Wednesday, November 18

A THANKSGIVING TALE...

One year, feeling a bit more Martha Stewart than usual,I volunteered to host the thanksgiving meal. My mom, sisters, nieces, nephews were all present (yes, all in my 750 sq. ft. cottage!) and the sounds of laughter and anticipation filled the air as I worked busily in the kitchen.




Our meal was to begin at 2 pm...and around 12 noon I started hearing murmurings in the living room..."Why can't I smell the turkey? That's half the fun of Thanksgiving is smelling the turkey..." "What about the pumpkin pie? Do you smell any pumpkin pie?" "She DID say she was making turkey and all the fixings, right?"

As the concern began to reach its zenith, I proudly announced "Dinner's ready!" The starving troops began making their way to the table...as they did so, my husband noted that the turkey didn't look quite as brown in the bag as he had expected. "Oh, it's done" I assured him. "Just wait til you cut open the browning bag and smell it!" As he cut open the bag, no glorious smell came wafting forth. In fact...he said, "Hmmmm." Concerned, my mom and sisters looked at him then looked at me quizically..."what's the matter?" "Uh....I don't think it's done." "What do you mean it's not done? The directions said 2 hours..." "Well, it's still very pink right here...and...ewwwwwwwwww. It's frozen on the inside..." "Frozen?! That's impossible...look."



I quickly grabbed the cookbook and showed him, "Cook turkey in microwave for 2 hours on high..." He said, "YOU TRIED COOKING A TURKEY IN THE MICROWAVE?" "Yes." I replied mousily. "It SAID..." trying to justify my actions, "That cooking in a brown-n-bag 'assures your turkey will be golden brown'"... The turkey had an unnatural shape...more like a cube than a turkey. The bird was apparently a little large for the microwave and I had to kind of "stuff it" in and slam the door closed. "Well, at least there's dressing, that should be done..." someone said with false hope..."Oh yes, I put the dressing in it..." As I got a spoon and began to scoop out the completely uncooked dressing, a piece of paper came out..."What's this?" I asked....

"The giblets" my mom replied. "You didn't take out the giblets?" "Take them out...from where?" She stuck her hand in and pulled out a bag of frozen meat...I stared in horror as she took the neck and other "body parts" out of the other end of the bird. "That's just disgusting" I say...almost in tears.

"Fine...I'll just put it in the oven for a few minutes and let it get brown"




"BROWN?! It needs to COOK!" 

Chagrined, I replied, "Well, okay, while it's cooking, why don't we go ahead and have dessert? Pumpkin pie anyone?" I proudly remove the whip cream covered pie from the refrigerator and began slicing. Well, TRYING to slice. It actually ended up being more of a dipping motion. "Hmmmm" I said. "It didn't set up in the frig..." "My mom said, "SET UP?!?" "Well, yeah...isn't that how you make the pie all firm and stuff?" Stifled gales of laughter began emanating from the group..."WHAT? You didn't COOK it?" "Well, YES I COOKED IT...the pie crust...look!" I showed them proudly the golden edged pie crust...however it was little consolation for the gooey orange mush that was now oozing over everyone's plates.




Realizing something had gone terribly, terribly wrong, I said quickly, "The can SAID "READY TO EAT PUMPKIN" Gales of laughter. "What?!" I look around and see everyone's disappointment now fading into hysteria..."Look" I show them the can, so as not to be made out to be a liar...I read aloud: "Libby's, Libby's Libby's READY TO EAT PUMPKIN." "AND there was NO recipe on the inside of the label...how was I to know?!"

Suddenly we realized we were all standing in water..."What the...????" The water pipe under the sink burst and water was leaking all over everything..." Suddenly visions of Ziggy are dancing in my head...

The story of the "ready to eat pumpkin" and the "cubicle turkey" is now told annually at each Thanksgiving. And when I ask the family what I can bring...everyone says in unison, "THE DRINKS!"



Grateful for a family with a sense of humor...
Paula Clare

10 comments:

Pixie said...

That was priceless!

One year, the element went out in our oven and we had to microwave the turkey.

