As much as I do not enjoy Halloween, I look forward to Thanksgiving. Maybe because so much of the day centers around food and I love to cook. Each year I prepare a meal for friends and family - anyone who is available to come by. Preparation begins weeks in advance as I plan out the menu and begin to play with the recipes to make them just what I want.
This year, I have been struggling with the menu. I normally do a traditional turkey and dressing with other traditional holiday foods. This year, I want to do something different, but I am having trouble coming up with the right food that celebrates the holiday but breaks tradition. I have considered doing beef since we are in Texas. I have considered game meats since that would have been widely available during the time of the first Thanksgiving.
With just days to go, the menu is blank and no groceries have been purchased. Normally cooking takes me four days. I need to get this underway shortly. The simplest thing to do would be to make a traditional meal. The stores are overflowing with those groceries.
Even if I do go with the traditional foods, my habit is to modify the recipes somewhat, so I have a few ideas how those recipes will change. Still there is only limited time to pull it all together. With that in mind, I will be spending time meandering the aisles at the grocery store, seeking inspiration - to either do classic traditional, or to do something creative.
Either way, I look forward to many hours in the kitchen in the next week doing what I can to show my appreciation for those friends and family who are joining me for the holiday.