Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It has everything to do with childhood memories before everything went south. Before Daddy died when I was 13. Before spider webs wrapped themselves around Mother’s synapses and short-circuited her mind. I freeze that “before” time by making a sweet domestic nest with my beloved. By immersing in the aromas of that happy, earlier time of childhood. Buck and my traditions are different. No longer bound by replica menus. Even the superstitious among us realize they brought no good luck. So: no heavy dressings or gravy or Crisco shortening pies. The meal will be simple: dry-brined and roasted turkey breasts, a cranberry sauce with cherries and bourbon, small baked sweet potatoes in their jackets, green beans redolent with shallots and lemon zest, mashed potatoes, and various sides brought by Buck’s daughter (my dear friend) and granddaughters (my dear friends, too).
Two turkey breasts are happily dry brining in the fridge tonight, and the messiest part of Thanksgiving dinner prep is done. I’m celebrating with a tot of sherry.