Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving = Southern Food for the Heart and Soul

Down to the deeper south for the holiday and a really good meal. My family has been preparing and eating basically the same meal longer then I’ve been around. My Moms family had a maid named Ida when she was a child and Ida cooked most of the meals. It was no different for Thanksgiving. The main thing I remember was the dressing. It was so good and seasoned with sage. She taught my Mom to cook, including the Thanksgiving feast. My Mom taught anyone that wanted to learn the same recipes. The dressing is simple, like all the dishes for Thanksgiving, but if ya want it to taste like Idas and Moms, you gotta do as they did. Today I bet there are ten or so people in my extended family that can prepare that dish just like Mom learned to.

This year my Dad cooked most of the meal. That’s not unusal, Dad does a lot of cooking these days. The dressing was good and tasted just like I remembered it tasted. The rest of the meal was made up of other family recipes. My grandmothers spinach cassrole, rice and gravey, turkey of course and a new twist on sweet taters. Dad stuffed hollowed out orange rinds with the sweet taters and then topped that with a pecan, burbon, butter sauce and baked it for awhile. Man that was a good dish. It was all good and I ate two plates of everything and then took a plate home for a midnight meal.


We had a good time, it is always fun to get together with the Loud, I mean Hartley family. We ate, drank and sang songs about eating a plate of red beans and rice twice. We all agreed that was a good idea.

This is just the start, we have a extended holiday season this go ’round. After Christmas we have Mardi Gras to look forward to. Mardi Gras comes early this year, Feburary 5th. Most folks don’t like it this early in the year and wish it were later in Feburary, which sometimes it is. I think I’m gonna like it early but we will have to see.

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