Saturday, November 28, 2009

Turkey One!

Shelley is a very talented cook. In an eleventh hour decision, she decided to prepare a traditional Thanksgiving feast. If you have ever tried to satiate a comfort food craving in a foreign country, you will appreciate that (in)availability of certain basic ingredients poses a rather large obstacle. Making sauce bases and combining the right seasoning takes a creative edge. As if that weren't obstacle enough, she prepared a complete spread (from shopping to serving) after work on Thursday afternoon. (Yeah, I run with superheros now.)

Shelley dressed Turkey One* with a sausage and green pepper stuffing...

Assistants Allison and Kristin providing backup to Chef Shelley

...while the guests nibbled on the standard crudité and ranch dip. (Try making ranch in South America, I dare ya.)

We dined on green bean casserole with a cream-of-mushroom-soup base and those crunchy breaded onions on top; roasted garlic mashed potatoes; and handmade blackberry relish (the avant garde cranberry substitute)--with everything made from scratch.

It was amazing.

And of course the company was great too!

Thanks a million, Shelley and Rafael, for hosting us for a memorable Thanksgiving Day!


*This was a little inside joke that I'll do my best to relay concisely, but humorously. A few weeks ago, Lisa, Ivan and I were having dinner at a churrascaria, drinking caipirinhas of course. Somehow the conversation lead to me, agitatedly, recounting my audacity at Sarah Palin's was-that-your-friend-there-in-the-woodchipper turkey trauma from last year. I had to brief my Catalan and Aussie friends on the concept behind the customary Turkey Pardon. I explained that typically the President offers the gift of life to the presidential which point my friends erupted in laughter.
Lisa and Ivan, in contemptuous unison: "Presidential Turkey?"
Ivan: "What do they call it? 'Turkey One?'"
And we all rolled about the table with tears streaming down our faces.

Anyway, Shelley made a Turkey Two too. Both of them were perfect.