A new ruler of everyone’s favorite food-centric holiday has been crowned and, yes, she will rule over her dominion with grace, and style. It’s a good thing, indeed.
On Nov. 17, one week before we all gather with our loved ones for a meal to remember, Martha Stewart was crowned the queen of Thanksgiving during TODAY’s United Sides of Thanksgiving.
The event, in which 17 all-star chefs shared recipes for their most-treasured Thanksgiving side dishes, honored Martha after she shared two of her faves: recipes for her Classic Stuffing as well as one for a Meyer Lemon Drop cocktail.
With all 17 chefs seated around a Thanksgiving table setup with Martha seated in the center, TODAY’s Carson Daly delighted Martha with the surprise coronation.
“There’s been a lot of talk lately about who’s the certain queen of a particular holiday,” Carson said in a not-so-subtle reference to the unofficial queen of Christmas Mariah Carey. “Well, this morning, we’re here to confirm the one thing that we know for sure. So, by the powers invested in me with this golden turkey baster goes to the one and only miss Martha Stewart, the queen!”
As gallant horn music reminiscent of a renaissance faire played, Martha happily accepted her title from Carson. With a laugh and smile, Stewart posed with her golden turkey baster as chef Bobby Flay placed a crown atop the icon of culinary television.
“All hail, the queen of Thanksgiving!” said Carson as the gaggle of chefs from our United Sides of Thanksgiving event laughed, cheered and applauded her.
In her first speech as Queen, she said, “I do believe that Thanksgiving is a very important time of year, and despite all other ideas that, you know, we skip over Thanksgiving, you never, never can. Here’s to our pioneers!”
“And to Mariah," she added, "I still love you!"
Martha, of course, has been a fixture on TODAY for over 40 years, celebrating her ruby anniversary with us in 2020. There’s really no other person more deserving of a Thanksgiving crown. Stewart has helped more people with her recipes and advice on turkey day than could feasibly ever be counted, and she admits her well of knowledge comes from decades of experience.
“I think I probably cooked, oh, maybe, I’ve cooked, let me see, 60 Thanksgivings at least, maybe more,” Martha Stewart told NBC’s Harry Smith in 2020. “‘Cause I got married when I was 19, and I did my first Thanksgiving … when I was 20 years old.”
Martha has recently been embroiled in a friendly disagreement with Mariah, who released a video on Nov. 1 declaring that Christmas was here (as she's done for many years now), weeks before Thanksgiving.
“Mariah, you know me. I am a traditionalist with a twist. You cannot give up Thanksgiving. Just because you don’t like turkey? I love turkey, and many, many other people love turkey,” Martha said during a Nov. 4 appearance on TODAY with Hoda and Jenna. “So, do not think that we are going to give up Thanksgiving just because you say so.”
Well, only one of the two monarchs currently has a crown —Mariah recently lost a bid to trademark “Queen of Christmas” — so, perhaps Queen Martha will finally extend an olive branch in the way of a Thanksgiving invite to Mariah as her first royal decree.