First off, let me state I like Thanksgiving at my in-laws. I like the way my mother-in-law cooks a turkey, and I like cooking nothing but green bean casserole.
That SAID, if I were to host a Thanksgiving dinner there would be some changes made.
1. Drinking. There would be drinking. All drinks would taste like caramel apple spiced hard cider or Irish coffee.
2. China. We would not eat off paper plates, we would eat off mis-matched thrift store china that we would then throw away.
3. Turkey. A fresh Amish turkey, never frozen, cooked long and slow. Also, jellied cranberry sauce, dressing and stuffing, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy, and perhaps yams. No sweet potato casseroles. I'm off sweet potatoes. I just made a vat of "fall root vegetable" soup, which sounded good until we ate some. ("Fall hot baby food" soup, more like it.)
4. Dessert. Okay, pies, but not fruit pies, and not cream pies. Cake pies. CAKE pies. Essentially, you make a deep dish pie crust, and then a lot of flat crusts. Then you bake a layer cake, and use chocolate frosting to cement the bottom layer to the deep crust, then you alternate a thin layer of frosting, a layer of flat pie crust, a thin layer of frosting, a layer of cake, and continue. Then you put some chewy cream cheese ganache over it all and press pecans into the sides. Serve with creme fraiche.
5. More dessert. Carrot cake. Pecan pie. Apple spice cake.
6. No pumpkin pie. Bleah. Hate pumpkin pie. It's a pie made of a vegetable. And don't throw carrot cake back in my face. Pumpkin pie is like carrot pie. Beet pie. Zucchini pie.
7. So after dinner we would immediately freeze the turkey carcass for six months later when we say "how long has this been in the deep freeze? Better throw it out."
Granted, this is my fantasy Thanksgiving, but to accommodate my needs I had to dismiss Gary's desires (pumpkin pie and whipped cream sprayed directly into his mouth). Too bad. He can eat grape tomatoes and Southwest Ranch dip, which is what he's eaten for three days since the root vegetable soup was rejected and he told me tonight that my latest casserole tasted like raw chicken skin.