Siri & Dad
Thanksgiving this year was wonderfully easy as well as awesomely busy.  With Siri and her boyfriend back in town for the week, we had the best division of labour for preparing dinner (we eat Thanksgiving at 6ish) that we have ever had in the history of hosting Thanksgiving.  I think we’re ready to operate air traffic control towers and coordinate the Super Bowl now.

Instead of making the Hawaiian rolls I typically do, I made challah loaves, which turn out to be my sister’s favourite type of bread (who knew).  On the morning of Thanksgiving, B and I smoked a 17-lb turkey and prepared all of the traditional Thanksgiving-style sides.  By the time we had finished using the stove, my dad was ready to start  cooking ALL the Chinese food (dual palates folks).  My sister was the piemaster this year and rocked out three awesome pies - pumpkin, pecan, and chess (thanks Amy for the pumpkin pie recipe).  She actually planned ahead and baked the majority of her pies the previous day.  I love it when she does pies; Siri has such patience with baking and her pie crusts always turn out beautifully.  Between the prepping, baking, and cooking, we also watched a whole mess of football.  Unfortunately Texas didn’t play on Thursday for the first time since 2007, but the Lions won and then the Cowboys won so everyone was happy.

Siri's Pecan Pie
There were a lot of other dishes on the table but below I’m sharing the recipes that served us well just in case you want to stuff yourself silly or try some of these for Christmas:

Smoked turkey, which we did in the electric smoker - http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2015/11/spice-rubbed-butterflied-smoked-turkey-food-lab-recipe.html

Challah, mushroom, and celery stuffing (I used a loaf of the homemade stuff below) - https://food52.com/recipes/1452-what-we-call-stuffing-challah-mushroom-and-celery

Garlic garlic mashed potatoes, which we had already made before once for “practice” - https://food52.com/recipes/14611-garlic-garlic-mashed-potatoes

Challah from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day (makes four loaves) - http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-noknead-challahem-43363

The smoked turkey was a total winner and the crowning jewel of the Thanksgiving feast.  B and I had practiced in August so we knew that it would end up being awesome, but the turkey we smoked for Thanksgiving was actually smaller than the one we cooked for ourselves so it only ended up taking a little over two hours to smoke.  All of our guests were so keen on having leftovers to take home that my mom forgot to save some for all of us… which lead to Thanksgiving Part 2.

On Friday night, instead of going out to eat as my mom suggested, we ended up making an impromptu feast of smoked potato salad, Tex Mex, and Chinese food to make up for the missing turkey leftovers.  Since one day of stuffing ourselves wasn’t enough.  I baked another loaf of challah, laid out the bright purple tablecloth, and we popped a few more bottles of wine and chatted and laughed the night away just between the six of us.  Prepping food and cooking with family is one of my absolute favourite ways to spend time with friends and family (even more so than eating it), and we certainly cooked up a frenzy last week.  I’m sure mom’s kitchen is appreciating the break we’re giving it, until Christmas.