Well, Thanksgiving has become an even more baroque ordeal. First, Gary has committed to fresh free-range turkeys (even though that just means the turkeys, in exchange for not being in pens, are de-clawed and de-beaked so they don't peck the other three-dollar-a-pound turkeys to death at home on the range.) We pick the turkeys up today, Tuesday. On Thursday I make the smaller test turkey for my Mom, and on Friday I make the glorious gender-affirming turkey for the S______s.
Then Gary woke up today and said, "I read on the Internet that you can't keep a thawed turkey in the refrigerator for more than two days. That means my family will get salmonella if we [sic] cook the turkey on Friday before we go over."
"Okay," I shrugged, because I AM CAPABLE OF DEALING WITH PROBLEMS INSTEAD OF JUST IDENTIFYING THEM, "We'll cook it Thursday along with Mom's, then carve it, then put it in the fridge and just pour hot turkey broth over it Friday."
"No," he pouted, "I want to cook it Friday. Why don't you call the butcher to see if it's okay to cook it Friday?"
Because I am not the insane one, I thought, so I just dialed the butcher and handed the phone to Gary. Then, I hid, because I didn't want to know the answer.
Gary came and found me hiding. "It's okay!" he gobbled, "The butcher put me on hold, and three butchers discussed it, and they all agreed it will be fine if we cook it by Friday."
"Yeah, so we're fine." Big smiles.
"What does that mean, by Friday? By Friday at midnight? By close of business Friday?"
"What - well - what if we cook it starting at 2 a.m. Friday morning, then it will cook while we sleep, then it can just sit out on the counter until we take it over?"
"Yeah, that won't cause salmonella."
Gary wailed, "Well, what are we supposed to do?"
We debated through the kitchen, then in the bedroom, and finally in the bathroom I said, "Your insane family doesn't even like to see that it looks like a bird. We are cooking it Thursday, carving it, and delivering it Friday. If YOU want something that looks like a turkey, then we can get a frozen turkey today, let it thaw in the fridge, and cook it Friday. Then we can even do a taste test, pick the best parts from all three turkeys and serve just those parts."
"Frankenturkey!" Gary exclaimed, delighted. This plan pleased him so much he began planning how we can purge the fridge to fit three turkeys in it. The he began flossing his teeth and grousing about how the butcher probably didn't care if we got salmonella. "Ha," he mimicked the butcher, "That's not salmonella, that's just the flu!"
"Bird flu" I joked happily. Then, of course we froze, horrified by the realization we were stupid enough to buy a fresh turkey in this, the one year no one is going to be eating fresh poultry. Of course the in-laws aren't going to touch a fresh turkey in this the year of the bird flu. Then Gary doubled over laughing, naked, with floss hanging between his teeth.
So here's the plan. Today, two fresh turkeys (at three Gary Bucks per pound) and one frozen turkey (at .49 Ellen Bucks per pound) will be bought. Thursday, Turkey Day, will be a massive turkey processing day. Freshly cooked fresh Turkey will be distributed to my mom. Frozen turkey will thaw. Friday, frozen turkey will cook (and I think I might even call Wilma at six a.m. to see what her special turkey technique is, because I have so totally ceased to care.) Then fresh turkey will be reheated with broth, frozen turkey will look glorious and we will ride to the S_______s for a big turkey tasting. Then all the remains go back with us, to live in our freezer for God knows not a second longer than six months. I told Gary that if he even thinks of deciding to stop eating his daily turkey sandwich I will become impatient with him and kill him.