26 November 2008

Thanksgiving Eve: Quarantine and retro recipes.

The decision I made a few years ago to stop doing Thanksgiving with my family and start doing it with my friends was probably one of the better decisions I've ever made. It was crystal clear last year when there was all kinds of drama between my mom and sister about who was hosting. There was back-and-forth for days and I was involved because, well, that's the way it goes. And if my parents had come up to my sister's place, I would have tried to both hang out with my family for a bit and do my own thing with my friends.

Not long after my post yesterday, I found out that the family Thanksgiving is a huge cock-up again this year. The Nunnery is under quarantine. Many of the Brides of Christ who live there are old and not well; they are particularly vulnerable at this time of year. So the fam cannot have Thanksgiving with The Nun and my mom is now hosting 12 people at kind of the last minute. I can feel the stress and insanity from here and man, am I fucking glad I'll be in my own place tomorrow.

I'm especially glad because I can sleep in at least a little tomorrow. I'll probably need it because Thanksgiving Eve drinking has become another tradition with my friends, we're going out tonight. How can you not? Thanksgiving Eve is the biggest bar night of the year. We're starting at Chino Latino for happy hour and then God only knows where we'll end up. At least two people have mentioned turning over cars and bottle smashing. And y'all thought I was the violent one. This is an especially exciting Thanksgiving Eve because new friends of mine will be joining us in our drunken escapades. Or part of the escapades, anyway.

Finally, I'd like to share a retro recipe I came across recently. A bit of back story: They Boy I Currently Like told me he needed a cookie recipe a couple of weeks ago. It's for some work thing. And since I have been providing him with lots of baked goods over the last year or so, I guess it makes sense that he'd ask me.

He decided on Snickerdoodles. I'd made that particular cookie, but not since high school. I e-mailed my mom to see if she could find the recipe in one of her Lutheran Church Lady recipe books, because I knew that's where I'd gotten it. In the meantime, I found several recipes online that were all the same and baked a test batch that both The Boy and my coworkers found to be delicious. Then mom was here last weekend and gave me a copy of the recipe. She'd actually copied two pages from the book and I found the following recipe there.

Crackling Cookies

2 cups cracklings (from home rendered lard)
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons ginger

Mix cracklings, brown sugar, eggs, milk and vanilla thoroughly. Sift dry ingredients together, add to first mixture. Roll in small balls, dip in sugar, bake at 350 degrees.

HOME-RENDERED LARD? You can make that shit at home? As a matter of fact, you can. I've never cooked with lard, but my mom used to, back in the day. I also find it interesting that neither this recipe, or any other on the two pages I received, had any baking time. Those Lutheran Church Ladies didn't need no damn baking time suggestions. They knew their ovens. They knew that cookies generally take eight to 11 minutes to cook. They also have a propensity for suspending things in Jell-o and making hot dishes with cream-of-something soups. But they know their baking.


.::~P~::. said...

That sounds like a good Thanksgiving Eve indeed!!!

I will deff. have to try that cookie recipe!!!

Have fun tonight!

Also, have a few for me, here in Canada!

Peach Pit said...

My mom also used to cook with lard - a MN thing? - but switched to olive oil when it became trendy, and when my dad got type 2 diabetes.

Have fun drinking! I'll actually be picking up the fam from the airport...

Diana said...

Now I feel like a total douche for being all sick and shit last night. Hope your day is good, and see you Saturday, where all will be explained....

Jess said...

Um, there is no reason to feel like a douche for getting sick, Di. Hope you are on the mend, 'cause I'm totally excited for Saturday.

I had plenty of fun last night and drank plenty enough to have some for P.

I thought maybe the cooking with lard was a country thing for me, Peach Pit, since I grew up on a farm. Then again, a lot of people in Minnesota grew up on a farm.