Thursday, November 22, 2007

Live From Silver Spring Maryland!

Yes, I'm coming to you all the way live today: Welcome to my kitchen on Thanksgiving Day:

10 AM Time to put the turkey in the oven and for the first of about 200 handwashes today. I'm a freak about handwashing, and the freakitude knows no bounds when I'm cooking poultry. My hands will be nothing but exposed skeletal remains by the end of the day.

10:30 AM First baste, 3rd or 4th handwash...losing count already. Time to go for a walk.

What the HELL is that?

(out to the back yard, tap on husband's shoulder. Tap tap tap.)

I cannot BELIEVE you bought one of those things!

I didn't buy it, I borrowed it.

That's just as bad!

Hey, I care about the environment, too, but I spent all afternoon on Sunday raking these frickin' leaves and by Monday afternoon, they'd blown all over the place! They're mocking me!

(that's not the leaves mocking him, that's me. I won't win the leaf-blower argument (today) so I'm just going for the walk)

Shit. Where is my iPod?

(tap tap tap. Ignore the "holy-mother-of-God-what-do-you-want-NOW-woman" look. I'm used to that.)

Got the iPod, got my shoes, ready to go

10:50 Put iPod on shuffle. Someone's been downloading. Note to self: buy him his own damn iPod. Note to Eminem: what the hell does "2 trailer park girls go round the outside" mean, anyway? Note to readers: that was a rhetorical question, I don't actually want to know.

11:40 2nd baste. Running low on hand soap, get an extra one from the bathroom.

11:50 Time to start tearing bread and chopping celery and onion for stuffing.

I LOVE cooking Thanksgiving dinner. I'm an OK cook, not great. I've developed a repertoire, and I can put a decent meal on the table. Thanksgiving dinner is a lot of work, but it gives me the opportunity to indulge my inner dictator (according to the What World Leader Are You quiz, I am Saddam Hussein. Not Mahatma Gandhi, not Jimmy Carter...Saddam...and on Thanksgiving, when I'm cooking, everyone who gets in my way is a Kurd).

12:30 Baste. Peel and cut carrots. Put them in a baking dish, add some turkey drippings and butter and put them in the oven. (hey! everybody out of my kitchen! It's 65 degrees out there, take those kids outside!)

12:50 Start setting the table.

1:15 Start melting a tablespoon of butter for the stuffing ("tablespoon" should be read as "half-stick"). Just getting started with the butter. Oh, I'm so sorry...did you order the vegan spa meal? Heh heh heh.

1:40 Stuffing's in the oven. Cut up broccoli to prepare to cook later (not very traditional, but I love broccoli with hollandaise sauce)

1:45 Time for a break. Football. I ask my husband why they always need to refer to the ball as "the football"? It's a football game, we KNOW what kind of ball it is, why not just call it "the ball"? Similarly, why must they constantly refer to "this football team"? Why not just "the team"? Are they contractually obligated to maximize their word count?

Are you seriously complaining about OTHER people maximizing their word counts?

OK, fair enough.

2:15 Back to work. Stuffing and carrots are looking gorgeous, as is my turkey. I've only burned myself once so far. Time to start a large pot of water for the broccoli and to get the wine glasses out. Take the pies out of the refrigerator so they're room temperature by dessert-time (they're store-bought. I can't do everything! One apple, one pumpkin, with vanilla ice cream).

2:45 Carrots are perfect. Stuffing is perfect. Turkey is looking good, time to remove the foil tent to let it brown some more.

3:10 Broccoli's done, time to make the Hollandaise. Turns out perfectly this time. I had a packet of mix as a back-up, but I didn't need it this time. I also have 2 jars of gravy, just in case. My gravy turns out OK about 40% of the time. If we were judging by baseball standards, that would put me in the frickin' Gravy Hall of Fame.

Full disclosure: It's now Friday, and the live portion of our broadcast has concluded. It turned out very well, even my mother-in-law was impressed. From 3:10 to 4:00 I beat potatoes and sweet potatoes (I only made enough for dinner, so we'll need to rely on instant potatoes for leftovers. I can only stand to peel so many potatoes), baked rolls, and heated gravy. From a jar. I'm down to about 30% on the gravy success rate, and I'll never make the Hall of Fame. Hope you all had a great holiday!


FranIAm said...

This was priceless. I love it CDP!

And I understand the Saddam business as we are evil twins, you and I!

I am imagining your dried and parched hands as I look at my own, post Thanksgiving dinner.

Glad you had fun.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

That sounded like a heck of a meal. But seriously, no toast?

CDP said...

Yes, Ms. Fran, some day we'll get together and massacre us some Kurds.
Dr. M., no toast, and we passed on the jellybeans and popcorn, too!

FranIAm said...

By the way in our evil step twins way - well I don't know if this is evil, but it touched my heart (non-Catholic types tune out here please!!) to see you write some words that flow out of my mouth 10 times a day..."holy mother of god!"

I call it my old Catholic lady expression. Except I am old and you are not. (tee hee!)

Sauntering Soul said...

Sounds like a wonderful meal! And I'm glad you didn't really want an answer to your Eminem question because I don't know either.

Whiskeymarie said...

I'm impressed, little Ms. Martha Stewart.

All I did was make pie and drink wine. Plus- hollandaise? Seriously, you are a much better culinarian than you give yourself credit for, my dear.

Anonymous said...

After all that? You deserve to pour gravy out of the jar.

The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: said...

My hands were practically mummified from washing them so many times on Thanksgiving!

I'm freaky about cooking with poultry too.

CDP said...

SS--I'm sure the Eminem thing is something gross...sometimes, ignorance is bliss

WM--Well that means a lot coming from you!

Dcup--thank you, I didn't feel bad about the jar wasn't bad!

Lady--I STILL feel like I need a manicure.

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