My first Thanksgiving in the UK was a success! It was my first time preparing a turkey on my own (well, with Anne). Checking for organs & giblets…
Jane’s parents and two of my friends from home (Anne, coming from Berlin; Brandon, coming from San Francisco!) coincided their visits with Thanksgiving, so we first had a sit-down meal for the 6 of us an hour or two before the party started, and then everyone arrived with dishes in hand for the rest.
Between Jane and my guests, there were about 30 people crammed into our tiny, terraced, shotgun house. The deal is, we provide turkey, gravy, pumpkin pie and sometimes a side or two, but otherwise divvy up the Thanksgiving classics and everyone brings a dish to add to the banquet.
We had a 15 pounder that we had to cook forever, but it was honestly the best turkey I’d ever had. We weren’t sure if we had to remove organs (bleck!), turns out we didn’t, but then we did have to pluck a few feathers (bleck!), then oil ‘er up, stuff and herb it, and rather than basting every 20 minutes we decided to use a honey mustard glaze. After that, make an aluminum (did you all know it’s spelled – and pronounced – “aluminium” here?) tent with toothpicks and started the long roast. It was supposed to take like 3 hours but it took 6 or 7 (it took so long because we stuffed it and my oven is a piece).
While that happened we got pretzel rolls ready, made mashed potatoes, pulled out the previously-made butternut squash + chickpea + carmelized onion + tahini salad, made greens, stuffing, and got the table ready.
The rest of Anne and Brandon’s visit was great. We had a little time around Oxford for pubs, brunchfests, thrift and record-shopping, cream tea, leaving parties, museums and shopping, etc.
Museum of the History of Science
Looking at some beautiful astrolabes
Saturday morning we headed to Bristol for the weekend (since they were flying out of Bristol: much better flight times to Berlin than London) to do yet more walking around, shopping, getting lost in sketchesville, having a veg-in night at the nice B&B with takeout and screwtop wine, then more walking, park and bridge visiting the next day. It was a quick visit, but great to see them.
Clifton Suspension Bridge
Brandon figuring out how to get into the tiny cabinet in our B&B