Susan Maria's Small & Happy Thanksgiving for Two. Why Not Stay Home Again and Be Thankful!

This Thanksgiving, even though you may have canceled plans for the last few years, you may still feel the need to edit this years holiday. Staying close to home and celebrating your blessings in your immediate bubble is not the end of the world. 

We have learned that older people are more vulnerable and will always need to be protected from the world. I feel that holiday life with family and friends has been forever changed. 

In 2020, my husband Ty turned eighty one and we had planned on flying the entire family in to celebrate Thanksgiving at our home in Arizona. Well the world imploded in a pandemic, so that did not go well. At the time we knew it was not smart to gather even though we are strong and healthy.

Even if health is not an issue for you, the airlines have not recovered to have ample staff, fight cancelations are crazy, plus prices to fly have doubled. I don't see my flying our family out west until things have stabilized.

Ty and I have not had Covid (knock on wood) and while we are not afraid of getting it, we are definitely more careful and very thoughtful. We happily celebrate Thanksgiving for Two.

 

I have built a wonderful small meal for just Ty and I that doesn’t produce leftovers for days by choosing dishes that are easy to make in small amounts. There are also food shortages to consider due to supply chain interruptions and lack of people hired to provide services we used to take for granted. The key will be to have FLEXIBILITY. No turkeys in the market? Buy a Pork Roast.

Here is my menu for our big table for two. Even taking into account what the last two years of near isolation has taken from us, we have too many blessings to count. Focus on the positive and you won’t have any space for disappointment. 

There are no recipes, just a simple narrative for preparation. You can do it!

Shrimp Cocktail

My favorite protein is old school fancy. I'll arrange poached colossal shrimp over ice on a pretty platter with lemon slices and a dish of homemade cocktail sauce - 1/2 cup ketchup, squeeze of a lemon wedge, 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish (buy the kind thats in the cold section near the smoked salmon in grocery store), a couple drops of Worcestershire, couple shakes of Tabasco. Chill. A lovely nibble with glass of white wine while I cook and we listen to music. 

If you cannot find shrimp in your markets, make lobster cocktails! I buy online from Lukes Lobster. It comes flash frozen in one pound packages and is shipped overnight with dry ice from Maine to your door. 

Roast Turkey Breast

I’ve bought a 3 pound boneless Butterball Cajun turkey breast, found in the frozen foods section of Walmart or any grocery store, to roast to 150 degrees on my meat thermometer in a cake pan so juices don’t burn. We will have leftovers for another meal and a sandwich or two for Ty.

Mashed Potatoes

Don’t go crazy on me until you read my rationale. I’ll boil a couple of peeled Yukon gold and mash with milk and butter. No cream cheese, no cream, no cheddar or bacon and everyone lives to see another sunrise. More manageable than stuffing.

Aunt Gail’s Stuffing

As much as I love it, Im not making this as it is too difficult to make a small dish. It’s okay, I know what it tastes like!

Slowly Simmered Southern Green Beans

Absolutely delicious when simmered with Tony Chatchere’s Creole seasoning and chicken broth until a glaze forms. So good you want to eat them!

Sugar Free Cranberry Sauce

Two ingredients - simmer half a jar of Smucker’s Sugar Free Raspberry Preserves and a bag of fresh cranberries. I can top my yogurt for days with this beautiful and delicious fruit topping!

No Sugar Cheesecake

Small batch! Make with 2 packages Philadelphia cream cheese, 1/2 cup Truvia, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon good vanilla… whipped until smooth and then baked at 325 degrees in a sugar free cookie crumbed glass pie plate until edges puff yet still a bit jiggly in the center.

The wine? Why V Sattui Gamay Rouge of course!  

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

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