by MELISSA GORDON
Raise your hand if you’re anticipating some kind of family drama at Thanksgiving this year. Maybe you still can’t get over the fact that your son and daughter-in-law just named your first grandchild after an Indian shrub. Perhaps your brother’s girlfriend won’t come unless she can bring her dogs, even though grandma’s allergic to them. Or maybe tensions are already high from political differences, and that uncle is going to be there, you know, the one who simply cannot accept who you voted for.
Whatever the case may be, you can take solace in the fact that at least you are eating together. And it’s not just you. Millions of other Americans are also eating together, and that is a beautiful thing worth celebrating. In a time when we eat roughly half of all meals alone, and the majority of American families eat only one of out every five meals together, that we continue to honor the Thanksgiving tradition of eating together is not insignificant. In fact, I might go so far as to say it’s radical. As a culture, and as individuals, we’re intentionally breaking from our busy lives to foster community and relationship, despite the inconvenience and frustration that sometimes accompanies it. So instead of stewing over who did or said what, let’s be thankful for the continued effort to bring life to community and to bring community to life.
Chipotle Butternut Squash Puree: Thanksgiving with a Twist
Adapted slightly from “From Asparagus to Zucchini” by the Madison Area Community Supported Agriculture Coalition
Makes four servings
Note: Although it may look like her food, you definitely won’t want to feed this to baby Sola.
• 3 pounds butter nut or other winter squash
• 1 tablespoon butter
• 1-2 tablespoons chipotle in adobo sauce, finely chopped
• Salt and pepper
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
2. Prick a squash all over with a fork, and bake on a foil-lined tray for about 30 minutes. Turn squash over and back for another 30 minutes, or until very tender.
3. Remove from oven and set aside until cool enough to handle.
4. Cut the squash in half, remove and discard the seeds, and scoop out the flesh. Puree the flesh in a blender or food processor, or mash with a potato masher.
5. Melt the butter and stir in the chipotle. Stir the butter/chipotle mixture into the squash and season with salt and pepper.