Writer’s Workshop: What’s On The Menu?

Notice: No turkey! Image by Sabrina Ripke from Pixabay

Mary and I have become decidedly less traditional on major holidays. It’s just the two of us, so we don’t so much plan as throw the thing together. We almost never have the approved meal for any of the major holidays, which means no turkey for Thanksgiving or Christmas and no ham for Easter. The tradition on Easter used to be leg o’ lamb, but I don’t know that anyone eats lamb anymore.

Last year we actually went semi-traditional on Thanksgiving and had a turkey breast, which is just enough for the two of us and provides sufficient leftovers for turkey tetrazzini and maybe a couple of sandwiches. Mary makes the turkey breast in the Crock Pot and puts a stick of butter in the cavity before cooking it. The result is a moist and flavorful turkey breast, something you don’t get from roasting in the oven, which we have with some sides we buy in plastic trays, such as mashed potatoes and mac & cheese (which here in the South is considered a vegetable).

Slight diversion: The now-retired meteorologist for WSB radio (AM 750, FM 95.5) in Atlanta posted a funny cartoon the other day…

As for this year’s Thanksgiving, we haven’t decided what we’re going to have. In fact, it hasn’t come up yet. I vote for ribs, myself.

16 thoughts on “Writer’s Workshop: What’s On The Menu?

  1. Do you have a Shari’s near you? I think they always have festive holiday meals. Maybe you could get takeout! 🙂 I feel like that’s the route Pat and I will take eventually. Cooking the whole thing is a lot of effort for just two people!


    1. We don’t have Shari’s, but there are tons of restaurants in the area, and I just got DoorDash. Mary went out and bought a 5 lb. turkey breast for over $17, so I think maybe it’s the last time we do that, unless prices start coming way down. You’re absolutely right, though: making Thanksgiving (or any other holiday) dinner for two people makes absolutely no sense. I’d just as soon buy a couple of Swanson turkey TV dinners at this stage of my life…


  2. Yea we don’t much anymore either. Last year we had a chicken instead of Turkey just for a change. I told Jennifer I want to try something extravagant on Christmas one year…Beef Wellington. I never had it but it sounds great.


  3. As a kid, I recall some Thanksgiving sides that were pretty gruesome, at least to me. Turnips, for one. That was something my maternal grandmother always insisted on having. Now, as the years have passed, the traditional feast has taken on a few twists and turns. Antipasto instead of Onion Soup, oozing with melted Swiss cheese. And a Lobster Mac & Cheese for the turkey-haters. And Parsnips. For me, a late-life, “hmmm, these are good!” food epiphany.

    It seems that Thanksgiving has become an “anything goes” holiday and, that’s just fine. What’s important is that it’s shared, with each other, family and friends, whenever possible.

    But NO Turnips!


    1. My stepfather, who did a lot of the cooking at home, made turnips or rutabagas (aka Swedish turnips) for a lot of the holiday meals. I didn’t care for them much, but the older crowd liked them.

      Swiss cheese on onion soup sounds great. It’s not as stretchy as Gruyere, which usually goes on it. Swiss has a nice flavor, kind of nutty, and it’s good on a Patty Melt, too (no offense 🤣 ). The lobster mac & cheese sounds interesting…


      1. Two things I haven’t tried yet now that I am a Southerner is cheesy grits (I love plain grits!) and Chicken and Waffles. I like chicken and I like waffles but never had them together and can’t understand why anyone would eat them together. I guess if I ever try them maybe I will know why.


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