Thanksgiving was *not* going to happen this year. Finally. After 30 years of frantic, OK, not so frantic after I got the hang of it, but a constant movement in the kitchen for near 12 straight hours with a brief break for dinner which also involved getting up and down, I really wanted out. I wanted a day of absolute quiet and I got it. Lucia and her boyfriend were off to his family. Elizabeth was not doing the split between families this year because she'll be leaving her dad behind at Christmas, and that just left me and the boy. He was more than happy to hole up in his apartment for quiet same as me.
Lucia's boyfriend got sick on Thursday which brought everyone back together on Friday.
Me at Peter's Market at 9 AM: Uh...do you still have any turkeys left? ...that weigh less than 200 pounds?
- one pound of butter
- one quart of milk
- one 8 ounce pack of cream cheese
- four large potatoes
- one large onion
- one large package of brussels sprouts FRESH
- 12 ounces of hard asiago cheese
- two round loaves of bread that will go hard fast
- one turkey as small as they have left (16 lbs)
- one pie, blueberry for the boyfriend because he was sick day before
There goes my in the city dance money for Saturday and then some but OK. Stop at Peter's wine and whatever and pick up one bottle of Catena (I am giving you the link because if you like Malbecs, I want you to drink this) because with this group, one is, thankfully, all we really need.
It was not frantic. No one was in the house. I'd had a complete day of rest. It is easy to make stuffing. OK, it is easy for me. I've been doing this for thirty years, remember? I don't even think anymore, I just do it. It is easy to stuff the bird.
Where is my roasting pan?
On Wednesday while I was working, Lucia came to my house and cleaned it within an inch of its life. Really. She did this for me. Lucia is literally the only human being in the entire world I would allow to do this. If NM so much as touched my mail I had conniptions. I never touched his mail, why on earth should he touch mine? And the fact that it was spread all over the table was not reason enough. Mail is personal. I am a private person. I get really upset when my boundaries are crossed and I am completely thrown off balance when my boundaries aren't even seen. I don't know where to begin drawing in heavy, dark lines. So Lucia, only Lucia can do this and she did it.
I really needed this. I have been in an overwhelm of sadness, grief, struggle, and whatever other crap and I've managed to maintain what I have and no more. When I came home after having had my hair cut off she was gone but my house was rather stunning.
I had a clear kitchen to work in and no roasting pan. I decided to leave her alone and use the dutch oven.
This is not done (clearly not done). It's a sanity check. It worked well, the meat was perfect, light and dark. Only problem was it didn't produce enough pan drippings to make a dark enough gravy for our taste. We like to have our asses kicked. I think that could be solved by putting a round cake rack at the bottom. I have one that might work.
I pulled out the good china, my good china from 1985.
This was actually titled 'Patterns of the Past' Really? Shit. It's only been 30 years and this shit was cutting edge at the time
We never use this stuff. We either use the undated stuff from my mother's side which may be from the turn of the century or older (the LAST century) or we use Great Great Grandma's and I might be dropping a Great from that sequence and that stuff is incredibly delicate. I would appropriately title that 'Patterns of the Past', not the silly Noritake wedding china from 1985 of which I have service for 12.
I cleared the table and stood at the sink washing dishes. Nobody got up to help which is sort of odd. I refused to call Lucia for help. Eventually Elizabeth came in to comfort me. I don't think they knew what I was doing and that was perfectly OK. What I realized was that I wasn't shot.
I hadn't been up since 7 AM all frantic and behind schedule. I had not been on my feet all day having worked a full day or most of the day before.
I was completely laid back and casual. I could have left the dishes until morning but I wanted my kitchen clean and I wanted this done before we sent Elizabeth and her dad away and got down to business with the boy.
I felt good about rolling out Thanksgiving for the first time in...
I have to figure out how to duplicate this feeling of, um, grace.
The Posse gave us something as well which is rather lovely. It is not Alice's Restaurant and that is perfectly OK.