Determined to make this as normal as possible in these abnormal times, two of my kids and I began early with a group text on our prep of our meals for our individual families. Instead of one big meal for a gang, it is 3 big meals served in three separate homes. The first text of the morning was from daughter with “Vote of confidence from my kids this morning: ‘Uncle Todd always makes the turkey. Do you even know how mom?'” This got us going exchanging how and what we were doing. Son 1 and I spatchcock our turkey, he varied our usual and nearly butterflied his with the cleaver trying it to flatten it and added a step with coarse salt and chopped herbs rubbed in the inside yesterday to “brine” over night. Daughter stating she didn’t have the tools to spatchcock so she was making a traditional bird. Son 1 stating he used clean tin snips and a cleaver. I am used to doing an 18-22 pasture raised bird for the gang, so an under 12 pounder had me baffled as to time. I managed to cut the backbone out with poultry shears, but had to pop the breastbone with my cleaver to flatten mine. Son 1 responded with 3, maybe 4 minutes cooking time when I asked, LOL. I put a large sweet potato in the oven when the turkey went in and when I was ready to peel, slice, and season it for the casserole it wasn’t done, so I popped it in the microware, pushed potato and came upstairs. Then I started smelling smoke, the microwave didn’t shut off and the yam was totally cremated and smoke filling the house. Fortunately it is 65 degrees outside so all doors were opened, yam dumped in cold water and a new yam cooked in the microwave with me watching like hawk.
In spite of not having them all here, texting back and forth has been fun, lots of encouragement, laughs, photos, fun. I prepared a traditional Thanksgiving, made the pies from pumpkins I grew, homemade rolls, peas and potatoes from our garden, sweet potatoes from the Farmers Market, fresh cranberries, pickles I made. Olives were purchased, but they don’t grow here. We are stuffed, will be eating turkey until Christmas, have quarts of fresh turkey broth. Everything made in smaller quantities, but made with love.
Happy Thanksgiving from us to you. Maybe next year we can be with our families again.