By Lorry Myers
Everyone survived my holiday dinner despite cooking plans that didn’t go as planned. I thought I would shake it up this year and not prepare and serve what I usually do, which typically involves gravy with sketchy lumps.
Not this year.
Instead, I asked others about their favorite family recipes or what they would be making for their holiday get together. Listening to everyone’s stories about their traditional dishes, I decided instead of my practiced holiday fare, I would make dishes I’d never made before. I googled recipes, checked my grocery list, and turned on the music, determined to create something my family would ask for again and again.
Our next new tradition.
I started with a strawberry pretzel salad that seemed simple enough. I am not a pretzel fan but love anything with cream cheese. Things were going fine until I realized I’d bought whole frozen strawberries instead of sliced but was not willing to do anything about it. Then, I forgot to check on the Jell-O part of the dish and it was way passed the jelling stage before I remembered it. As a result, that part of the dish was in chunks instead of a smooth sheet of red.
I covered it up with whipped cream.
Then, I chose a grape salad made with brown sugar and pecans in a creamy sauce. The recipe I found online looked pretty good, and I followed it to the letter. I checked the ingredients and measured twice putting in the required cups of this and cups and that along with ten cups of grapes, never looking to see how many the recipe served. Apparently, grape salad serves an army.
Nobody wanted the leftovers.
Finally, I saw pictures that my niece, Melissa, posted showing the dessert she was making for her family. It was Oreos and ice cream with a chocolate fudge topping, the very dessert my mother-in-law made for Sunday dinners. I had forgotten all about that sweet treat and how much I loved it. When Grandma Lucy passed, I just assumed the recipe went with her because Lucille never measured or wrote down anything. Now, my niece had it in writing, complete with measurements and jotted notes in the margins.
I was all in.
Following the recipe, I chopped up cookies for the crust and pressed them in a pan. Then, I melted chocolate chips and added other random stuff for the fudge topping which had to be boiled to the right temperature and beaten so many strokes. I did it all, I followed the recipe exactly as it was written.
For the complete column, see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.