Another Christmas come and gone. And Mrs. Hillbilly Mom served up quite possibly the worst Christmas dinner ever.
It was only the four of us this year. The Mrs., the Farmer, the #1 son, and The Pony. Still, a proper menu was prepared. In Mrs. HM's head, and on a note card, and on a typed-up itinerary for the four days leading to Christmas. Things were running on schedule. Sure, Mrs. HM was pooped. But her dishes were queued up, ready to hit the table, and only a half-hour late.
The ham, a spiral, was succulent. The deviled eggs were properly devilish. The potato salad just right. Sister Schubert's rolls hot from the oven, with butter slathered on top before hitting the table. Stove Top Stuffing for The Pony, hot in the pan. Sliced cheeses on a tray. A magnificent 7-layer salad, even a non-mayonnaised version for #1 to add his own dressing. A chocolate pudding pie. Store-bought blueberry bread and brownies.
BUT THE VINCHTABLES WERE ROCK-HARD!
That's right. The baby carrots, potatoes, and onion wedges that cooked with the ham were as firm as the day they were harvested. What's up with THAT? Those vinchtables baked in the oven from 7:30 until 11:00. Actually, until 11:30, because they were shoved back in the oven like would-be-hapless Hansel and Gretel once the ham came out to breathe. That's FOUR hours, people! FOUR hours for baby carrots, potatoes, and onion wedges to roast in the oven. At 325 degrees! Sweet Gummi Mary! You can bake a whole potato in one-fourth that time!
I declared that my dinner companions did not have to eat the vinchtables. But they did. Bravely. "They have a good taste, really. It's just that they're...um...not cooked."
Of course I blame Farmer H, who picked up the potatoes for me, since I had used all the russets in the potato salad the day before. AND he brought home Yukon Golds. I swear. It's like they are chunks of frozen tundra. I said I was going to throw them out. No time to recook. Besides. After four hours, how much more time do they need? We had to wrap things up and head to my sister the ex-mayor's wife's house. Yes. I was going to toss them off the back porch for the chickens to peck. The vinchtables, of course. Not Sis and the ex-mayor.
"I would take them back to college with me on Monday." Yep. The #1 son rates above the chickens in the pecking order here at the Mansion. So he's got himself some rock-hard vinchtables.
Come to think of it...he never said he and his housemates were going to EAT them...