Wednesday, December 24, 2014
Friends and Family, Not Recipes, Make the Meal
In my last post, I pulled a recipe from my mother’s old file to try this Christmas – “Honey Oatmeal Cookies.” Now I love oatmeal cookies, but just because the recipe was in the file doesn’t mean it was a good one – or that she had ever tried it for that matter. These cookies were so bad, I now find myself standing at the counter, picking out the good cranraisins and pecan chunks rather than throw them away.
If you share my experience, it isn’t difficult to blow a recipe during the holiday season and have some cherished memories as a result.
There was the year I couldn’t afford a good turkey and bought on the cheap instead. I was young and didn’t know I couldn’t rush the bird, so I also cooked it on high and fast. The finished bird lay on the table, looking and tasting much like a deflated football.
There was a time I served watery broccoli, lumped potatoes, inedible pies and worse dinner rolls. But there are also some great recipes in my file. I can cook a mean turkey now, I know the store that sells the best pies, and I have great friends that invite me to their house for Christmas dinner. I have just enough great recipes to take a tasty dish along with a good bottle of wine and we are all happy.
The best recipe of all is the Christmas mix of good family and friends who put together the memorable and unique meal of the year.
As we prepare our meals and baked treats today and throughout the next week, I hope that all your dishes turn out well. When in doubt, just remember that Julia Child was never bashful about butter.
And if you really want to make good friends, invite or go to eat with someone. The people who give you their food give you their heart.[i]