November 21, 2007

Panic time

Two days before Thanksgiving,
and all through the house,
no turkey, no pumpkin,
and no cranberry souse.

Ha, ha, ha! That's my lame attempt at poetry.

homemade breadWe're having the BIG family over for a traditional American-style Thanksgiving dinner. Last week none of the stores had turkeys. We meant to go shopping last weekend, but....I don't know what happened. Procrastination, I guess. We (me in particular) are famous for it. Then Monday slipped away, too. I made homemade bread and stuck it in the freezer but that was about it.

So yesterday, while I was slaving away cleaning house, El Jefe went shopping with my second grocery list. 'Second' grocery list? The puppies ate the first one.

pumpkinIt was actually a pared down list as I was trying to concentrate on the basics and the things that his family likes. For example, the first year that I made Thanksgiving dinner for them, some of the family only ate turkey and pushed everything else around the plate like it was poison. In fact, one nephew leaned over and told me if he had to eat one more bite of sweet potatoes, he was going to vomit. Ah! Just what a cook wants to hear.

They didn't seem to like the pumpkin pie so much, so I'm making a pumpkin cheesecake for them and a pumpkin pie for us.

Soon after he left, El Jefe called to tell me that the first store only had 10 pound turkeys. Ten pound turkeys?! I didn't even know they came that small. My three brothers-in-law could demolish a 10 pound turkey by themselves.

Canned pumpkin? What is that?

Stuffing mix? He found 6 oz. Stove Top and that was it. Okay, no problem, I can toast and cube the bread myself.

Butternut squash? Nope. (I had planned to make a Butternut Squash soup that is to die for − I'll give you the recipe sometime.) Well, I always make too much food anyway. No soup entrada.

Cranberry sauce? What is that?

Chicken broth? Nope.

Graham cracker crusts...or graham cracker crust mix...or plain graham crackers? No one had a clue what or where they were, even though I'll bet $100 that I see one or all of these the next time I go to the store because I HAVE seen them in the stores many times. Oh well, scratch the key lime pie. I had three backup desserts in mind, depending upon what ingredients were available.

Real butter? One clerk suggested that a package of cheddar cheese might work instead. Come on! Mantequilla amarilla is Spanish for real butter and the clerks don't know what it is? How about a little training here? It's not like I'm asking for pâté de foie gras or something exotic!

With every phone call, and there were many, I continued to adjust the menu. After that last call suggesting that I make pie crust with cheddar cheese, as I sat dejected after hanging up, I seriously considered throwing my phone through the window.

turkeysAfter hitting every store in town and coming home with frost-bitten fingers from searching the piles of turkeys, El Jefe came home with a 17-pound turkey, the largest in La Ceiba. We looked at it, thinking " may be enough, but then we wouldn't have leftovers for turkey sandwiches." So he went back and bought another small turkey as well.

Gotta go! Today I'm making the desserts and finishing cleaning the house. Wish me luck!

By the way, you could eat off my kitchen floor.

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