Thursday, November 15, 2007
Thanksgiving. Angst. Would you like some WHINE with that Turkey
All my gluten free friends are swapping recipes and posting menus on their blogs, and I've been thinking about Thanksgiving a lot.
I have a horrible confession to make.
I hate Thanksgiving. It causes me great angst.
This all stems back to the fact that when I was a kid, we rarely did the big "Thanksgiving Day" and I rarely remember Thanksgiving with extended family (last one I remember was when I was in college -- we went to Connecticut in 1974 and 1976).
I spent most of my youthful TDays at Morrison's Cafeteria or the Holiday Inn Buffet. Once in a while my Mom would cook, but there was always so much angst attached to it -- fights over turkey temperature, etc. I mostly laid on the floor and watched the parades. In about 1975, my Mom concocted a "new" family dinner consisting of Countryside Chicken Bake and Yam Baskets Louisianne. She also served corn pudding from the Southern Living cookbook from that. I inherited the tattered, faded recipes for those. I still love those recipes.
Thanksgiving was a big deal in my ex's family, and his mother always killed the fatted turkey for the whole crew. I hated not spending Thanksgiving with my parents, but his folks invited them over, and we all had dinner together. Once in a while I cooked at our house. It was a huge, angst-filled production. That went on for a long, long time. It was OK when we could bring home extra dressing -- I would just open a can of Ocean Spray and I would be happy. But most of it was angst. (I remember really enjoying cooking in 1983. I was in Germany. I was proud of that meal. And one or two in the late 80s, maybe. 1997 we had a lot of fun. But I digress.)
That's it. To me, Thanksgiving meals are a lot of angst. I HATE cooking for Thanksgiving. There. I said it.
The perfect Thanksgivings for the past four years have been with Randy. We always go to someone else's house (Usually my friend Pam, who has a great, crazy family). We bring home leftovers. (Pam doesn't mind sending us home with food). And I don't have to do much work. I have a lot of great home cookin and have fun! And I bring home food in exchange for a side dish or two.
So we're invited to Pam's again, but this year, I'm GF, and this lunch is fraught with cross-contamination danger. Randy said we should just stay here, but I just don't want to cook what I want to eat!
If I have to cook, I'd make turkey breast, my Southern Cornbread Dressing, and a GF modified green bean casserole. But that's about it. And Randy won't eat the green bean casserole. There would be corn. I might make some frozen/refrigerated mashed potatoes. Maybe. But if I mostly want to eat at someone's house, I don't want to have to bring the food I'll eat with me. I can't eat her turkey (she makes a rockin turkey) because she stuffs it, which causes cross contamination. I don't know what is in the glaze of the ham, so I don't know if it's GF. I know all the desserts are out. My favorite food is dressing. Can't have none of that. To me, the greatest thing about Thanksgiving is leftover dressing and that can of Ocean Spray Cranberry Sauce.
I guess the bottom line is -- I want someone to cook for me for Thanksgiving. And now, I can't get anything that resembles it without doing it myself. Which I don't want to do.
This is so dreadful! I love food, and I love cooking, and I am THANKFUL, but the thought of making Thanksgiving dinner this year just drives me nuts. I guess I'm feeling a little sad. I can't have my Thanksgiving and eat it, too, anymore.
I'll get over it. I promise. Don't worry, honey. I won't let you starve.
Much love, and I'm sorry I'm so WHINY