Although the mall by my house was decorated for Christmas before Halloween this year, we don’t plan on skipping over Thanksgiving in our house! The minute trick or treaters stop ringing the doorbell, I’m more likely to be thinking about stuffing than Christmas cookies. In addition to celebrating Thanksgiving , this year we will be hosting our second annual Friendsgiving. Have you ever heard of Friendsgiving? It is an excuse to celebrate Thanksgiving again, but with your friends. The year that Chanukah overlapped with Thanksgiving, social media told me some people even celebrated Friendsgivukah. That basically sounds like an excuse to have latkes at Friendsgiving, and I am all for it. We get extra excited about Friendsgiving because it means that we will have friends visiting from Long Island! My husband and I are always thankful for Long Island friends and family who are willing to make the journey three and a half hours north.
Our first Friendsgiving last year was a total success. Instead of a turkey (because we all knew we would be having one of those in a few weeks), our friend made a roast and Yorkshire puddings. I made sweet potatoes and this bacon bourbon stuffing. Friends came and brought their famous cornbread and their green bean casserole, and my friend who came to visit from Long Island took care of appetizers. Her chili dip is to die for! We bought our pies from Gades Farm so we wouldn’t have to worry about dessert. They sell a huge selection of fantastic pies from Mourningkill Bake Shop in Ballston Spa. As for drinks, I believe we had wine and beer. I also spent weeks before the event on pinterest looking up a signature cocktail recipe for the day. I ended up making bourbon apple ciders, with frozen cranberry ice cubes, stirred with cinnamon sticks Leave out the bourbon and its still delicious. All in all, we had a great day with our friends, and fell into food comas shortly thereafter. We managed to eat some pie several hours later.
Now that we have hosted Friendsgiving once, we have a good idea about what works, and what doesn’t. I think this year’s celebration will be better than ever. The thing that makes Friendsgiving fun and stress free is that everyone makes what they want to, and kind of puts their own spin on it. For example, this year, my friend’s boyfriend is responsible for the potatoes, and instead of mashed, he is making potato croquettes. Delegating responsibilities ensures that no one person feels completely overwhelmed. Everyone can volunteer to make or help with what they are good at! Unless someone wants to bring dessert this year, we’ll will be getting our pies from the farm again. I’ll be doing a ton of cooking and prep work, and I honestly feel that I couldn’t do a better job with the pies myself. There are certain times when it just makes sense to buy something rather than make it yourself- especially if it keeps you from becoming overwhelmed. I also intend to buy the cranberry sauce that is shaped like the can. Because I love it.
We do not have a dishwasher in our house, so I will most definitely be using tin serving trays and paper plates and cups for such a big crowd! I want to have time to spend with my friends without all of us being stuck in the kitchen. Something that we found helpful last year was saving plastic takeout containers from our favorite Thai restaurant so that people could take leftovers home if they wanted to. Purchasing some glad-ware will also serve this purpose. What is a Thanksgiving celebration without enough leftovers to make at least one Pilgrim Wrap?
We still have a lot of thinking and planning to do about this year’s Friendsgiving celebration. I still haven’t decided if I want to roast a turkey or not! My friend and I recently discussed how we are most excited about the sides. While we both eat meat, we are not super carnivorous. In a few weeks, I’ll share the menu and some pictures to let you know what we decide! In the mean time, I’m going to go up in the attic and dust off our Thanksgiving decorations. My colorful Christmas trees will be nearby tempting me, but they will have to wait until black Friday to go up. This month will be all about Thanksgiving, even if the Starbucks cups are red and the mall is full of bells and green garland.
Do you think you you’ll host a Friendsgiving dinner this year?