How I Pick My Turkey
Picking the perfect turkey is one of the most important parts of Thanksgiving—in fact, it’s as important to me as choosing the right Christmas tree.
Thanksgiving has always been a special time not only for me, but for my family. Sadly, the pandemic got in the way of last year’s festivities, and I wasn’t able to connect with my loved ones, but now that the strictures have loosened, I’m excited to see everyone again—Uncle Frank with his delicious Chardonnays, Cousin Joey with his acoustic guitar, and Ma with her exquisite meal. I’ve missed the sights, smells, and tastes of my favorite holiday, and I’m looking forward to getting back to normal.
Normal, of course, starts with a great turkey. My favorites are plump and contain no nitrates. As a piece of advice, I suggest paying attention to the size of the turkey you buy so that nobody will go hungry (don’t be afraid to buy 2 turkeys if you need to!), and also to choose a reputable, high-quality brand.
Getting Rid of My Turkey Neck
Speaking of turkey, I can’t stand my turkey neck, and I’m afraid that my family might cook me instead! Jokes aside, I have some seriously saggy skin under my chin.
Usually at this time of year, I’m reminded of how much older I’m getting, and it’s easy to feel down. But now that I’ve been getting non-surgical Kybella injections from my doctor, things will be different! He has told me that Kybella eats away the fat permanently, so I can’t wait to show off my new neck to everyone on Turkey Day!
My Favorite Time with Family
If for no other reason, we cherish Thanksgiving for the memories. One time, my nephew, Jim, slid the cranberry bowl across the table for Pop Pop, and the bowl tipped and spilled all over him. Pop Pop was upset, but he has a good sense of humor, and laughed it off like a champ.
To make things more special, everyone in the family brings their own dish. For example, Sharon brings the mashed potatoes, and Uncle Frank brings the Chardonnay (always with a few sips missing). After the feast, we usually watch a movie or play board games. It’s quality time that counts!
In the end, we are so grateful to have one another. The pandemic has made me appreciate my family to a degree I didn’t think was possible, and I’ve come to realize the importance of living in the moment.
Finding the Right Wines
My family, like most Italian clans, is exceptionally passionate about wine. My mother uses Sauvignon Blanc in her famous turkey platter, and Uncle Frank’s Chardonnay is a great wine to pair with turkey, or any roasted bird, for that matter; it complements the fresh herbs that Ma uses in her dishes.
Thanksgiving is a time to love and celebrate, so buy drinks that match the occasion! Wine and spirits can do wonders for a meal, and if there were ever a dinner that you’d want to celebrate, it’d be the one that could feed a hungry village!
Everyone Contributes to the Festivities
Thanksgiving isn’t a solitary event; it requires teamwork and a sense of shared responsibility.
I’m always happy to help out whenever I can, and it’s so enjoyable to work with my family, especially because it allows me to enjoy the meal with a sense of accomplishment. It’s even exciting to clean up afterwards because everyone does their part, whether that means bringing plates to the dishwater or scraping crumbs off the table.
It’s important that you remember, too, what Thanksgiving means: prioritizing the time you spend with the people you cherish. Rekindle that family flame and bond over the memory of a bountiful feast—and don’t forget to enjoy the apple and pumpkin pie afterwards!