Wouldn't want to break my (stupidly) long streak of Friday Food posts, would I now? Of course not. Plus, I actually write it throughout the week and finish it Thursday night for a scheduled post in the morning, so it's not as if I got up at four on Christmas morning to write this ridiculously long post.
Just a little behind the scenes tidbit for you.
Here we go!
Short version: Pork stir-fry, rice, chocolate pudding with whipped cream
Long version: Jack's birthday request. I made the stir-fry with the rest of the pork I had made the day before, plus a bag of frozen stir-fry vegetables (hoarded for this very day), some extra frozen green beans, onions, and carrots.
Jack also requested the chocolate pudding. I only had enough chocolate chips to make one recipe of it. I usually double that recipe, but we also had brownies on hand left from the class Christmas parties the day before, as well as more of A.'s birthday pumpkin custard, so I figured we wouldn't have any lack of desserts.
Sadly, this means no ugly cake photos. I know you're disappointed.
Short version: Roasted pheasant and rabbit, rice, salad with vinaigrette
Long version: The pheasant was wild; the rabbit was tame.
A. shot the pheasant when he went hunting with Cubby the weekend before. A. hung it to age a bit, and it was so cold, it actually partially froze. So it hung for five days. The rabbit was one of the bucks from the casita. This is the first time I've ever prepared a domestic meat rabbit--as compared to a wild cottontail--and it was really quite a bit bigger. Milder in flavor, too.
Both of these are very lean meats, so I covered them all over with bacon before roasting them, removing the bacon after about twenty minutes and seasoning the meat with salt, pepper, and thyme. I made a little sauce with the pan juices, a bit of some fancy apple brandy from Santa Fe my sister sent us for Christmas, and cold butter.
They came out fine, although somewhat tough. A. was very enthused about the pheasant. He stood over the pan after dinner, picking meat off the carcass, and very solemnly told me, "I regret to inform you that I am passionately pleased by wild pheasant."
Regretful indeed, given that this is only the second time in our entire lives that he's shot a pheasant.
His success and enjoyment of the pheasant inspired him to go quail hunting on this day, though, on some public land just a few miles from our house. We all went along for the adventure.
Short version: Rabbit and pheasant soup, cheese, ice cream with caramel sauce or maple syrup
Long version: There was quite a bit of meat left on the carcasses of the rabbit and pheasant, and the easiest way to get it off is to boil the carcasses for awhile. This has the happy result of also making very nice stock.
I used the stock to make soup with the meat I pulled off the bones, a couple of pieces of bacon, onion, garlic, celery, carrots, green beans, and rice. It was very good.
We finished up the caramel sauce with this Sunday dessert. There was just enough for A. and me to have it with our ice cream. The children chose maple syrup when given a choice, so it all worked out.
Short version: Breakfast sausage patties, curried split peas, rice, fruit mix
Long version: I usually make the curried split peas when I make the sausage because the two members of our family that do not eat legumes do very much like sausage. And the two that don't like the sausage love the curried split peas. It works out well.
The fruit mix was one of three GIANT cans I was given by the cook at the school when she was clearing out the kitchen before Thanksgiving. Each can is 6.8 pounds of peaches, pears, and grapes in an extra-light syrup. It was kind of bland, so I added a bit of maple syrup and cinnamon to it for the children. Only Jack and Poppy finished theirs, though.
I froze the rest of the can (in bags, not in the can) for use in smoothies this summer. Given that I have two more of those huge cans, I guess we're going to be all set when it gets hot.
Short version: Pork roast, roasted potatoes, sauerkraut and onions, carrot sticks with curry dip
Long version: This was the last of the smaller pork roasts my mom brought us in October. I just roasted it with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and thyme until it was done. Under the roast was a jar of my rinsed sauerkraut and the remainder of an onion that I sliced up because it was starting to go bad.
Welcome to My Very Real Kitchen.
The carrot sticks were courtesy of Miss Amelia and her commodities delivery. She couldn't eat it all, so she asked A. to come and pick up the extra food. That included the biggest carrot I may have ever seen.