Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Time to Carve the Roast Beast

Merry Merry! Did you all have a satisfying gift-opening frenzy? I certainly hope so. And now most of you are probably preparing to dig into a big Christmas dinner.

I have researched some alternatives to the traditional turkey. These recipes are not jokes. They are from real cookbooks, courtesy of my mom's library of strange and relatively rare books. They are meant to be used, although you may have some trouble finding the ingredients. I should warn you that I have not tested them myself.

From a cookbook of traditional Israeli dishes, first published in 1963:

Locust

2 kgs. locusts

Heat the oven and when hot, put out the fire. Put the locusts in the hot oven and leave half a day. Remove from oven, spread out to dry in sun one day. Before eating, remove head, legs, and wings.
Serves 4

Mmmmm... Sounds yummy, doesn't it? Boy, my mouth is watering. But that's just for the appetizer. Here's a main course, from a cookbook of traditional Northern Canadian recipes, published in 1967.

Jellied Moose Nose

1. Cut the upper jawbone of the moose just below the eyes.

2. Place in a large kettle of scalding water and boil for 45 minutes.

3. Remove and chill in cold water.

4. Pull out all the hairs - these will have been loosened by boiling and should come out easily.

5. Wash thoroughly until no hairs remain.

6. Place the nose in a kettle and cover with fresh water.

7. Add onion, garlic, spices, vinegar (etc. - it goes on for another 8 steps to completion. If you have your heart set on following the whole recipe, I can e-mail it to you.)

There you have it! Proof that hungry people will eat anything. That same Northern Canadian cookbook has recipes for bear, lynx, beaver, and anything else you might hunt or trap in the woods. It could come in handy!

Last night my mom's side of the family all got together to celebrate my grandmother's 87th birthday. It seems that my mom decided to cook a dinner of maximal gas, including both lima beans and brussels sprouts. I asked my grandfather if he likes brussels sprouts.

"I can tolerate them," he said.

I managed to tolerate four sprouts, which is more than my usual annual quota. For some reason the first three didn't taste so bad, but the fourth had extra stink. Sulfur, I guess. Some of those little green fellers taste really nasty.

What are you eating today?

6 comments:

Karen said...

We are eating a sort of traditional Polish meal - perogi, balbabki, pea soup, jellied pigs feet and ham. Mixed with an American/Quasi-Italian tadition of shrimp, lobster, antipasta, lasangna, meatballs and sausage. Lots of yummy food. But no locusts - pigs feet is as gross as we get.

And I LOVE brussel sprouts. I make them 2 or 3 nights a week. LOL.

Again Merry Christmas.

Kell said...

Ya know, that green bean casserole is sounding better all the time.

We're heading to a friend's house for honey-baked ham. I'm contributing a squash casserole and a couple of bottles of wine in case the casserole is awful.

Merry Christmas!

Aric Blue said...

Of course, nothing beats a turkey! Mashed potatoes & Gravy, which I typically stack on a roll and eat like a sandwich because I'm weird like that...

*(and for the record I skip everything else--no stuffing, no veggies--but this year I did have a slice of banana creme pie.)

Sparkling Red said...

Honestly, if I knew where y'all lived, I'd have spent yesterday crashing your parties. Sounds delish!

Melinda Zook said...

Yikes, these are some nasty sounding dishes. I am definitely going to stick to good old fashioned turkey, ham, or perhaps smelt.

Sparkling Red said...

OMG, someone else who likes smelt!