Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Turkey Day!

To all our US friends, have a greeat Thanksgiving!

But this year I shall not be as jealous as for the first time in over a decade I will attend a real home made Thanksgiving in Caracas instead of the now lousy dinner at Lee Hamilton where they do not even bother to whip somewhat the canned cranberries to remove at least the imprint of the can.....  I shudder at what new low they will descend this year with the excuse of "escasez" and the irrepressible will of Venezuelans with money to be fashionable and put up with a pretend Thanksgiving feast.  Still, we all have to work tomorrow and Thanksgiving will be a dinner date and not a mid afternoon gastronomic saturnalia.  Friday morning we'll be a little bit heavy to head back to work.  And since I am driving, that I can do few things besides suggesting menus and recipes (I am the one with "experience" and in charge of the speech), my job is bringing wine.  What do you think?  Good Merlot is the best able to take care of the Turkey Day variety?  Or maybe Argentinian Malbec?


  1. Happy Thanksgiving to you Daniel and to other readers who celebrate it.

    I have been cooking non -stop all day.some kids are flying in, and some are driving . We will be 24 in all,at a sit down dinner at my mother's home.Food will be a combination of traditional with a few Venezuelan and Belarusan accents I just finished the last desert, a pumpkin crumble cake which I can't eat as I am diabetic, but as giving without expecting is the name of the game,it's all just fine.

    PS I hate canned cranberry sauce well....i always make the fresh whole cranberry sauce, and maybe a cranberry chutney as well.

    The old southern pickles traditionally eaten at Thanksgiving( like the peaches and watermelon ones) have lost favor, but the sweet potato souffles are still a hit!

  2. Boludo Tejano4:09 AM

    Having just tried a $3 bottle of Argentine Malbec today, I would recommend it.

    Through force of habit- or nostalgia- my favorites are Salta whites, but they are not as easy to come by around here. Salta whites go well w turkey.

  3. Stephanie6:38 AM

    Happy Thanksgiving! Go with some Merlot. That is usually what we have. Preferably blackberry. I don't mind the canned cranberry sauce as it will be mixed in my dressing (stuffing) anyhow.

  4. Anonymous10:47 AM

    Pomar Frizzante?
    Sorry. Happy Thanksgiving.

  5. My extended family and friends often ended up eating at 11 a.m. Because of the special meaning the day had, which of course is the start of deer season. Opening and cleaning the camp Thursday afternoon, in the field at 0400 Friday.

  6. Anonymous12:43 PM

    Can you tolerate some history on a day like this?

    I first came across the Pilgrim Fathers' memorial in a town called Immingham, in eatern England, to where I was once sent by my company for bad behaviour.

    The memorial marks the site of the 1608 departure of the Pilgrim Fathers to Holland. They were aboard a vessel on the Humber estuary. The weather was bad and the wives asked to be put ashore for the night. Unfortunately news of this group reached the authorities who proceeded to come to Immingham and arrest the dessenters. On hearing this, the Captain of the vessel insisted on sailing away before the wives and children could embark. Hence the wives and children were arrested and jailed. Word of this spread throughout the country and very soon a popular protest against this violation of human rights arose. Due to this popular feeling the wives and children were released and allowed to join their husbands and Fathers in Holland. From Holland they eventually sailed to Southampton and finally Plymouth, from where history records the sailings of the Mayflower. I'm not sure if the turkeys were to celebrate getting away from bloody Immingham and its bad weather, or for surviving the equally bad weather of Cape Cod. Either way, I sympathise with the Founding Fathers. It was certainly worth a turkey.

    A Tory boy.

  7. 2003 Clos du Bois, as advertised by your little bro, the Turkey Master! Joyeux thanksgiving, notre fete preferee ici aux USA, pour plusieurs raisons, sauf l'infernale machine capitaliste de l'inafame "black friday". CI.

  8. Anon:

    Thanksgiving in North America had originated from a mix of European and Native traditions.[1] Typically in Europe, festivals were held before and after the harvest cycles to give thanks for a good harvest, and to rejoice together after much hard work with the rest of the community.[1] At the time, Native Americans had also celebrated the end of a harvest season.[1] When Europeans first arrived to the Americas, they brought with them their own harvest festival traditions from Europe, celebrating their safe voyage, peace and good harvest."

