December 28, 2005

Goose and Bread Pudding

A couple of years ago we broke away from doing the big family Christmas at my Grandmother’s house on Christmas day. On Christmas Eve, we would go to my parent’s house, and then on Christmas Eve we would go to my Grandmother’s house. That left us with no time for just our family and the boys didn’t get to play with anything they had been given. It made for a very hectic holiday.

When I was growing up, my parents would spend Christmas Eve with just us kids and then Christmas days at my Grandmothers. I wanted the same thing with my family. My mother didn’t want me to break tradition by not going to Grandma’s. It didn’t take much explaining when I reminded her that when growing up we didn’t spend Christmas Eve at Grandma’s and Christmas Day at Great Grandma’s. I told her to pick which day she wanted us at, she picked Christmas Eve.

That left me with what to do on Christmas Day. I knew I wanted to spend time with my family, but I wanted to start our own tradition and I wanted to make a special meal for all of us. When trying to decide what to make, I looked back on history to see what they used to eat on Christmas day and I found my inspiration. After conferring with Ktreva, I decided to make a goose, a nice traditional Christmas goose. We decided to make it a tradition and do it again this year.

For those of you that have never had goose, it is a very interesting bird. There is no white meat, it’s all dark meat. Depending on the type and age of the goose you have depends on how dark the meat is. Last years goose the breast meat was a dark chocolate color, this year it was more of a milk chocolate color. If you are not aware of this when you start carving the bird, it can come as a shock. I had thought I ruined it the first time. Goose is also very fatty. There is a layer of fat between the skin and the meat as well as veins of it running through the breast and thighs. This makes for a very juicy bird. Well, that and my special cooking style for birds.

I also made a nice homemade stuffing to go with it. When I say homemade, I mean I made it from scratch, no box and no pre-made ingredients. I even used fresh herbs that I had to prepare by hand for the seasoning. I did cheat and buy pre-made bread this year. In years past Ktreva would bake me a loaf of bread to use, but I decided to give her a break this year.

We also had Green Beans almondine, and baked sweet potatoes. I baked them because I’m not a fan of those different sweet potato/yam dishes with tons of brown sugar and marshmallows on it. Just give me a plain baked sweet potato with melted butter and a light sprinkling of brown sugar. The rest of the family likes them that way as well. I picked a nice red wine for Ktreva and I, while the boys had milk. Everything turned out very well, but then Ktreva had to trump me.

I told her she didn’t have to make anything; I would take care of it all. She insisted on making the dessert. Digging through her stack of recipes, she decided she was going to make her bread pudding with whiskey sauce. She served it warm at the table right after the main course was finished. When it was removed from the oven, the aroma itself was enticing. The boys and I sat in anticipation it smelled so good. We served it up, and as soon as each person took a bite, we could barely contain ourselves from just gobbling up this delicious culinary delight.

For those of you reading this worried about the effects of alcohol on the children, remember alcohol cooks out during the baking process. There was a minimal alcohol content left when it was finished.

Last night we re-heated the left over bread-pudding and finished it off. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that it reheats very well. It was just as, if not more, delicious then when it first came out of the oven. Ktreva was very proud of herself, and rightfully so. It was probably; no, it was the best the dessert she has ever made, not too sweet, not too rich, and just right.

We’ve decided that she will be making that again next year, it will become part of the Contagion Family Christmas Tradition.

Posted by Contagion in Family Life at December 28, 2005 01:11 PM | TrackBack

That sounds awesome. Goose is one of my favorite birds.

Posted by: littlejoe at December 28, 2005 10:25 PM

Wow! Sounds fabulous. You are so right to put your foot down and make sure your kids have Christmas at home. We didn't do that - and it's not the best decision we ever made... so more power to you!

I've never had goose, but if I didn't have to make it myself I might try it sometime *grin*. As for the bread pudding - congrats to your wife for hitting one out of the ballpark! (and anyone who wants to complain about alcohol and kids in that context can go jump in a lake and I mean right now in the middle of winter in Chicago!)

Posted by: Teresa at December 28, 2005 11:45 PM

Damn,man... now I'm starving.

Sounds like a very kick ass meal!

Posted by: That 1 Guy at December 29, 2005 08:40 AM

Sounds great, dude! I love goose, though I haven't eaten it in years.

I gave The Wife a Xmas goose. Damn, that woman hits hard...

Posted by: Wes at December 29, 2005 10:09 PM

About the "alcohol cooks out" thing:

Scroll down about 1/3 the way.

Posted by: Harvey at December 30, 2005 02:16 PM