By Hilary Davidson
My main character, Lily Moore, has never had much in the way of family traditions. Her mother wasn't the sort to prepare a Thanksgiving feast, and Lily was more likely to escape the holidays by watching the classic Hollywood films she loves so much, instead of sitting at a table filled with turkey and all the fixings.
Still, Lily's friends are her surrogate family, especially Jesse Robb, who is like a brother to her. While Lily isn't the type to spend much time making meals for herself, she enjoys cooking for him (as she does in The Damage Done). Since Jesse hails from Oklahoma, that means Lily has picked up a repertoire of recipes from his home state, including cheese grits, brown bean chowder, and sweet barbecue brisket. Invite her to Thanksgiving dinner, and at least one of those will be on the table. IThis style of cooking suits Lily particularly well, since her idol, Ava Gardner, hailed from North Carolina and loved that sort of rib-sticking food, too.
While I'm talking about Thanksgiving, I'd like to mention some real-life resources for people who have celiac disease (as I do), or gluten intolerance. It's getting easier to find safe foods and recipes. For Thanksgiving, one terrific resource is Eating Well's gluten-free recipe guide, which includes Turkey Tenderloin with Cranberry-Shallot Sauce and a vegetarian Winter Squash Risotto. I also like Prevention's "Perfect Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Menu," which linked to many different sites for recipes. I also include some holiday resources on the Gluten-Free Guidebook. However you celebrate your Thanksgiving, I hope it's happy and healthy!