Endless Menus: A Meat Lover’s Thanksgiving
T-minus 10 days, people! Turkey day is almost upon us, and if we know our readers at all, you’re still nursing Halloween hangovers/post-Election giddiness and haven’t even begun to plan for the big feast.
So lucky for you, ES has come up with four delicious menus to guide you along. Now let’s be honest, there are enough effing sites on the Internet telling you how to brine a turkey and mash potatoes. And you probably know how to do all that shit anyway. But what about people who don’t want to do the same damn thing every year, who get sick of the same old sides, and don’t think adding rosemary to the stuffing counts as “mixing it up.” This one’s for you folks. Introducing Endless Menus.
One thing that’s always bothered me about Thanksgiving is that it doesn’t have nearly enough meat in it. For a celebration that claims to be the most American of holidays, it sure doesn’t include much of our favorite food group, does it? I mean, a giant bird and some vegetables? What country are you people living in? That’s not the America I know and love. For a truly pilgrim-loving Thanksgiving, toss the yams this year and cook up A Meat Lover’s Thanksgiving:
The Bird: Turkey Galantine
Yeah, yeah, yeah, you think you’re pretty badass for your annual turducken fry, dontcha? Big deal. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out how to stuff a duck in a chicken in a turkey. Why don’t you try stuffing ham, pork, veal, tongue, truffles, nuts, and three eggs up that hole? Then you can talk. None other than James A. Beard himself brings us this retro recipe, which calls for stuffing so many effing things in that bird that you actually have to take out all the bones, and much of the turkey meat. He even pulls the turkey breasts out, marinates them in cognac, and then stuffs those fuckers back in. Now that’s a badass bird. (Photo: MizD)
Sausage stuffing? No, no, no, people Don’t you read the paper? Spam is in this year! And there’s no better way to spice up your stuffing than with the South Pacific treat. Gingerjoy says: “Your guests will be surprised that the tasty flavor actually comes from this ‘mystery meat.’ Yeeeeeeeaaah. We can’t say for sure if that is good surprised or bad surprised, but we think we have an idea. Apologies to ninjapoodles for using your stock stuffing photo, but there is no known documentation of actual Spam Stuffing.
The Spuds: Bacon Mashed Potatoes
We’ve said it once, we’ll say it again, and we won’t stop saying it until we keel over face down in a pool of our own grease: There is nothing bacon can’t improve. And while mashed potatoes were pretty goshdarn good to begin with, the golden rule holds true here. It turns out quite a few folks have thought of this, but we’re particularly partial to Bon Appetit’s Bacon and Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes, because hey, you’re putting bacon in it, why not go for buttermilk too? A little lard couldn’t hurt anyone either. (Photo: Incase Design)
More meat-y menu ideas after the J.
The Rolls: Lard Bread
Some people bypass the bread plate on Thanksgiving because they don’t want those pesky carbs taking up precious plate space. Not us. There’s no reason to leave the bread behind when you can use it as a vessel for salami, cheese, and yes, lard. This Neapolitan classic is actually quite the Euro food-snobby thing, but we’ll give it an American-Approved stamp, because…well…did I mention salami, cheese, and lard? In a slice of bread? Bravo. (Photo: TheGirlsNY)
The Veggies: Green Bean Casserole
Oh America, why do you even pretend to eat vegetables? Because it’s an excuse to get another serving of meat on our plates, that’s why! Of all the “veggie” dishes America has come up with to slip more meat into our diet, the Thanksgiving-approved Green Bean Casserole has to take the cake, because it makes such a mockery of the green beans by adding unhealthy ingredient after unhealthy ingredient until you can hardly see the green beans. You can add hamburger, sausage, tater tots, or Velveeta, but as long as you’ve got at least one green bean in there (notice they don’t call it green beans casserole), you’re still allowed to call it a veggie dish. My personal favorite has to be this green bean weiner casserole shown above. Bacon bits, hot dogs, vienna sausage, pepperoni, cheez whiz, and zero guilt.
Time to give thanks indeed.
Also on ES:
New! A Procrastinator’s Thanksgiving