Monday, December 26, 2005

The Day After


Happy First Day of Hanukah, a Very Bonnie Boxing Day, and a Pleasant and Respectful Feast of St. Stephen. Or as we at Grubb Street have taken to calling it, Happy Recovery Day, a day of resorting the house after the Holiday Feast, which includes disposing of the leftovers, finishing the remainder of the mixed drinks, and hand washing the glassware that doesn't fit in the dishwasher.

The Feast itself was wonderful as always. We had eight guests, I managed to expand my cocktail-making repetoire, aided by a shaker and measuring glass that the Lovely Bride got me for Christmas. For appetizers we served rumaki (bacon-wrapped olives and scallops) and salmon-stuffed mushrooms. The salad course were arugula mixed greens with hazelnuts and persimmons and a citrus dressing. For dinner we served our signature brined turkey, baked ham, mashed pototes with herb bernaise butter. green beans with wild mushrooms, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sause, and homemade poppyseed rolls. Desert consisted of a chocolate hazelnut cherry brownie with choclate mousse and a green tea cheesecake with raspberries.

It was, of course, wonderful. Our guests were both vibrant and very comfortable with each other (we have done this for at least four years, and I realized when putting out the place settings that everyone had been here before). Bill brought a great late harvest reisling and John his selection of teas. Everyone brought conversation and appetites.

The only downside for the event was that the 22 pound turkey, dubbed "Turkzilla" by Shelly, was uncooperative, getting to the party an hour later than planned (the Lovely Bride and I have the meal planning broken down in ten-minute blocks, and were well ahead of the game before the turkey brought everything to a halt). By the end of it, Turkzilla's doneness was determined by which thermometer was used and who was jabbing the turkey with it, but it was fully cooked and succulent and delish. The only danger was I was going to run out of cocktails before it was ready. (I am up to three for the holiday party now, plus a non-alcoholic blush for the expecting and the temperant).

Of course, the lateness of the turkey gave me the chance to deliver the toast that I always considered previously:

"As God is my witness, I swore turkeys could fry".

Happy Recovery Day, the first day of the weeklong Festival of Leftovers!

More later,