Thanksgiving Open Thread: Alice's Restaurant Edition

My Thanksgiving has begun with the great Thanksgiving tradition of hearing the 18 minute version of Arlo Guthrie's Alice's Restaurant, recorded in 1967 on the radio. This year is the 50th anniversary! If you miss it on your local radio, you can listen here at noon and again at 6:00 p.m. MT.

If you're wondering where Alice is, she's here. Does anyone besides me still have a hardcover edition of her 1969 Alice's Restaurant cookbook in their kitchen? (Photo here.) It's filled with tasty recipes and very easy instructions. Her red chili recipe is still my favorite. And she uses ingredients you'll already have in your kitchen.

The line that stood out to me today: "If you want to end a war, you have to sing loud."

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! If you haven't already told us, what's on your menu and who are you spending the day with. This is an open thread.

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    Feasts (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 05:14:15 PM EST
    I just got home way over stuffed.  My plan to avoid the right wingers failed.  Alas they found out and crashed my party.  Whatever.  It was still fun.  And I got to spend most of the day alone with my sister while I cooked.  And if I do say so, I cooked.  As usual we ate early to accommodate the EMTs and cops who always have to work.
    The other feast was visual.  While I cooked I decided to PPV VALERIAN and the CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS.  I got thru the whole thing in bits a pieces with my sister.  
    I LOVE this movie.  I realize not everyone will.  Again whatever.  It is so beautiful.  Luc's movies usually are.  This one was IMO way less annoying than usual.  Probably because he only wrote the screenplay not the story.  It's from a graphic novel.
    But the best part, the very best part was Rihanna.  Being old I did not even know who it was until I came home a googled.  I am currently digesting (I will not even want to look at food for at least 24 hours) and watching it a second time.  With Alice's restaurant playing instead of sound.  

    Rihanna Is in Maybe 5 Minutes of Valerian and They Are All Spectacular

    They really really are.  She only does a very small amount of "acting" which is just as well.  And most of that is just her voice.  She is not really an actor.  But DA-um can she make a pole talk.

    So two reasons for this comment. 1) I absolutely love and recommend this movie and 2) simply to annoy, um anyone who might be horrified because she plays a stripper, a hooker and pole dancer who they will almost certainly see as her being exploited and blah blah blah.

    Happy turkey day.  And see VALERIAN.

    i brought some cookbooks (none / 0) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:37:54 PM EST
    and got a bit creative, at least for that crowd.

    one thing i made was a couple of "onion pies" from an old family cookbook.

    which was sort of like a quiche but i think way befor quiche was cool.   they were very good.  recipe available on request


    I have a recipe (none / 0) (#7)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:40:31 PM EST
    for that but it's called Vidalia Onion pie. I have never made it. But since you say it's good I might try it.

    Yes (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:58:40 PM EST
    That's what it was called

    Oh yeah! (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 09:37:09 PM EST
    I learned today, well 2 important things.  One, every member of my very diverse political family is completely on board with not only medical pot but actually LEGALIZED pot.  That really surprised me.  In fact about 75% of the conversation was about the various strains and uses of pot.
    Not only THAT but I found out that my drug store, the one I have used for years and have a charge account is going to be a dispensary.
    And they all knew my doctor was giving out prescriptions and that he had applied ( or whatever you call it) to be a grower.

    It's like Christmas came early.

    It was the best day I have spent with my family in a really long time.

    We made Thanksgiving for ten, including (none / 0) (#2)
    by Peter G on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 07:43:27 PM EST
    one of our three grown daughters (the other two had plans in other cities), our daughter's partner, two international students from a nearby college (one from China and the other from Guam [yeah, I know, not technically international]), and four of our daughter's friends, mostly queer or trans (alienated from their own parents or otherwise not wanting to be with family), including a visiting rapper from Cuba who speaks almost no English. Everyone participated in cooking and baking a pretty traditional American t-giving dinner: roast turkey with stuffing cooked in the bird, cranberry sauce, mashed Yukon Gold potatoes and mashed sweet potatoes (half topped with marshmallows), Brussels sprouts, green bean casserole, home-made pies (apple and pumpkin [not canned]). Red and white wine; also Martinelli's apple juice for the non-drinkers. It was a lot of fun.

    I have to say (none / 0) (#5)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:11:21 PM EST
    making a pumpkin pie from a pie pumpkin is an art. I have made one and it tasted like squash so I went back to buying the canned pumpkin.

