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Nov 19, 2012

Category:Holiday Cuisine
What's on YOUR table?

Thanksgiving is coming. Many of us are getting ready for the standard fare. Turkey (or other type of poultry), stuffing, a potato of some type, sweet potatoes and/or squash, either some sort of cabbage or veggie casserole, and the usual pies.... Pumpkin, pecan, apple, or other type of berry or something.

That is all fine and dandy, and I love this traditional fare just as much as the next person. Just that I don't buy croutons at the store. I save up the bread crusts or the other pieces that no one ate from the end of the bag, and I cube those up (yes, just plain stale) and make the stuffing from that. I add my large minced onion, 3 ribs of diced celery, 1/4 cup parsley, 1 heaping TBS sage, salt and pepper to taste, and 2 eggs... It's actually quite tasty.

Many people like my pumpkin pie, also, but that's a secret recipe that I might share, if I'm feeling generous, at Christmas time.

But anyway, I think it's neat how different cultures have their different foods, such as the fact that my step father has something called lefse. It's Norwegian, and it's a very thin potato & cream flat bread, almost as delicate as a crepe, and it's eaten with butter and brown sugar on it. We've used this in place of dinner rolls, though I do like plain rolls to scrape up the left over gravy off the plate...

But, it is interesting to have other stuff besides the regular foods. MY thing would be to have an "International" Thanksgiving. I think that would be fun.

Why "international"?

I think, TOO often, we think of the First Thanksgiving as something that was celebrated with the colonials and the Native Americans as a peace offering with the feast, where the Pilgrims were thankful for the feast in front of them, and so that is how it got to be that way.

But, lets think about it here in this country, there are so many more things than the merge of two cultures, and then surrounded by nuts, squash, and all of the same old usual... I think it's neat to do something different.

So, fry bread rather than dinner rolls. For those of us too busy or not coordinated enough to make a home made bread dough, buy the frozen kinds, let it thaw, and when it begins to rise, stretch it out, and it's okay to have a little poked hole in it to deep fry to a nice golden brown. The hole will allow the grease to pass through, rather than make the bread too soggy. This would be a nice tribute to our Native American heritage that is so rich in the USA.

To honor the Jewish roots that many Christians have, making mashed potatoes using soy milk would be a great way to substitute it, so the meal is kosher. Season with onion and/or garlic, salt and pepper. I don't normally like drinking silk milk, but, the texture is that silky that it's a great compliment to mashed potatoes.

Being part Japanese, the thing that I miss during American holidays is either something that resembles miso, and some sort of pickle. Japanese people love pickled anything, and I like the radish. But, a salad with that Asian Sesame & Miso paste dressing is top notch, and some pickled cabbage would be great as a side to it too. The acid actually helps clear the palate with all the surrounding rich foods, to better enjoy the new flavor of each different dish.

But then again, I'd be happy with a good Hungarian goulash as the main course as well, though maybe a type of paprikash would actually be a better substitute for the turkey. The stuffing can be made with some chicken or turkey broth in a slow cooker if you want that to go with the meal, if you're replacing turkey with the paprikash.

So, what's YOUR non-traditional tradition? Inquiring minds would like to know...

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Posted: Monday November 19, 2012, 10:50 pm
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Lika S.
female, age 45, married, 2 children
Racine, WI, USA
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