I’m making a big Thanksgiving dinner again this year and have yet to fully decide on which recipes I’ll be using. I decided to check out the PBS website to see what they’ve got in the way of recipes. After all, they are the home of some of my favorite programming like the radio show “The Splendid Table” and television's “America’s Test Kitchen” (whose family cookbook has been in my Amazon wish list for over a year –hint hint).

Thanksgiving makes me feel nostalgic. It was a really big deal growing up with all 6 of my dad’s siblings and their families and even some of their in-laws all meeting up. There were so many cousins! So, I set out to find recipes that reminded me of that time. The first search I typed in was a dessert recipe – don’t judge. Specifically, I wanted to find a sweet potato pie recipe. My grandma cooked massive amounts of food; I remember at least 7 of those being dessert. My aunt, who hosted each year, took care of most of the dinner (and made a dessert, too). Grandma had a handle on the pie and cake portion of the day – chocolate layer cake, coconut cake, pecan pies, custard pie, pumpkin pie, lemon meringue, and sweet potato pie. Any one of these desserts may show up at a Sunday dinner except the sweet potato pie. I can’t tell you why, but it was only brought out seasonally. Obviously, this made it special.

I haven’t eaten a sweet potato pie in years, not since our family began spreading out across the country, making the Thanksgiving Family Feast impossible. Fortunately, this recipe from PBS Food is going to bring me a lot closer to home and some really special memories this year.

What food is a must have for your Thanksgiving dinner? What foods do you remember especially from your childhood?