Bitches, I basically made the whole dinner. Seriously, the only thing I *didn't* do was cut up the animals. Oh, and I didn't actually make the pies from scratch. And the ham was pre-cooked Plus I did most of the cleanup.
Oh, and we had a fourth person attend our dinner. I expected this person to show up.
Devilled eggs: Nothing special, tasty but nothing to write home about. So far I'm the only one who's eaten them because I stuffed them in the fridge so nobody would get food poisoning and everyone else forgot about them. Aiya.
Ro-Tel dip: Come, now. A pound of Velveeta to a can of Ro-Tel? You don't even have to cut it up beforehand. I mean, if you screw this up, you shouldn't be allowed to make anything more complicated than a bowl of cereal. It was good but also nothing special.
Vegetable tray: It was a veggie tray. Naturally, as the healthiest thing on the menu, it was virtually untouched. I, however, quite enjoyed broccoli dipped in Ro-Tel.
Cranberry sauce: Oh shit, I left it in the cupboard.
Ham: Purchased at the eleventh hour at Daddy's insistence. A little on the dry side. Probably got overcooked as it was hard to cut with a fork. One of the dangers of buying something that just has to be heated up, I guess.
Turkey: Ah, the piece de resistance. The most important part of the meal. Fuck this up, and you'll never be allowed to bring anything more involved than a store-bought pie to any family gathering for the next five years. Now, this was my first time to be in charge of the turkey. After I got the fucker thaaaaawed, I brined it for about 18 hours before cooking it. Oh my god, brining is some kind of miracle technique. I thought people were exaggerating about how the turkey would turn out, but it was tender, moist, perfectly seasoned, pretty.I riffed on Alton Brown's brine recipe. Now, the Food Network website has a picture of the finished product and naturally, it's picture perfect. I inherited the ugly food gene from my mom. It's where you make delicious but weird-looking food. Her turkey is the prime example of this. It comes out of the oven as meat piled around a bird skeleton but since all of the meat has been sitting in the juices, you don't need a gallon of gravy to swallow it without choking. In fact, you can skip the gravy. Naturally, my turkey didn't look anything like Alton's turkey, right? WRONG! I'm serious, that turkey was fucking gorgeous. I've never made food that pretty. And by the time I thought to take a picture, Dad was already ripping up the turkey. "Oh, I thought you already took a picture of your turkey."
I'm seriously upset that I didn't take a picture of the turkey. I'm going to have to find a way to manipulate it so I make the Christmas turkey because I need proof that I can make pretty food.
Giblet gravy: Good stuff.
Stuffing: Bland. Dry. Our family has always used bagged or boxed stuffing and as such, I've never been thrilled enough with stuffing to go off and find a decent recipe.
Sweet potato casserole: This was supposedly based off of the Boston Market recipe. Alright but too sweet for my taste. Everyone else loved it. Weirdos.
Biscuits: A little drier than they normally are. I have got to get my hands on some proper biscuit dough. Still much tastier than the rolls we would have had instead. Plus, this means biscuits and gravy for breakfast.
Pumpkin pie: Didn't eat it. Hard to go wrong with a frozen pie, though.
Cherry pie: Well, I don't think it would make a grown man cry, but it still tasted pretty damn good. Especially for something that basically just had to be heated up.
Overall, a success. Much less stressful than when there's fifty thousand relatives who you never talk to outside of family gatherings and you're dodging knives and hot casserole dishes.
Now, just to plow through a month's worth of leftovers...