Thanksgiving was fantastico. The turkeys turned out great even though they took an extra hour − a result of my opening the oven to baste too many times, I suppose. Thankfully, the oven cooperated and didn't "go off" during the turkey roasting as it did FOUR! times the day before while I was baking the cheesecake and pumpkin pie − hence the charring on the tops of the desserts.
Most of the guests were an hour late as well, so that was a lucky coincidence. Apparently El Jefe has lectured them about 'American time' for parties so many times that they are usually right here right on the dot. We had twelve people − exactly the number that comfortably fit around our dining room table with all the leaves − another lucky coincidence. In Honduras, you never really know if someone (or more than one) extra will show up.
The 100-year-old antique china came out of hiding for the occasion, too. I just happen to have a service for 12 más o menos (more or less). The family was incredulous that it could be that old.
I don't think I've ever been thanked and complimented so many times. We talked a little about the Thanksgiving tradition. They got right into the American tradition and ate until they could eat no more. This year, they even liked the cranberry sauce and stuffing! I actually ran out of stuffing. All but the youngest one 'cleaned their plates' and almost everyone sampled two or three desserts. We also did the wish thing with the wishbones and everyone laughed at that.
Brother-in-law M wanted to know, "Who decreed Thanksgiving?" which I thought was an odd question, as if someone sometime had decreed that we must give thanks. He seemed impressed with the idea that Thanksgiving was celebrated before there even was a United States of America or a government to decree it, and even more so that it was celebrated with the indios (indians) to give thanks for the harvest.
Photo: Pumpkin praline cheesecake
After dinner conversation included corruption, my favorite topic! Que lastima (what a shame) that I was too busy doing woman's work to participate, but if you want to know the truth, the women usually don't get involved with those kind of topics, so maybe it was for the best. I did hear brother-in-law J (who has been around the world for the past 10 years as a pilot on a cruise ship) say that he thinks that corruption has gotten worse in Honduras than anywhere he has been.
As I'm sure most of you guessed the other day, we didn't need two turkeys. Oh, well. We gave half a turkey to my sister-in-law B and still have about half a turkey leftover. I'm debating what to do with the leftovers besides my favorite: cold turkey sandwiches. I also gave one of the carcasses to B for soup. ;-) I debated long and hard about offering it. It does make a great broth but on the other hand, offering someone the bones is kind of weird and could be taken the wrong way!
El Jefe is still complaining about these turkey prices! But there are many more meals to be had, so it's really not like we spent L.1,270 on one meal (US $67!). Besides, it's only once a year, unless we do it again for Christmas. :-D
B brought me a present. I've wanted an orange hibiscus for a long time and have gotten cuttings from her plant and others but hadn't had any success in rooting them. I mentioned to her a couple of months ago that I wanted one, so she said she would root it for me. I looks great. I just hope that I don't kill it.
I forgot to ask B about teaching me to make tamales but now I have an idea to get her over so she can teach me to make tamales while I teach her to make bread. Her family loves my bread and El Jefe says that she wants to learn how to make it.
The day after Thanksgiving, I could hardly move. My back was killing me! I guess from being on my feet for most of three long days, not to mention scrubbing floors on my hands and knees. I'm feeling better today. All the hard work was worth it because we all had a very nice time.
Photo: Blueberry-almond cake with cream cheese frosting