Today is the Friday after Thanksgiving and yesterday (T-day) was a whir of tense activity. I spent Thanksgiving morning telling myself, the day would become one of those "special" family stories and that down the road, I'd look back on with a rosy view....
Several weeks ago my food processor died. I've been through several in the past few years and just couldn't bring myself to buy another underpowered, under-built collection of plastic parts that take up a huge amount of storage space and deliver unimpressive results. So, I did some shopping, some reading up, asked friends and you all about how to proceed and mostly.... I procrastinated. I admit it.
Last Sunday it dawned on me that we were having a pile of folks for Thanksgiving dinner and that as usual, my DH would be making his much loved cranberry relish - in large quantity and WE HAD NO FOOD PROCESSOR! I made a command decision and ordered a robot coup Magimix with an extra set of fancy blades from the nice lady on the phone at Williams Sonoma.
Finally - a grown up food processor! Yes, it was expensive but hey - they had a sale and I had a coupon and a 25.00 gift certificate and best of all they offered next day Air shipping. The nice lady assured me that it would arrive in ample time, after all overnight means one night and it's only Sunday. They would ship Monday and I could expect my new fancy cranberry chopping tool on Tuesday. Good. I am happy. Poor, but happy.
My DH was happy as well. He read the specs on the motor size and bowl capacity and agreed that it looked like fine, big, manly motor and surely up to the task of making his famous relish. He congratulated me on finally making a decision and taking the bull by the horns and applauded my thrifty use of a coupon, finding a sale and handing over my gift card to lessen the pain of a spendy investment
. He pointed out that good
tools are worth a little more and that I would be very happy with the new tool. Then he headed off to the store to buy another 2 lbs of cranberries.
Tuesday finally arrives. I listen for the delivery truck but no joy, no truck. I am nervous. DH on the other hand is cool, collected, he has faith in that nice lady from Williams Sonoma and in the brown truck guys. He reviews his recipe, lines up his 1 orange, 2 apples and the cloves, brown sugar and walnuts that go into the relish. Then he calmly sits down and rereads the specs for the processor that hasn't arrived. "So he'll be ready" he says.
Over dinner he tells me all about it. Did I know it's made in France? Has an awesome warranty? used by professionals worldwide... Did I know that the box weighs 26 lbs?
He is obsessed and I am worried. Thanksgiving is two days away. The fridge is stuffed, the guests are invited, two have called to ask if they could bring an extra friend along for dinner. I told my DH during dinner and he beams. More will be fun, he says - and they will LOVE my relish. After dinner he goes off to the store for one more bag of cranberries.
Wednesday morning I call the nice lady from Williams Sonoma and ask about my order. After some checking she assures me that it was shipped out on-time and scheduled for delivery today. She gave me the tracking numbers so I could watch the progress myself. I am calmer.
4:30 PM. I hear the truck. The dogs bark and the bell rings. Before I can get to the door The truck pulls away - they are in a hurry. I open the door and there is a box. Small, light... it's not big enough. Oh no.....
The box contains blades! Seriously? Only blades?!
When DH gets home I sit him down and let him know that the nice lady from Williams Sonoma was umm... mistaken, deluded, a lying w**** and that we need a new plan. I offer some options:
1. Turn off the lights tomorrow and lock the door - pretend we're not home.
2. I can try to borrow a processor
3. I can go buy a really cheap one.
4. I can dice a lot of berries and he can help.
5. We could use that weird shredding thing that came with our mixer and see if that works.
I show him the parts and he is hesitant but says - no worries, I can cope.... "I got it"
Early Thursday morning I stumble in to the coffee pot and am surprised to see my DH with a giant bowl of washed berries and a box grater. I'm barely awake but the coffee is good and still hot and I'll just sit in the rocker with my coffee for a few minutes and try to figure out why my DH is grating berries one by one by one... I'm not really awake.
"Where are the band-aides"
"Where are the band-aides" "DO WE HAVE ANY band-aides"
OH.... he's talking to ME!
DH has added part of his finger to the cranberry mash. I get him fixed up, dump the meat laced berries and get out the mixer and that funky shredding attachment.
Man-ish Power tool paradigms
Bigger is better.
Faster is better.
Manuals and directions are a waste of time.
DH is flustered. He's been bested by a box grater and we have guests coming to bask in the awesomeness of his fine relish. He must not disappoint them. There is no time for reading the manual about how to use the weird shredder attachment. After all there's a giant bowl of berries and once grated they have to soak in their juices for 4 hours prior to service - time is slipping past.....
He puts on the attachment, cinches down the thumb screw (grunting as he gives it an extra turn), pours berries in the hopper on the top, flips the mixer on to HIGH and then reaches for something to catch the ground berries, letting go of the lid on the hopper.
Berries spring from the top and gush (already mashed) from the bottom in an instant. They hit the ceiling AND the floor, whole ones up high, mashed below and some even shoot straight out of the KA towards the wall. Never underestimate the power of a Kitchen Aid on high and never, ever turn your back on it. Red juice everywhere! Berries bouncing across the floor, slippery, sticky mash underfoot, Cranberry EVERYWHERE! Like a scene from I Love Lucy.
Sigh.... I bet that nice lady from Williams Sonoma has a clean kitchen today.
Broom, mop, towels and 30 minutes later he tries again. This time, slowly, cautiously; chastened by the power and dangerous possibilities of the mixer, he successfully makes relish.
A few hours later company arrives, dinner is delicious and of course the relish is fabulous. His friends ask about the amazing relish - how did you learn, how do you do it? He smiles and gives careful directions to make relish with a mixer and shredder attachment and even mentions that you should always start the mixer slowly after-all the best things in life are worth waiting for.
I'm still waiting for my new food processor......