Skip to main content

Please Pass the Puddin'

Thus far in our married life routine of juggling family time, Scott and I developed a pretty awesome and efficient holiday routine - Thanksgiving with his clan, Christmas with mine.

It works because it boils down to two things: Thanksgiving is about food, which the Adams Family has down to a big ol' literal gravy-covered T, and Christmas is of course about all things red, green, and white with Santa and Baby Jesus guest-starring, the lot of which my Mother Margaret smothers and covers all over the damn place.

I love Thanksgiving at the in-laws because of the sheer number of them. Growing up, it was my parents and me, the only child, with widowed grandmothers and the occasional aunt, uncle and cousin thrown in the mix. I became used to the holidays being pretty intimate, but now that I have a wealth of in-laws, it's so fun to see all the personalities and the food preferences gel and collide. This year, the in-laws hosted at the family house at Sullivan's Island, South Carolina, a wonderful sprawling "Goat House" that is best suited at full and boisterous capacity - and it was.



The Goat House

The night before Thanksgiving, we sat down at a long table and gobbled down at least 10 pounds of fresh boiled shrimp, red rice, and biscuits. Some dipped their shrimp in drawn butter, while others preferred cocktail sauce, but everyone agreed that these were the sweetest shrimp anyone had enjoyed in a good long while.

Scott and I scored two pounds to take home by "volunteering" to behead the 15 pounds of shrimp - these are not the shrimp commonly found in your grocer's case. These had the eyes and all, so we had to pinch and twist at their little shrimp "necks" and pull those off, exposing what's known as the "head salad." I don't know what salad it's named for, but it's none that I want to eat anytime soon.

While the adults worked their magic in the kitchen, we nibbled on some snacks, as Adams Dinner Time usually strikes past 7 pm or so. Behold the amazing Boiled Peanuts - the informal Snack o' The South.


Boiled Peanuts at the bar

No, you don't eat them with a spoon, as a college friend raised in Michigan once asked. And while you're at it, please fix yourself a drink. You'll always find the bar fully stocked.





After a rousing game of "Playing Ping Pong with a Paddle in One Hand and a Fresh Cocktail in the Other," we all adjourned to the table, as decorated below:



The Thanksgiving meal included:
Turkey
Butter Beans
Grilled NY Strip
White Rice
Cornbread Stuffing
Corn Pudding
Sweet Potato Casserole
Turkey Gravy
Beef Gravy
Relish Tray, with pickles, olives, Chow Chow (if you're not Southern, Google it) and Artichoke Relish
Biscuits

Deserts offered were Apple Dapple cake (Caramel. Apples. Bliss.), Pumpkin Pie, and Banana Pudding.

Now, when you normally think of Thanksgiving Dinner conversation, one might consider a rundown of the year's milestones, the blessings and wishes/trials and tribulations of those gathered around the table.

Or, if you're with my in-laws, a rather perplexing discussion of what a White Owl is with a heaping side of conversation on sexual orientation as defined by the southern sweet treat of Banana Pudding. To quote the third-eldest uncle, "He likes the banana more than the puddin'."

Good times, I do declare. I laughed so hard at dinner that breathing became a task, which actually could help burn the calories from all that gravy and sweet potato casserole I inhaled.

So, to recap, the must-haves for a thoroughly enjoyable Thanksgiving are:
- good food
- lively company
- sexually-charged dinner repartee
and last, but not least,
- Puddin'.

Comments

  1. GREAT recap of the event....
    with photos, no less!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Best Way to Keep Cannoli Fresh and Other Baltimore Stories

My mom and step-dad were up visiting for Thanksgiving and after gorging ourselves on turkey and the sites of D.C., I took them on a day-trip to Baltimore.

After a visit to my mom's favorite museum (she's a mosaic artist), we aimed for lunch at Rocket to Venus in Hampden. It was closed for lunch, but our trip up Charles St. wasn't for naught - we stumbled onto residents of 34th St. setting up their Christmas displays! This street is Christmas at its best, or worst, depending on your tolerance/interest in all things Christmas. Erin teases me for being a scrooge, but I have to admit, lights and what-not are nice at this cold and dark time of year.

After a brief walk through Hampden, we aimed for lunch at Kooper's Tavern in Fells Point. The tavern was most certainly open, with rowdy sports fans packing the bar and even spilling onto the sidewalk for fresh-shucked oysters. (My friend Gideon would have camped out right there for their Chincoteagues!) After some deliberati…

Adventures in Gardening

We're back with another edition of "Hey, we used to be bloggers." I am not so sure who reads blogs much anymore (hi Moms!) but hell, if e-newsletters are in again and the '90s "flatform" shoe is making a comeback, maybe we have a shot.

As I nurse a gin and tonic made of nothing but the finest (here's to you, cheap Chek tonic cans from the Mount Pleasant, SC Bi-Lo - sometimes you just buy things to get the job done, especially when you're en route to Vacation Weekend after a slight detour to fix a flat tire on I-26...), I'm mulling over what's happening so far in our garden plots. 
We went Tomato Crazy this year, planting 6+ mixed varieties in our raised beds that kinda-sorta get sufficient sunlight in our backyard, and 8 seedlings in one of our two Winterfield Community Garden plots. Hopefully we'll soon pick beautiful Red Delicious, San Marzano, Black Krim, Blue Gold Cherry, Brandywine, and a few "mystery" tomatoes, and I can …

Tea Time

Fall finally decided to show up here in Charlotte, NC this week.

Hoodies and sweaters were pulled out of closets, socks and slippers donned for the first time in months, and denim could be worn comfortably.

Oh denim. I've never understood people who wear jeans in Southern humidity. They're like sweaty straightjackets for your legs and torso. Skin was meant to breathe, y'all.

So with a chill in the air, one must make certain adjustments in all areas of life, from the closet to the kitchen. Gin & tonics are replaced with red wine. We buy apples and dried fruit for cereal instead of berries. And I trade daily cold drinks of seltzer for my favorite comfort of the cooler seasons - tea.

Scott & I share an affinity for tea, and we have our rituals. "Tea and Books and Bed" is a totally innocent affair that involves piling up with reading material and decaffeinated brews. You do have to watch Scott with tea - one drowsy moment can result in a messy spill, turning …