The first real cold snap has arrived. The sun, to borrow from Dan Borne, is finding its home in the Western sky earlier in the evening than just a few weeks ago. All of this can only mean one thing...Thanksgiving, that greatest of American holidays, the ne plus ultra of eating and drinking, the Super Bowl of Bounty, is just five weeks away.
It is time to get serious about Thanksgiving.
First, some self-scouting of last year. The mashed potatoes took a turn for the worse when we all got distracted with catching up. The turkey was done, but someone (read here: me) had forgot to start the potatoes. Cooking on an away field with a pot with more bends and warps in it than a trip with Doc Brown, the potatoes just sat in tepid water never really fully cooking. I tried to force the issue by pushing them through a ricer and then finishing the smaller granules in chicken stock and butter. I do not recommend you try this. The potateos came out gummy and tacky, a travesty of science and technology that should never happen. Lindsay still hasn't forgiven me.
This year I am simplifying things by cooking on home turf, for one. One turkey is going on the Big Green Egg while a boudin stuffed turkey breast is getting roasted in the oven. Mashed potatoes will be the only other thing I cook, besides a gravy. If I can pry the recipe for that corn dish out of the hands of the cooks at Baru, I may try that as well. Of course, I may want to bake some bread in the morning. But first and foremost is atoning for the sins of last year's Thanksgiving. Everyone else is invited, just bring booze and Better Cheddar. The rest will take care of itself. And remember, Thanksgiving is coming.