I should start this post with a caveat: I love to cook, and I always will. The holidays are among my favorite times of the year. But I think everyone can relate to needing a break every once in a while, am I right?
And so, a very, very minor Christmas gripe in advance of what I think will be a very spectacular week with my family:
One of the only downsides of being able to cook well is that once your family finds out, you’re on the hook FOREVER. Forget being able to sit in front of the fire, drinking too much eggnog and generally being a lazy sack of bones. Your ass is going to be in the kitchen from here on out.
Normally, I love this responsibility, and take it very, very seriously. But this year, though I’m totally in the holiday spirit, I was also looking forward to a bit of a break. Two years ago, I over exerted myself at our big family gathering, and made a gigantic spread that kept me in the kitchen for THREE DAYS. It was fun, but my feet hurt by the end of it, and I needed another vacation. So much so, that last year, we avoided the fuss altogether and spent the big day in Nicaragua, where we feasted on a little Christmas pizza in balmy 85 degree weather. It was awesome. And it gave me an idea for this year.
A few weeks ago, my grandmother emailed me asking what she thought we should make for Christmas dinner. Um, “we?” Exactly what I’d hoped to avoid. Coy as I am, I responded with this:
If we’d rather be awesome and do something non-traditional, we could have a carb fest and order pizza, I could make spaghetti and homemade meatballs (easy), throw together a green salad and call it a day. Secretly, you think that sounds a little tempting. Don’t lie. Or I could make enchiladas.
Her response was radio silence, which I thought could be a good sign. No menu planning could mean that we’re just calling in for pizza! Right? Right? Please say yes.
Then, I was served papers on Saturday:
butternut squash (do you have recipe for this?)
We need a salad, but what kind? Fruit? Saw one about pears and grapes that looked interesting.
Soooo, long story short, we will not be having pizza or enchiladas for Christmas dinner. I can’t imagine why not. Holiday eating traditions are so funny in that everyone tends to gripe about them, but no one will ever break the mold and just do what they really want to, which usually involves a case of wine and delivery.
Of course there’s something to be said for tradition, but dammit, is it wrong for me to want to just get sloshed in front of the fireplace and leave the cooking drama to the pizza joint down the street?