    "In the United States, the modern Thanksgiving holiday tradition traces its origins to a 1621 celebration at Plymouth in present-day Massachusetts. There is also evidence for an earlier celebration on the continent by Spanish explorers in Texas at San Elizario in 1598, as well as thanksgiving feasts in the Virginia Colony.[7] The initial thanksgiving observance at Virginia in 1619 was prompted by the colonists' leaders on the anniversary of the settlement.[8] The 1621 Plymouth feast and thanksgiving was prompted by a good harvest. In later years, the tradition was continued by civil leaders such as Governor Bradford who planned a thanksgiving celebration and fast in 1623.[9][10][11] While initially, the Plymouth colony did not have enough food to feed half of the 102 colonists, the Wampanoag Native Americans helped the Pilgrims by providing seeds and teaching them to fish. The practice of holding an annual harvest festival like this did not become a regular affair in New England until the late 1660s.[12]
    According to historian Jeremy Bangs, director of the Leiden American Pilgrim Museum, the Pilgrims may have been influenced by watching the annual services of Thanksgiving for the relief of the siege of Leiden in 1574, while they were staying in Leiden.[13]"

    The basic history of ThanksGiving day is As Good as it Gets, in my humble opinion, in today's capitalistic, plastic days. Hell, I'm not not looking forward at all for Santa Claus a month later, another fake holiday, ("holy" depending on your religious standards) .. but i like thanksgiving here: good food, friends and family, and sometimes, people get to actually Reflect, and give Honest thanks for whatever we have. It's a good time for introspection, and celebration of the harvest. And a good chance for self improvement going forward. A votre sante! CI.

  9. Sledge,I am in no way criticizing you, I don't know you from Adam but I take the time to bring up a pet peeve of mine that you reminded me of.

    If we are truly non- materialists then we realize that black Friday is and can only be a state of mind in any real sense.

    I have seen blackness in the hearts of the who scream materialism is evil! and I have seen " materialist" full of light and love.

    The material world is part of creation, and creativity is a spiritual quality.

    I have never been to black Friday because I never need anything enough to care about it....but I would never criticize those who do, without knowing their reasons and the entirety of their beings.

    Thanksgiving includes the material as well.....we eat far more than we should ....but hopefully if we eat with detachment and presence it is a dedication to the spirit as well.
    Any Holiday can spiritualize the material as long as there is meaning.

  10. dear cochonette de feu, I just hate shopping malls and that aspect of this life. I think "black friday" should be Ilegal, and, most certainly, Lucifer himself, and all of his little kiddos, have a hand on it. You seem to be a poetic, spiritual person.. the more separation we can achieve from such plastic, material celebrations -- as black friday (which kills the history of the pilgrims the day before, imo) the better.

  11. Sledge, Certainly there are many who just want to accumulate...true...but then I know there are others who need a warm coat for a kid.

    In any case...we can both agree, that without guidance from the spirit within, nothing much is meaningful, and in today's society it is getting harder and harder to be guided by spirit..

    Be Well, and Happy Thanksgiving

  12. Thanks Firepiguette, heading over to my sister's house, just with a little bottle of wine from Chile, Can't complain about the weather lately in Miami, it's been great, 7o's blues skies.. have a good one!

  13. Daniel, a little late for this year, but I can say from experience, a good Malbec goes very nicely with turkey and stuffing. Seems to balance the grasa well.

    I hope you enjoyed the meal. It's hard for me to imagine a year without a proper Thanksgiving meal. It hasn't always come on the exact day, but I make sure to have one sometime close whenever I am overseas. In fact, I'll be the one cooking the turkey tomorrow.

  14. Anonymous11:05 PM

    Wine for the bird:
    A dry riesling
    Sauvignon blanc
    Pinot noir
    Most Malbecs are a tad too robust, in my opinion, for the bird.

    Pelao Manrique

  15. I'm too late for the gathering, but just in case the turkey is repeated, I'd agree with PM on the Malbec. Too robust; better with red meats. I loved the Frizzante contribution! That would have been very festive.

    Thank you for the history lessons, Anon and Sledge. You may be interested in the fact that Cdn Thanksgiving falls on the 2nd MOnday in October.


Comments policy:

1) Comments are moderated after the sixth day of publication. It may take up to a day or two for your note to appear then.

2) Your post will appear if you follow the basic polite rules of discourse. I will be ruthless in erasing, as well as those who replied to any off rule comment.