Thanks, But NO Thanks and Challah Balsamic Stuffing

by Eden on November 23, 2011

Before I begin, just wanted to mention I was overwhelmed by all of the comments on my last post. Seriously, its that kind of support that helps me keep my chin up.

But back to business…

It’s a cliché to write about – especially on “the holiday” – the things you’re thankful for on Thanksgiving. Plus, I’m sure most of you aren’t doing much blog surfing when you should be cooking/eating/playing football or some thing “American”.

So today I’m going to instead write about the things I’m NOT thankful for:

Paying for Take-out: Even though I’m chef, I don’t feel like cooking (shocker!). But nobody does their own take-out anymore! Nope, you have to call one of the myriad of companies who will charge you a hefty premium just to bring you substandard restaurant “food.” Good thing I know how to use the microwave.

Ice cream with freezer burn: :(

Over-use of words like “Fail” or “Epic”: If the deli guys forgot the pickle on your sandwich, tweeting “epic #fail” isn’t the best way to handle it? Last I checked, pickles can’t not materialize from a Twitter stream. Try going up to the counter and asking for one. Sure it’s an extra step out of your already busy day, but its more useful than dumping your pickle disaster on a congested tweet feed. And what the fuck is “Epic” supposed to mean anyway?! “Would you like some EPIC with that FAIL?!

The Facebook and Twitter “Things I’m Thankful For…” fad: Ugh! If a see another #thankful4 or list of facebook….Besides, everyone lists the same things more or less:

“my family, my health, my friends”

Ya know….maybe they should be more honest and write

“my health insurance, my fertility, my huge cock, my hedge fund, etc…”

Cancer: enough said.

Luxury: Don’t get me wrong, I like good food, vacations and having a comfortable place to live as much as the next person. Especially if you EARN it. But luxury, as a way for brands to differentiate themselves, is a tired idea. In fact, anything that uses exclusivity or costliness as it’s main point of distinction feels icky and, well, cheap.

Andy Rooney’s Passing: I’m not thankful that Andy Rooney passed away. This guy was like my wise godfather I never had.

He new how to be grouchy without being hateful – which is the tone I’ve tried to achieve. And lets face it, I pretty much suck at it.


But now that I think about it, I really should be thankful to have reader who get my sense of humor. Fuck, I should be thankful for having readers at all!

Happy Thanksgiving my American friends. And to people abroad, I apologize for America for “Americanizing” far too many things.

What things are you NOT thankful for? Whats your least favorite thing American “Americanized”? I think the top of my list would be “Taco Bell” and “Panda Express” and trying to pass it off as Mexican and Chinese.

And since its Thanksgiving, I thought I’d share a recipe that’s totally NOT traditional. Its like a the the birth child of Jewish/Italian “pilgrims”. OK, not really…it just has challah and balsamic vinegar.

This recipe is scaled down for two or three people (or one person even!). If you’r having a big dinner party, double it!

  • 6 slices of toasted or stale challah bread, cubed
  • 1/2 cup pureed winter squash or canned pumpkin
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 1/4 cup and 2tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 cup broth of choice
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 3 eggs (sub almond milk or egg substitute if you like)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. in a large bowl, combine: broth (sub for different broth if you’re vege), egg , 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, and mashed squash
  3. mix until sort of smooth, but don’t be too rough with it!
  4. add bread cubes, and gently mix until bread is evenly coated and soaked in mixture and gently fold in half of your sliced onions and thyme.
  5. Bake in muffin tins for individual servings or a loaf pan/casserole dish. The size of the pan you use will determine the cooking time. For muffins it could take 15-20 min and 30 for whole loaf…but keep an eye on them! Don’t yell at me if you burned them, everyone’s oven is different too so just be alert after 20 min have passed.
  6. In the meantime, with the rest of you onions, coat a pan with a little oil and add the onion. Let them get a little soft and add remaining balsamic vinegar, cider vinegar, and maple syrup and sautee to reduce it a bit by bringing the heat down to low. Let it reduce for about 10-15 min or until syrupy and remove from heat.
  7. Once the stuffing is done, pour the balsamic reduction on top and garnish with more thyme.


