Thanksgiving: Recipes and Traditions
The American celebration of Thanksgiving stretches back almost 400 years to the year 1621, when English settlers at Plymouth Rock gave thanks for their first harvest. The Pilgrims held a feast together with members of the local Wampanoag tribe who had helped them avoid starvation the previous winter.
In the beginning, Americans observed Thanksgiving only on an informal basis. Starting in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln established Thanksgiving as an official national holiday. Since 1939, the official celebration always falls on the fourth Thursday in November.
More than any other American holiday, Thanksgiving centers around food. Turkey is crucial to the meal, but many families served duck or even venison too.
Seasonal produce with New World origins features prominently — corn, squash, beans, yams, pumpkin, cranberries.
In recent years it has become more and more common to accompany the whole meal with a fine American zinfandel or pinot noir wine. But any wine, white or red, will do.
Try these recipes for Thanksgiving.
(Salvadoran roast turkey with a rich sauce)
(How to make chicken stock, with variations)
(American cornmeal bread dressing)
(American Southern roasted ham)
(American cornmeal bread)
(American sugar-baked sweet potatoes)
(Irish and American potato puree)
(Canadian-American wild grain pilaf)
(American Southern-Soul simmered leafy greens)
(Armenian rice-stuffed and baked whole pumpkin)
(American pasta with cheese)
(American holiday turkey)
(American pumpkin pastry dessert)
(English roasted Brussels sprouts with cheese sauce)
(American cranberry condiment)
(American Mid-Atlantic cream cheese dessert)
(American cinnamon-scented baked treat)
(American, Southern-Soul sweet potato open-faced tart)
(American seasoned bread side dish)
(American green beans side dish with a crunchy topping)
(American apple tart)