In the midst of the despondency and despair tempting the children of light in this land of darkness, my Faithful Readers took an active, in terms of comments to the last post, interest in what I’m making for the family for Christmas Dinner. I’m touched, you guys are great. Therefore, instead of my usual doom and gloom:
Merry Christmas! And a Happy New Year!
Since you’re dying to know: First off, even more than usual, there will be several feasts over the holidays. I may be able to work some of the generous suggestions into the future dinners, but the Christmas Day one is now pretty much set. This year, our beloved elder daughter and her husband just moved into a house they bought in Sacramento. Yes, crazy kids these days, in their mid-20’s, have saved up enough to buy a freaking house in CALIFORNIA 5 months into their new life of wedded bliss. Our daughter has always been preternaturally responsible; if my new son in law were any more responsible, I’d have a dadgasm and die. Anyway: since they are living amidst dust and boxes at the moment, we all agreed that we’d cook up a dinner and show up on Christmas afternoon, to kick off the new digs proper-like.
Then, a few days later, Middle Son and HIS NEW, AS OF YESTERDAY, FIANCE arrive from New England by way of Alabama. So, we’ll do something again. Then, we try to do Epiphany as big as Christmas, because it is. Three pending feasts and counting.
So, for feast #1 at Elder Daughter’s house: Got a nice 5 lbs lamb roast AND about 3 lbs of wild-caught salmon at Costco. Menu will include The Usual: mashed potatoes, gravy, peas, homegrown sweet potatoes in some form, salad, homemade bread. Dessert will include cheesecake – my specialty – as well as assorted pies – wife’s specialties. I suspect son-in-law’s Napa connections (his home town) will supply the libations.
We have a local produce market that caters to ethnic cooking – ideal. I was there to grab a variety of apples – a very nice lady I knew back in New Mexico made the best apple pies, so I asked her what she did. Her rules:
- Make the crust from the recipe off the Crisco can
- use fresh cinnamon and nutmeg
- use a variety of apples
And that works. Classic straight up apple pie. So I always get a collection of apple varieties, favoring old school varieties like Braeburn and Granny Smith, and avoiding ‘delicious’ varieties, Gala, and Fuji on principle.
For reasons unknown, this produce market has a fishmonger attached. After (of course) buying the on sale but still dear salmon at Costco, I spot huge farmed salmon at this market at $7 lbs. Picked up a 5 lbs roast, threw it in the freezer. So, that will be featured at some point.
More updates as events warrant. Meanwhile,