Monday, 24 December 2007

It's Coming...

Well, I picked up my (free-range Welsh) turkey from Rob Rattray's in Aberystwyth yesterday and today's the day when preparation really is the name of the game. My jobs have so far included making my giblet stock and stuffing, preparing the sausage-and-bacon rolls for the oven tomorrow and getting Delia's Parmesan Baked Parsnips (from Delia Smith's Christmas) done to the oven-ready stage.

The boys and I had a lovely lunch of scrambled eggs with smoked salmon earlier, though James didn't think much of the salmon and Chris and I were left to eat it all, quel dommage. This has long been the traditional Christmas Day breakfast at my Mum and Dad's, and I should miss it terribly if it didn't figure somewhere over the festive period. With small children, though, Christmas Day breakfast is more a case of "whatever gets you through". Coffee, anyone?
Things are pretty much ready to roll now, all the pre-preparation is done and dusted, the cake is iced and ready to slice and the fire is lit. The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols is on Radio 4 as I type this and it really feels like Christmas has begun... The only thing left for Christopher and I to do is to put out the annual "snack tray", all those dried figs, twiglets and jellied orange-and-lemon slices that make Christmas nibbling so inviting. The dish of nuts is already seriously denuded; Chris has already discovered just how tasty are raw nuts, straight out of the shell.

We have the same Christmas Eve dinner every year, a ham (this year cooked in Coca-Cola รก la Nigella), baked potatoes and vegetables, followed by mince tarts with thick cream. The leftover ham will be great for cold cuts on Boxing Day, it's true, but more than that is the comforting routine that the meal brings; we look forward to it almost as much as the big feat itself and every year another decision is already made. The ham goes on the stove as the aforementioned service starts at King's College, Cambridge and bubbles away gently until suppertime. Potatoes in the oven, veg on just before six and pour a nice glass of red. Merry Christmas to you all, God bless us, every one.

Cath xx

1 comment:

lesle said...

Cath, thank you for the past year's pleasure in reading your blog!

Merry Christmas!

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