"Those who forget the pasta are condemned to reheat it." ~Unknown

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving, On Another Day

Word games!
     We spent this Thanksgiving with family in Corvallis (we made a great movie while we were there), and while our dinner there was excellent, there are some dishes, and traditions that we couldn't do without, so today I'm going to make Thanksgiving dinner again, a few days late.  We are having our old friends Sam and Elaine over. As we've done for as long as I can remember, the important part of our Thanksgiving feast is not the turkey; it's the side dishes.  For the all-important sides, we've got Mimi's butter-rich dinner rolls, cranberry smash, brussel sprouts cooked in bacon fat, and yams, and for dessert, we've got pumpkin pie.
     Right now, we've got cranberry smash boiling away on the stove, in the oven the pie crust and yams are baking.  Cranberry smash is a very simple dish that has been a family tradition for at least three generations, going on four. The dough for the rolls is almost done rising.  Once we've got the pie filled and back in the oven, we're going to start on the rolls.

     The rolls went ... well.  Usually, Mimi makes them, but it was up to us today, and without Mimi we were bumbling along.  Mimi always makes her rolls crescent shaped, and so we followed suit.  Once we'd spread the dough out in a circle, I started halving the dough, so that we could make the crescent rolls.  We halved all the way to thirty-seconds before we started rolling them.  By the time we'd rolled about a quarter of the rolls, the other rolls had risen enough that they started to grow back together.  So, after tugging re-slicing and tugging a little bit more, we had 32 rolls laid out.  They're certain to taste as good as Mimi's, but they're not as beautiful.
     I just finished peeling the brussel sprouts.  What a bunch of work they were!  When I started on 'em, the sun was still up (though behind clouds), when I finished removing the bad spots and chopping them, it was completely dark outside.  I think Dad started the stuffing while I was chopping brussel sprouts.  The cranberry smash is done, the pie is done, the rolls are rising, the yams and turkey are in the oven, and the brussel sprouts just got thrown into cook with shallots and bacon fat.  Yum.  The stuffing is on the stove, replete with onions, celery, garlic and lots and lots of butter.  The croutons and chicken stock have yet to go in.

     Dinner is taking a little longer than expected, because of the turkey of course.  Hopefully they'll be out in a few minutes though, and then we can throw the rolls in.  While we wait on the last few dinner items, we get to fulfill one of the other Thanksgiving traditions, word games.  Most years, we'll play dictionary (also known as balderdash).  This year though, we've got a new game, called konexi.  You build words in a three-dimensional tower, a sort of Jenga meets Scrabble.  Like camping, it's in-tents.

     Dinner was awesome.  It had every thing we need to feel that the holidays have begun, from butter rich dinner rolls, to cranberry smash and chipotle yams.  For dessert we had the requisite pumpkin pie.  To finish off the evening, we've got more word games.

1 comment:

  1. I hope I didn't spook you out of frying your bird! And no oysters? I guess those are hard to find so close to the Pacific ocean.

    Have you guys played Quiddler? Great word game. Diane and her mother were up all hours playing it, and nearly came to blows, during Thanksgiving.