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Sunday, December 26, 2010

"There never was such a goose..."

"There never was such a goose..."*

Braised Christmas Goose
What a marvelous Christmas dinner we had last night!  Goose: braised, succulent and juicy, with homemade sausage and chestnut stuffing—by which I mean that the sausage itself was homemade, rich with veal, pork, port wine and sundry other delicacies; red cabbage stewed for hours in wine with yet more chestnuts;
Cabbage Braised with Red Wine and Chestnuts
crisp broccoli to offset all the luxurious fat; and wonderful, deeply-flavored goose gravy with which to bathe the's enough to make a person wax Dickensian just thinking about it!
Warren's Table with Bellflower Glass
All these fabulous dishes were made by my friend Warren,
along with other delicious things, and served up to a group of old friends with his painstakingly collected and lovely antique American Medallion silver, Wedgwood Ivy china and choice Bellflower glassware, making the occasion further sparkle and glow with warmth.
 It was all a tremendous amount of work, I know, and Warren is probably at this very moment thinking that he never wants to do Christmas dinner again!  But I will hazard a guess that it was worth it, even for a weary chef on the morning after.  These, after all, are the things we remember: the homemade, long-simmered dishes, the objects chosen with care, collections sometimes years in the making, the friendships tumbled about and burnished by the passage of time.
In came the cook...

It's worth taking the time, worth caring about the ingredients of our cuisine and our lives.  In the end, you get something better, something richer and brighter than all the hurriedly-acquired, gourmet-boutique items that fill up and overflow our time and space.

 Like the reformed Scrooge in A Christmas Carol, my friend Warren surely knows how to live wisely, and how to keep Christmas well.  In a larger sense—as Dickens said—"may that be truly said of us, and all of us!"**

 *A Christmas Carol, Stave 3, page 4
** A Christmas Carol, Stave 5, page 3

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1 comment:

  1. As a guest, I didn't know that there would be a second dessert - this one rich with memories and calorie free!

    My thanks to Warren for a fabulous meal and to Anne at Everything-Tasty for helping us savor the flavors.


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