My Big, Fat, Italian Thanksgiving
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My Big, Fat, Italian Thanksgiving

When it comes to food, Italians never do it wrong

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My Big, Fat, Italian Thanksgiving

I’m quite positive that everyone is aware of the traditional American Thanksgiving Day feast and all it entails: the turkey and gravy, the stuffing, the sweet potatoes, the mashed potatoes, the steamed vegetables, the dinner rolls; the list goes on but I must refrain because I’m getting hungry. However, when I walk through my grandpa’s door on Thanksgiving Day, I see what most people rarely get a glimpse of on that beloved holiday: the preparations for an Italian Thanksgiving. Of course, I’m greeted with the quick kiss on the cheek and a “How ya' doing?” from all of my relatives, but then my eyes swiftly focus on the abundant platters of cheeses, various sausages and pepperoni, stuffed peppers, and delicious baked breads filled with meats and cheeses. If that’s not enough, next come clams on the half shell and shrimp cocktail.

After we all sit down and say grace, we immediately dig into the beautiful mountain of salami, prosciutto, provolone cheese, olives, peppers, mushrooms, and artichokes: the ingredients to form the all-hailed antipasto salad. One of the hardest tasks when eating the antipasto is to not stuff yourself because you definitely will need to save room for the other endless courses to come. This is all topped off with clams oreganata. To be honest, I’ve never actually tried the clams, but they are certainly a hit among the majority of my family members. Surprisingly, by the time the appetizers are getting cleaned off of the table, there are hardly any left.


The next on the list to delve into is the tomato and fresh mozzarella caprese salad. Who would ever think that something so simple would taste beyond delicious? Topped with oil, a hint of salt and pepper, and oregano, this delectable dish certainly hits the spot.

One of my favorite appetizers is my father’s stuffed artichokes. Layers upon layers of tasty breadcrumbs on every artichoke leaf is like biting into heaven on Earth. This may be one of the messiest food items on the table, but a few grimy fingers are definitely worth the scrumptious combination of garlic, cheese, and breadcrumbs.


Need not worry, there’s also the option of the traditional homemade chicken soup followed by platters of five layered lasagna (meat or non-meat) and of course, Italian bread. Because, we all know that any Italian dinner must have pasta; without it would be sinful. Immediately, dishes are cleaned and prepared for the next course. However, there has to be at least a two hour nap before the next meal can begin.

The following course assuredly includes the turkey, gravy, stuffing, sweet and mashed potatoes, and a family favorite: celery salad. At this point after eating, we might need to loosen our belts to avoid the discomfort from our bloated stomachs.

Hours later, it’s time for the long-awaited desserts. Yes, there is the classical apple pie, pumpkin pie, and carrot cake. But, let’s not forget about the rich New York style cheesecake, the assortment of Italian cookies, or the struffoli puffs! Combined with a hot cup of coffee or espresso, these various desserts surely complete the Italian Thanksgiving feast. But then comes the hardest question…who gets the leftovers?

Thanksgiving Day is one of my favorite holidays. I have the privilege of spending the day with the two things I love most in this world; pasta and cheesecake (just kidding). What I’m really talking about is my family and the delicious food! Every time we get together on that special day I realize how important each one of them is and how I wouldn’t change them one bit! As the holiday quickly approaches, I am getting more and more excited to dive into those tasty Italian delicacies and to re embrace those special people so close to my heart.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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