for cornbread stuffing. I have never had it! It’s bread stuffing all the way in my family, and I wouldn’t mind trying something a little different. :-)

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