This post is for all my American readers who will be celebrating Thanksgiving this Thursday. Are you ready? What is going to be on your table this year?
I am ready… sort of. :-)
I have hosted Thanksgiving at my house for 23 years which has given me a lot of experience. I have developed a method to get all that needs to be done, done before Wednesday when I don’t want to be running to a crowded grocery store.
This will be the second year that I will not be hosting a huge gathering. I enjoyed it when we would have a large number around the table every year, but as the years have gone by and the older generation are no longer with us, the seats needed around the table are less. I am looking forward to when those empty seats are filled once again, but with grandchildren. I have to wait a few years for that scenario, though.. xoxo :-)
This week I am in preparation mode and getting things planned out for the day and ready to go. Since I like to see pretty, setting the table is where I always start my preparations.
I have posted many table settings over the years. The one that I did last year is one of my favorites. I am going to do the same thing again this year. If you are in search for Thanksgiving table setting ideas, I have gathered all of mine and created a page where you can easily find them. It is here: 15+ Thanksgiving Ideas
I no longer have fancy china since we sold it all when we moved. I prefer to keep things simple. My collection of three styles of everyday white dinnerware are very versatile… they look good on a casual table or a fancy one.
All my French White baking and serving pieces that will go from oven to the table are also white.
As far as what I serve for dinner, I stick with my tried and true recipes every year as tradition reigns BIG TIME at my house. We usually brine the turkey a few days beforehand in a cooler, then roast it in the oven on Thanksgiving Day. This year I have a new roasting pan with a “V” rack. Have you ever used one? Does it make the bird more tender or juicy? Here in the south, deep-frying the turkey is quite popular. I have never tasted a turkey or cooked a turkey that has been deep-fried, have you?
I make my mom’s stuffing recipe that is soooo good. It is mostly butter, bread and onions… what is not to like, right? We don’t stuff the turkey with it, I bake it separately.
For years I always made Campbell’s String Bean Casserole recipe that is made with mushroom soup and French’s Fried Onions mixed in. But in our quest to eat somewhat healthy, I stopped making it. Now, I simply steam green beans and toss in slivered almonds and add some season salt. – No complaints from anyone.
There is always a big bowl of whipped potatoes and gravy. I also make Mozzarella Orzo which has become a holiday favorite that I make for Thanksgiving as well as for Christmas dinner when we cook a beef tenderloin.
I buy frozen creamed corn and dinner rolls. Every year we try a new kind. My house is one of those where we have to make sure to put the timer on so we don’t forget to take them out of the oven as we are about to sit down… a few years they burned.
For dessert we make Ed’s mom’s Pumpkin Pie recipe, which really isn’t a pumpkin pie since it uses a Butternut Squash, not pumpkin.
For those who don’t like the pie, like me, I always make Ina’s Apple Crisp... so good. Both desserts are usually topped with a big mound of whipped cream.
I know many like to eat early on Thanksgiving, but we always eat dinner around 5 ish… sometimes later if I didn’t gauge everything to be done at the same time. Since moving to the lake house this is no longer a problem since we have a double oven.
Besides the table setting and food, there are few more things that happen every year. Watching the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade and then football games are on all day. After dinner, we gather around the TV to watch Home Alone or Home Alone 2. It is our way to ring-in the Christmas season. We have seen the movies so many times we recite the lines before the actors do. “KEVIN!!!” :-)
Once Thanksgiving Day is over it will be full-throttle into Christmas mode for me. On Wednesday of this week, I will be sharing a way to display your families Christmas memories. So stay tuned.
What traditions do you do every year with your family on Thanksgiving?
I hope whatever your family does for the day, that you have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving Day.
For all my non-American readers. I hope you have a terrific Thursday this week.