Thanksgiving isn’t Thanksgiving without butter in the shape of a turkey

People get real weird about the foods that are specific to their own traditions at Thanksgiving. Some need stuffing prepared a certain way. Some need their turkey deep fried. Some only want canned whipped cream for their pumpkin pie. I want butter molded into the shape of a turkey.

There are two types of people in this world. Those people who go to three different stores looking for butter molded into the shape of a turkey for their Thanksgiving dinner and who almost break down in tears when they can’t find it. And those people who have no idea what the hell I’m talking about. Like the 16-year-old stock boy I accosted at my local Kroger last Thanksgiving when I couldn’t find the butter sculpted into a turkey shape.

You mean Butterball turkey?

No, I mean butter. Like actual butter? But they sell it so it looks like a little turkey?

I have no idea what that is.

What sort of horrific childhood did this stock boy have where he was totally unfamiliar with turkey butter? Were his parents monsters?

It took me three different trips to three different stores until I finally found my butter shaped like a turkey, but to me it wouldn’t have been Thanksgiving without it. Probably because my own mother always made sure this butter sculpture graced our own Thanksgiving table when I was growing up.

Now, now, I know this seems like a dumb thing to get all riled up about, but it’s what makes my holiday special. I basically need four things on Thanksgiving to make my day seem truly thankful. I need sausage and apples in my stuffing. I need the parade on when I am peeling potatoes. At some point in my meal preparations I need someone to make me a vodka cranberry. And I need my damn turkey butter.

I’m not picky with the rest of my ingredients. I’ll use whatever breadcrumbs are on sale. I’ll buy store brand instead of name brand cranberries for my sauce. I’ll decide at the last minute whether I want to mess with cooking a whole turkey versus a turkey breast that I won’t have to make room in my refrigerator for the carcass for after dinner is done. But I need my turkey butter, even though the kids basically mangle it after the bread basket is passed around the table. It just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without it.

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