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December 2010

Happy days


I’ve been cooking up a storm.  Doing the Christmas feast prep, but once on a cooking jag, it’s sort of like a run-away train. 

All my kids are home and so, on the counter is half a dark chocolate cake with a broiled pecan topping and melted chocolate drizzled on the top and slathered on the sides.  There is part of a sponge cake that I made today.  And yes, I know there is already the rest of yesterday’s chocolate cake to be consumed, but I have a good excuse.

See… I decided not to make the usual three pies (pecan, apple and pumpkin) for Christmas day dessert.  I figured that after all the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet yam rum-cinnamon mash, the various vegetables, gravy and so forth, that by the time pie rolls around, it’s more of a duty than a pleasure. 

So, this year I’m making a delicious trifle, using a bunch of the berries I froze from the farms this summer for a compote with a little sugar, half a squeezed lemon, and a few good glugs of vodka.  I prefer to use homemade sponge cake rather than store bought lady fingers or cake, so I made a cake.  Well, actually I made two, because we picked up our turkey at the butchers today and I had too much stuff in the fridge, so really, I made an extra sponge cake because I was being helpful.  Not because I felt like eating it!  Ahem…

Then there was the custard to make for the trifle.  Well… it took 10 egg yolks!  And I didn’t want to throw out perfectly good egg whites, so I used them to make a slew of meringues.  And yes, along with a goodly portion of the sponge cake, I have had a meringue as well. 

I won’t even mention the Purdy chocolate liquor balls that I bought… and re-bought… and re-bought again, because I kept eating them. 

I’ll be glad/sad when the holiday season is over and I can get back on the going-to-the-gym wagon. 

And, yes, I can hear some of you saying, “what’s wrong with getting on the wagon now, Meg?”  But I’m pretending I can’t hear you. 

All my kids home for Christmas!  And so, I think what it is, is I’m trying to make up for them all living away from home by cooking overtime.  Making every cozy food I can think of, even though they are grown and raw oysters and champagne, brie cheese and a pint are probably more in line with who they are, have become.  I love having them home.  Emily walking circles in the kitchen talking to a friend on the phone.  Will downstairs.  Dave working his butt off, but even David gets Christmas Day off and he and Amy will be staying over as well.  A full house.  So happy.

And then in January, the day Will goes back to London, and one day after Emily returns to New York, our friends Ken and James are coming for a visit and we will write and cook and eat and talk and it’s really good timing, because even though I’ll be missing my kids, the house won’t be quite as empty and hollow feeling as it otherwise might have been.

Wishing all of you a wonderful Holiday season! 

Much love, Meg xo