Last year, on Christmas day, the element went out in the oven and somehow the electrical current was then running thru the house and the water pipes were electrified (we are not properly grounded in our ancient old house)...I got zapped with a jolt when I was brushing my teeth. Good thing I was out of the tub at that point!

Creative Breathing said...

Paula Clare, This is such a hysterical story! I love it! It's so me! Thank goodness I'm not alone in my cluelessness! I am so excited to tell you I made a chunky Christmas book! Oh my gosh your example helped me get the idea of what to do. I'm so happy with the finished project, already looking forward to another! Would you like me to return your book with your tags? It is just so wonderful, I can't imagine your giving it away. I'm afraid the pages are a little more worn from all my thumbing! This is a very loved book! Let me know, and a very Happy Thanksgiving to you! Elizabeth

Angela said...

Oh Heavens~ This is hilarious!!! And SO you :) Is this why you are called a "starving artist"?? *chuckle* So...what or should I say where did you end up eating?? I'm picturing a scene similar to that of "A Christmas Story" with you and all the fam..sitting at the local chinese resturant. FA RAH RAH RAH RAH :)

She'sSewPretty said...

Oh no! You didn't! Oh my gosh. I'll bet you've been the topic of many a tale about Thanksgiving!! Too, too funny! There's one good thing about this...you only have to bring the drinks and I have to bring a ham, and waldorf salad and sweet potatoes, etc....

Paula Clare said...

Thanks so much for all your comments...I confess I forgot yet another juicy detail...I decided this same year to make home made bread...again, following the package instructions: "Dissolve one package of yeast in warm water". I did so and then couldn't figure out how to get the foil/paper out of the water/yeast mixture to add it to the flour! My sisters said it was like watching the three stooges stuff a turkey...."Separate two eggs"...ha!

Anonymous said...

Dear Paula, I ran across your blog while trying to find information on microwaving a turkey. My stove went out this summer and I cannot afford to replace it. I only cook now on my George Foreman grill and microwave. I am a widow so it's no big deal. But an unknowing friend gave me a turkey. I am short of money, so I need to try to cook it. However, I wanted to share my Thanksgiving disaster story. I had been cooking very successful dinners and entertaining up to this time. ?But a few years ago, my Pastor and Pastor's wife offered me to spend Thanksgiving dinner with them and their other guests. I asked what I could bring, and was asked to bring either a ham or turkey. We decided on the turkey. I did my usual routine in preparing the turkey, but I looked for the giblet package and couldn't find it. I reached inside and washed the turkey inside and out before cooking. After the preparing, roasting, and arriving at the dinner, they start to carve the turkey and out pops the "baked in" giblet bag. I was mortified!!!! So of course, they have never asked me to bring anything else to any function. Hahaha! But life goes on.... Thanks for your wonderful story. I will try to see what I can do with the microwave this year! Haha! Best wishes to you Paula for a wonderful holiday season. God bless you, Karen (cash4you2spend2day@netzero.com)

Paula Clare said...

Hi Karen,
OH NO! You are seriously reduced to using a microwave for your turkey? You MUST implore a friend for the use of her oven...truly...I have NO HOPE that a microwave cooked bird would EVER replace the slow, lingering fires of a regular gas (or electric) oven! Sometimes Kroger or other stores will also cook the turkey for you...you MUST be creative in thinking but by NO MEANS succumb to the false hope of a golden brown microwave turkey!

Cindy said...

Paula this is hilarious!Thank you so much for linky this over at Rick-Rack..love it.
You need to make a copy of this and put it in your recipe book.

Hugs Cindy from Rick-Rack and Gingham

LBP said...

Tears are streaming down my face!!! That stroy is so hilaious!! My red face came a couple of years ago when I decided to NOT make homemade rolls and bought frozen ones at the store and baked them. Apparently I didn't read that these rolls had sausages in them! Who puts sausages in rolls. You should have seen the looks on my guests faces when sausages popped out of their rolls! I still get teased about it!

Blessings

Linda

Emileigh said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! This story is still one of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions. :)