So, it turns out that Thanksgiving isn’t actually a German Thing. While Germans are wholeheartedly for gratitude and a good meal, they don’t actually have “the fourth Thursday in November” set aside for celebrating a semi-tall-tale gathering of starving, sick pilgrims and equally exhausted Native Americans. Nor, as it turns out, are they really all that into turkey, pumpkin pie, and cranberry sauce. So, what’s a body to do?
Well, like most things, you plan a little, you fudge a little, and you muddle on through! So, Thursday was out. Kids had school until 6pm and I had a doctor’s appointment in the middle of the day. Also, it was crunch time at work for David, so he wasn’t going to be able to take off, either. Likewise Friday would have been tricky. Saturday we had to do our shopping and several other necessary errands. So, Sunday seemed the perfect day.
Now, I said that turkeys aren’t plentiful, but they are available. Most turkey served here is boneless skinless breasts. Which, odd to Americans, is served not sliced, but cut into large chunks! Large turkey breasts with the bone in and skin on are nowhere to be found. However, small turkeys are often stocked in the frozen section of most large grocers. German ovens are not typically large enough to accommodate a full turkey. This, incidentally, is a fact not lost on Germans who are at all familiar with American habits. More than once I have gotten into a chat with someone about the relative size of American and European ovens and had them exclaim “Oh! Of course! You need it for the turkey!”
This year I managed to find a turkey just the right size for our family and our oven. It was 2.3 kilos (or about 5 lbs.). Even so, the only place in our refrigerator with enough room to house such a notable bird was the deep fruits and vegetable drawer! David managed to score wonderful can of sweetened cranberries that served as our sauce. And, of course, I made a pumpkin pie from scratch. In the end we wound up with a little feast that, I think, was completely satisfactory- and, we were grateful to have it!