Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Hazelwood Thanksgiving

T-day (crazy Kate style)
(insert theme music here)

Although this is our second Thanksgiving as a threesome family this is the first I've blogged it...
So here are the ground rules:
  1. I make waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much food
  2. It's uber time intensive
  3. It's really yummy
  4. I spend more time tending to the turkey than I do Little O and D.
  5. Did I mention it's really yummy???
I started by making my own brown sugar.
I did this for Elsa. You're welcome. hehe

1 c. white sugar
1 T. molasses

Mix it up in your kitchen aid (for about 10 minutes)...
voila...BROWN SUGAR.

(I also made my own butter this year but that is a 38549583049 page blog in itself. Not to mention that it will drive you to drink just reading about the process. Let's just say my kitchen aid was mad at me for the amount of "churning" it had to do. And then I ate most of because it's just so gooooooooood fresh. Call me Homer.).

Next up came making the brine for the 13.45 lb turkey.
A measly sized turkey in the eyes of my father but considering it's just D and I I figured I should draw the line somewhere.
Besides this is coming from the man that had troubles ramming the chosen Christmas tree through the front door and may have suggested getting rid of the living room couch so that said tree would fit. Hmm..

Anyway, it consisted of about one cup orange juice, 1 1/2c. brown sugar, 2 cups salt, rosemary, bay leaves, thyme, lavender, chives, and oregano which all got heated up in a HUGE pot of stock with a few splashes of liquid smoke and 4 cloves of garlic.

Please remember that I never measure anything (hence why I don't bake). So for all I know it could have been 6 cups of sugar. HA!

After you prep that lovely bird.
And by prep I mean give it an autopsy of sorts.
You take a picture of it for your blog.
Wash hands first though.
It's uber important.
No one wants puking on t-day.

Now if you're Kate you go the extra step and take a totally GROSS picture of the the neck and other gross parts.
Because it's gross and because you're going to use them to make broth later.
I SO died laughing when D was rummaging through the fridge for a snack and opened the neck/kidney/heart tubberware. HEHEHEHEHE!

Now that the turkey is going to brine in the fridge over night you can open a good bottle of wine and put your feet up.
Reality check: You can sneak a few drinks in between chasing Little O who has decided that the only toys he now owns are Christmas decorations. Now spend the next 38239584985 minutes saying "careful/don't touch that/danger".

Then you remember that you have rolls in the oven!
Luckily, you save them from a slow burning death.
To celebrate you eat one.
And then go sweep up an ornament from the floor.

Day two of Hazelwood Thanksgiving dinner begins with me dragging D out of bed and to the Christmas Tree farm in Elgin.
This was an adventure because:
  1. Oliver didn't nap
  2. D was mad cause I made him go
  3. It was cold (Texas cold mind you)
  4. Oliver wouldn't get off of the tractor
  5. Oliver threw a fit when we got off the tractor
  6. It was a big tantrum
  7. Another tantrum when we had to stop playing tether ball
  8. Another when we left the goats
  9. I wore high heels
  10. and a skirt
But we sawed down our own tree!
and by we I mean D did.

Little O and the boots not ever leaving the trailer.
We could've left him on the tractor all day.
Why do I pay for a sitter?
Do I hear a 3rd birthday idea????
Me thinks yeppers!

And a screaming, hysterical Little O as I insist that the tracor ride is over.
Note said high heels and skirt.
Stupid, stupid Kate.

The yellow play tube climbing thingy distracted Little O for about negative .6 seconds from the "stractors".

Aaand we're done... Back to terrorizing adorable children and helpless animals (goats).

After we wrangled the little monster away from the tractor (and by wrangled I mean kicking and screaming...literally) we headed on home.
Little O took a much needed nap (thank you baby Jesus).
D spent two hours searching and cussing for the Christmas tree stand.
I soaked some mesquite wood chips and started the massive amount of prep work for the massive amount of food that would become massive amounts of leftovers.
Then I did some impromptu kitchen dancing.
Just because I felt like it.

So, in between soaking the wood chips and the finished yummy turkey you see below was a TON of chores and several time outs and chopping and hanging ornaments and lights and a few more time outs and more impromptu dancing.
But here is the smoked, brined, most juicy turkey I have ever eaten.
I can't even describe to you the level of juicy.
It was like an 11 on the scale of 10.
It rocked.
For those of you that have seen Spinal Tap.
You get it. hehe...

This picture is stinky mc-stink but it's pumpkin cheese cake.
As per a D request there is crust on the top AND bottom.
What would he do without me?
Probably not be traumitized by all my kitchen dancing.
That's what.
And he'd be even skinnier.
(Not that I'm saying you're skinny D)
But I kinda am.
Shut up Kate.
Shut up and eat turkey.

Here we have oyster stuffing.
Also per a D request.
and double erlack.
The only time I don't like seafood is when I was pregnant.
Just kidding.
I'm not.
I just think oyster stuffing is erlack and double erlack. least I think I'm not pregnant.

D does the manly job of carving the turkey (bwahahaha).
Then we load up plates with stuffing (erlack), spinach casserole (mmm), garlic rolls, and JUICY turkey.
I made gravy too but the turkey was way too good to destroy it with gravy.

And there you have it folks...
My first Thanksgiving as an "almost" Hazelwood.
Little O had a sucker (not kidding).
No judging. We wanted to actually sit and eat together at the same time.
Which happens twice a year.
It was a lovely holiday.
Now for some impromptu dancing.

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