Thanksgiving Traditions

I would like to introduce the new addition to our family! She’s a 6 year old English Setter, Angie. She is one of the sweetest pups I’ve ever met. We wanted a companion for Duke and we couldn’t have been blessed with a better dog. She is about to share her first thanksgiving with us. I’m going to cook the dogs up some pumpkin treats!

I think it is really interesting when you ask people what their family traditionally cooks for thanksgiving. They all tell you a few common dishes yet they all have a personalized twist. I never really thought about it until I moved to Louisiana and had my first thanksgiving with my husbands family. They cooked gumbo! I had never heard of such a thing.
Then, I was talking with my 87 year old friend from the bayou and she was so excited to have her “asparagus on toast” for thanksgiving. That got me asking what else they were having and she named a few other items that were new to me. 

I grew up in a family that had all the most American traditional components of a thanksgiving meal: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean cassarole, sweet potato casserole, cranberry relish, apple pie, and pumpkin pie. So now being exposed to thanksgivings “outside the box”, I thought I’d write a post on a few people from different regions in Louisiana and what they are serving! 
Ms, Lorraine: 87 year old from Golden Meadow, LA. Baked turkey, Baked ham, Gravy from turkey, Oyster dressing, Dirty rice, Asparagus on toast, Praline sweet potato, Cranberry sauce mold, Caramel custard, Praline fudge, Cocoons, Chocolate marshmallow fudge, Praline candy.

Mother-in-law, Lisa. 53 year old from Cut Off, LA. Gumbo, Potato salad, White rice, Ham, Turkey, Stuffing, Rice dressing (dirty rice), Green bean casserole, Sweet potato casserole, Custard pie, Sweet potato pie, Pumpkin pie, Tea cookies, Garlic roast.

Tabitha, 40 year old from Thibodeaux, LA. Crab, shrimp, and sausage mirliton bake, Shrimp and zucchini bake, Cornbread dressing, Turkey, Ham, Roast, Sweet potato pie.

As you can see, Turkey, Ham, and a Roast are common among families, but they have some really unique side dishes! The mirliton bake sounds amazing to me. A mirlinton is a green squash-like vegetable that you probably pass over on your way to the zucchini. It is common down here and they cook it all kinds of ways. I have even had it as a soup. Seafood is also commonly added to meals. 

When you are around friends and family, take a second and ask them what their traditional meal looks like and you may be surprised. It’s never too late to create your own traditions! Let me know if you come up with something delicious! Does your family have a unique dish?

Happy Thanksgiving!


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