(originally posted 11/1/2009)
I am serious about Christmas. I really take getting the presents and the parties right. Christmas is a big deal.
And everyone wants to see us on Christmas Eve. It’s so strange. Stranger still is that we have nothing at all to do on Christmas Day.
So it’s become a tradition for me to make a huge Christmas dinner for my immediate family on Christmas Day. It’s one of my favorite parts of Christmas, planning and making Christmas dinner. I enjoy making at least one new dish each Christmas. All of the dishes are made from scratch and generally are pretty time-consuming to make.
One year I made lobster bisque; I started with lobster tails (I should have started with live lobsters, but I just couldn’t bare the thought of having to kill them myself) and went through the entire 4 hours process of making the bisque. I’ve made cornish hens, yorkshire puddings, turkeys (of course), ham with tangerine-honey ham glaze (squeezing all the tangerines for the glaze is messy), all sorts of special stuffing (where I made the bread myself, cut it up and let it go stale, and then made it into stuffing), many different rolls and breads, cheesecakes, bread pudding, real cranberry sauce (not that crap that comes out the same shape as the can), etc.
Many years ago, it may have been our first year in our current home, I decided that I just must have a goose for Christmas. I’ve never eaten goose before, but it is an old traditional English Christmas food item.
Well, Christmas Day, I got up to put my goose in the oven and realized that I didn’t have a pan long enough to accommodate the goose. I always relied on disposable aluminum pans (I know, not environmentally friendly at all. I now have real cookware) for cooking large things like turkeys. But these pans weren’t long enough. Not a single store was open on Christmas Day so I couldn’t just pop into Walmart and pick up a pan. I was having a total melt down. I so wanted dinner to be perfect and I didn’t have anything else in mind to make.
My husband is such a great sport. He got all suited up, cleaned the snow off the grill and grilled a goose. It was hilarious. Everytime he lifted the grill lid, huge flames would shoot up in the air. The goose was just that fatty. He was standing on our back patio, in the snow with a pitcher of water to keep the flames in check. It was so smokey. And when he’d come back in the house all that smoke would come in with him. Our house just reeked of smoke.
The goose ended up being really good, however, I haven’t made another one since. It just wouldn’t be the same. But it is one of my favorite Christmas Day memories. Me freaking out because I’d failed to plan properly, and my husband thinking clearly and then suffering in the cold and smoke to save my day.