The Feathered Nest

The softer side of MaisonBisson

Turkey Day Postmortem November 29, 2008


I am late writing about the big feast. Thursday, I was exhausted after the gorging, and then the cleaning, was done. Yesterday, I awoke at the crack of dawn to meet up with mom and aunt for our traditional black Friday outing and discovered that our dear male cat, Newton, was urinating blood. So that meant I was at the vet instead of the mall and have been distracted taking care of him. He seems to be better today but I am still keeping a close watch on him. All cat lovers, send us positive thoughts.

This morning, I finally have time to sit down and write about the feast. Did all my planning make the day a breeze? Was each dish a picture of perfection? Was I cool, calm, and collected? Of course not.

I got up around seven to put the turkey in the oven. I coated it in an herbed salt mixture the night before and I had to rinse it, pat it dry, stuff the cavity with herbs and citrus, and then coat the outside in melted butter. The turkey was in the oven by eight. The plan was for our guests to arrive at one, the recipe estimated that the bird would need five hours in the oven. I took it out every forty-five minutes to baste. When I took it out for a basting around eleven, it looked done, I took out the meat thermometer and sure enough it was at, actually above, temperature. I took it out and covered it in foil. I began to fret that I would be serving a dry, cold turkey. I put the foil covered sides in the oven to warm. I set the table. I blanched the green beans. I put on water to boil potatoes. I took out the cutting board and knife to prep the potatoes and then I realized that I never actually purchased potatoes. You simply can’t have Thanksgiving without mashed potatoes.

One of the advantages of living in a place with more than two stores is that there is usually something open. We still find this fact to be a decadent novelty. Casey ran out to the nearest grocery, the one we usually don’t frequent, but that is another story. He purchased potatoes and was on his way back when our guests called to say that they were runnig ahead of schedule.

They arrived to find me furiously setting potatoes to boil, simultaneously chopping sun-dried tomatoes, dripping with sweat, and looking haggard. So much for the poised picture of domestic goddessness I had hoped to paint. Casey mixed drinks. I composed myself and the kitchen.

We all sat down and gave thanks. We had family and we had food. The turkey was not dry, it was actually damn good. I may not be the modern Donna Reed, but I think the day was a success.

Photos: dinner, done, and leftovers.