before the parade passes by

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade was hanging in the balance this year. High winds were predicted to blow through after a storm system that brought some much-needed rain. The day ended up being cold and clear.

The expected winds didn’t happen. So when we tuned in Thanksgiving morning, there were all the  inflated characters bobbing up and down, tethered by the strings of the balloon handlers, as they made their way down the parade route.

The bare limbs of trees provided a backdrop for Spider Man and other well-known characters. The camera crew from NBC probably wished the billboard, of a woman in a hot-pink Victoria’s Secret bra, wasn’t positioned on the side of a building on the street just above Macy’s.

It seemed like the cameras were trying not to cut to the shot, of the next float or marching band to get to the reviewing station, until the very last possible minute. Otherwise, there she was staring down from the sign, in the camera angle that included everyone from Tom Turkey to Mr. and Mrs. Claus, as they waved to the children.

The timing of the sage, in what is left in the garden as the weather gets colder, works well. The sage leaves being picture-perfect, for when the kitchen gets cranking for Thanksgiving, gives the freshest flavor possible for the stuffing.

Onions, garlic, and some stock transform toasted cubes of bread into a holiday dish. It’s satisfying to grab some sage leaves and slice into thin strips for the stuffing. The aroma of the sage is released as it warms in the stuffing.

Turkey. Stuffing and gravy. Sweet potatoes or mashed. Everyone has a food that says, “It’s a  holiday!” when it hits the table. What’s yours? Cranberry sauce can take you from Thanksgiving to your holiday dinner table decorated with pine cones in December.

Head over to Parade for some ideas for cranberries this holiday season.

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