    I'm assigned to the pastry/crust squad (none / 0) (#11)
    by Peter G on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 09:29:04 PM EST
    Fillings, including the pumpkin magic, is my wife's and daughter's department. They make it from a cookbook we got when my wife's aunt in Kentucky died. It's from the 1930s.

    I think I first heard Arlo on the radio in 1966 (none / 0) (#3)
    by Peter G on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 07:54:03 PM EST
    when I was a senior in high school, probably on WBAI but perhaps it was the folk show on WQXR ("Woody's Children"). I sojourned into NYC from my home in the Jersey suburbs (by bus and subway) to hear him live at least three times that year at some underground club in Greenwich Village ("Cafe Wha?", perhaps, but probably someplace smaller down the block). I seem to remember that when he performed "Alice's Restaurant" live it was more like 30 minutes than 18, but I could be romanticizing.

    I seem to remember a (none / 0) (#14)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Nov 24, 2017 at 12:32:16 AM EST
    22 minute version. I never saw him perform it live though. The other song I love of his is Coming in to Los Angeles....

    Coming into Los Angeles
    Bringing in a couple of keys
    Don't touch my bags if you please
    Mister Customs Man

    I didn't realize the story behind it, and it's really funny -- "Arlo Guthrie Thanks the Narcs"


    I cooked a full (none / 0) (#4)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:10:01 PM EST
    meal, turkey, green beans, stuffing etc. Oldest son could not make it so it was just the three of us. We talked about what we were thankful for etc. and basically it was just like any other meal we have around here.

    So much food, so much laughing, so (none / 0) (#8)
    by Anne on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:42:07 PM EST
    much craziness...and I wouldn't change a thing.

    And no one talked politics!  

    Turkey, of course; dry-brined, which is really so much easier and less messy than a wet brine.  Garlic mashed potatoes (the trick is to throw the garlic in with the potatoes as they cook, that way the flavor is sweet and mellow.  Cream cheese, butter and cream also contribute to the "aaaah" that turns into "mmmm" because you can't say "aaaah" with your mouth full).  Green bean bundles wrapped in bacon, and brushed/drizzled with a brown sugar/garlic/soy/butter sauce. A cranberry salad (heartier than cranberry sauce - has mandarin oranges, thinly sliced celery and chopped pineapple in it).  Peas and pearl onions.  Relish trays with carrots, celery, all kinds of olives and marinated mushrooms.  Dressing - not stuffing, since I don't put it in the bird.  Tons of gravy.

    Dessert was a pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust, and a caramel pie (that was a new recipe and was just this side of mainlining sugar).

    My mom came - she is 87 and having some memory issues that seem to be worsening rather quickly.  One daughter, her husband and the two boys (the younger of which I started to refer to as "the tiny terror," because he is fast as lightning and always spots the most dangerous thing in the room and makes a beeline for it).  My daughter's in-laws came.  He was diagnosed in July with a grade IV glioblastoma - he's had radiation and chemo - the chemo part continues for the next 6 months - he is doing as well as can be expected and it was good to have him at the table.  I hope he is still there next Thanksgiving.

    My brother and his wife, and her mother, my niece and her fiance all came for dessert, which was good.

    Younger daughter was with her husband and the two boys at his uncle's for dinner - all happening at the same time, so no visit today.

    I drove my mom home and got back home to find my husband had cleaned up the kitchen and finished putting stuff away - thank God, because I wasn't sure I could do it!

    Anyway, much to be thankful for this year; it felt good to just be in the moment, enjoying the chaos of family, and feeling grateful for the many blessings of my life.

    Hope you all had a wonderful day!

    Tomorrow, I may not get out of bed til lunchtime...

    Yeah (none / 0) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 08:57:21 PM EST
    Must be the position of the planets or something.  We also got through the entire thing without a single mention of politics.  Which is so weird for my family it did not fully sink in until I was home deep in the joint and vodka.

    Honestly I think everyone is exhausted.  Left and right.


    Went to my cousin's (none / 0) (#13)
    by caseyOR on Thu Nov 23, 2017 at 09:47:55 PM EST
    for dinner. Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, pumpkin pie. All quite tasty.

    We have lost too many family members over the last few years. Our dinner table is not nearly as crowded as it used to be. My generation is now the oldest, which feels quite odd at times even though that is how life goes.

     We do have a new member of the family, my cousin's newborn granddaughter who arrived earlier this month. I got to sit and hold that tiny baby. It was wonderful. Calming, I guess. The tension, the constant inner rage I have had for the last year just slipped away for a bit. I highly recommend finding a baby to hold, with the parents' permission, of course.