Turkey with a Hole on Top

| 21 Feb 2012 | 10:52

    When you are young and married with no children, the parents' expect it is your responsibility to visit during the holidays. Those first few years, before you get any guts, it's a constant battle over where to go. However, when a baby enters the picture. . .that causes quite a stir. You desire to create your own traditions. Fresh moments to cherish and experience with your newly expanding family. Not old ones. Thus, when I decided to make my first Thanksgiving turkey, I was prepared way in advance. Of course, the slighted parents didn't think I could pull it off. We've all been there. Roasting your first turkey is an experience you will cherish for a lifetime. Preparing a menu all by yourself and the sense of power achieved when selecting the perfect bird are unparalleled. Single-handedly being able to choose the accompanying vegetables and the plump sweet potatoes. Ah, just the thought gets me dizzy with excitement. Pulling out my trusty Martha Stewart magazine, I thawed and soaked the turkey in saltwater overnight (just envisioning the tenderness still causes my mouth to salivate). Thanksgiving morning, I withdrew the turkey from the fridge and, as I was about to pop the sucker into the oven, the phone rang. "Mom! Yes, I'm just putting it in now. . .what? Remove a bag? I stared at this unappetizing raw bird, searching for an open orifice. "Where is this bag supposed to be? I turned it over and over, trying to figure out why I couldn't find the elusive gizzard bag. "But mom, there are no holes!" My mom was just as exasperated, "No holes? Are you sure you even have a turkey there!" she bellowed. "Maybe you bought a ham?" No way. How could I have done something so stupid? I slammed the phone down and opened the trash compactor, rifling through the previous day's contents. Surely I'd find the plastic wrapping to the bird and prove it was a turkey. Ah, yes, there it was, slithered down between some carrot shavings and onion peels. I produced the wrapper and held it up to read: 7 pound turkey BREAST. There were no giblets, no neck, no yuck. Nor were there legs or thighs for that matter. And I hadn't even noticed. I had mistakenly purchased just a breast for our Thanksgiving feast. Maybe there are some traditions a mother hopes never to perpetuate.