Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Someday I will get Christmas dinner right. It's always something different, but there's always one dish that presents a challenge for me and provides ample fodder to steal my joy, if I let it. And it's always a different dish.
Last year, for instance, it was the Yorkshire puddings. It turned out I added a little too much bacon fat to the baking tins and when the puddings began to rise, the fat overflowed, hit the bottom of the 450 degree stove and made smoke billow out of the oven.
This year, it was the prime rib. I pulled out the meat when my new meat thermometer registered 170 degrees, which is about 30 degrees higher than the optimal "done" point. But I figured since the outside was cooked well, it would be a perfect medium-rare in the middle....I was wrong. The middle of the roast was almost raw. My husband even said the rib bones were cool. Not good.
So we popped the under-done meat into the microwave and, gently and carefully, cooked it the rest of the way. This is not easy; microwaving meat is not something I recommend on a regular basis because it ruins the flavor. But in this case, it worked. We had perfectly done, flavorful meat, Yorkshire pudding, mashed potatoes, spinach casserole and pies, all without setting off the smoke alarms, which generated good will towards all.
Sometimes...in fact, most of the time, things just work out somehow, if we relax and work with our circumstances, rather than trying to achieve some perfect moment or day. In that way, Christmas is no different than any other day.
Happy holidays, everyone.