Really, it’s all about the food.
Sure, there are parades, the BIGGEST and BEST being the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade coming down 6th Avenue this morning in New York City:
Every year I say I’m going…and every year, I’m here, on the couch, drinking coffee and watching it on tv. Why am I so lame? Because I get talked out of it. Every year. My uncle practically lives on the parade route–and he’s the worst one!
It goes something like this: “Patreesha, are you stupid? You can’t get anywhere near it. They board up my building, you can’t even get in without a pass. It’s going to be too cold/windy/raining; there might be a blizzard. There’ll be forty-six billion people flooding the sidewalks. Why would you want to get involved with that? Stay home and be warm…”
Then my mother calls. “Uncle Jay says you can’t go up there. It’s going to be so windy they won’t even be flying the balloons. He says you won’t get a seat on the train. It’ll be so bad, they might not even let anyone watch–I think they’re sending people home. You better not go–you’ll never get out alive!”
Sheesh. I have such fond memories of going to the parade with my father, sitting on his shoulders to watch while my mother stayed home with my new baby brother. Just Dad and me–it was heaven. We ate at Horn and Hardarts, the coolest place ever:
But, as great as the parades are, this whole day is really about the food. And though the menu varies only slightly from house to house: turkey, mashed and/or sweet potatoes, corn, string beans, cranberries, etc…it’s the stuffing that makes the difference. Ask a dozen cooks/eaters and you’ll get a dozen answers–from the basic, no frills bread crumbs, to chestnut to cornbread to oyster… But by far the BEST dressing (it’s not healthy to put it in the turkey anymore, thank you research scientists for ruining yet another delicious treat), is the one my Irish Nana taught my Italian mother to make all those years ago, when she was a bride and wanted to make a traditional Thanksgiving meal that didn’t feature pasta.
So, while I sit here wowed by Kristin Chenowith’s belted rendition of New York, New York (1. her hair!! and 2. WordPress thought maybe I meant her last name to be ‘cheesecloth’), I am dreaming of stuffing, the manna of American cuisine. No, it’s not good for you. And yes, I’m gonna have to take Allegra before I go because I’m allergic to so much of what goes into it. And yes, I’m a quasi vegetarian and never eat sausage; but I will today and be truly grateful for it.
On this holiday for foodies; on this day we list our blessings and take the time to remember how lucky we are to be sitting at a Thanksgiving table laden with all manner of indulgence; on this day of food and wine and parades and football, I wish you all a Happy Holiday Season and tell you how grateful I am that you’ve taken the time to read this little blog.
And to tell you that my stuffing beats your stuffing, hands down. Now, let’s talk about pie…