By Cheryl Brooks
Not long ago I self-published a book in which the heroine's favorite day of the year was Thanksgiving. Why? Because she loved to cook.
So do I. I love the excuse to get out my grandmother's china and her silver turkey platter. I like being able to pull out all the stops and use a tablecloth and matching napkins. Granted, my feasts are small ones, with only my husband and two sons to cook for, but I make enough food to feed at least eight. Considering the fact that I've inherited enough plates to feed a football team--second stringers and all--on china, I could probably handle more than that.
Gram's silverware was an old set, and she used it every day. I use it once a year, but knowing it's up there on top of the cabinets waiting to be dusted off and used is comforting somehow.
My Thanksgiving menu doesn't vary much from year to year. We all like turkey. Sam always asks for crescent rolls--like we couldn't have those more often! Mike wants cranberry sauce. Bud asked for a pecan pie, which is one of those things I've never been any good at making. They always end up hard as a rock or soupy. If anyone knows the secret, please let me know! Pumpkin pie, however, I'm pretty consistent with. I never carve my Halloween pumpkin, but leave it whole, sitting out on the deck where I can see it through the kitchen window. Last week, I baked it, pureed it, and put it in the freezer. Now I'll thaw out some of it and use it to make pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, and the pumpkin casserole I recently invented. If you're curious about the pumpkin casserole recipe, here's the link! http://cherylbrooksauthor.blogspot.com/
My other standby is potato casserole, the recipe for which I also I inherited from my grandmother. It works best if you use the hash brown patties and mush them up after they've thawed. The shredded kind in the bag just aren't the same. However, I'm faced with having to use them this year. My trusty grocery store failed me this time.
That being said, here's the recipe. It's easy to make and just plain good!
1 pkg Ore-Ida hash brown patties (27 oz) thawed and crumbled up
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
½ cup chopped onion
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup sour cream
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
Mix all together and spread in greased 9 X 13 pan
Mix one stick melted butter with 1 ½ cups of crushed cornflakes and spread over the top.
Bake @ 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
That's what we're having. What's on your Thanksgiving menu?