Thanksgiving: Turkey, BBQ Ribs and Fried Flounder

umi grill fried flounder

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and since it’s a feast of a celebration, I figured it was only right for me to write a quick post about the holiday. I know it’s been over a week since we all sat down with our families and went around the table saying what we were all thankful for this year, but better late than never.

This year we spent Thanksgiving in Terre Haute, IN with my wife’s family. They moved there about 4-5 years ago now and we try to alternate Thanksgivings between her family and mine. Christmas is always easier since they come back up to Chicago. The 4 hour drive to Terre Haute isn’t the worst, but I always seem to get a speeding ticket on the way down, but thankfully I didn’t this year. It’s a Thanksgiving miracle!

When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, everything is pretty traditional. We had turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, pumpkin bread, cranberry sauce, etc. Nothing too out of the ordinary until my mother in-law remembered that she had ribs in the fridge… BBQ ribs at Thanksgiving dinner seemed like an odd choice to me, but I do like my some BBQ so I wasn’t complaining… it was just a bit weird. I guess the fact that it was a smoked turkey kind of went along with the bbq theme, maybe? I just never think of Thanksgiving as a time for BBQ ribs, but I guess the whole idea is to eat a lot of food and be thankful for what you have. So that night we were thankful for BBQ ribs. But even though I love BBQ, those weren’t the star of the show, we had the Brad Pitt of turkeys. It looked good, it smelled good, it had the perfect skin… hell, if I were a man turkey and this was the Brad Pitt of turkeys, I’d go gay for this turkey; it was that good.

thanksgiving dinner 2013

Part of the Thanksgiving Spread w/ [Peter] Parker Table Photobomb

The turkey actually came from Reagan Meats in Glenview, IL; my wife and I had to pick it up and drive it down to Terre Haute. My mother in-law doesn’t think the turkeys at Wal-mart or Sam’s Club in Terre Haute have quality turkeys, so she refuses to buy them. That’s fine by me because this smoked turkey from Reagan Meats was absolutely delicious. It was a bit on the salty side and almost resembled the taste of ham to me, but I love ham, so I was not complaining. The Reagan Meats traditional stuffing was also quite delicious, but the raisin/nut stuffing (or whatever was in it) was not very good. All in all Thanksgiving dinner was a success. The food was delicious, the company was good and [Peter] Parker the puppy didn’t pee or throw up all over the house like he did last time he was there. The only issue was the lack of beer on actual Thanksgiving. I mean, we found some beer, but when I checked the “born on date”, 2009 didn’t seem so appealing to me. I’m not sure that Bud Light is the type of beer that ages well.

The day after Thanksgiving someone decided it would be a great idea to drive up to Indianapolis to go to the mall to shop. Clearly this was not my idea, but the mall wasn’t nearly as crowded as I expected it to be on Black Friday. There were some stores that had ridiculous check out lines, but I wasn’t about to buy anything in those stores anyways so it didn’t matter. We did eat in the food court here so it kind of ties into the food aspect. There weren’t very many choices so we opted for Elevation Burger, which is another one of those burger joints that prides itself on grass fed beef and all that jazz. Needless to say I wasn’t very impressed. I’d take Edzo’s or even Five Guys over Elevation Burger in a heartbeat.

thanksgiving lechon pig roast

Thanksgiving Lechon aka Roasted Pig

After the mall we had dinner at a family friends house, kind of like another Thanksgiving celebration with more than just the family. This time though, instead of traditional American Thanksgiving, it was Filipino Thanksgiving. I pretty only ate the mini egg rolls as there is only a few Filipino foods that I truly enjoy. However, in lieu of a turkey, they had a lechon, which is basically just a roasted pig; a full roasted pig. Now like I said above, I love ham, but I don’t like it when my food is staring at me while I cut hunks of meat off it’s back; I passed. I get a lot of shit for not liking a roasted pig, but I just can’t get over the eyes staring deep into my soul. Friends Thanksgiving was a good time and I found some “beer” (Red’s Apple Ale), which I happily partook in.

Saturday was the last day of food worthy of writing about and it’s probably the strangest thing I ate the whole weekend. Even stranger than BBQ ribs for Thanksgiving. We went to a restaurant called Umi Grill which is a Japanese Sushi restaurant. Of course I didn’t eat any of the sushi and got my boring usual of Chicken Teriyaki, which actually tasted extremely fishy to me due to the fact that they probably cooked it on the same grill as fish… but it was alright. So while I didn’t partake in the sushi I did give my asian salad a try and was pleasantly surprised that there is other salad dressings out there besides Western and French that I like. I’m not sure what dressing it was, but it was pretty tasty. But the salad wasn’t the adventurous part of the meal for me… that would have been the fried flounder. It was literally an entire flounder, fried and thrown on a plate, head and all. As soon as it hit the table I knew I had to try it so I could write about it, and guess what… it was pretty good. It tasted pretty much like any other fried white fish, which I don’t really mind, so I was pleasantly surprised; maybe it was just the presentation that threw me off.

umi grill fried flounder

Fried Flounder

Overall I’d say it was a pretty successful Thanksgiving. Good food, family, friends, and flounder, the only thing that would have made it better is if we got to see my family, but thankfully we got to FaceTime with all of them before Thanksgiving dinner and we’ll see them all next year. When you have two sides of a family the holidays become a bit more difficult to work out, but that’s just the way it is and I’m thankful that we have 2 loving families that we both enjoy seeing on the holidays, not everyone can say that.

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

 

 

I'm a married man in his 30's who doesn't really "like" food. If it weren't for my wife I would have never tried things like sushi or thai food. I mainly just eat so I don't die.

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