TBR Tuesday: For All About to Cook, I Salute You

funny man holding pan with pot on head in apron at kitchen askinIs it just me, or do we put too much pressure on ourselves for the holidays that they end up being, well, a lot of hard work? I have a relatively quiet life, after all. I’m pretty much housebound on holidays because my Senior Adult can’t get out, and the rest of my family gathers elsewhere. But still, somehow, I have gotten guilted into doing one of my least favorite things this year: cooking.

I’m a Southern woman, so I should love slaving over a hot stove, right? I actually had a man–a supposedly educated professor at the University of Illinois–joke with me in a job interview that he thought Southern men kept their women barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen. I got the job, but I never forgot. *Sends razor laser looks at that particular professor.* I was so traumatized by the Illinois winters that I didn’t have time to seek revenge. (Okay, Roger and others, go ahead. Laugh.)

Anyway, my biggest culinary challenge this year will be making cornbread dressing using my grandmother’s recipe, which involves two days of cooking, including a hen, two iron skillets of cornbread, two biscuits (three if they’re small), onions, celery, lots of sage and black pepper. Oh, and some chicken broth. And that’s all BEFORE the stuffing gets mixed and baked.

Shoot me now.

What will be your biggest culinary adventure this Thanksgiving if you’re in the U.S. If not, what’s your biggest holiday cooking challenge? If you’re a true cook, my hat’s off to you–you can tell me your favorite dish to cook. Comment for two books from the bag o’books I hauled home with me from the Southern Magic Reader Luncheon week before last!


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About Suzanne Johnson

Author of urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and suspense. As Suzanne Johnson, she is the author of the Sentinels of New Orleans urban fantasy series (Royal Street; River Road: Elysian Fields, Pirate's Alley, Belle Chasse, Frenchmen Street (March 2018). Writing as Susannah Sandlin, she is the author of the Penton Legacy series (Redemption; Absolution; Omega; Storm Force; Allegiance; ILLUMINATION); The Collectors series (Lovely, Dark, and Deep; Deadly, Calm, and Cold); and the Wilds of the Bayou series (Wild Man's Curse; Black Diamond).

22 thoughts on “TBR Tuesday: For All About to Cook, I Salute You

  1. I have cooked all the meals in my house since I retired, 12 years now. My wife said she cooked for me all those years that now it was my turn. Loved doing Thanksgiving turkey. This year is my daughters turn. I’m bringing the Pepto-Bismol. LOL Oh yes, Illinois winter is just getting a start. Although Thursday is going to be in the 50’s.

    • LOL, your daughter might surprise you, Roger!

      I moved to Champaign, Illinois, on January 1, and did not see the ground until late March–constant snowfall. People kept telling me it wasn’t normal (and, as it turned out, it wasn’t) but I distinctly remember watching the morning weather out of Chicago one morning that February and the “high” for the day was going to be -5 with a windchill of -60. “Blood freezes at 40 below, so bundle up,” the reporter said and I thought, what in God’s name have I done, moving up here?! 🙂

  2. We’re keeping Thanksgiving simple this year – just three of us. My Mom is making half a turkey breast and I’ll make the sides. If the farm stand has pies tomorrow I’ll pick one up. If not my boyfriend will bake an apple cake.

    I enjoy cooking but don’t like the stress of large holiday get togethers.

    • It is stressful! I hosted “the family” a few years ago and decided to heck with it. I ordered barbecue pork and sides and dessert for 30. LOL. I called it my “unconventional Thanksgiving.”

  3. I’m a horrible cook but I still end up cooking every year!! My potatoes are always either too hard or turn to mush, my gravy is always lumpy etc!! I hate doing it but I’ve no one else to do it for me!!

    • I hear ya! I am actually not a bad cook, but just don’t enjoy it. Then again, I have never, ever, ever even tried to make gravy, and I’ve only done mashed potatoes once or twice. So maybe the reason I say I’m not a bad cook is that I keep a very limited repertoire. I make a mean stir-fry–LOl.

  4. We are going to my husband’s cousin’s house and all I need to bring is a dessert. I’m doing my famous/infamous lemon jello cake. So happy I don’t have to do more!

  5. No thanksgiving dinner here, but at Christmas I always bake a special Christmas bundt cake. Otherwise we do cook a bit fancier with Christmas than normal, but not to the extent that we’re in the kitchen all day.

  6. My biggest culinary adventure this year will be dessert. I am going to try to make a pumpkin cake studded with pistachio, layered with a few pomegranate arils and frosting, iced with a not too sweet cream cheese frosting, the top covered in pomegranate arils and the side of the cake dusted with chopped pistachios.

  7. We are buying a ham and my adult girls are helping me cook the sides. We’re keeping it simple this year.

  8. Because of scheduling issues, we actually ended up having Thanksgiving on Sunday. My daughter, my mother, and I fixed everything except the mashed potatoes, which a friend brought. We just stuck with the basics (for us), though, for the meal, which is turkey, dressing, gravy, the aforementioned mashed potatoes, LeSueur peas, cranberrry sauce, rolls, and 7-Up Salad (a family favorite). The real issue is just the time to get everything done!

  9. My mom always cooks for Thanksgiving, and so do both sets of in laws! So our biggest challenge is making the rounds to everyone’s house since on one wants to comprise on what time they want us there lol. But at least I don’t have to cook! 🙂

  10. Sweet potato muffins and stained glass Jello are the favorites in addition to the stuffing and turkey. Fortunately, I do not have to cook this year. Yay!

  11. i love to cook but usually when i do it i won’t eat as i spent so much time in preparation taht i lost teh will^^
    i love to make some sauce ( cognac sauce for example) right now i’m loving to make a meal with 7 or8 different veggies ( but cut so small that it takes around 6h just to be cute^^;;) i’ve called it autumn wonders because i tend to do it when it’s colder ( now it’s too cold so i love staying in front of the fire even to cook^^)

    you will get a small example of my cooking though as it’s heading your way as promised

    You do tend to put too much pressure on you but this time i can’t blame you as i’m crushing under nearly 20 crafting project that in the best of the world should be finished by 1st december and i’ve completed what…2 of them?

  12. We keep it very simple. It’s summer here so lots of salads & fruits & cold meats. Cooking – what’s that? No stress involved.

  13. I grew up in the restaurant owned by my southern stepfather, and learned to make gravy at a young age, biscuits and gravy yum! So every Thanksgiving I was elected gravy maker.Thing is, I don’t actually measure anything so it’s hard to teach anyone!