Bobby claims that we don’t really do Thanksgiving. My parents landed in the U.S. in their mid-twenties, with no claims to the only true American holiday. Despite their heritage, we’ve always feasted as well as my compatriots on this day. Our family would gather with fellow ex-pats to merrily feast and be thankful for our family and good fortune. Thanksgiving in my mamma’s house waned with an empty nest, but this year, the marvelous celebration was revived! Feast on this tantalizing spread…

STARTERS
Cider Cocktails to start (Spruce up my last recipe with a splash of fresh-squeezed tangerine juice and a splash of sparkling cider. Substitute whiskey for dark rum.) Serve with cheese, pate, and crackers.
Cider Cocktails to start (Spruce up my last recipe with a splash of fresh-squeezed tangerine juice and a splash of sparkling cider. Substitute whiskey for dark rum.) Serve with cheese, pate, and crackers.
Peter, hungry!
Peter, hungry!
Starters on the roof. 60s and sunny with an emerald Long Island Sound. From left: Dimity, Nolan, John (my sister Francesca's love, Alessio (A visitor from Italy), and my (wicked Stepfather) Peter.
Starters on the roof. 60s and sunny with an emerald Long Island Sound. From left: Dimity, Nolan, John (my sister Francesca’s love, Alessio (A visitor from Italy), and my (wicked Stepfather) Peter.
Mamma, the master chef. This year we each contributed a dish, or course, with Mamma holding the reigns!
Mamma, the master chef. This year we each contributed a dish, or course, with Mamma holding the reigns!

SIDES

Caramelized Acorn Squash. Slice, spread with honey and butter, and bake at 350 until tender.
Caramelized Acorn Squash. Slice, spread with honey and butter, and bake at 350 until tender.
Sausage Stuffing. Saute 3 c. white onions in 2/3 stick butter. Remove, and in the same pan crumble about 1 lb. spicy (or sweet) ground sausage. Saute for about ten minutes until browned. Add onions, 1 c. chopped celery, 1 jar or can pre-cooked chestnuts, lots of fresh minced sage, fresh or dried thyme, pepper and salt, cubed miche bread (white country loaf). Use about 1/2 loaf or 8 cups. Best if slightly stale. Add 1/2 c. sherry or marsala. Mix well. Bake in the oven at 250, and stuff your turkey!
Sausage Stuffing. Saute 3 c. white onions in 2/3 stick butter. Remove, and in the same pan crumble about 1 lb. spicy (or sweet) ground sausage. Saute for about ten minutes until browned. Add onions, 1 c. chopped celery, 1 jar or can pre-cooked chestnuts, lots of fresh minced sage, fresh or dried thyme, pepper and salt, cubed miche bread (white country loaf). Use about 1/2 loaf or 8 cups. Best if slightly stale. Add 1/2 c. sherry or marsala. Mix well. Bake in the oven at 250, and stuff your turkey!
Quirky, curvy sweet potatoes from mamma's garden.
Quirky, curvy sweet potatoes from mamma’s garden.
One more than half the size of my head!
One more than half the size of my head!
Chop the sweet potatoes. toss in an oven dish with salt, rosemary and olive oil. Bake at 350 until tender and browned.
Chop the sweet potatoes. toss in an oven dish with salt, rosemary and olive oil. Bake at 350 until tender and browned.
Rutabaga and Turnip Gratin
Rutabaga and Turnip Gratin
Peter's specialty. Potatoes. Mashed. With lots and lots and lots of butter.
Peter’s specialty. Potatoes. Mashed. With lots and lots and lots of butter.
Steamed green beans. A sprinkle of salt.
Steamed green beans. A sprinkle of salt.
Dimity's "spoon" cornbread. A light, fluffy cornbread pudding.
Dimity’s “spoon” cornbread. A light, fluffy cornbread pudding.

THE CENTERPIECE

The man for the job.
The man for the job.

15

Well, maybe...
Well, maybe…
Stuff and seal with a lemon.
Stuff and seal with a lemon.
John and Bobby waiting to be unleashed.
John and Bobby waiting to be unleashed.
Nom nom nom!
Nom nom nom!

DESSERT

Mamma, about to put Francesca''s apple pie in the oven.
Mamma, about to put Francesca”s apple pie in the oven.
Francesca's Pumpkin Cheesecake, with a vanilla wafer and pecan crust. Divine.
Francesca’s Pumpkin Cheesecake, with a vanilla wafer and pecan crust. Divine.
Apple pie, paired with vanilla ice cream and home-made whipped cream.
Apple pie, paired with vanilla ice cream and home-made whipped cream.

23

Francesca's dark chocolate truffles. Naughtily rich!
Francesca’s dark chocolate truffles. Naughtily rich!
Nolan's pumpkin cheesecake, equally mouth-watering!
Nolan’s pumpkin cheesecake, equally mouth-watering!
Among the fine bottles opened from my mom's collection, was a vintage port to close the meal (originally $15 from a wine shop in Denver). Nine years older than me! Exquisite.
Among the fine bottles opened from my mom’s collection, was a vintage port to close the meal (originally $15 from a wine shop in Denver). Nine years older than me! Exquisite.
Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *