The Christmas Turkey Debacle
Yesterday was Christmas and I was the host of Christmas dinner.
I was all prepared with the turkey in the refrigerator soaking in a salt brine from the day before. It was 1:00 PM and I had been up since 3 AM hacking up a lung from some plague of a lung infection, compliments of my Pre-K students.
I had Christmas tunes playing, the tree all lit, a soy candle called “Christmas” burning and was sure this was going to be a Christmas dinner to remember. And remember it all we will, but not for the initial reasons I had thought.
Time to put the turkey into the oven. I opened the bag to take it out and drain it but the turkey smelled rotten! I was sure I was breathing in botulism and quickly shut the bag and hauled the bucket, the salt brine and the gag producing turkey out to the garbage can.
I had 7 meat eaters to cook Christmas dinner for, and 3 hours until they all arrived. I had cookies in the oven and could not go to the grocery store (if it was even open) to buy a replacement meat. Perhaps I could dash over to 7 Eleven after the last batch of cookies and create a Slim Jim platter with Doritos as a side dish. There had to be another answer.
I quick defrosted 2 lbs. of ground beef and two packages of boneless chicken. Meatloaf-that would work with the sides of mashed potatoes, green beans and homemade cranberry relish. I only had one meatloaf pan and the only other cooking vessel I had with tall sides was a Bundt pan. A quick search of “Bundt Pan Meatloaf” was successful, and so I whipped it up, and covered it with bacon in the hopes of retaining moisture.
Mom’s recipe for homemade fried chicken would provide a sufficient amount of food for my carnivore family. As everyone sat at the table, my oldest stepson puts on his best cockney accent, looks at the Bundt pan and says, “What we’ve got here is a meat cake with bacon icing”. And so, a new food tradition has been created in our family.
It was the best Christmas I can remember as an adult. Lesson Learned: Always have meat in the freezer and bacon in the fridge”. Happy New Year everyone.