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Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving Leftovers

Two newly discovered leftover delights one for the stomach and one for the mind. Stomach first!
Delicious, yummy and perfect: Turkey-Barley soup! I tried a new recipe last night to use up the leftover Turkey we brought home from Mother-in-Law's home. Really delicious! I got most of it from that Simply in Season book I mentioned earlier, but I've adapted it a bit for use with roasted turkey.

Turkey-Barley Soup

4 c water
4 c chicken or turkey broth
1 1/2 c diced carrots
1 c diced celery
1/2 c barley
1/2 c onion
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp each pepper, sage, thyme

Combine in a large soup pot. Cover and simmer for one hour.

1 lb roasted, chopped turkey
2 T ketchup
1 T soy sauce
Add to soup, allow meat to heat and serve.

This can also be done in the slowcooker! Just throw all the ingredients in the cooker and set on low for 6-7 hours.

I served this with warm, crumbly, buttery corn bread. DELISH!

Now for the Mind... From the Wall Street Journal's OpionionJournal an article by Joseph Epstein on Thanksgiving as a truly adult holiday. I've excerpted the best parts below:

"Let us be thankful that Thanksgiving has not yet fallen to the Kindergarchy, as has just about every other holiday on the calendar, with the possible exceptions of Yom Kippur and Ramadan. Thanksgiving is not about children. It remains resolutely an adult holiday about grown-up food and drink and football.

The weather, which provides the backdrop to Thanksgiving, is also much in its favor. In most parts of the country cool, sometimes cold, it doesn't usually blow the holiday away with tornados, hurricanes or great snow storms. Warm jackets, sweaters, corduroy trousers are the order of the day--comfort clothes, the sartorial equivalent of comfort food.

Comfort food is what Thanksgiving provides, and to the highest possible power. Large browned turkeys, rich heavy stuffings, sweet potatoes, cranberries.... Everyone has in mind his or her own memories of splendid Thanksgiving dinners.


Thanksgiving also has inclusiveness going for it. The holiday really is for all Americans, though I suppose a sourpuss leftist might, with boring trenchancy, be able to interject it isn't such a fine day for Native Americans.

While secular in tone, Thanksgiving is also slightly religious in spirit. I am having Thanksgiving this year at the home of my son and daughter-in-law, and because of the slight religious nature of the holiday have asked them not to invite Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens or any of the rest of the atheist gang, all of whom seem likely, if on the premises, to put a dampening spirit onto the proceedings.

I wish the poet W. H. Auden were still alive, so that he might be at the same table where I eat my Thanksgiving dinner. Auden, I think, nicely captured the spirit of Thanksgiving when he wrote that, in prayer, it is best to get the begging part over with quickly and get on to the gratitude part. He also wrote, 'let all your thinks be thanks.' "