Friday, October 08, 2010

canadian thanksgiving: let's talk turkey.

For all of my friends south of the border, this weekend is Canadian Thanksgiving (up here in Canada we like to space our turkey out a bit more than you yanks).  This year Scott and I are hosting Thanksgiving at our house.  It will be a small group - Nana, Bumpa and the Carefoot Crew.  I have never cooked an entire Thanksgiving/Christmas meal unsupervised, so I'm a bit stressed out.  Add to that, we want to make it really special for Scott's mom, for obvious reasons.    We will do our best to make it a joyous occasion, but the elephant in the room is that we don't know if this will be our last Thanksgiving with Lorraine.  It seems this dark cloud looms over every special occasion we have now but none of us ever talk about it openly.

My plan for cooking this meal and not getting totally stressed out is to space the preparation out (and consume plenty of wine).  On Saturday morning I'll make the stuffing (with my mom on auto dial - in lieu of wine - should I need any advice).  She'll be doing Thanksgiving prep as well, just out on the west coast.  It's comforting knowing that she is going to be making the same dishes as me, even if we can't be together for Thanksgiving this year.  I'll cook the turkey on Sunday, and the mashed potatoes, gravy and whatever green veg we throw in for good measure aren't anything to sweat about and can be prepared on Sunday as well.  Dessert will be covered off with a Chudleigh's apple pie and Cobs mincemeat tarts.  I think I'll skip the cranberry sauce as it doesn't seem to be something any of us really enjoy.  Hey - it's actually not that stressful now that I've planned it out a bit!

Here is my mom's Traditional Sausage Stuffing recipe:

2 lbs ground pork sausage
2 tsp dried sage
2 tsp dried savory
2 tbsp butter
2 large onions
2 large stalks celery chopped
1/3 cup fresh parsley chopped
6 to 8 cups bread cubes
Hot water or stock

Cook ground pork over medium heat, stirring until all traces of pink disappear.  Stir in sage and savory.  Drain and place in large mixing bowl.

Melt butter in another skillet.  Sauté onion, celery and parsley until golden.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Add vegetable mixture and bread cubes to sausage meat; stir well; moistened with enough hot water to make it dry or moist as desired.

Using ice cream scoop, spoon stuffing into turkey cavity allowing room for stuffing to expand during roasting.

When turkey comes out of oven remove stuffing.  Makes enough for a 22 lb turkey.

If cooking separate from turkey - bake covered at 350 degrees F for 45 - 60 minutes.


  1. Anonymous12:31 p.m.

    Just to be clear, that is not Kat's mom in the photo (turkey or woman).mb

  2. my new favourite quote that aptly applies to a holiday meal: "Stressed spelled backwards is Desserts!" Enjoy.

  3. I like that - also, vodka spelled backwards is akdov!

  4. Anonymous4:25 p.m.

    mmm... vodka. Oh, yes, and turkey is good too.
    You'll do a fine job I'm sure : ) (blind confidence, since I don't know you at all, but many people have been there...It'll be good)

    So sorry you have the elephant in the room. Bittersweet, But any day could be for any of us if we really wanted to make it that. So let it be what you make it. It is what it is, and it'll be a good holiday, great family time with everyone together. And vodka.