a Pieta Moment with a twist, the son holding the mother up.
We hadn't meant to brine the turkey, but since the bird required soaking in a sinkful of water for an hour before cooking to get out the final chill, we poured on the salt. According to Goomp it was the bestest, moistest turkey he'd ever had in all his ninety years.
Sweet and savory, light and dark, smooth and crunchy, the foodstuffs conspired to tempt and satisfy the discriminating eye and palate.
We'd been a little concerned when the homemade cranberry sauce didn't seem to thicken as much as expected. Following the recipe on the Ocean Spray package, you bring 1 cup each of water and sugar to a boil, add the cranberries and cook ten minutes, then strain to remove solids. As with everything else, the result though not as thick as your typical canned, was the best ever, a luminescent jewel.
The two brothers, our nephews -- one breaking bread with us in Maine, the other dining with friends where he lives in the heartland -- turned making a side dish into a spirited competition, each cooking the same casserole of julienned carrots and parsnips and agreeing that word of mouth would determine the winner. The recipe came from David, a fellow competitor. "What was the premise, again?" we asked our sis:
I never QUITE understood the premise, since each of the three would be playing to different audiences, but it was supposed to be based on preparation technique and audience response. Christian and I agreed that if Goomp asked for seconds, Christian's was CLEARLY the hands-down winner.
Continuing the theme of unprecedented excellence of our entire meal, we had to take sides, convinced that Christian's dish should win top honors. "What's it called, again?" we asked Susie:
I don't know, re: official name. I'll admit that "Carrots and Parsnips" doesn't sound too glamorous, but it is what it is.
): If you were the Food Channel, you would probably call it "Roasted Root Vegetables with Herbed Butter sauce."
Not having a mandoline in the home kitchen, Christian had julienned by hand, and consulting with a friend who happens to be a professional cook, he topped off the dish with a secret ingredient, Panko (Japanese bread crumbs).
The proof is in the pudding. We ate it all up, and Goomp did indeed ask for seconds. He'd apparently had a bad experience with parsnips in his childhood and had never tried them since.