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Not As Good As Pork Cracklins

misadventures in cooking

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Christmas Dinner

I can't believe how badly I messed up such a special dinner. And it had such potential! I am the queen of accidentally undercooked meat, but the pork was so overcooked that it was nearly inedible. Part of the problem is my cheap-ass thermometer which is probably miscalibrated. But the bulk of the blame is the cook's, who should have checked it at more frequent intervals, once it got close.

The mushroom mixture for the stuffing started out just fabulous. Even Eric, who doesn't eat mushrooms, came to see what smelled so good. I tasted it and it was out of this world delicious. Alas, when I mixed it with the cubed bread, egg and broth, I forgot to add the salt and pepper. It turned out so bland that it was awful. Which is a particular shame, seeing as how I spent a fortune on the mushrooms and they sauteed up so nicely.

Sheri's recipe for a very special cheesecake is excellent. I know that because I licked the beater and bowl for the chocolate-raspberry truffle batter completely clean and it was AWESOME. Unfortunately, I overcooked the cheesecake. The center, which I thought was jiggly, was actually perfect, which made the outer perimeter overdone. To add insult to injury, the crust would not come away from the non-stick pan. Gary said (jokingly), "I'd like mine with some crust", and by that point I was so distraught that I nearly burst into tears.

[edited to say: aha! After the cheesecake has been out of the refrigerator for a little while, the crust releases from the pan just beautifully.]

The only bright spot was the bisque. I absolutely loved it and would highly recommend it.

The wine was a birthday gift to Gary from Steve and Casey Lynum. We both loved it.


At 12/25/2004 9:26 PM, Blogger Sheri said...

Oh, Amy, I'm sorry you had such a bad cooking day! You know that I've been there too, and it always makes it worse when it's a special day with guests. I know exactly how it feels. I'm always inconsolable after a bad cooking night.

I've been having problems with my thermometer too. The only thing I've found that works is to always have a brand new one on hand and to replace old ones regularly. What a waste of money.

Your stuffing sounds wonderful, even though I don't like mushrooms - I probably would have gobbled it up anyway!

I'm sorry your cheesecake didn't turn out the way you wanted it to. I've never had an issue with the crust - maybe it's all those trans fats in the Oreos helps! :)

Merry Christmas anyway - you're a wonderful cook! I ended up not doing anything - we took our steaks next door. Lynn was also making steaks for her sister and brother-in-law, so I made the steaks and pan sauce (cast iron, of course), and we had their leftover sides from last night plus we brought leftover chocolate tart. A nice, spontaneous Christmas dinner.

At 12/27/2004 3:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Amy! I didn't know about this sight until I just read about it on Eric's journal. What fun to read! I'm sorry your Christmas dinner didn't turn out. Miss you.



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