As Thanksgiving quickly approaches, I have been thinking about the role of cheese in this traditional feast. It’s a particularly heavy late-afternoon repast with nearly every type of food one can imagine: turkey with gravy, stuffing, and cranberry sauce, roasted squash, cauliflower, chestnuts, parsnips, carrots, various high-starch side-dishes, including all sorts of potatoes, and, of course many different pies, like sweet potato pie and pumpkin pie. The list seems endless. At the end of this culinary hedonistic celebration, who has an appetite for a cheese course? I certainly don’t.
Being the cheese enthusiast that I am, it’s impossible to imagine a feast of gastronomic pleasures without fromage. However, the absence of a dedicated course does not mean that cheese isn’t part of the feast. Indeed, in dishes, like chestnut soup, acorn squash puree, and pumpkin dip, cheese hardly takes a backseat role.