Thanksgiving 2023 Truths

by | Dec 7, 2023 | Stories

Now that it’s over and the unspoken “trauma” has resolved, I will tell the “true story” about Thanksgiving 2023 dinner rolls. Mary (you know who you are), this story is dedicated for your amusement because thankfully you always encourage me.

Here goes.  My youngest daughter, her husband, and two daughters host Thanksgiving dinner every year.  They include Scott and I, my sons-in-law’s mother (Judy), son-in-law’s sister (Becky) and her husband (Chris), two cousins (my granddaughters Kayla & Gracie) and boyfriend (Andy). It’s a wonderful group and our favorite holiday.  

They have more than perfected the juiciest, most flavorful turkey on the planet.  Everyone volunteers to bring the rest of the traditional side dishes.  There is no muss or fuss, no drama, just pure enjoyment of each other’s company, the yummiest food, and usually a few games after dinner.  

Becky usually brings the dinner rolls and has historically made some scrumptious “sweet” butter (i.e. honey butter).  What would Thanksgiving dinner be without Becky’s green bean casserole, generously garnished with crispy fried onions on top?!  And Judy’s pies etc.?  Gracie was brave to cook a pumpkin pie this year.  It was amazing how well she and Mrs. Smith collaborated on the recipe.  I bring dressing/stuffing (whatever you prefer to call it), make the gravy and, of course, bring my special my pickles (www.sylleecreations.com/products). Cranberry sauce etc. arrives with Kayla & Andy. 

Get the picture?  Because I forgot to take any pictures. There’s always an abundance of food; lots of food fit for our royal family Thanksgiving gathering. 

This year I decided to volunteer for the dinner bread and butter too.  I hoped Becky wouldn’t mind because she often brings dinner rolls.  A local high school was holding a fund raiser that offered Texas Roadhouse frozen dinner rolls and butter.  What a great idea!  We’ll help the school with their fundraiser and provide Thanksgiving bread.  “Two birds with one stone” is the old saying.  We won’t talk about the “killing two birds” part.  I’m thinking about the poor dead bird soon to be our super delicious turkey.

We were notified to pick up the frozen bread from the school on Thursday, November 16th after school. Since I was double booked with other activities, Scott came to the rescue!  Good thing he wrote down the address because he almost went to the wrong Champlin school.  He found the bread location at the school’s kid pick up area which is foreign to us since we don’t have kids in school.  There wasn’t much room in the garage freezer, so asked him to put it in the fridge until I got home a few hours later to rearrange it and hoped it would be okay. Done!  

I read and followed the Texas Roadhouse dinner roll baking instructions.  The rolls must thaw for several hours and grow (aka “raise” in baking terms) to be about twice their frozen size.  I put the timer on and watched those babies grow.  And grow.  And grow.  And grow.  Grow they did in the prescribed amount of time.  Lordy, they grew!  There was no room for placement “2 inches” apart on the cooking sheet. I think we can live with that, but they were fragile to move from their growing position after they were done baking.   When I moved them, some of them collapsed. I don’t blame them; poor things were exhausted from all their growing and baking work.  

I decided to try one pan of rolls to see how they would turn out.  Bingo. That was smart because they didn’t turn out so well.  We’re okay.  I have 4 dozen, more than enough if the first pan didn’t turn out.  We’ll make some adjustments, and the 2nd pan should be better.  Do ya think?  Nope!  Another failure.  And another failure.  Oh my gosh!  Panic city!  What are our options now?  Should I go to Hy-Vee for the “take and bake” so we could just stick ‘em in the oven to get them hot?  

I couldn’t do that.  I just couldn’t.  Everyone knew I was bringing the Texas Roadhouse rolls.  Should I get more and try again?  I couldn’t easily do that either.  My energy and patience were evaporating!  Even so, Scott and I hopped in the car and off to Texas Roadhouse we went.  Fortunately, they were out of frozen rolls and only pre-baked were available.  Perfect!  I didn’t want to bake them again anyway!  I ordered three dozen pre-baked rolls which came in heavy tin, covered pans for warming.  I told the cashier my sob story and she compassionately threw in extra butter.  

The rolls warmed up nicely and no one knew the struggle because we don’t like drama, right?  There you have it.  Let the truth be known; the truth about the 2023 Thanksgiving dinner Texas Roadhouse dinner rolls. You can count on me for an adventure even with what might ordinarily be mundane.

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