Even though the turkey legs were a little overdone, as Boxing Day Disasters go 2013 wasn't that bad a year.
I hope it’s not tempting fate to say so but this year I am really looking forward to Christmas. There are several reasons for this happy state of affairs. The first is, that when we had our recent family celebration in Sligo, I had the opportunity to give Christmas gifts to family members who live in far-away places. No stressing about getting things into the post! Another reason is that we have decided not to do the Boxing Day dinner for it had become a serious source of seasonal stress and I had stopped enjoying it. Then, of course there is the fact that our responsibilities have diminished as there is no elderly, bed-ridden, Christmas-hating person and no carers coming in on top of us on our family day.
The following is a throwback post written nearly five years ago. It tells the tale of the worst Boxing Day dinner ever. I still get shivers when I think of it.
It has taken me a while to be able to share this story. I must warn you in advance that it is a very sad story and that you will probably cry. This is the story of Nelly's Boxing Day Dinner Disaster.
My day began at 6am Why so early? I wanted to get a handle on my day and a start made on my enormous 22 pound Black Norfolk Turkey, a gift from Clint.
By 10:30am the turkey was thoroughly cooked, in fact, it was a tad over-cooked. I was a little dismayed but Bert said, never to worry, sliced in gravy, nobody would notice a thing. Still, I was embarrassed to see it sitting there all black skin and singed legs so I got Bert to slice it up and I tucked it away out of sight.
All was under control – desserts ready, most vegetables prepped, a nice pork roast sizzling away in the slow cooker. I just had some stuffing to prepare. At 2pm the pork was succulent and only needed a quick blast in the oven to make the crackling. This was a method I was quite confident about as I'd cooked pork in the slow cooker at least a dozen times.
I put the oven on to high and left it for thirty minutes. To tell the truth, I got involved with other tasks. Suddenly I remembered I needed to put the pork in for a blast of heat so transferred it to a roasting tin. Over to the oven, door open....
Oh dear God! There were my turkey slices, burned, dried out, totally fucked. I was so distraught I dropped the pork whereupon it fell on the floor and disintegrated. See! I said you would cry. I certainly did.
What Happened Next?
I saw Bert coming across the yard carrying a bucket of logs. I ran to the door. I sobbed,
Bert! Come in! Something terrible has happened!
He took one look at my anguished face, dropped the logs and ran in. I believe he thought I had discovered his mother lying dead. Little did he know it was far worse than that.
Then What Happened?
I had hysterics.
Then What Happened?
I stopped crying and went to collect Hannah and her friends. On the way in I started howling again thinking of that noble turkey who had lived and died in vain. I gathered up my guests who. I believe, were rather apprehensive about their evening's entertainment.
Meanwhile, Back At The Ranch
Zoe and family arrived and measures were discussed as to how dinner could be salvaged. With the help of my lovely guests, we saved the day. There was enough meat underneath the burned turkey and above the splattered pork to feed us all. Second helpings were in short supply but thankfully there were lots of desserts.
Last Year's Boxing Day Dinner
I seem to remember that there was also some sort of disaster at the 2010 Boxing Day dinner. I don't recall what it was about but it culminated in me running out and sobbing in the polytunnel and when I allowed myself to be persuaded back into the house the guests had eaten all the food. Ah well. I dare say it served me right for being such a hysterical bitch.