The week leading up to Thanksgiving is one of my favourites. I intentionally clear my calendar so I can spend several days prepping our big meal by organizing the activities for the kids, adding a little festive décor to the house, and planning far too much food for our larger-by-the-year crowd.
What started out as six people seated around Rob’s parent’s dining table nearly two decades ago, has swelled to literally quadruple in size, and we now have 24 people at our house for a full-blown buffet-style fall feast. Everyone comes armed with a hearty appetite, as well as a contribution to the meal, and we stuff ourselves silly with the fixings of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.
One thing I don’t make much room for on the menu is appetizers. I don’t spend a week planning my meal, brining the bird, and baking pies so everyone can fill up on roasted nuts, puff pastry parcels, and dips for chips. If I offer anything, it’s simple and light, like a shot glass full of a seasonal soup, or a modest, yet creative, cheese board.
I have a habit of putting a seasonal spin on my cheese boards (remember the cheesy Christmas tree?), which is exactly what I’ll be doing on Sunday when I place this plucky cheese and cracker turkey on the table for pre-dinner nibbling. There is no how-to here, if you want to make something similar yourself. Simply cut your cheese and salami, dig out some crackers from the cupboard, find a round platter or serving board, and begin building the snack into something that roughly resembles the shape of a turkey. It’s ridiculously easy to do (cut your cheese and salami the day before to save even more time), bordering on silly even, but everyone will delight in your efforts, I promise.