Those were big family gatherings that included extended relatives and they were very formal affairs.
These days, though, it’s usually just my parents, us and my brother and his family, which means it’s a lot like a Sunday family dinner. Because of that, it has gotten a bit more casual. Although my sense of nostalgia wants to relive those Thanksgivings of my childhood, the practical adult in me is very thankful for more casual gatherings that allow for dressy jeans and laughs instead of tears when some minor kitchen disaster occurs.
We go to my parents’ house so my mom handles the lion’s share of duties, including setting the table. But if I were setting the table, I’d want it to be special but reflect the casualness of what our holidays have become. No flower arrangement ordered a week in advance. Just pretty linens, a low centerpiece or series of small centerpieces (I hate when I can’t see the people on the other side of the table), and lots of room for all the food.
I love the feel of this table, even if it’s not particularly Thanksgiving-y. I don’t know what the New York Times thing is but let’s pretend that’s a mini pumpkin or something, OK?
And I like this one too, although even more pared down because you have to have a place to put the turkey platter!
Casual is the way to go. We all wear jeans, sweaters and relax at Thanksgiving. It's usually still warm enough that the kids are outside and the men are hovered over the fryer for the deep fried turkey (I also make a roasted turkey too). No matter which way you celebrate, have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
Have to admit that I still miss the dressing up from the old days. This year I decided to wear a black jersey dress with French terry inside so I looked good but it felt like jammies. Have you looked at my gingerbread recipe on the blog? It uses chopped up prunes cooked in brandy with minced ginger root. The prunes are not really discernible in the end but they add moisture. I'd consider currants, prunes, dried cherries or cranberries if you don't like raisins.
I did end up making the gingerbread cupcakes and they were really good. I did do the raisins and it was just fine … they didn't bother me at all. I did check out your gingerbread recipe; sounds very interesting!
Did you make the apple/cranberry pie? If so, how was it?
I did and it was delicious! I also made a regular apple pie and everyone greatly preferred this one. I think the ginger in it just brightened it up a little. I did it as a regular pie, not the big slab pie. I'd definitely make it again.