(I don't have any photos of the finished dish, as it was eaten too quickly!)
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Usually I make it loosely based on my Mum’s way of doing it – cut up turkey mixed with sauteed onions, mushrooms and garlic, leftover vegetables and gravy as the base and here I have always deviated from my mum’s recipe – instead of her pastry topper, I do a mashed potato topper, so it is a turkey pot pie a la shepard!
This year I sautéed the onion, garlic and mushrooms and added the cut up turkey. Then I made a pesto cheese sauce using 2 oz butter, 2 oz flour, 1 c stock (turkey stock), 1 c milk, ½ c homemade basil pesto and about 1 ½ c grated cheddar and gruyere mixed. To this I added ½ head cauliflower and similar amount of broccoli that had been oven roasted. This mix went into the bottom of a casserole and then was topped with puff pastry. I tried to get fancy and make a leaf motif with the leftover pastry.
And as I was defrosting the puff pastry anyway, I made pesto and goat cheese puff pastry appys - roll out the puff pastry into a rectangle. Spread a thin layer of pesto over the pastry, add a layer of goat cheese over the pesto and roll up from each long side until you have two equal rolls meeting in the middle. Cut into ~10-12 pieces and place onto a baking sheet. Bake at 400 deg for about 10 minutes until lightly browned and puffy.
Monday, December 28, 2009
The other night - Christmas night actually, I was putting T to bed when he asked me where my mummy lived. I told him she lived in heaven now and that she was an angel watching over us. He replied "how do angels watch over us if we don't have holes in our roof?" Hmmm. The best I could come up with was that angels and fairies aren't bound by physical boundaries like walls, the float through air. "But why isn't grandma here" he asked. "Why is she an angel now?" I told him that she had been very sick for a long time and then she died. But that she didn't want to leave us and that she would love to be here with us and play with him. That she would love him and his cousins, she would be so proud of her grandsons. (So hard as I don't want to freak him out and let him think that anytime mummy gets sick, I could die and leave him. So hard too, as I still miss Mum and she would so love my boy and his cousins - all three are such special boys!).
So at breakfast, T sits up at the breakfast bar and tells me "it's a great morning!" Mummy and Daddy are home today and we're going to ride the train in Stanley Park later today.
Sunday, December 27, 2009
For dinner I made braised cabbage in cream (from Molly Wizenberg's book - A Homemade Life) to go with cheese and sausage perogies which gave dinner a slightly Ukranian feel. I gave T a quick bath and hustled him into his pjs. We put out the snack for Santa - chocolate chip cookies along with a carrot for the reindeer and T insisted that I make a cup of tea for Santa and we left it all on the hearth beside the tree. Then came our three hours trying to get T to go to sleep. "Is it morning yet?" over and over. I finally had to say "Santa won't come if you aren't asleep. Do you want me to call him and say don't come because T doesn't want to go to sleep?" The answer was an earthshattering "NO", but he did lie down and eventually fell asleep. I did too and when I woke up 20 minutes later, groggy and bleary eyed, I had to start remembering where I'd hidden all the presents - both the stocking gifts and the gifts from family and friends sent in the mail that I've been hiding away for weeks to keep T from opening them. The trucks meant that there was no big assembly project this year but as usual it was after midnight by the time we took our weary selves to bed.
The blessing of the late to sleep meant that T didn't wake up until almost 8. He came out and found his stocking full, he discovered paint, colouring books, chocolate, an orange, a monster truck and a lego truck. Then we made him get dressed before heading downstairs. I went to take some pictures and discovered all my camera batteries were dead - lovely! And my search for new ones was fruitless. Ah well.
T found his Santa presents on the hearth - his bulldozer, a steam shovel and a road grader. Then he opened our presents to find a low loader (red) and a concrete mixer truck. By that point he'd figured out that the blue wrapping paper meant a truck. He opened an earthmover from Grampie and was set to open the other two boxes but we made him wait until Auntie K and Uncle M came later in the day for turkey dinner. He opened other gifts - a big pirate floor puzzle from Auntie S, a furry hat and a pirate treasure book from Auntie A, a kite and backhoe t-shirt and chocolate coins from his cousins, a Cars race car transporter and a fleece hoodie and a book from Auntie M and a hat and book from Mummy's friend PK. And along the way, Mummy and Daddy got some presents as well. T and D played with the trucks while I started cooking - first taking the turkey out of the brine and stuffing it with sausage stuffing. I made a vegetarian mushroom, cranberry, corn stuffing as well. The vegetables were carrot/yam dish from M&B, mashed turnip, maple roasted parsnips, braised pancetta brussel sprouts ( from Smittenkitchen.com without the breadcrumb topping), creamy potatoes plus gravy, cranberry sauce (M&B again), and our family traditional bread sauce. Dinner was served around 2:30 once K&T and M&B arrived and more gifts were exchanged. More trucks for T - a quarry truck and a dump truck. After dinner, we had candy cane ice cream from K, mince pie and cookies. T then played trucks while the rest of us rested,
had tea, chatted and Uncle T made hundreds of wrapping paper rocks to load up T's trucks!
Here are 4 of the trucks with the mountain of "rocks".
A lovely day and T learned that it sometimes doesn't snow at Christmas and it happens anyway!
Monday, December 21, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
Monday, December 7, 2009
And when I came back inside, there was T's combine harvester ready and waiting for harvest!
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Saturday, December 5, 2009
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
My name is T.M and I will be 4 in January. I have been a good boy this year. (There was some hemming and hawing about this statement after I wrote it as T was fairly sure he's not always a good boy at daycare - not listening well, etc but in the interest of the letter he left that bit out).
I hope you and the reindeer will come to my house at Christmas and we can look at wheel backhoes (real ones) on the computer. I would like a bulldozer, a track backhoe and a road grader for Christmas, please.
Mummy and I will make cookies for you - chocolate chip ones - so I hope you like chocolate.
Hello to the reindeer.
T decorated the letter with some stickers (fire truck, monster truck, train and 18-wheeler). We are going to mail it on the way to preschool tomorrow.
I don't remember writing to Santa as a child. A family tradition was that on Christmas Eve we would write out a list of wishes and each member of the family would throw the paper on the fire. If the paper flew up the chimney that meant our wish would come true. At least, that is how I remember it. I do remember my mum being nervous about us throwing paper on the fire at my grandparent's as my grandfather (my Da) would encourage us really close to the fire to catch a draft so the wish would fly up.