Everyone has their favorite dish at Thanksgiving, and mine is stuffing. We have a loose leaf binder (our version of a family heirloom) that my sister Connie keeps in her possession; shared when someone else hosts the dinner. I’m happy she’s the one who holds it for us. I believe of the four of us, she leads the most orderly and well-organized life. There’s a good chance if it were in my care I’d manage to put it in a safe place that made perfect sense and we’d never see it again.
Corporate Records is printed in faded gold on the cover of of our Thanksgiving binder. Recipes are all that’s in there. We’ve collected recipes over the years, and have chosen our top hits. For me the star of any Thanksgiving meal, and especially ours is the stuffing. Contrary to current advice, we continue to stuff our turkey, and so far no one has gotten sick. We use the method described by Christopher Kimball in Cooks Illustrated, and heat our stuffing.
Our recipe is sourdough bread, hot and sweet sausage, apples, parsnips lots of herbs and butter. It is truly wonderful, and I wait for it all year. A few years ago after a Thanksgiving meal that left me so overstuffed and uncomfortable I swore that going forward I wouldn’t take seconds on anything. So far I’ve held to this commitment. I take whatever I want, and as much as I want, but whatever I take is it. This means my plate is 50% stuffing and 50% the other stuff.
This year our Thanksgiving table will be the smallest it’s been, maybe ever. There will be nine of us. My brother and two sisters, my brother-in-law, his mother, two nieces, one nephew and me. One of my nieces is currently living on Rwanda, and my daughter is in Mississippi visiting her grandmother. Because our numbers have shrunk my sister (the host) told me yesterday that we will not be making the usual amount of stuffing. Naturally I am in a panic.
I’ll try to make sure I’m the last person to take stuffing for two reasons:
- So everyone takes what they want before so I don’t deprive anyone
- My rule of no seconds
Though our talk of politics has already started, at least we’re all in agreement about the outcome of the recent elections (not just presidential) so no fighting about that. As we do each year, we’ll toast loved ones, both geographically and permanently absent. We may drink too much, and get loud. There may be obligatory singing, but I’m sure there will be more stuffing than we need. I am grateful for the all abundance my family enjoys. I wish you a peaceful holiday filled with warmth, love, and lively conversation.