My favorite Thanksgiving story goes like this.
My family really likes cranberry sauce. I mean, reeeaaally likes cranberry sauce. I remember having homemade cranberry sauce at my grandmother's house, each of us with our own portion in a little glass pyrex bowl. It was smooth like applesauce. I learned that a foley mill was key to getting the perfect texture. Later my dad became the cranberry sauce maker in the family and the individual serving bowls seemed to get bigger. I swear my brother has a cereal bowl for his.
Many years ago, while living in California, I found a foley mill at a yard sale and bought it. Not long after, I was getting ready to make my first ever Thanksgiving dinner. The 'stray dog' dinner we called it as we were all transplants who weren't going to be with family that day. We were going to watch some football and the guys were betting on who could gain the most weight over the course of the meal. (I was asked to have a scale handy for the before and after weigh-ins.) I ordered a fresh, free-range bird and planned to make all the stuffing, sides and desserts from scratch. I called my dad to get "Grandma's Cranberry Recipe." Surely this was a family secret to be passed down in loving tradition. I had my pen ready.
"Look on the back of the bag and it's right there," my dad says. "I cut down the sugar a little bit but that's it."
Seriously? My treasured family delicacy was splayed out there openly by Ocean Spray for all the world to see? My heart sank. Certainly there was nothing special about that. The only thing special about us is the way we line up with our cereal bowls to get our enormous ladle of sauce. It's really good stuff, you know.
Many happy Thanksgiving wishes to you and yours.