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Thanksgiving 2011.

Thanksgiving is hands down my favorite holiday of the year. How are you going to argue against a national holiday where one has the day off from work or school, and likely the following day off to eat a huge meal and watch football? You can’t. Especially this year with our San Francisco 49ers playing in their biggest game of the year to date. I don’t think I can recall a Thanksgiving where the Niners were playing, let alone 9-1! But, I digress. It is a shame that this glorious holiday is already being pushed aside by the commercialism of Christmas. Union Square already has the Ice Rink and Tree set up. Macy’s has holiday Wreaths in all its windows, and F***** Christmas carols are already being played in grocery stores. It is an outrage. I remember during my high school mock government class someone tried to pass a bill that would outlaw Christmas decorations before Thanksgiving. I should have voted yes. Damn.

Back to talking about food. There are always the age old debates on Thanksgiving culinary treats. To brine or not brine the turkey, yams or mashed, pumpkin or pecan, stuffing or dressing, etc. Well, I believe it is all up to the family traditions. It’s the one culinary holiday of the year where sticking to basics and tradition will trump experimenting. Luckily, my family has recently adopted the deep fry turkey as part of the holiday spread. And for that, I am thankful! I usually try do go outside the box and produce an appetizer that is different, fun, and exciting, and this year is no exception. The idea was conceived in the new “Man Cave” at my buddy’s house; cucumber rolls, with artichoke puree, roasted bell pepper aioli, fresh dungeness crab and mint. If anything, it should be a fun app to make. This year, as I have now officially inherited, I have the all important mashed potato duty. I have a wonderful method which, if you haven’t done you need to try. Boil the potatoes in MILK, not water. Then use some of the cooking liquid as your mashing aid when bringing the dish together. It makes the best mashed potatoes ever. You can add all the garlic, cheese, and butter you want to your normal mash, but it won’t compete with the milk mash. Trust me.

This year, I also put a challenge out to you the reader. Take a picture of your Day-After-Thanksgiving Turkey Sandwich. It is my favorite part about this holiday, and it is fun to see how creative you can get while still producing an edible sandwich that doesn’t fall apart. Bacon is encouraged. Ill even raise the stakes. Best picture submission gets lunch for 2 cooked for them by yours truly. Post them on the Kellan’s Kitchen Facebook account, with a share to this post.

With that, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! GO NINERS!