Because our parents were just here to visit, Dan and I will be celebrating Thanksgiving on our own. Instead of throwing in the towel and ordering pizzas and baking mozzarella sticks to gorge ourselves on while watching the Lions game, we decided to invite over our newest friends. We actually like these people, so I started freaking out about cooking the turkey.
I know more about quantum physics than I do about cooking a turkey.
Not only will it be the first year in which the food responsibility has fallen squarely on my shoulders, but to add an even larger twist to this holiday, our friends are Muslim and require halal food. This sent me straight to the internet.
INTERNET SEARCH #1: What is Halal food?
According to About.com,
- pork or pork by products
- animals that were dead prior to slaughtering
- animals not slaughtered properly or not slaughtered in the name of Allah
- blood and blood by products
- carnivorous animals
- birds of prey
- land animals without external ears
These prohibited foods and ingredients are called haram, meaning forbidden in Arabic.
Ok, I got it. So what about a Halal turkey?
INTERNET SEARCH #2:
Halal turkeys are turkeys that have been slaughtered in a manner that abides by Islamic dietary law. They are no different than the turkeys you purchase in your supermarket, except for how they are slaughtered. Many people, including those who are not Muslim, agree that the way the turkeys are killed is more humane than how other turkeys are killed. You can get them fresh from a halal butcher, but they are few and far between in the United States.
Now I just need to figure out how to do the potatoes, stuffing, gravy, potatoes, and pumpkin pie.