Turkey lurking

From Thanksgiving 2015: Emeril’s chicken cacciatore and a side of Martha Rose Shulman’s stir-fried succotash with edamame.

A week until Thanksgiving. Two months until Inauguration Day.

Guess which one I’m looking forward to?

When I was still marginally employed in the newspaper bidness I didn’t pay a lot of attention to holidays, other than in a professional sense, which meant grinding out the usual heart-warmers and eye-rollers, plugging the holes around the ads until stupid-thirty, when I could return to my true occupation, which was drinking.

Thanksgiving was just another day in the workweek for a single fella whose family was as far away as he could keep them. The O’Gradys’ holiday gatherings were not the sort that gets written up in the newspaper; not outside of the police blotter, anyway.

Think George Carlin in “40 Years of Comedy” discussing “family style” dining:

“You know what that means? It means there’s an argument going on at every table, two people are crying, and the eldest male is punching the women.”

This may be why you will rarely find me cooking turkey for Thanksgiving. Call it shell shock. One whiff of giblet gravy and I hit the deck with my eyes out on stalks and a knife in my hand.

“Micks in the wire!”

I’ve made all manner of off-brand meals for Thanksgiving, from northern New Mexican combo platters to Emeril’s take on chicken cacciatore. Martha Rose Shulman’s stir-fried succotash often plays a supporting role. But we haven’t done the actual turkey thing since 2012.

This year … frankly, I have no earthly idea. I did a speed run through the grocery early yesterday to beat the rush and hope not to go back anytime soon, so I’m limited to whatever’s already on hand.

The lead-up to the actual holiday may beat the holiday itself, feastwise. I have chicken thighs for posole, turkey thighs for tacos, the makings of a decent pizza sauce and/or a spicy pasta sauce, flour tortillas, bread flour and yeast, plus salmon filets and a couple pounds of ground turkey in the freezer. So “turkey day” may center on turkey burritos smothered in green with a side of arroz verde.

Maybe I’ll cook an actual turkey with all the trimmings when we finally run that overstuffed poltroon out of the White House. This bird’s for you, Adolf.


22 Responses to “Turkey lurking”

  1. DownhillBill Says:

    Calvin Trillin once wrote a column arguing that the true and proper all-American Thanksgiving meal should be Spaghetti Carbonara. I don’t think turkey bacon was a thing yet, but that substitution should satisfy the turkey purists. Those of us who regard the noble pig as one of the major food groups won’t be so happy.

    And yes, I have had Spaghetti Carbonara for Thanksgiving dinner.

  2. Pat O’Brien Says:

    Spinach lasagna, sourdough bread, with a nice Pilners Urquel. Repeat until full. Then some vanilla gelato with fresh blueberries. Then play with the Duffinator.

  3. Shawn Says:

    I drug my frozen ball of butter and bird flesh home from the local grocery about two weeks ago. They had a sale, I was hungry and I love smoking a bird on my techo-sophisticated barb-b-cue smoker with moving-blanket insulators. Last year I was able to “cook” the turkey on the smoker in about three hours – No oven bake finishing required. Yum !

    On a more velo-ci-pid note:

    “There is also the mention of a power generating unit, which essentially means the shifters could potentially self-charge, negating the requirement for batteries.”

    I love when technology trickles down. Even if it is to those who pedal faster, stronger and are paid to do so in the Alps of Europe.

    Someday maybe I’ll get me a DA equipped bike again… and maybe Der Trump will be re-elected in 2024. Yeah. Uh huh.

  4. Charley Says:

    Pretty much in this household also, just the two of us. Will probably decide in the next day or two and go from there.

  5. khal spencer Says:

    I’ll have to dig out and publish our tofu turkey and besan gravy recipes.

  6. SAO' Says:

    Speaking of turkeys …


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