Dec 26: Soul Food

Today’s Reverb 10 prompt asks: What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul?

A very timely question!
This year I was in charge of the Christmas turkey.  It has always been my mom’s dinner…and this year it was MINE.  I was to buy a free-range bird, brine it, and cook it…and I was terrified of not living up to my mom’s expectations.  She gave me her brine recipe and directions and I was left hyperventilating and slightly dazed.  But then everything changed.  By chance I stumbled upon this recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/good-eats-roast-turkey-recipe/index.html

I sent it to Matthew and he responded with something like “Hey, why not?”

So we set out on a mission to make Christmas dinner our very own.

This recipe is VERY different from my mom’s.  The only similarity is that the turkey is, in fact, brined (but in veggie broth and spices and awesomeness instead of salt water).  It was a gamble.  But the bird came out looking AMAZING.  And the stuffing, which I didn’t put in the bird at ALL, also came out looking AMAZING (my mom helped me with the stuffing…I admit it).

(See?  His name is Edward Cullen :P)

We put all of the serving dishes on the “L” of our kitchen counter and Matthew and my brother Allen carved the bird…and Matthew gave me a taste of the turkey….and I knew.  I knew that this was THE BEST TURKEY I HAD EVER TASTED.  And we…Matthew and I… had cooked it ALL BY OURSELVES.

There was something about that Christmas dinner…the stuffing I had chosen the recipe for, the turkey that was so juicy it wasn’t like any turkey I’d ever seen, the potatoes that my dad (as always) mashed, my much-appreciated extra addition of Brussels sprouts to the Christmas veggies.  It wasn’t just the fact that everyone LOVED it and that my mom asked me to send her the turkey recipe.  It wasn’t even the fact that everyone pitched in and helped and it was a really family effort while still being very much Meg’s Dinner.  I think it was the fact that, instead of sticking with tradition, I went in my own direction.  I found new ways of doing things and they turned out better than I had imagined.  And everyone supported me in the journey.

I will never forget that dinner.  It was such a perfect reflection of where I am right now and where I hope to go this year.

(Xander wishes you a “Mewwy Cwistness”)

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