Thursday, January 27, 2011

I’m Not Bragging

Okay, maybe I am, a little—but you can make this stuff quite easily yourself!

Yeah, I’m still on the subject of sauerbraten ’n’ red cabbage. Our dinner was Monday night, and everything went well—we had a great group of family and friends, and my only regret is that some couldn’t come on account of the reschedule.

Okay—backpedaling again—I have a few other things I would change, but then nobody’s perfect; I try not to be too hard on myself about, say, not having made quite enough gravy to accompany the entire bounty of beef and taters. Oh well—when you only make something once a year, you have to write down notes for improvements, or you’ll completely forget them by the next time.

I have to explain, also, that compared to other homes, ours has a relatively tiny dining room. It measures only about eleven by seven feet. Our venerable old table, however (which came with the house), though only forty-two inches in diameter when it’s a circle, expands to a majestic eight feet long when all five of the leaves are added. It creaks, and there are scuffs and chips in the finish, but I love it.

To me, that dining room table is magic. It’s as if no matter how many people you invite, there is always room for them at the table. And that’s a very cool property for a dining room to have.

So the dinner came off without any major hitches, even though I’d stayed up til five that morning working to meet an extended deadline on a project. Considering that I felt jet-lagged and loopy, it’s miraculous that I didn’t braise the kuchen and put meringue on the sauerbraten.

I wish I had some pictures to share with you of the meal, but we were so busy there was no thought of grabbing the camera. In midafternoon, when we had a few minutes to sit and relax, I did just that—and nearly fell asleep.

Needless to say, that evening I slept pretty well. I spent most of Tuesday morning washing dishes and putting serving platters and our largest heavy cookware away. Considering that I think of the sauerbraten dinner as a “Christmas” thing, it now feels like the “holidays” truly are over.

And I’m ready to start seeing signs of spring!

Jumping the gun a little bit, I ate my lunch today on our unheated the back porch, where it really didn’t feel too cold (at first). In the mornings, sun pours through the glass storm windows and heats up the room rather nicely. There’s a nice view of the birdfeeders from there, and I was surprised and pleased to see a flicker indulging in our seed—it’s the first one I’ve seen in ages, and the first one I’ve seen in this yard since we bought the house. (Welcome, friend!)

Here, I took a picture of my lunch for you: it’s a sauerbraten-and-red-cabbage sandwich. A simple, left-overey thing—and so delicious. It’s kind of like roast beef, only much tastier.

One more disjointed thought: It strikes me as strange that a nation having Germans as its second largest ethnic group is yet almost completely divorced from the flavors of the fatherland. (Hamburgers and frankfurters excepted.) Do you suppose there will ever be a rise in interest—in popularity—of German foods in our country? When it comes, it will be long overdue.

No comments: