I recall the Thanksgiving of 2005. I was 24 at the time and living with my parents. I was, at the time, playing professional baseball with the New York Mets Organization. I was on a kick that year where I was cooking everything in order to stay in shape for the upcoming season. I never went out to eat and I cooked all the meals for myself as well as my parents.
As November came, we were preparing the menu for our Thanksgiving feast. I had tons of great ideas as my cooking skills were growing everyday. We were planning on the typical 4-6 people that we usually had. By the 10th of November we had 10 people attending! Keep in mind that I had already agreed to cook Thanksgiving dinner.
The number of attendees had grown to 12 by the time Thanksgiving rolled around. I was at the point where I didn’t know if I could handle the pressure. All of these people were expecting me to create this “feast for the ages”, and I didn’t think I was up to the task.
I had to rework the menu a bit to accommodate the extra mouths to feed. I ended up cooking three turkeys, one of which was a fried blackened turkey injected with Cajun spices, the second was marinating in a bring and roasted, and the third was smoked. The fried turkey was succulent and delicious. I made the traditional stuffing and all the normal “fixins”. For dessert I made an apple caramel puff pastry. MMMMM!! I also made a bourbon pecan pie. All in all the meal was delicious and filling.
I had family that came to my parent’s home in Marion, IL from Florida and South Carolina, as well as St. Louis. I hadn’t seen many of them in a number of years. I was good to visit with all of them and catch up with aunts, uncles, and cousins that I had lost touch with over the years. We talked about old times when we used to see each other a few times a year and had been a lot closer than we were in 2005. We watched old home movies from when everyone had gotten together. They were hilarious!
Thanksgiving is a time for giving thanks. Giving thanks for having family to share a meal with and having memories of good times with family and friends.