The First Really Big One by Theresa Jaye

I thought and thought about what event in history I would like to have witnessed and there were so many my poor little brain was reeling like a slot machine so I went with my gut.  Literally.
The first Thanksgiving.

No, I’m not kidding. Wouldn't it have been awesome to sit at that table and break bread with these hardworking English settlers and Wompanoad Native Americans?  I'm not discounting their hard work and I mean no offense to anyone, but I would have done it a little differently. 
What qualifies me to say that?  Well, I can hold my own in the kitchen and spend many, many hours a week cooking, baking and sharing the fruits of my labors--but not always my recipes.  <g> 

First off, they served way too many varieties of the main dish. At our house, we stick to ham and turkey for the showcase items. At the first Thanksgiving, they served swan, goose, duck, deer, bass, cod, clams, eel, lobster and turkey. Have you ever anxiously stood in a buffet line behind little old ladies or finicky pre-teens who can’t make up their minds when all you want to do is fill your own plate? Seriously, too many choices slow the table traffic down to create a dining room bottleneck of nightmarish proportions.  

For sides, the pilgrims served cornbread, corn pudding, dried beans, squash and turnips. What about mashed potatoes and giblet gravy? The homemade noodles and green bean casserole? Cranberry salad? Candied sweet potatoes? Dressing?
My kids would have made a run to McDonald's before they'd eat corn pudding and dried beans for Thanksgiving.  Everyone in my family has their favorites and I don't dare dissapoint them. 
It's been written that the pilgrims had run out of sugar by this time so their desserts consisted of fruit and nuts. Now I like fruit and nuts as much as the next gal, but come on, really?  I like them IN THINGS, not sitting lonely on the plate.  I'm pretty sure my family would stage a demonstration if there wasn’t at least one pecan or pumpkin pie, chocolate cake or homemade whipped cream to slather on top.

So tell me, do you like to cook and what are your favorites dishes?
Theresa Jaye


Joan Vincent said...

Theresa, love your take on Thanksgiving. My family would be at MacDonald's with yours if I served corn pudding. Sounds like our menus for the holiday are pretty similar. I love cooking and since I was helping cook for threshing crews by the time I was six I'm pretty experienced. I love cooking anything--been big into chilis and soups with this weather! I make an 8 layer Black Forest cake my kids love and peanut butter pie is also one of their favorites. I think what we call "Grandma's Chicken --boneless breaded fried chicken is their favorite--at least their most often requested birthday dinner.

Pat Davids said...

I do cook although I wouldn't say I like it. I do like to bake. Pies. My most requested item is my made from scratch cherry pie. It was Dave's favorite. My made from scratch pecan pie was only sampled by the dog last year. She thought it was awesome.

Rox Delaney said...

I'm LOLing, as usual, Theresa. But I'm more like Pat. I don't find cooking a thrill. It's a necessity. Like Joan, I spent time providing meals throughout harvest, plus driving the wheat truck to the elevator. I was also expected to have a decent supper for the six of us on the table each day of the year, plus a real meal on Sundays. Fried chicken and the works or pot roast. If I lived alone, I'd be snacking throughout the day. I like to eat when I'm hungry, not by the clock, and it doesn't take much more than a bowl of cereal to get me through the day, until later. By the way, I rarely fry chicken now. ;)

A formal bow to those of you who enjoy cooking. And love the Thanksgiving story! Nuts and fruit? Blah. Give me ice cream!

Becky A said...

Theresa, I love your take on the first Thanksgiving celebration. It kind of reminds me of my last. It shall forever be known to me as the pumpkin pie debacle.
Every year I bring pumpkin pies to the family dinner along with an assortment of other things. This year I rebelled. I put my oldest son in charge of the pies. He's a good cook so I thought it was a smart move. Not! He neglected that little thing called; instructions. So, we had Thanksgiving with no pie. Of ANY kind. What a bummer!
I had decided to bake my own, and eat them both-hehehehe, right before I broke my arm. That'll teach me to be a selfish glutton! My Mom finally took pity on me and baked me a pie the end of January. My sister objected. She only got a piece or two. I got a whole pie!