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HAPPY New Year :-)

When planning my New Year's Eve dinner for eight  I decided to go for a simple menu that would leave no room for error and would allow me to enjoy the evening rather than stress over the cooking. As most best laid plans go awry it stands to reason that my crab claws were mushy, my beef was overcooked and my FOOLPROOF potato bake was semi-raw. My husband then decided to add hot water to my mushroom and wine sauce after Genius declared that "the gravy was too thick" so naturally I wanted to kill them both. I sat down to eat feeling like a total failure and despite the protestations from my lovely, gracious and polite guests that everything was delicious I couldn't really enjoy the meal. Oddly enough when their oldest son agreed that perhaps the potatoes were a little undercooked I started to feel a bit better - my gripes vindicated.

This past week after a few seasonal spats my husband and I agreed that we were a team and therefore we would subdivide the chores each morning in the true spirit of co-operation and in the interest of maintaining harmony in the home. What I did not realize was that he now thought we were on a level playing field and that his little culinary improvement suggestions would be welcomed. I'm not quite sure how this completely DELUSIONAL state of mind developed but it was guaranteed to piss me off. Seriously this is a man who has no business in the kitchen except for washing my dishes. I am not prepared to reconsider my position until he has completed a year long residential Cordon Bleu course preferably in Paris. In the twenty-five years we have been together the only time he has cooked anything resembling a meal is when I have been out of the country and the boys got sick of take-outs. Apparently on one such occasion (in the middle of a boiling summer) he cooked an ENTIRE Christmas lunch, turkey, roast potatoes etc. and invited all the boys friends over to share it. I know that this meal was produced in the spirit of rebellion and in part to taunt me as I flat out refuse to make turkey at any time other than Thanksgiving and Christmas and he would dearly love to eat it at least once a month. It's amazing how whenever the subject of his cooking skills (or lack thereof) comes up, this story gets wheeled out and the boys get all misty-eyed about Dad's Michelin five-star achievement yet I have cooked (a SUPERIOR) version of this same meal at least FIFTY times and no-one thinks it's a big deal.

Fortunately I still have a sense of humor so we are able to laugh ourselves silly over all these incidents. We spent the rest of the year watching stand-up comedians and so thanks to Michael McIntyre Bill Burr and Rohd Gilbert I was able to welcome in 2012 in a state of great joy. Laughter really IS the best medicine for most situations including acute indigestion and family spats.

Happy New Year.

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