Open Thread: Make David’s Shopping List

This is a day late, obviously! So consider this droll contribution from esteemed BMGer jimc, first posted in 2010, your 2012 Thanksgiving Day open thread. Hope all are enjoying a lovely holiday.

As we all know, our esteemed and learned editor (and good sport) David can be forgetful during the Thanksgiving rush, and today is the last day to shop. So I suggest that we build his shopping list.

I’ll just start with the most obvious and important item: cranberry sauce. The canned kind, of course.

I like the kind with the ridges on the side. It’s baroque.

This is important because you want to head off any homemade stuff. It’s always the semi-unexpected guest from out of town who decides to be all New England-y and make some cranberry sauce. Then you’ll have to explain to frightened children that it’s not what it looks like, and try to encourage reluctant adults to “Just have a taste,” but no one will, so of course you’ll end up saying, “Well, more for me!” And then you watch in pain as a gorgeous, postmodern sculpture of yumminess in the middle of the table is sliced chipped away until it vanishes.

So you want to avoid that. Say to any potential guest, “Well, anything you want to bring is fine, except cranberry sauce, I really loaded up on that.” Then make it true.

Please add any items you think David shouldn’t forget in the comments. Happy Thanksgiving!

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12 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. Humble Pie -- I have to make for myself at least

    once a month.

    Crust- 1  cup usalted butter or  2 1/2 cups flour

    Filling - 2 cups small pebbles, 1 cup cement

    The crust is terrific.      

  2. Crow?

    Maybe just as an appetizer.

    After the election of 1948 ("Dewey Defeats Truman"), the Washington press corps invited Truman to dinner. He would eat turkey, they said; they would eat crow. Truman declined -- or rather accepted, but said they should eat turkey too. I don't know if the dinner ever actually happened, but I read the exchange of letters at some point.

  3. Amen on the cranberry sauce

    If one can't read the imprint of the serial number stamped on the can in the sauce, it's not the real deal.

    Don't forget the spirits either, if you're lucky enough to live near one of the only two Stop and Shop's or Shaw's licensed to carry them in the entire state -- now that's a law we could repeal also.

    sabutai   @   Tue 4 Dec 7:00 PM
    • More Stop and Shops now sell alcohol

      On Thanksgiving Eve I needed to buy a bottle of wine. Just as I was heading out the door, our microwave malfunctioned. What used to be a luxury is now more of a necessity. Off to Stop and Shop to buy wine and a few pieces of fruit for my last minute decision to make fruit salad. Picked up a microwave at the nearby store and we were done.

  4. Vinegar Pie

    Someday I'm going to try to make this.

    And yes, I got the idea from Miami Blues (a good B movie, but not recommended for family viewing on Thanksgiving).

  5. Four Loko

    For a "freedom toast." It's just not Thanksgiving without it.

  6. What,

    exactly, do ~you~ think homemade cranberry sauce looks like??

    That's all we ever make in my family. My Memere has been making it the old fashioned way (fresh cranberries cooked on the stove) for a loooong time. She no longer makes it (when 92 years old YOU reach, cook the cranberries you will not, hmm?) but whoever gets assigned the cranberry sauce, still does it that way. It's not even that hard to do!

    I'm in the cleaning and prepping frenzy that has been accompanying Thanksgiving these last three years, ever since we bought a house good enough to host 16-22 people comfortably. But, almost all side dishes come with the guests so there's less on that front for me to do. :) Just my traditional amazing and decadent mashed sweet potatoes...and NO, not a lick of marshmallow touches my version.

    • Some old, some new

      Some old favorites will continue their annual run this year — my family loves twice-baked potatoes, half of them with jalapeno and half plain. All have things like chives and sour cream in them, with melted cheddar on top. We have hold-outs for whom turkey cannot be served without string beans sauteed in butter and parsley alongside.

      New this year is a roasted cranberry sauce from "Bon Appetite" (a poor substitute for the late "Gourmet", but some issues have a winner or two in the recipes). Also new is a baked fennel casserole that did very well in its preliminary trials.

      Old-fashioned cranberry sauce is an absolute necessity here. This year, for the first time, we cooked off and canned about five pounds for use over the winter — we love cranberry sauce with roasted chicken, and prefer to start with fresh rather than frozen cranberries.

      A huge advantage of having older children (two twenty-somethings, one in college, two high-schoolers) is that we can send them off to their big sister's house (the oldest) to prep all the sides, I get the bird in the oven by around 11:00a, and then we have the house to ourselves until the final frenzy.

  7. cranberry sauce

    I've run across this problem before - people whose limitations make it impossible for them to comprehend that the stuff in a can is not an adequate simulation of cranberry sauce.

    Just face it - no self-respecting citizen of our Great Commonwealth should be proud of submitting to that crap that Ocean Spray calls "cranberry sauce" in that can.

    Today I made cranberry ice cream.  This week I made cranberry juice.  The freezer is overflowing with 30+ pounds of cranberries from Carver.

    Why in anyone's name should a good Massachusettsian submit to that junk in a can?  

    Find yourself a meyer lemon, pick the seeds out of it, squeeze the juice of it all over a pan of Howes cranberries, add a bit of sour cherry juice and put that on the stove over a very low heat.  Grate the yellow part of the lemon skin into a beautiful aromatic pile on the cutting board and put in in the pan.  Cook it all together and listen to the pop of the berries under the lid.  Gently stir up the cooked berries to pop the holdouts and add as little refined sugar as you dare.  And remember to use refined white sugar so its flavor doesn't overwhelm the cranberry and lemon flavors.

    Put it in the fridge to chill - it will set up because cranberries are very high in pectin.  (You can be sure that stuff in the can isn't jelled naturally.)

    Get a beautiful white porcelain bowl and mound the stuff in it.  Place it on the dinner table and watch it vanish before your very eyes.

  8. The Hunger Site

    A good Thanksgiving eve or Thanksgiving thing to do. It's free. (I can't guarantee you won't get spam; I don't think so, but I really have no idea.)

  9. A job at the Probation Department

    Easy to find :)

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Sat 29 Apr 11:31 AM