Cooking for the Family You Choose

I’ve never been a fan of the term “Orphan Thanksgiving;” it seems to imply that the people who attend such affairs are less loved, less worthy.  I know that inference is mine rather than the implication of most of the people who use it. Still, it chafed when someone asked me yesterday what I was doing for the holiday and they used that term when I told him that I was cooking for some friends.

“Oh, an orphan Thanksgiving” he said, followed by “What’s on the menu?”

I will admit that I took some measure of joy in sharing my menu after absorbing that perceived slight.

Lobster Bisque

Twice Baked New Potatoes with Pancetta and Black Truffles

Dauchiusse Potatoes or Fried Mashed Potatoes with Wasabi & Manchego

Artichoke, Mushroom, & Asparagus Casserole

Herbed Red Wine Mustard Crusted Pork Tenderloin

Roulade of Turkey, Duck, and Chicken Paillards done Confit Style

Sweetbread and Lamb Sausage Stuffing

And Winter Fruit Tarts with a Caramel Glaze

When he said “Wow, I’d be an orphan for that meal,” I tried not to smirk.


12 Responses to Cooking for the Family You Choose

  1. dorothy says:

    Delightful menu. You’ll probably have a much better day than most people who’ll be spending it with blood relatives. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Thanks, and I can say now that it was the best Thanksgiving ever.

  2. Christina says:

    Wow, what time should I be there?

    If only you and yours didn’t live in Chicago.

  3. k8 says:

    Hehe. We call it The Misfit Dinner. And it’s always better than any family gathering I’ve ever been to. Because sometimes family comes and sometimes they don’t. Sometimes we have strangers and sometimes we know each other so well, we do our ballet in the kitchen with no mishaps. I don’t take it as a slight. I take it as a compliment. Because it means I accept and love people from all walks of life, and find joy outside the confines of tradition. It makes me kind of awesome, actually.

    The bounds of your awesomeness have yet to be found.

  4. Jaime says:

    OK, I need the casserole recipe stat. Pretty please.

    I would send it to you, but it was the least successful dish of the night… give me another try to get it right and I will happily forward it.

  5. Oooo… That menu sounds divine. Absolutely divinely delicious!

    Thank you, it was a blast cooking with good friends, old and new.

  6. Lisa says:

    Um. Holy cow YUM. What a fabulous meal! I’m sorry we’ll be in NJ.

    I’m sorry you had to be in New Jersey too.

  7. kitty says:

    all orphans should be so lucky.

    It was a delightfully motley bunch.

  8. A says:

    From one orphan to another…I am thankful that you are my friend.

    The gratitude is mutual.

  9. citygirlblogs says:

    I’ve been feeling like an orphan a bit this week, but after reading your post, I realize that maybe I’m the lucky one. I look forward to toasting you soon, Refugee!

    By the way, my godson’s mom is a great cook, but there is no way that her menu can hold a candle to your culinary delights! xoxo

    I look forward to that day too… been too long.

  10. Gofahne says:

    The best Thanksgivings I’ve had were with friends. Good food and none of the family drama. We call it Fakesgiving, which just makes for a fabulous thanksgiving. Enjoy! Wow on that menu!

    Thank you. It was lovely and I hope yours was too.

  11. […] Cooking for the Family You Choose « The Restaurant Refugee […]

  12. Isabel says:

    Wow, that menu sounds awesome!

    I’ve hosted lots of Christmas dinners like that – where anyone who was left by a plane, broke up with a boyfriend or had to work the holidays just shows up – and they always end up being tons of fun.

    I envy the people who are blessed with a family that truly enjoys each other’s company, but I was delighted with the family we choose that day.

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