Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thanksgiving, Portland style

The harried hostess pouring filtered water for the masses.
The Thanksgiving Dinner countdown has begun, and like many modern families, we're blended. Which means we get to do this more than once.

Kirk and I have five kids all together--including two with partners. Counting siblings, significant others and close friends, we need something on par with a Google algorithm to figure out possible holiday dining combinations. So, being welcome to excess in all of its permutations, today we hosted a sort of Fakesgiving potluck. Most of the kids were here, and a few of their pets, too.

Such good sports. Aren't they?
Now, bear in mind that many of our kids are embracing restrictive diets of one sort or another. Vegan, gluten-free, food sensitivities. And then there's the elders who like to stick to low-glycemic fare. Some of us enjoy our meat. Others are fine with whatever, as long as the wine is flowing. I'm proud to say that our table was replete with foods from all of the new-fangled food groups. Bring on the soy-sausage! Enjoy the wheat-and-dairy-free eggplant "parm." Want pureed cauliflower in lieu of mashed potatoes? No problem!

Pass the vegan gluten-free brownies! Pour me some of that 2007 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir! Anyone for brined organic turkey? For the Chihuahuas we even had soy-, wheat-, and corn-free treats. And for those allergic to Chihuahuas we had Benedryl.

The food scrap compost bin is a big part of Thanksgiving this year.
And after everyone was satisfied and plump, we sent them packing with leftovers. On my stove now is the carcass, melting like a Wizard of Oz witch into a pot of simmering water, carrots and celery.

Kirk and I will be heading over the mountains and through the river on Wednesday for the Thanksgiving part 2, to bunk down with a group of friends who like to start each morning with a good breakfast porter and a side of bacon. 

How about you? How many 2011 Thanksgiving Dinners in your future?


  1. lovely.

    gorgeous table setting.

    we have only one planned dinner on thursday and another friday night. i will be bring desserts and that is all.

    we do have family who likes to call the day before thanksgiving and say, "we're thinking about having dinner around noon, are you guys available?"

    this year, i promise myself to say, "sorry." even if we are. last minute planners drive me up a wall.

  2. Keep strong, Amyg! Two is a good number when it comes to eat-a-thon weekend.

    I hear you with the last minute folk. They call themselves "spontaneous" right? When really, they're inconsiderate and arrogant. Repeat after me: "Wow, I wish we knew about this a week ago, we've made other plans."

  3. That looks wonderful! I hope you had a wonderful holiday.

  4. We only had one, and it featured a Tofurky. My husband's vegetarian and I'm vegan, yet it was my mother-in-law who most wanted to the Tofurky because it has become her tradition. So we laced that Tofurky pan with plenty of sweet potatoes, onions, and carrots and went to town. Reading about all your various food accommodations almost makes me feel better about our vegan fest (which involved one very, very understanding meat eater).

    I also may have eaten half a pan of stuffing and 3/4 of a vegan pumpkin pie, but that's neither here nor there.

  5. Just to clarify, the understanding meat eater came over for our vegan Thanksgiving dinner and was not actually a PART of our feast. Errr.

  6. Thanks for sharing that, Laura. After all, Thanksgiving was originally conceived as a way to share new foods, right? It's really great how creative folks have become with the big spread.

    Our second feast was a conglomerate of several families and some amazing new taste sensations, like rosemary/chipotle glazed nuts and green curry over rice. So good!


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