I suppose it was inevitable that the two of us would meet around the biggest food-related holiday of the year.  While it was baseball that got us first talking, my KitchenAid Mixer and Victor’s Calphalon pretty much cemented the deal.  It’s not like either of us are really mercenary or anything, but, hell… merging our kitchens was not a bad thing…

And we’ve been having fun and eating well, ever since.

Today is 17 years since we first met.  17 years of holidays, food, family gatherings, and fun in the kitchen.  We added to the Calphalon collection over the years – we now have all we’ll ever need and will never have to buy another pot or pan – and the KitchenAid is still going strong.  Buy quality.  Buy once.  You save in the long run.

We’re hosting Thanksgiving Dinner tomorrow for a mere 13.  The smallest gathering we’ve done, I think.  Naturally, we’re going to have enough food for twice that amount.  We can’t help it.  We seriously tried to limit hors d’oeuvres, desserts… It didn’t work.   Every time we turned around, we were adding something to the list.

But it’s okay.  We’ll deal with it.

I started making the pie crusts a few days ago.  I just wrapped them up and stuck them in the ‘fridge.

I know there are reasonably good frozen crusts out there, but I just can’t do it.  These are just too easy to make.  And homemade is better.  Always.

One thing I had to get used to when we merged kitches was the rolling pin.  Victor really liked the long fat-broom-handle-type, while I had always used the more traditional pin with handles.  He was right.  That rolling pin is so easy to use, and I have perfect control over anything I roll.  I can also control the weight and pressure when rolling something out.

Love it!

And when you make your own crusts, they really fit in the pie plate!

Of course, sometimes you may want to make something a bit different – and not use a pie plate…

A Pear Crostatta fit the bill.  With the desserts all done, and hors d’oeuvres all organized, tomorrow will just be cooking the turkey and the rest of the main meal.

Easy money.

Our menu for tomorrow is:

Butternut Squash Risotto Arancini
Shrimp with Cocktail Sauce
Hot-Smoked Peppered Salmon
Baked Brie en Croute
Tomato Jam Bruschetta

Spinach Salad with Pumpkin Dressing
Roast Turkey with Giblet Gravy
Nona’s Stuffing
Sourdough Stuffing
Mashed Potatoes
Marie’s Sweet Potatoes
Roasted Butternut Squash and Sweet Potatoes
Honey-Glazed Carrots with Dill
Corn Pudding
Cranberry Orange Sauce
Ocean Spray Jellied Cranberry Sauce
Homemade Pumpkin Rolls

Pumpkin Pie
Pecan Pie
Cranberry Apple Walnut Pie
New York Cheesecake
Pear Crostatta

This was Victor after I had finished the pies.  That mess was mild.  I’ve done much better.  Or worse, depending upon your point of view.

And, of course, we have our family traditions covered…  The jellied Ocean Spray Cranberry Sauce has to be on the table for Victor’s father.  Served in the cut glass dish that my mother always served it in.  We never-ever had homemade cranberry sauce growing up.  But we also never-ever had frozen pies.  Mom made the pies – from scratch.  I’m just following tradition…

So the table is set, glasses sparkling, lots and lots of food in the house, and more cooking in the morning.

This has been the best anniversary, yet!