Maine Traditional Thanksgiving Meal

Thanksgiving will be here before we know it!  Have you planned what you will be serving for the special feast?

roast turkeyI’d like to share with you a “Traditional Maine Thanksgiving Dinner,” from Ocean Point Inn. Having grown up in Maine, I have to say this is almost the exact same menu I had as a child.  Definitely remember that turnip which I dislike to this day!

  •        Roast Turkey
  •        Onion and Celery Stuffing (not called dressing in Maine)
  •        Mashed Potatoes
  •        Gravy
  •         Parker House Rolls
  •         Squash
  •        Turnipth dinner plate
  •        Creamed Onions
  •        Celery stuffed with cream cheese
  •        Green and Black Olives
  •        Cranberry Sauce
  •        Pumpkin and Apple Pies

People debate whether a fresh Maine turkey or a frozen turkey is best?  Butter injected or store brand?  And, do not forget the wild turkey!! wild turkeys I have only had wild turkey once and it must have been on the run for months as it was tough as LL Bean shoe leather!  But, everyone has their own opinion on this.  There are certainly dozens of wild turkeys running around Ocean Point Inn these days.  I wonder if any of them will end up on a Thanksgiving table??

Some insist you have sweet potatoes with marshmallows, green bean casserole, pumpkin cheesecake and on and on.  The menu today is limited only by one’s imagination and favorite foods.

Our classic turkey dinner is very popular, on our menu on Sundays at the Ocean Point Inn, its “Turkey Dinner with all the Fixin’s.”  You want to eat early on Sunday evenings if you want Turkey as it usually sells out quickly.  Many people return every Sunday evening just for the turkey.

cornucopiaBesides just having leftovers, some feel the best part of the turkey is turkey sandwiches the next day.  These sandwiches can vary as much as the meal itself ranging from just meat and bread to lettuce, stuffing, cranberry sauce and mayonnaise.  Of course, there will always be the discussion of which is best – white meat or dark meat?  A distinct advantage of cooking your own turkey is having the carcass left to make turkey soup, a wonderfully warming late fall treat.roast turkey

We do lots of planning to come up with the perfect menu and table decorations, but ultimately the day is for being thankful and sharing food with family and friends.  It does not matter where we are, who we are with or what we are eating. cranberry We are thankful for what we have.

One Thanksgiving I spent the day on an uninhabited tropical island.  We  grilled lobster and ate fresh conch we had caught. These treats were served with salad and orange cake plus lots of rum punch.  Somehow this experience and setting made everyone  especially thankful that Thanksgiving Day.  You could swim, walk the beach or hunt for shells to work off the meal.  Or, some found a fishnet hammock hung between two palm treats the best way to work off the meal!!

This year I will have Thanksgiving dinner on a tropical island but in a traditional table setting.  The guests will be from different parts of the happy thanksgivingcountry with different traditions.  Everyone, no matter where they are from, will be thankful on that day.

May your Thanksgiving be full of fun, family, love, traditions and much thankfulness.  Enjoy!

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