Sunday, December 28, 2008
Post Christmas Fug
Well, the leftover turkey is almost gone, the carcasses have been turned into soup along with some lovely fat egg noodles, the remaining baked goods are still going down well with breakfast coffee (seriously, is there anything better than chocolate for breakfast?) and the Christmas holiday is all over but the shouting. How did everyone do?
We had twenty-four for dinner, although two stayed home and had dinner delivered to them as they weren't feeling well enough to get out. There were a couple of glitches along the way. My car battery died, so we were down to one car. Then our water turned brown from a broken water pipe somewhere, but I ran over to my in-law's and filled up a couple of jugs even as half a dozen snow plows/trucks blocked my way and honked as I darted in and out. We didn't get our promised free-range, 30 pound "happy" turkey my two daughters on the cusp of veganism insisted on, which (despite my reservations to the contrary due to its size) I've roasted in the past to juicy, tender perfection. No. My husband came home with two, 15 pound Butterball turkeys the butcher handed him instead.
This meant stuffing and roasting one on Christmas Eve and racing home from my sister-in-law's shindig to carve it and make gravy and tuck it away in the fridge. No worries. It reheated beautifully while I made gravy from the second Christmas Day turkey and so there was plenty to go around along with the huge (I mean giant roasting pan filled to the top huge) pan of stuffing, mountains of mashed potatoes with sour cream and butter, mashed turnips with maple syrup and cinnamon, cranberry sauce and broccoli with olive oil, lemon and sea salt. We finished the meal with my mother-in-law's famous steamed carrot pudding with hard sauce, and I baked Italian macaroons (divine, chewy almond confections I tried for the first time and LOVED), a bowl of fresh fruit salad, shortbreads, truffles, buttertarts and all manner of other treats.
Doug insisted on a big cheese plate, which I thought would be too much, but it proved popular so we'll do that again. It went very well with the new whisky he gave me for Christmas, one fine bottle of Glenkinchie. Do other women ask for whisky for Christmas, or is that just me? It has proved to be my current favourite, just slightly above the Aberlour, Glenmorangie and the Macallan 12 year old we've sampled lately. For some reason, and I really don't know why, whisky does not affect me the way a glass of beer or wine does (that is, almost instant stupefaction accompanied by a flushed face and the sweats leaving me looking like a scullery maid after a big banquet.)
There were so many people in our tiny house that all the windows steamed up as did I, when I stepped outside to cool off. Literally, there was steam rising off my body in shimmery waves which cracked up my sister-in-law, who hasn't experienced a hot flash yet. (Just you wait, darling.) But we all ate and drank and chatted and opened gifts together and it was everything Christmas is meant to be.
Doug and I collapsed at the end of it, our legs finally giving out around midnight. We haven't moved from the house since, preferring to eschew the Boxing Day sales and instead, tucking in with our new books and mugs of tea and the odd DVD, like Terry Jone's MEDIEVAL LIVES. Happy New Year everyone!