Is it wrong that I’m still feeling full after Thursday’s yummy Thanksgiving meal? Probably because my family is a carb-loving, meat and potatoes kind of crew. Our family meals consist of what I lovingly call “farmer food,” because a good 80% (at least) of my family tree is or was a farmer. Good, homemade food—can’t beat it. In fact, I really could care less about the turkey. I’m all about the sides.
Real corn is so good I could have eaten this whole bowl myself. Yes, I know that corn that comes off the shelf at Kroger is technically real, but it pales in comparison to the stuff that gets picked fresh from the field and cut off the cob. THAT is real corn.
My mom’s stuffing recipe is simple—bread, chicken broth, celery and onions, sage—but I swear she sneaks in some unicorns or rainbows because it’s DELICIOUS in all caps. And like my dad says, it’s even better warmed up the next day. Stuffing takes up the most real estate on my plate.
Homemade rolls, how I love thee. When I was in college, my mom would send me back to school with some, and I wouldn’t share with my roommates. Instead I’d eat two or three as my entire meal, every meal until they were gone. I gave Henry my very last half of my very last roll at supper on Friday, and tried to explain how it proved how much I loved him. He didn’t understand, but he TOTALLY owes me. I won’t forget, son.
Our potatoes came from the store this year, thanks to a crappy growing season. But usually, our mashed deliciousness gets dug up straight from the fields. Real potatoes, just like real corn, is the real deal. Our family puts the “potato” in “meat and potato” and always has at least a crock pot’s worth on hand.
Noodles are a family staple that nobody outside my family has ever heard of. To me, this is truly farmer food, because the few people we’ve come across that eat them, too, usually have ties to a central Illinois farming family. To be honest, I don’t really eat them; we usually have them with roast beef and I’m not a huge red meat fan. This is one of those family dishes where you ask your mom for the recipe, and she says, “well, you just take a little flour, and then add some whatever, etc.” Made entirely from scratch, and served by making a big hole in your mashed potatoes and filling up with noodles.
So there you have it. The ingredients for every family Thanksgiving dinner since the dawn of time. Or at least as long as I can remember, anyway. You can keep your rice pilaf or oyster stuffing, just pass me another roll.