When it comes down to it, Thanksgiving is really about one thing: the turkey. Especially here in New England.
When The New York Times put out its map of the Thanksgiving foods represented each state, New Hampshire was awarded the crown prize, the New England Roast Turkey.
So on this Thanksgiving, we thought we’d bring you some stories all about turkeys—from a restaurant that serves turkey dinners every day to a lawyer raising the bird to a soup kitchen making sure no one goes without the main dish this year.
Every day is Thanksgiving at Hart's Turkey Farm in Meredith
by Sean Hurley
"All the time."
That's Sam Willey. His grandparents opened Hart's in 1954. Willey himself has bussed and waited tables, prepared food, bakes pies.
"I started when I was 7 years old. Pick up the parking lot was my first duty."
Now Willey's one of the owners. How does a restaurant that serves Thanksgiving dinners year round top itself on the big day?
"We actually do everything the same," he says.
But just a lot more of it. Mike Cornellison is the executive chef. On a good day 500 hot plates will emerge from his kitchen. On Thankgiving, he's expecting to serve well over 1000.
"The hardest part of my day is making sure everything gets up and is hot and fresh cause we are a scratch kitchen here so we make everything from scratch. Today, out back right now I think there's 36 people back there."
Making rolls, thickening gravy, prepping turkey...or like baker Sherry Agengo, making lots and lots of pies.
"I'm making peach cobbler," Agengo says, "Today, I made over a hundred."
In the busy gift shop out front, the phone doesn't stop ringing. Orders for cranberry sauce, stuffing, for the biggest turkey they have.
"We actually get a lot of calls, why we don't mail gravy? Maybe one day we'll be there, but I'm not ready for that," Willey says, laughing.
There's nothing in the world that can prepare you for mailing gravy, but if anyone can figure it out it'll be someone from a land where Thanksgiving never ends.