Perhaps you will remember my column two weeks ago in which I whined that I was hosting seventeen for Thanksgiving dinner. Well, I really didn’t whine – just stated the fact that it would probably be a bit difficult for me because I am culinarily challenged. As you’ve no doubt been holding your collective breath since then, waiting to hear how many guests ended up hospitalized, you can once again breathe freely. Everyone survived.
Furthermore, my cousin, Margaret Ann, who is a gourmet cook but quite normal in all other ways (I think) pronounced my gravy “wonderful.”
So now, I will tell you the secret of that amazing turkey gravy.
But that requires a bit of background for those of you who haven’t memorized my columns over the years (you know who you are). The children Bing and I created, as I have written before, grew up to join the Expiration Date Police. They are constantly horrified by finding stuff in my cupboards and medicine cabinet that have long-ago expiration dates stamped on them. My life would be a lot easier if all manufacturers would summarily abandon that annoying practice.
One year, my bottle of the gravy seasoning Kitchen Bouquet was the object of their eye-rolling horror. It had expired a decade or so ago. To keep the peace, I dutifully purchased a new bottle of the seldom-used stuff.
However, while stirring this year’s gravy, I accidentally grabbed the old bottle of Kitchen Bouquet and poured it into the roasting pan. Actually, I poured a little more than I intended – my hand slipped. However – voilá – the gravy was a deep brown, glowing, tasty masterpiece. And nobody got sick. And my cousin Margaret Ann, who is a gourmet cook but quite normal in all other ways (I think), said it was wonderful. I know I already wrote that, but it bears repeating. Humor me – my cooking seldom, if ever, has garnished rave reviews, so please let me savor the moment.
Our children have probably fainted dead away just now reading that I didn’t throw the old Kitchen Bouquet away as ordered. If I had, the gravy probably would not have been nearly as good.
And I would be writing a different column this week, one that probably wouldn’t include the term “culinarily challenged.” I just made that up and I think it has a nice ring to it.
You may all feel free to use it anytime.