Friday, December 26, 2008

A Christmas Carol and Cthulhu Droppings

Happy Boxing Day. I hope you all had a wonderful, relaxing Christmas yesterday. I know I did. I did try to do a Christmas Day post, but the Blogger monsters ate all but the first two sentences. After that I gave up and went back to relaxing.

A few years ago I decided that I didn’t want to spend my Christmas Day in the kitchen preparing a large meal. As much as I like cooking, I get too stressed trying to create a “traditional” Christmas dinner, so we decided to start our own tradition. We get really good steaks and we barbeque. Less fuss, minimal clean up and more time to enjoy the day. (e.g. playing with new toys, napping, walking, napping…)

Because I didn’t have to prep a big dinner, I was able to spend part of Christmas Day re-reading Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. There’s a man who can write about food. Reading this book always makes me hungry, and I find myself making repeated trips to the kitchen for snacks. From time to time I’ll even try to replicate some of the Victorian-era foods he mentions. My book club was most appreciative the year I contributed Negus to our holiday feast.

Yesterday’s reading inspired me to make onion marmalade to go with our steaks. At least, I assume it was my reading. I certainly didn’t have onion marmalade on the menu for Christmas dinner prior to reading about the fruiterer’s, where “ruddy, brown-faced, broad-girthed Spanish Onions, shining in the fatness of their growth like Spanish Friars; and winking from their shelves in wanton slyness at the girls as they went by, and glanced demurely at the hung-up mistletoe.”

I used Warren Ellis’ instructions for the marmalade. His descriptions of food are as memorable as Dickens', but in a completely different way. He’s rather obscene, and his humour is much more in your face. A rather refreshing change from the likes of Tiny Tim actually. I will admit that I felt a little bad about slicing the skull off my little Spanish Friar, what with it being Christmas and all, but the results were worth it. And I was able to have something onion-y to write about for my first Christmas post. I kinda like the way that worked out.

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