Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thanksgiving getting a raw deal?

I'm a big Thanksgiving person, seriously. It is my favorite holiday.. I think I have stated that before. It is really one of the few holidays that is not religious, and truly American. It celebrates all diversities, and the generosity of one human to another. Its a time to give thanks, love your neighbor. You open your doors to everyone at Thanksgiving. Its a time of tradition, joy, and open hearts, even the presidential turkey gets a pardon.

When I lived in England, I would have a big Thanksgiving there, invite all of my neighbors. I would have my Frenchies onions, and make my homemade pumpkin pies. Ya they thought I was a bit crazy for putting out a spread like that, but after the first year I would start getting calls at the end of October to make sure that there would be room at the Thanksgiving table for them. They secretly love the tradition.

So as I go about my days getting ready for this Holiday that I love, I find myself not experiencing the joy the way I used to. Its almost a feeling of disappointment. Thanksgiving is getting taken over by Christmas!!!

I go to the grocery store and see fruitcakes and Christmas wrap, wreaths and lights up in the town square, my neighbors are already getting their lights up on the roof tops, and I am feeling very disappointed.

I'm a firm believer that The Christmas Season DOES NOT START until you see Santa Clause in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. Yes I still watch that! You don't hang lights until the weekend after Thanksgiving, and take small breaks to sneak inside and eat turkey leftovers. Gifts and wrap should remain tucked away in the garage or closets, and town decorations should remain a surprise until Friday when you line up outside of your favorite store to get to the sales.

I love to spend November exchanging recipes, scouring online looking for new and creative ways to do Thanksgiving table scape's or a new dressing recipe. I love to bake pumpkin bread all month long, and have a reason to serve my kids squash. I definitely don't want to think about Christmas!

So today I have another favorite Thanksgiving recipe for you. Growing up, I hated sweet potatoes. My mother bought them from the can, dumped them in a casserole dish, took a whole bag of brown sugar and bag of marshmallows and baked it. They were nasty, to sweet, an awful texture, and for years I just refused to eat them. So when I came across this recipe about 10 years ago, my mind was changed and now these are served with honor on my Thanksgiving table.

Candied Sweet Potatoes


6 sweet potatoes
1 stick of butter
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
generous dash of vanilla
juice from 1 med orange
generous dash of orange liqueur (optional)
some marshmallows


Boil the unpeeled sweet potatoes in a pot for about 20 min. Once cooked and soft to the touch, peel and slice (or cube) into an oven proof dish.

Heat oven to 375 deg.

Put the butter, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, orange juice and orange liqueur in a sauce pan and bring to a gentle boil. Pour the sauce over the potatoes and bake for 15 min. Remove and place the marshmallows on top. Return to the oven and bake until melted and browned.



  1. Hello,
    Thank you for your note on my blog.
    I saw you recipe, that's looks great! Maybe I try it out.

    Greetz, Kizzy

  2. Yes, Yes, YES! I have to agree with all you said. In the fevered pitch to get that Christmas merchandize out there the traditional Thanksgiving favorites and displays are getting pushed aside.

    I'll try your sweet potatoe recipe because I've never liked the traditional one with the marshmellows - definately a texture thing.

    Great post!

    Stan at Scrappers Workshop

  3. hhmm...I have to agree with you that Thanksgiving is being taken over...but I can't help it! I am SO excited for Christmas this year. I think it's cuz my boys are all finally old enough to understand. So I am busting out the decorations already. Sorry!

    Oh, and I don't like sweet potatoes either. I might have to try this recipe. :)

  4. Would you like to come cook for me? Yum!

  5. I agree with you. They started Christmas advertising in October. I love Christmas but Thanksgiving is a great holiday too.

    I like sweet potatoes and made a bread recently with it--instead of using pumpkin for pumpkin bread, use sweet potato. It was very good and MH liked it and he doesn't like them either.