Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A culinarily critical day

Our family Christmas dinner was a fun evening without any intense drama. My mother used to create some sort of scene nearly every year, but sadly, she was not there to cause trouble. Everyone was on his or her best behavior. Dakki likes to buttonhole people into convoluted discussions of ecclesiastical minutiae, but everyone managed to avoid being snared into this potential morass of ennui. There was only one tiny crisis, and this one is an annual event. I was just debating whether to have more wine, when Nancy said, “Joanna! Joseph is making the whipped cream.” I sprang into action. Whipping the cream is, for some reason now lost in family history, Joseph’s job. But he needs to be carefully monitored. He has definite ideas about how it should be done, and these ideas conflict with the opinions of some other serious whipped cream aficionados. He feels that it should be beaten until nearly a solid mass. One year, I was discretely (not!) supervising, and kept telling him that I was sure it was done. “No, no,” he said, “it’s not quite ready.” Suddenly …. Butter. I have to confess to a bit of Schadenfreude here, despite the fact that we didn’t have whipped cream on our pumpkin pie that year – or at least not perfect whipped cream. Then there are discussions as to whether to put in sugar and vanilla. Joseph and I are in agreement here. No to sugar, yes to a tad of vanilla. And we, with a united front, we stand firm. This year, the whipped cream was wonderful, as was the pumpkin pie upon which we enjoyed it.
In this last picture, many seem to be supervising Paul as he deals with the ham. I was not certain what is going on, but it looked interesting so I took a picture. I never did find out.


Lorette said...

Looks like a fun day! I nearly turned the whipped cream into butter this year, but saved it in the nick of time. Having a free-standing Kitchen Aid mixer makes it easy to walk away until it's too late. Butter wouldn't be a bad thing, but not with sugar and vanilla in it!

Janet said...

Pumpkin pie - one of my favourites which I haven't had for years.

Laura said...

Glad you had a happy Christmas with family and the only drama was-will the whipped cream turn to butter :)