Monday, November 21, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Many American holidays have almost no meaning to us Americans other than a free day from school and/or work. Thanksgiving, however, is not one of those holidays! Last year J and I celebrated Thanksgiving by means of me preparing the meal and then inviting two of our Swedish friends over to enjoy it with us, then out to a Soundtrack of Our Lives concert. Some of you who may have been following me since day one may remember a post about that.

This year I decided to up the number of partakers from 4 to 6! Big increase, I know. J and I decided it would be nice to be able to share Thanksgiving with his family this year instead of with friends (if we had chosen friends, then how many guests would we have had? The number could have easily gotten high, and that would be too stressful for me!). So this past Friday and Saturday were big cooking days for me. On Friday I came home from school and baked my first ever pumpkin pie (used my mom's recipe :-) ) and it turned out great! I made the crust from scratch and everything. (Sidenote: could not find a premade crust in ICA. Why do Swedes have premade and presliced cakes without icing, but not premade dessert pie crusts? The food selections here continue to baffle me). While that was in the oven I proceeded to concoct a loaf of zucchini bread, of course with walnuts in it. That turned out great as well! But I've had some practice there, I've made it before. Lastly, although a Christmas-time treat, by J's request I made some buckeyes. Last Christmas I had made some as well and they were a hit with his family, as they were again this time around.

Saturday was the big day. We decided to go out to J's parents' house in Tibro and cook the dinner there as J's sister, her husband, and two small girls were in town visiting. It's strange cooking in someone else's kitchen, but it's much more spacious than my kitchen (although mine isn't bad!) and so it was less hectic than I thought it'd be. The menu: Turkey, homemade stuffing (in and out of the turkey), mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green beans almondine, salad, cranberry sauce, turkey juice gravy, and zucchini bread. Of course as dessert were the pumpkin pie with whipped cream and a buckeye or two.

Here is the end result. Thanks to J's sister for the picture!

All were able to enjoy! I was glad to have pulled it off for the second year in a row. I've only ever cooked these two Thanksgiving dinners (last year and this time around) all by myself, so I'm rather proud of it. I'm contemplating cooking a mini version just for J and I this coming weekend since we didn't keep any of the leftovers, J's parents' were excited to gobble them all up. ;-) But I would like to be able to enjoy some more of those Thanksgiving dishes. I'll be sure to post again if I decide to do so.

By the time we got home Saturday night it was around 11pm. I had gotten up at 7:45 that morning to do some laundry to be able to have something nice to wear to the dinner. So I was rather exhausted by the time we got home. Yesterday, Sunday, was the best lazy Sunday ever. I really needed it after all the work put into Thanksgiving. J and I had a couch potato day watching several movies that were playing on TV and playing against each other with a version of Scrabble on our smart phones. The game is called Wordfeud for anyone interested!

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