Saturday, December 19, 2009

Latkes & Christmas Trees (A Very Festive Sunday).

12.13.2009, Sunday. A very fitting day to acquire a Christmas tree (my first adult purchase of a Christmas tree). The Christmas tree itself was quite an adventure, what with the seven chain stores (multiple Walmarts!) we had to visit in order to locate BLUE Christmas lights & the fact that the first snowflakes fell just as we were selecting the tree in Hadley & we then had the pleasure of driving home in a gorgeous early snow with the tree on the roof of the car. So all of that is a story in itself, & NOW we come to the food...
The epic search for Christmas lights in the essential colour of blue led us to not eat all day yet again so the first step when we returned home laden with BLUE lights & tinsel garlands was this...
A roast chicken, with garlic & rosemary, & stuffed with a dried cherry & shallot stuffing. We used one of the metal ties from the Walmart Christmas lights to sew the chicken together after we stuffed it (so resourceful!). Oh & lots of butter was everywhere.
& yes I am half Jewish & Hanukkah had just begun , so LATKES! (basic recipe: grated potatoes, yukon gold in this case, an onion, an egg). Which were fried in the chicken fat we collected as the chicken roasted (not kosher) (but still the reason we were roasted the chicken). This is non religious but very traditional holiday cooking here, traditional only in the sense of what feels like how you remember it. This feels right, for a half Jewish half Catholic girl raised with zero religion but a hell of a lot of respect for ritual. The other reason we roasted the chicken was that it could smell like Sunday dinner while we decorated the tree. Shit like that's important to me.
By the time we roasted an entire chicken in order to produce the chicken fat in which to fry the latkes, & still hadn't eaten anything, we were starving, & for people who had done a shit ton of cooking, we ate a very informal meal of a shared pile of latkes on the same plate (the chicken wasn't eaten at all that night, but stay tuned for what I did with the ample leftovers).
& then while decorating the tree we realized we had an excess of key limes in the pantry (long story) & well, KEY LIME PIE had to happen. This led to a mad excursion to Stop & Shop ten minutes before they closed in the midst of slush & ice & snow (dreaded "wintery mix" as The Weather Channel likes to say). But then we didn't make the pie. But we did the next night. & stay tuned for pie leftovers leading to dancing, also. Note on the Key Lime Pie: I am well aware Key Lime Pie is not traditionally topped with meringue but I like it to be. So we stayed up late hand beating egg white to make it happen. My key lime pie is really a lemon meringue/key lime hybrid & it's perfect, in my humble opinion.
So tonight, before it begins to snow in Massachusetts, Happy celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas, Solstice, Abigail's birthday, oncoming snowstorm, whatever you like, hopefully with glitter, the only way to truly celebrate at least according to Eating & Drawing.

Friday, December 18, 2009

An Old Classic Revisited, Part Two.

A long overdue conclusion. Oh, let's see, where did we leave off? Oh yes, Dustyrose on the table with a baguette. While all that hilarity was ensuing, some cooking was actually also being accomplished.

Steak simmering in red wine, garlic, & yellow potatoes boiling...this all smelled very good...
...which sets the scene for food as sex appeal....i.e. Eating & Drawing's
Classic New Boyfriend Dinner...
oh & the leftovers work great the next night alone in your room at approximately 2:30am after dancing at the basement. (perfect snack for updating your facebook status before going to bed)
I promised in Part One that Part Two was going to explain all, but instead I'm just gonna leave you with: it's good to cook for the people you love, whoever they are. I think the lights on the Christmas tree are making me sentimental or something.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Sometimes It's Nice To Be Cooked For.

I love to cook, but sometimes it really is. I always insist that cooking is the most fun for me, & that I rather be the one doing it, & this is all absolutely true...but when last Sunday night Owen insisted that I sit at the kitchen table & get some shit done & drink a glass of wine & eat chips (Tostitos With A Hint Of Lime left behind by temporary housemate Dennis) & salsa (Green Mountain Gringo), & that he was cooking with no help from me so just shut up Liz, it was an amazing feeling. I think this is exaggerated by the fact that the absolute last time anyone cooked for me was Rin's fabulous margarita cupcakes on my birthday, & before that the last time I visited Mum in Brewster & ate delicious leftovers. & the fact that we didn't eat all day of course & I was all typically stressed out & starving.
I drew this on the phone. Owen cooking at 133.
what Owen made: shells, kidney beans, garlic, cheese, I didn't make it so I don't really know but it tasted good.
What I love most about cooking is feeding the people I love. It's nice to experience the other angle of that feeling too.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Above All, We Celebrate Cooking. Thanksgiving Part Four.

That's what Thanksgiving means to me, the holiday of no other obligation than sharing a meal with people you love. It's the signature holiday of EnD. The day after Thanksgiving, DR was mad that I wasn't cooking. It was a pretty insane day for me, that day after Thanksgiving. I woke up surrounded by pans of turkey & stuffing & brussel sprouts. My beloved car died, & I spent six hours in the emergency room.
(mom cook something)
Returning home around 9pm, I ate french fries with mayonnaise & sriracha (these Alexia frozen ones because despite many facebook requests no one would bring me a bacon cheeseburger & onion rings) (& set the oven on fire) & shared a magnum of the Anchor Steam Christmas Ale, & then went dancing at the WWII with my favorite person. Pretty appropriate for the day after, I think, but don't worry, I cooked my ass off the following week.
Thus ends the 2009 Thanksgiving Live-Blogging (sort-of) Experiment.
What's gonna happen on Christmas?!

Here's Where We Get Back To The Gravy. Thanksgiving Part Three.

Um, Yeah, the 2009 Eating & Drawing Thanksgiving Live-Blogging Experiment kinda fell apart around the time that it started to seem like a really good idea to actually EAT Thanksgiving Dinner, rather than draw it & starve. Don't worry though, y'all, eat thanksgiving dinner I most certainly did & I drew it too.
Sides (other than stuffing): my favorite sides for most meat courses
(extremely delicious with steak)
buttery mashed potatoes & brussel sprouts roasted with garlic.

& finally, FINALLY, food plated:
rosemary & sage turkey breast, gravy, yukon gold mashed potatoes, apple-pinenut stuffing, roasted brussel sprouts with garlic.

Yup, I like gravy. I do think the Shawmut Diner's was was more satisfying. But this was my first complete Thanksgiving dinner, & I don't think it turned out half-bad.
The leftovers were better, Sunday night, over a glitter n' glow puzzle.
Thanksgiving dessert also didn't happen the night of Thanksgiving, but it happened, via David Lebovitz and Chez Panisse. Yeah yeah yeah I drew it. What was it? SUSPENSE.