A Recipe for Thanksgiving…

The First Thanksgiving, painted by Jean Leon G...

Image via Wikipedia

…that special holiday when the pilgrims ate brie en croute.


One of my mini(many)-addictions is magazines.  Yet, November is just a ‘no-go’ on magazines, because every magazine publishes ‘new‘ recipes for Thanksgiving.


Oh, and don’t let’s forget… The-Last-Turkey-Recipe-You-Will-Ever-Need.


Can I just say?…

You don’t need a recipe for turkey(the directions are printed on the wrapper)!

Why, oh why, do we need new recipes for sides?  I know some people don’t have a Thanksgiving tradition or at least not one they want to repeat.  But why would we blame the food?  There is a menu for this holiday.  We don’t need new.  Thanksgiving isn’t about new.  It is specifically about what has gone before.  We know that the pilgrims didn’t have feta OR turkey gravy from a jar.

My connection to my far away family’s tradition is that I duplicate the menu every year.  The aunts didn’t do it on their own.  They haven’t yet.

We also have new traditions.  We get together with friends who are like family.  I am no longer doing it alone.  My daughters have taken over the preparation of their favorite dishes.

I love Thanksgiving: the Holiday.  I invite you to share my family’s traditions. Remember back when the Pilgrims hung out with their unlikely new friends, the Indians and everyone had a clean slate?

As for Thanksgiving: the Practice– I am not as accomplished at that.  But I know this…

You don’t need a recipe for Thanksgiving.

You just get on down on them knees.

Fold them hands, like so.

Drop your chins to your chest.

Close your eyes.

Open your mouth and whisper,


Tomorrow: What exactly is the menu, and if you are so ordinary, why are you a food snob?  And…Homemade Noodles for regular folk.

This post is the beginning of a Commonplace Life series on the traditions and recipes that anchor one ordinary family’s celebration of the high day of Autumn.


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3 Responses to A Recipe for Thanksgiving…

  1. Serene says:

    I’ve never liked the traditional foods of Thanksgiving (nope, not one of them), so I make them for my family, but I don’t really enjoy the food itself. What I enjoy is the gratitude (albeit not to god(s); I’m an atheist), the family, and the cooking. Some years, I mix up the menu, but most years, I just do the whole mom-food thing with turkey and stuffing and so on. This year, I’m making everything my mom used to make, but making sure it’s all gluten-free for a blog event I’m part of. (Fortunately, the only things in my mom’s T-day dinner that had gluten were the pie and the stuffing; I think I can handle that. 🙂

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