Merry Christmas To All

It’s Christmas morning, the Oregon rain is falling steadily and presents are about to be opened.  This year things are a little different, but new traditions will be made.  In the absence of my dad, it’s now my responsibility to prepare the Christmas feast.  Because I live in an apartment and often don’t have more then a handful of friends to dinner I’ve only cooked a turkey once before, so we’ll see how this goes down.  I’ve brined the bird and now he’s resting in the fridge to dry off a bit.

While we wait for my brother to emerge from his cave downstairs our Italian strada is baking in the oven.  It’s basically a sausage and pepper bread pudding and because it’s mother tested and approved (my mom is the pickiest eater ever) we can make it.

To me Christmas is more about the food and the presents.  Of course I remember the year I got the Pony Paradise Estate or my big wheels, but what really stays with me over the years is the flavours and foods that my family associates with Christmas.  My mom makes things like sweet and sour meatballs (the chilli sauce and grape jelly balance themselves out nicely), puffs, which are basically like French gougers, stuffed with cream cheese and olives, and no holiday meal would be complete without her tarts, which are mini cherry cheesecakes.  This isn’t high brow food, but it’s delicious and reminds me of being a kid on Christmas morning.

So Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates.  I hope your table is surrounded by family and loved ones, and that your plates are full of delicious things and treats.  And wish me luck in pulling off a full turkey dinner this afternoon.  I’m not gonna lie the thought of making gravy from scratch is a bit daunting to me.  I figure I’ll just pop the processo before dinner and all will be well!

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