“Marilu, we’ve decided to have our family dinner at your house. We will be there at 6 on Sunday.”
Nothing can strike fear into my heart faster than that ominous phone call from a family member. It is worse than finding Freddie, Jason and Michael in my closet when the electricity is out and I’m home alone. In fact, I’d rather face those three than my family at the dinner table.
Not only do I have to clean my house so that my "Junior League" family members won't feel the need to pitch in and help me ‘pick up,’ but I also have to ensure that no "dinner disasters" take place.
You know what those are, surely... I mean, haven't some of you left the paper in the pie plate or left that icky giblet packet in the turkey by mistake?
Or served brandied fruit to the tee-totaler in the family? Or used a bad pint of oysters for the oyster dressing? Yes, there is nothing quite as bonding as a family trip to the emergency room.
Of course, if I don’t poison them on purpose and Uncle Bud doesn’t remind Aunt Sissy about that unfortunate marriage of hers, it will be a good dinner.
True stories from my family files include the Thanksgiving dinner when Mama proudly presented her very first pecan pie to a table that included her mother and her mother-in-law. I can’t remember which one took the first bite, but the reaction was not what my mama was hoping for. She’d left the piece of paper that separates the two pie shells IN. So along with a delicious piece of pecan pie, everyone got a nice hunk of roughage.
Then there was the time Mama was entertaining her boss and his wife. She’d made her special pork chops along with her good brown gravy. Her decision to offer the gravy in the china gravy boat was one any Southern Belle might have made. If only she’d wiped that one small drip of brown liquid from the handle. It might not have slipped—dumping a good cup of hot brown gravy in her boss’s wife’s lap.
So when I heard that I was going to be hosting Sunday dinner, I had to quickly figure out the menu least likely to become a Family Story. What are your family stories about food fiascos? I’d love to hear what you did that lives on in the memories of your kin.
Share your best (or worst) dinner disasters with me in the comments (or via email to email@example.com ) and I’ll send you a link to my Red Beans and Rice. One lucky winner will get a complete set of my recipe cards featuring recipes my characters love to eat!
Originally posted on MOMdotCOM.blogspot.com