Julia Child’s Blooper Reel

November 29, 2011

in How to be a Housewife, How to Diet in Reverse, I Learn the Lessons So You Don't Have To

I’ve been looking forward to Thanksgiving since the day after Halloween.  Secretly, it’s because the Christmas season starts the day after Thanksgiving, when I get to fill every nook, cranny, and nail with holiday Stuff.  But I refuse to publicly admit this.  After all, there’s no need to look like a hypocrite after I finish my annual rant against The Man and his propensity to start selling Christmas items  on July 5th.

So, logically, that the only reason I look forward to Thanksgiving all month long is The Food.

Which makes sense.  Seeing as how my first question to the Big Man when he rolled out of bed on November 1st was “What’s should we have for dinner on Thanksgiving?”  To his credit, he did not attempt to refocus me on the meals to come before then.  Like breakfast.  Rather, he gamely sat back down and compared our ideal menus:

My Ideal Thanksgiving Menu:

Turkey with Stuffing, Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Stuffing, Broccoli, Glazed Carrots, Latest Stuffing Fad Recipe from Google, Cranberry Jelly, Sweet Potatoes, Green Bean Casserole, Crescent Rolls, Biscuits, Pearl Onions in that cream sauce, Apple Pie, Pumpkin Pie, and French Vanilla Ice Cream.

The Big Man’s Ideal Thanksgiving Menu:

Turkey, Sweet Potatoes, Oyster Stuffing,  Gravy, Pecan Pie, His own can of Reddi Whip.

Given that our meal needed to be big enough to feed a grand total of 3 people, we decided to compromise and went with: Turkey with Stuffing, Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Stuffing, Broccoli, Glazed Carrots, Cranberry Jelly, Pumpkin Pie, Pecan Pie, Family can of Reddi Whip.  See?  The man got his Pecan Pie. Because  THAT is what compromising is all about.

Of course, because we live in a house with a kitchen built by Munchkins, we had to wait until the Tuesday before Thanksgiving to actually buy any of the items on our menu.  Fortunately there was still one fresh turkey left.  And while the octogenarian next to me may have been gunning for it, the Little Miss managed to share a toothless smile with her just long enough for me to slide that sucker into our cart ahead of her.

And Wednesday morning, the Preparations began.  With the Little Man’s assistance, I managed to bake a pecan pie, a pumpkin pie, 6 mini-pumpkin pies, and enough seasoned oyster crackers to keep the Big Man out of the kitchen until at least 3pm.  And I only burned one thumb.  And not the Little Man’s.  Needless to say, I went to bed feeling quite accomplished that night.

The next day?  Didn’t quite go as well.

It might have helped if I hadn’t passed out before doing the dishes from the day before.

So after pushing dinner back from 12pm to 5pm so I could get enough dishes cleaned to actually cook dinner, I dried off the largest pot I could find, and set about heating up some butter to saute the onions for the stuffing in.

It takes Quite a bit of onion.

At which point I may have gotten a tad distracted.  What with the Big Man deciding 9am was the perfect time to star snacking on those Oyster crackers I’d hidden in the back of the pantry.  And trying to find the Macy’s Day parade live online.  WHICH IT WASN’T!!  And then desperately searching to see if we could get “free” cable hooked up to catch at least the end of the parade?  All while the Little Man ran around like a kitten in a catnip field trying to help me cook while simultaneously making sure that the Big Man didn’t get a “taste” of the Oyster crackers without sharing one with him too.

By the time I realized that the Little Miss had decided to take her morning nap sitting bolt upright in her high chair, and that there would be no Macy’s Day parade for me to watch in my pajamas this year, the butter?  Was beginning to look suspiciously brown.

And not in a “brown butter is the new Butter cooking fad” kind of way.  At least I don’t think.  I don’t actually know what brown butter is.  But my butter?  Was looking a little browner than I’d have liked.

Or so I thought.

But I wasn’t quite sure.  It was, after all, at the bottom of my largest pot.  And I couldn’t quite tell if the butter had just slightly browned, or if it had actually burned.  So I did what anyone whose seen Julia Child cook on YouTube would have done.  I stuck my face in the pot for a closer look.

And burned my eyelid.                                             

That was about the time the Big Man realized a few things:

1.  He might as well take the Oyster crackers out of the kitchen, since he wasn’t fooling anyone let alone the Little Man with his “covert” food-is-still-in-the-pantry-and-not-my-mouth snacking strategy.


2.  He may want to take the Little Man out of the kitchen with him.  And put 911 on hold.

Fortunately, in addition to Julia Child’s blooper reel, I’ve also been watching a lot of Top Chef lately.  And if its taught me one thing, its that those who sit out the competition because they’ve seared a portion of their eyelid are whiney losers.  So I sucked it up, turned down the heat, and added another 4 sticks of butter to the stuffing.

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