Thanksgiving 2013 was one of the best I had. During the long weekend, my family went to my brother’s fiancé’s home to celebrate a potluck dinner with her family and relatives. For starters we had two kinds of crunchy, golden, shanghai rolls: fish and pork with sweet chili (Asian) sauce, instead of the usual cold shrimp and dip. Creamy ‘Sopas’ (Filipino macaroni soup) was also served while waiting ten more minutes for the star of the evening, the lonesome stuffed turkey infused with bacon, still crisping in the oven… but there’s more. Trays of tender roast beef, succulent pink squid stuffed with peas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and onions, and finally, fresh and thick slices of baked salmon adorned with herbs and lime, all steaming, filling the air with faint, but irresistibly sweet aroma, and burning our hungry gaze… but there’s still more.
Side dishes. Southern-style mashed sweet potato casserole topped with creamy, toasted marshmallows, a tossed house salad full of cranberry seeds, the classic mashed potatoes, RICE, and a selection of apple or cranberry sauce, banana ketchup, and vinegar. All dishes complimented with fine red wine and sangria to keep you bubbly through the night while playing the board game and DVD edition of Family Feud… but there’s still WAY more… Aside from the usual chopped pineapples and the sweet classic Filipino cassava-coconut cake, heaven sent “Crawford’s Village Bakery” (Brampton, ON), a good priced bakery that is constantly reviewed to be a 5-star experience from customers. We were rewarded with the light, creamy, and not over the top or too sweet, but extremely delicious, locally fresh, and homemade chocolate cream pie, and rhubarb pie topped with cream cheese frosting. They were gone before I could go back for a second slice. It was that good.
Excitedly trotting around the kitchen and sniffing everyone’s slippers and fingers is Ozzy, my white bichon-poo puppy. Mom brought home cooked dinner for him. She left freshly shredded (boiled) chicken meat on his baby blue, dog bone print, bowl. Ozzy would occasionally sniff his food, but he was too distracted by the unusual and happy clamor filling his ears. Ozzy looked at everyone with his black, beady, eyes. Mom trimmed his fur earlier so he could see well. My brother’s fiancé’s cousin, Mary, lowered her hand for Ozzy. Ozzy sniffed, licked her fingers, and parted his mouth while sticking his tongue out. “Why are you smiling Ozzy?” My brother knelt beside him to pet and kissed his fury head. “Mm! You smell so good!”
Mom loves it when Ozzy smells sweet like a baby. What a spoiled dog. Finally, Mom arrives with some leftover turkey. She chose just the meat without the skin or any visible seasoning and hand fed Ozzy. Ozzy could not wait. He gobbled it up right away and left no trace but ensuring licks. I looked at them lovingly. Ozzy is a beauty! He will surely look forward to his third Thanksgiving next year.