Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving and Caturday

Today's Caturday is a little different than before; for one thing, it's on time! For another, I managed to grab a shot of all three cats coexisting peacefully together.


I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving. Mine started on Wednesday, with a little baking.

I'm glad I took a half day on Wednesday, because I still had another batch of onion bread to make when these were done. I've learned that I'm not good at sharing onion bread, so it's really better for me to make more and not be grouchy on Thanksgiving when I realize there isn't enough bread left for sandwiches and toast. So, Anne gets two loaves and I get two loaves.

We really had a ridiculous amount of food for just two people.

Clockwise from the bottom, we have butter (I was going to skip that one, but I didn't want people asking what it was. It's not like we were taking spoonfuls and eating them.), a plate of onion bread, fresh broccoli, duchess potatoes, roast beast, and cranberry goo. In the center are glazed carrots, and up above the potatoes is the dish of mock hollandaise for the broccoli. Oh, and we had sparkling apple cider and sparkling grape juice, too, plus dessert--pumpkin pie and Who pudding.

The Who pudding is essentially tapioca flavored with orange zest and topped with homemade fruit topping. This was the first time I've made pudding from scratch, and it turned out wonderfully. This is some tasty pudding.

For the curious, here's a close up of the duchess potatoes.

You mash potatoes, add an egg, pipe onto a cookie sheet, drizzle with melted butter, and bake. We also added some fresh rosemary to our mashed potatoes, and these were freaking fantastic.

And the roast beast?

I violated a chicken and shoved whole cloves of garlic and sprigs of rosemary and sage under its skin, rubbed it with olive oil, and baked. Again, fan-freaking-tastic.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, the mock hollandaise was terrifically bad. Not because of any error in the cooking; it was the combination of a tablespoon of sugar and two tablespoons of vinegar that really made it... interesting. I think in the future I'll make hollandaise from a little packet I buy in the grocery.

All things considered, it was a lovely day. We cooked (Anne prefers to do sous chef stuff, which suits me fine--I like to be in the thick of things!), feasted, played some cribbage, and generally had a very quiet day. Lovely.

Yesterday, I fired up my sewing machine, which I have named Monty. A few yards of fabric and the better part of a bag of fiberfill later, this is what I had.

Things to keep the draft from freezing my feet in the kitchen! Hooray! I'm curious about how long it will be before the cats decide these are Fun Toys that need to be liberated from under the cupboards. We'll see.

Also yesterday, the Universe decided that I needed a lesson in deprivation, following Thursday's excesses. I woke up to discover my freezer wide open--and everything inside seriously thawed. Meat, veggies, ice cream, the whole shebang--into the Herbie Curbie they went. Damn. Oh, well. That'll teach me to somehow not notice that the freezer isn't closed... though I admit, I suspect supernatural forces. How would I not notice an open freezer? I'll live, though. And now my freezer is all clean and shiny.

And today, I am going to borrow my friend Kirsten's daughter, Violet, and take her to lunch and a show. We will be seeing the world premiere of If You Take a Mouse to the Movies. I also have an in to get Miss Violet backstage to meet Mouse and Boy, and sit in the giant set furniture. It should be pretty awesome. I'm seriously loving this 4-day-weekend thing.


Barbara said...

Everything looks so yummy, Ann! I'm glad it all turned out and that you had a good day.

I'm jealous that you even know a 4 yr. old to borrow. Have fun at the show.

Talk to you tomorrow.

Love, Mom

Samara said...

I'm jealous. I want cats and a borrowed kid :) But it is nice not having pippin hair all over.

Aaron said...

Wow. What a post! The only thing that would have made it better is a snowmobiling adventure!

Thanks for Caturday. I can't believe you caught all three cats together, and sitting still, and that they sat still through the picture taking. That's amazing.

Your food looks yummy.

I know why the freezer was open. If you shut the fridge door hard, the freezer will sometimes pop open. You just have to watch that. It didn't happen to us too often where we didn't catch it, but it can suck when you don't know how long your freezer has been hanging open.

I like the draft catcher you made for the kitchen. That's pretty awesome.

Hey--drop me an e-mail. Did you ever get that tree cut up?

Abigail said...

Ann -
I loved the food picture! I have to say that if I had been allowed to make duchesse potatoes like that in school I might still like them! We had to sculpt little mashed potato/egg balls into little bosque pears, coat them in eggs, bread crumbs, and then add alittle slivered almond for a stem and then deep fry them, and pray for them not to explode.

I like the piping method much better!! Who wants potatoes to look like pears anyways?

Glad you had a good thanksgiving!!

Abigail said...

PS - What is mock hollandiase?? This shakes me to the core, as does the packet. Here is a website for no fail blender hollandaise. Know it, love it, and promise your sister-in-law to never mention packet hollandaise or mock hollandaise again. ;)