Preparing for a marathon is a lot of work. I have to get plenty of rest, be sure to hydrate and do appropriate stomach stretches to get me raring to go. Even more incredible, this marathon will be achieved wearing high-heeled knee-length leather boots while gracefully avoiding the effects of tryptophan. To what am I referring to? Thanksgiving.
This long run of eating requires fortitude, dedication and strength in order to properly navigate to the final mile of the dessert table.
For our annual feast, turkey may as well be a side dish along with my mom’s homemade cranberry sauce, roasted veggies with fried chickpeas and leeks, mandarin orange salad and broccoli slaw. My scratch-made cornbread, my brother’s garlic smashed potatoes, and my grandmother’s stuffing also make the menu. The rest of the meal includes my dad’s meat magic with brisket, steak, two kinds of sausage and peppers with meatballs, corned beef, pastrami, hard salami and hot dogs as well as mushroom soup with white truffle oil, butternut squash soup with chestnuts, couscous with peas, pignolia nuts and sesame oil, yams with pineapples and marshmallows and sweet potato pancakes with mango salsa. Just to name a few.
After a breather and a water break, we make our way into the cherry, apple, blueberry, lemon meringue and lime meringue pies, dig into some chocolate babka, brownies, pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, brownie cookies, black and whites and halvah and run through the finish line with some fresh fruit.
Then after the guests leave, we put on our comfy clothes and do it all over again. This is clearly no event for amateurs. This year the meal served 27 and we were still eating leftovers a week later. It makes me realize how much there is to be thankful for, like elastic waist bands and food-coma induced naps.