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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Char @ November 23, 2011 at 11:39 pm

Maybe it’s cliché, but I really am thankful for things like my health, my home, Dallas, my family, my friends, my job…I’ve had to work hard for everything I have, I’ve had to fight through hard times since I was a kid, so for those reasons I don’t take any of it for granted. But I think the point you’re trying to make is that this statement is often just tossed around lightly? I can see/agree with that. But I really, really do love my life and am very thankful for the way it is now.

And I loooooove Challah bread!! My Auntie was given a home-baked one at Christmas time last year, and gave me a slice. Wow. Thank you for reminding me because I kinda wanna go bake it now :D Your balsamic stuffing looks delicious, too!


Eden November 24, 2011 at 12:50 am

Oh dear, I totally wasn’t trying to knock being thankful for all health, home, etc. those ARE important and we shouldn’t take them for granted. I’m glad you know that and I hope other people appreciate what they have too.
Now get you challah on!


Char @ November 24, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Ohh I just re-read it. I’m sorry, I was really tired (no sleep), and totally misunderstood your whole post. My bad :/
Happy Thanksgiving, Eden!! :)


Anne November 23, 2011 at 11:43 pm

In general, I can’t stand when a foreign film is turned into an American one.
As a video store clerk, I can’t stand when people find out a film is subtitled and immediately decide they don’t want to watch it, regardless of what it’s even about.


Eden November 24, 2011 at 12:50 am

ugh, like “Mostly Martha” became “No Reservations”!


melissanibbles November 24, 2011 at 3:52 am

I’m so on board with this. I hate when foreign tv shows are Americanized too. Or should I say bastardized?


Eden November 24, 2011 at 7:06 am

Yea, Americans like to bastarsdize perfectly good tv. Can’t we come up with our own ideas?!


Anne November 24, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Look up George Ritzer’s “The McDonaldization of Society”.

Ellen November 23, 2011 at 11:48 pm

I am not thankful that I am a raging insomniac. It sucks. Especially if you are an actress who is supposed to be pretty and you have a 5 am call time. Which is when the make-up artist is your bestie. Forgive me for using the term bestie.
As for Americanized things, I hate when great films from other countries get made in America and are nowhere near as good as the original…
Now, because I am a sentimental fool I have to say I am actually quite grateful for a ridiculous amount of things, including your blog for entertaining me. Sorry to get saccharine. Can’t help it:)


Eden November 24, 2011 at 12:51 am

I used to act and thats why I quit.


cameo November 24, 2011 at 4:13 am

I am not thankful for our whack-job Congress…not to get too political. But my LAWD if they aren’t the biggest group of crazies…and they are running our country!

Very funny…especially, ““my health insurance, my fertility, my huge cock, my hedge fund, etc…” hahahaha!


Stephanie November 24, 2011 at 4:19 am

It’s not Thanksgiving here. But I’m all about Thanksgiving. It’s pretty much the only holiday that isn’t all about buying and spending and “showing someone how much you love them” (by buying and spending). And I really am thankful for my family and friends. And also for my awesome bed. And Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

I’m not thankful for the fact that I can’t get real Chinese food here. I moved from Toronto to a village of 1800 people this summer. There’s a chinese buffet here that serves chicken balls, sweet and sour pork, and french fries. I really miss Toronto sometimes.


Villimey November 24, 2011 at 4:22 am

Hi Eden

This is my first comment here, I’ve sorta been lurking around for quite awhile, reading your blog. I think I’ve just been too timid to make a comment here (not that I’m afraid of you or anything, I think you’re very cool! )

But I just have to say that I agree with the others about foreign films being turned into American versions. What is sooooo wrong about having subtitles in a movie? I’ve heard so many American complain that they’d wished they knew more languages, well guess what? Watching foreign movies with subtitles on HELPS!!!
There are also so many good foreign movies that have been changed into worse ones, thanks to America, for example Death at a funeral: brilliant Brititsh movie with great British humour……gets turned into a movie with Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence and Tracy Morgan -_-;; Then there’s the upcoming movie Akira, if you don’t know what movie that is, it’s a Japanese animation, basically a cult classic and America is turning into a 9/11 remembrance movie!!!

