This is my favorite time of year. There's a nip in the air. Football is in full swing and college basketball has begun. The leaves are putting on their gorgeous colorful display. But most of all, I love planning for Thanksgiving.
Yesterday, the annual Thanksgiving text thread between the women in my family began. We each submitted what we would be bringing for Turkey Day. Just reading it made my mouth water. The standards were all there, with additions of our favorite casseroles. My niece submitted her items to this list for the first time, since she got married this past summer. It felt like a right of passage to the beginning of her adulthood.
I pulled out my 80s Ivy print recipe book. It holds many of the family favorites and is worth its weight in gold. Along with our traditional fare, I've always liked to try something new every year. Yes, my required standards were always made (sweet potato casserole for Worth, mashed potatoes, some jello thing), but going out on a limb has proven itself to be quite rewarding. It's also added a couple of new dishes to my list as it was requested again. For instance, brussel sprouts. I'd not grown up on these little cabbages of goodness, but found a recipe for bacon and cheese brussel sprouts and had to try it. Wow! Hub has already put in the request for them again this year. Brussel sprouts are good, ya'll.
This week I'll be browsing the internet and cookbooks to find my new "something" to add. There are rules to follow: no duplications of other dishes, there must be a balance of sald/side/dessert, and all the colors need to be represented. This color quirk came from my precious mother. She ingrained in me the need to check over the menu and make sure all colors would be offered so that the meal not only tasted good, but looked good as well. Thanks to her, I'll be basing my contributions on what colors need to be incorporated into the feast. The eye eats first, right?
What are your favorite Thanksgiving dishes? Do you like to cook as much as I do, or are you a catering type of person? No judgement here. If it's delicious, I don't care who made it. You go on with your bad Turkey Day planning self. Make that call and book your banquet. I'll be jealous of you in a couple of weeks as I'm trimming the ends off my brussel sprouts.