LONGLEAF STORIES

full circle in the hundred acre wood

At the stroke of Midnight tomorrow, I will turn into a twenty-first century version of my mother. Yikes, ya’ll.

Well, it’s almost Thanksgiving. By nature a seriously grateful critter, it’s my favorite holiday. I really don’t connect it with the traditional native Americans and pilgrims story, but more of a generalized grateful heart feeling; a nice preparation for the Christmas season. I love planning a menu, listening to all the Thanksgiving stories on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition, and then there is the actual cooking. Sharing the meal is good, too, but it’s the smells I am really after. Onion, celery and green pepper sauteing. Buttermilk cornbread baking: one for the dressing and one for Buck, who will be sniffing around the kitchen like some poor starving rogue dog. Ha. Cinnamon and fresh ground nutmeg for the sweet potato casserole. Grand marnier for the parisian coffee. My oh my oh my.

Okay. Here’s this year’s menu:

 

Marinated Shrimp with Capers and Dill (a perennial favorite)

Cheese Straws

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Spicy Sweet Hickory Smoked Turkey Breasts

Smithfield Ham Baked In Madeira

Triple Cranberry Sauce (another favorite)

Sweet Potato Casserole

Hopkins Boarding House Squash Casserole

Sharon’s Green Bean Casserole          Ariel’s Creamed Corn

Yeast Rolls & Angel Biscuits

Darryl’s Pecan Pie                  Pumpkin Pie

Pinot Noir                               Parisian Coffee

 

I was going to roast a whole turkey, but the sad fact is nobody likes the dark meat except me. It’s a whole lot more practical to cook just the turkey breast. Plus, that eliminates any last minute bird wrassling. I ran across a recipe for smoked turkey breast that caused me to  remember my neglected smoker languishing out in the store house. I bought charcoal and hickory wood chunks today and am going smoke a couple of turkey breasts, dousing them first with Pickapeppa Sauce. Ever heard of it?

Inspirational Thanksgiving quote:  It’s hard to soar with the eagles when you’re surrounded by turkeys. Maggie reminded me of that. She saw a big turkey eating corn from one of our troughs today. It apparently knew it had been pardoned and continued scarfing down the dried niblets.

Good night, all. I rise early tomorrow to polish silver, pick magnolia leaves, and scavenge for acorns to put in a bowl just for looks. The sssssmmmmokin’ will begin on Wednesday.

 

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