Sunday, November 22, 2009

Let's Get Ready to Gobble!!!!

You got me again Mr. Holiday, you tricky tricky beast. Here you are, and here comes my need to share a social food-based gathering with the loved ones. Why am I not worried about this though? Because I insisted on cooking Thanksgiving. If you have an amazing, supportive family like I do, they're down for letting you make Thanksgiving your way.

I'd like to take a moment to thank my mother, just about a Saint, who has to shop/prep for the Thanksgiving meal since I arrive home early on Thursday morning (yay redeye flights.) I was on the phone with her for a total of 2-3 hours this weekend explaining ingredients to her and then having her read ingredients to me while at the supermarket when she was unsure if a product was safe. This was after a detailed email. There was a lot of preparation for this since I haven't really been home all that much since I've had to give up eating the "normal" way. She remarked to me about how challenging it must be for me to shop for food; she was exhausted from running between 3 grocery stores and frustrated from being unsure what was 100% safe or good to consume. She also saw, maybe for the first time, how unnecessarily random ingredients were thrown into certain foods when we tried to find me a balsamic vinaigrette without gluten or soy (you'd be surprised.) So Mom, one of the things I'm definitely thankful for is you and how hard you've worked to let me make you a meal that could be safe for all of us, and how hard you always work to help your kids out (and anyone else who may need help on the way.)

Now that we can stop cuing the violins, I'll continue. I hate to say it, but I feel most comfortable eating when I can control how it's made. This makes me sound like a control freak, but when you're trying to stay away from sooooooooo many ingredients it really just puts your mind at ease. That's probably why a lot of allergic and intolerant folks dread going to restaurants and social occasions such as dinner parties for fear of either getting sick or being the allergic one who sticks out like a sore thumb. Sure it's fun to be on the other end of gentle teasing, "Geez, Suz, you can't eat anything!" but it's only so much fun until it starts giving you a complex. If I couldn't eat anything, I would have nothing to blog about ;) I love cooking. And I love cooking Thanksgiving. It's definitely my favorite holiday to make!

I'm going to be experimenting with a mostly grain-free menu this year, the exception being a fantastic stuffing I'm trying for the first time courtesy of the genius Shauna at glutenfreegirl and her blog. Because I will be doing the other recipes from scratch and on the fly, I will post them after Thanksgiving. After all, I'm not going to post anything I haven't tested. The other challenge is my parents are kosher. We're eating turkey so no that means no dairy. Me adding cheese or butter for enhanced flavoring are out. I take this as a welcome challenge and am surprised that I was able to find a soy-free, dairy-free butter substitute (thank you Earth Balance.) I will use that substitute, veggie broth, or olive oil plus seasonings to make the flavors shine through. I have a good feeling about it :)

I went through my blog and found some recipes that could be a welcome alternative addition to a Thanksgiving table. Good luck for good cookin' all ;)





Leftover Ideas:

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