This year Koen and I had a small Thanksgiving celebration, just the two of us. We narrowed down our favorite sides (okay, I chose the sides!) and we bought a chicken rather than a turkey to prepare and we were good to go! There’s something so comforting about eating Thanksgiving food in November no matter where you are in the world. We also enjoyed many leftovers the coming days – maybe even the best part of the Thanksgiving meal!
For our last dinner in Georgia, I requested a fish fry! I really enjoyed using my Grandpa’s fryer and was able to put it to good use with the fish, okra and hush puppies! My contribution to the meal was homemade quick dill pickles I prepared a couple of days before! One of the most important recipes I wanted to learn was for my Grandma’s tomato grits. It was a staple at any family gathering growing up – and now I can make them too!
One of the recipes my grandmother was most excited to pass down to me is her recipe for Brunswick Stew. I think every Southern family has their own version, and this is ours (although the exact steps I won’t tell!). To accompany the stew, Koen grilled a piece of brisket on the Green Egg and made biscuits!
Learning Grandma’s chicken and dumplings was also requested by my brother. It wouldn’t okay for Grandma to make it without him also being able to enjoy the meal! So this really was a Grandma and grandchildren effort – even Edward helped!
There were a few times the whole family was together. So what better than grilling as a family? I made my favorite grilled vegetable salad, my dad grilled steaks and corn, and my mom baked a fresh loaf of sourdough bread along with potatoes – both regular and sweet.
One of the best parts of being in Georgia was cooking family recipes with my grandparents. Of course my very first cooking lesson had to be my favorite – fried chicken and biscuits!
My parents have lived in Macon, Georgia for a few years now, so with this visit they were able to show us around and take us to some of their favorite places.
Going back to Georgia = family time. Although technically vacation, I want to spend all of my time seeing everyone and catching up. I do my best while in Belgium with Skype, Facetime and Whatsapp, but nothing beats face to face!
Even though Koen and I live in Belgium, we still celebrate Thanksgiving every year. This year was very special – my parents were in town! They were able to bring decorations and ingredients with them from America!
America by birth, Southern by the grace of God. That’s how it goes, right?