It is slightly obsessive to be writing a blog post about Christmas dinner, barely two hours after it’s been eaten. However I am here, more on the impetus of my mother, a proud mother, rather than my own steam. In fact, she is sitting here by me, watching the process, reading as I write. I am tuckered out but still, she doesn’t ask for much. Most of the time! Christmas dinner (and everything else) would not have run so smoothly, without her being sous chef / dish and pot cleaner. At least it meant I didn’t have to do the haka to get things going!
I apologise for the bitty photos. I knew, unquestionably, that I would not have the chance to snap shots at the table. I would be shot down with evil glares and so, had to take whatever pictures I could as the food came out of the oven. Obsessed? Moi?
So, turkey was on the menu. Of course. A frozen one is the only option here in Doha and I slathered it under the skin with garlic butter. The Scotsman recommended the American method of blasting the turkey at the start and then letting it cook on a low heat for hours, till done. I, for once, took his suggestion and I am so glad I did. Before anyone starts to bombard me with health and safety issues; I have a meat thermometer and consulted it carefully before deciding the turkey was safe for human consumption. The bird was bronzed to perfection, succulent, done to a turn and outright delicious. I am wholly converted and will continue using this method, even if it means listening to The Scotsman gloating.
Other partners to the Turkey were cranberry sauce (love), Nigella’s Chestnut and Bacon stuffing (or rather Lidgate’s stuffing), brussel sprouts (converted my brothers), roast potatoes (never underestimate the time it takes, particularly in a cantankerous oven. I had to finish mine off on the stove) and gravy (always make loads). Pudding was a Yule Log, a first for me, and I am happy to report that it exceeded my expectations of my own capabilities. Moist, light and chocolatey. Perfect.
My family did me justice and demolished their ‘tea’. I barely have leftovers except for a few seriously good sarnies tomorrow. All in all, I am satisfied.
More than all this though, is being surrounded by the noise, banter, shouting, laughing of people I love around me. Even if I bicker with some of them (brother!!) along the way! In the end its not about what’s on the table, but the people around it. But I am grateful, that through food, I am able to show, how much it means for me to have them here.
And I think, they get that.