There used to be a Fairy Tale about a king who could smell what was cooking in every kitchen, from great to small, from manor to humble, all over his kingdom. He’d be enticed by an especially delicious aroma, and would invite himself to dinner, surprising many a citizen by his appearance at the door.
country, with all the lovely scents of Thanksgiving preparations going on. I imagine the pies are being baked today (ours yesterday, on Caro’s day off), and the vegetables prepared right up to the cooking stage. Many a bowl of stuffing is being tossed to await the anointment with stock or broth or drippings for baking tomorrow---whatever kind of bread cubes, toasted or left to dry, tossed with their many differing ingredients, according to recipes old and new.
Enough skillets and pans of cornbread are baking right now to feed armies, and the keen fumes of onion, the nuttygreen aroma of celery, the musky curls of sage and those little poufy dust-bunny shakes from the McCormick’s can, the boiling of stock and gravy---all those scents are rising like praise to Heaven.
There's one charity group in town which feeds 25,000 people tomorrow, and imagining the bubbling pots and laden chopping boards in those kitchens would boggle even that Old King, I think.
Not when I’ve polished up the silver, or got out the pretty cut-glass dishes gathered from so many tables not my own, or when the sweet potatoes go in to bake, or folks packing to go to Grandma's, or getting those pies nestled safely into the trunk of the car---but at THAT MOMENT, that inhaling of the scents old as the South, readily available for centuries and compiled of the essence of the dish---THAT’S the instant the clock turns to Thanksgiving, no matter what the calendar says.