Thanksgiving marks the one year anniversary of my blog. Last year I started things off by giving the menu for our 100-mile meal. That was an ambitious feast, rather too ambitious. (The crab stew really sent things over the top.) By the end of Thanksgiving day, I was exhausted from two solid days of cooking, and I hadn't had time to socialize with the people with whom I shared the meal. I knew that I couldn't do something like that again.
Happily, an alternative appeared: a friend of ours who had been joining us for Thanksgiving for years said she would be interested in co-hosting. And even though I've been putting on Thanksgiving dinners single-handedly for something like 25 years, I agreed to this idea. That's how tired I'd gotten! She and I have been working out the details over this past year. Roughly speaking, we're each making half of the meal, with our guests bringing some extras.
It's been an exercise in letting go. Also, in grabbing back and then letting go all over again. At times, this has felt painful, as though I were losing something precious. At other times, I've been able to relax and see that I am gaining time and space, and maybe other things too.
All this "working well with others" includes the pig. He will definitely be a presence at the table. My co-host and one of the guests have told me that they've talked about the wild boar meal they will be eating for Thanksgiving, and they are getting a positive, even envious, response from their friends. I am really looking forward to sharing the pig.
We're having wild boar pâté along with a seasonal vegetable and fruit plate as appetizers. The main dishes will be wild boar ribs (my contribution) and a roast chicken with stuffing (my co-host's). We are both gardeners, and so from our gardens we'll have chard, cauliflower, and potatoes (mashed). We'll also have sweet potatoes, a pomegranate relish, and a green salad. For dessert, we'll be having an apple crisp and a pumpkin pie. This year I grew Long Island Cheese Squash for their reputed excellence. (Back in August, I was worried that I wouldn't have enough squash for Thanksgiving pie, but the pollination intervention did the trick!) So, the extra-long table (thanks to Iris's ingenuity!) will groan with bounty, as you can see.
This Thanksgiving, I'm thankful for so many things, a list that is too long to go into here. But let me simply say that one thing I am deeply thankful for is that I won't be sitting down to the Thanksgiving table all tuckered out.