Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Turkey Sandwiches

I can't believe we ate the whole thing.   TheThanksgiving holiday makes many people feel warm and comfy-cozy, safe and happy.  The smell of the food, the feeling of it all, the nesting hominess is a happy memory for most of us.  Turkey, sage and thyme, butter and cream.  This is our culture.  Who we are on some fundamental level.

But let's be real.  The traditional Thanksgiving of my past is 2 days of work to prepare and serve and 1 day of clean up for someone.  If you've been that person, it can be overwhelming.  And yet it is easy to feel guilt at not doing this for future generations. 

My usual solution to this problem is a seriously scaled back version.  This year, I roasted a turkey, made mashed potatoes and gravy and a pie.  No greenbean casserole, no yams, no stuffing, no rolls, no salad, and on and on.  I served it on the china.  We enjoyed the smells and toasty warm feelings before, during and after the meal.  I cleaned up as I cooked so it wasn't too bad.  We had left overs for 4 days. More and more, the important thing for me is to be happy, not to be perfect. A hard lesson for me.

My favorite sandwiches are all grilled.  My memories of my mom making grilled cheese are strong and just make me feel good.  To make this sandwich, butter one side of a piece of bread (bakery sour dough here).  The other side is spred with mayonaise.  It goes butter side down in a heavy bottom pan that has been heated to medium.  A layer of cranberry sauce, then turkey, and Brie cheese.  Common left overs after Thanksgiving.  I've done this with swiss and provolone also, if you don't have Brie.

Another piece of bread butter up, mayo down.  The bread gets toasty as the sandwich heats and the cheese melts.  Use a spatula to lift up the corner of the sandwich and peak under. 

When the bread is browned, use the spatula to flip it over.  Be careful to make sure the ingredients stay intact.  Apply a little pressure with the spatula to the top of the sandwich now and then as it cooks and the ingredients incorporates. Just delicious.  One day I may get one of the new fangeled pannini makers, but maybe not.

A piece of pie and a pair.  Shared this all with the husband and we had lunch.

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