Sorry about the rant here, but America really needs to appreciate the good quality that foreign movies have and maybe Hollywood should try for more originality….


Eden November 24, 2011 at 7:00 am

Timid? Haha, dont worry, I only bite people in person. I can’t do it through a computer screen ;) Please comment more often! I love rants.


Villimey November 24, 2011 at 7:20 am

It would be pretty cool if you could bite through a computer screen……oh wait, that would hurt too! XD

Sure thing, once I find something really worth ranting (the love for the Twilight series for example *pukes*), I’ll comment it here ;)


Ameena November 24, 2011 at 4:43 am

I’m not thankful that my mom has to undergo yet another cancer related surgery but I am thankful that an end is in sight.

Happy Thanksgiving Eden. Hope you and your fabulous Challah have a great day.


Eden November 24, 2011 at 7:08 am

ugh, I really am SO over cancer! can’t it just go bother some dictator and not perfectly good people that don’t deserve it?!
Have a great thanksgiving Ameena! My regards to maya!


Shannon November 24, 2011 at 5:31 am

I’m torn between being thankful and NOT thankful about having to work today (waitressing). On the one hand, money! On the other hand, I’m sick of working every single holiday (except Christmas). But then again, at least it’ll give me away to be around people since I’m completely alone at home, and if it wasn’t for work I would just sit around the house by myself.

Working on Thanksgiving when you have no one to go home to is like working on Valentine’s Day when you don’t have a significant other (wow, is that term still in use?).


Dawn @ Blonde on a Mission November 24, 2011 at 6:47 am

I’m not thankful that ANTM is still airing new episodes (but secretly I am).
I’m not thankful for all these fucking term papers I have to write and I’m definitely not thankful that all I do is eat when I’m trying to work.
I’m Canadian, but I can still be not thankful on American Thanksgiving.
I am thankful that I found your blog though. I love it.


Eden November 24, 2011 at 7:03 am

I’m thankful I have a new canadian reader ;)
(PS where did you find me? A dumpster? Under your car seat?)


Dawn @ Blonde on a Mission November 24, 2011 at 7:07 am

Via Asian Bitch’s blog. You guys made the Favourites tab, not Google Reader. :)


Eden November 24, 2011 at 7:11 am

oh, she’s cool. haha. Ok, then, as long as I wasn’t found behing the fridge or somewhere nasty…


Rachel November 24, 2011 at 9:10 am

Right now, I’m thankful I don’t have whatever illness my husband has–Sore throat to the point that he can’t even talk! But I’m NOT thankful he’s sick…I feel bad for him. I am thankful we’re postponing our dinner until the weekend, though. I’m feeling lazy today!


Pure2raw twins November 24, 2011 at 3:01 pm

oh yum! love the addition of balsamic in this recipe


Missy November 24, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I’m NOT thankful for my ED
I’m NOT thankful that I can’t drive
I’m NOT thankful that my Mom is not here
I’m NOT thankful that I wasn’t with my family (Dad, sisters, etc) today
I’m NOT thankful that all of my blog friends live so far away.
But I am thankful that I can still fight ED, that I will be able to drive soon, that I plan on seeing my Mom in Heaven, that I should see my family at Christmas (Lord willing) and that hopefully one day, I can meet up with all my bloggie friends! God has blessed my despite all the bad.

I hate Americanized foods as well. I just hate cheesy imitations of anything actually.

Hope you had a blessed wonderful day with your Dad!


Jolene ( November 27, 2011 at 7:18 pm

I am not thankful for useless homework, most chain restaurants, the headache that I have right now.


Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) November 29, 2011 at 3:48 pm

I didn’t read all of the comments above, but i do agree that we Americans should embrace foreign flicks with subtitles- if I had a choice, it’s all I’d see!!

Right now I’m pretty thankful. I’m not happy that I lost my parents, but I’m thankful that i had many wonderful years with them. I’m not thankful that I have to pee and I’m trapped by a small cat who I adore too much to move for the sake of my bladder. Then again, I’m thankful to have such a sweet lap cat. Mary Fricken Poppins, over and out…


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