Planning a Reveillon

In Kentucky the onset of autumn is here, and the weather has already taken a turn toward the cold. Our first frost killed Kat’s basil a week ago, further signaling the time of year when Amazon Workkampers settle in for two tough, grind-it-out months on the job. This work buys a lot of diesel and campground fees, and when you think about it, working four months a year is quite the luxury. You get just enough of that old nose-to-the-grindstone to remember how sweet the time off for travel is, and will be when we visit California, Oregon, and Washington in 2016. But it’s still work, and where there’s work, you’ll find daydreaming.

Yeah, Baby, We Got Color!
Yeah, Baby, We Got Color!

I’m thinking about what we’ll do for this year’s Christmas in Tennessee. Last year was marinated brisket with gravy and latkes. The year before was a rib roast and a turkey, if memory serves. I love to observe our peculiar Christmas tradition: cook something new every year! Over the years we’ve done goose, turducken, pork crown roast, smoked turkey, fried turkey, hickory smoked ham, country ham, oysters Bienville, and once when caught on the road and no place else was open, Pizza Hut. I can’t think of what’s left, so I asked The Google, and she told me: Go for a Reveillon.

 

Sounds like Reveille, the bugle call to awaken the troops, right? You’re close. It’s a French term for awakening, or more accurately, staying awake from late evening Mass to long past midnight Christmas Eve. Long ago the Church expected a day-long fast on Christmas Eve to be broken after its latest Mass. This occasioned a multi-course feast with champagne and too many desserts. Hey, the Tennessee group loves champagne! The Google is onto something. There will be no fast, but we will feast for hours Christmas afternoon.

Pate, Baguette, and Cornichon
Pate, Baguette, and Cornichon

The typical first course is foie gras. We’ll make do with truffled pate on buttered baguettes. An oyster course is next; we’ll try Warren LeRuth’s legendary Oyster and Artichoke Soup. Lox on onion bagel medallions with chived cream cheese will follow. The traditional lobster course highlights the feast, but good ones are hard to find on the mountain. Instead we’ll use frozen tails in Emeril’s Lobster Mac and Cheese with Swiss, Fontina, and Parmesan cream sauce. In France a roast turkey would be next, but few will be that hungry, so we’ll prepare Swedish meatballs a day ahead for those with bottomless stomachs. Dessert will be the French “La Buche de Noel”, a rolled cream cake with many flavor options. I think something chocolatey-raspberry would be perfect, but espresso-chocolate or orange-cream might find a more universal appeal. I’ll hide a pumpkin pie just in case somebody complains; they’re even better the next day, don’t you know?

Oyster and Artichoke Soup
Oyster and Artichoke Soup

 

Lobster Mac n Cheese
Lobster Mac n Cheese

 

Chocolate Ganache on a Buche de Noel
Chocolate Ganache on a Buche de Noel

9 thoughts on “Planning a Reveillon

    1. Em, if you can make it, I will make sure there’s a place at the table for someone as discerning, witty, and literate as yourownself!

      Jackson

      Like

      1. Aw, I’m blushing, Jackson! Actually, we’ll most likely be here in Playa del Carmen for Christmas. If we were in the US and didn’t spend the holidays with my mother et al in NC, I’d be dead meat. But thank you. I look forward to your blog post about it with the food photos. You can eat my servings!

        Like

      2. Where you reside in Playa del Carmen? Do you fly in, or drive? How are the roads – good enough to pull a trailer through?

        Like

      3. We are living in Centro, downtown. We fly from Charlotte or Atlanta to Cancun. It’s a loooooong drive down from the US and gas is still pricy here in Mexico, but people do drive RVs even all the way here on occasion. You do have to do your homework and be well-prepared, plan your stops, etc. If you’re on Facebook, there’s an excellent group for people driving (and RVing) in Mexico where you can get specific questions answered. It’s called “On the Road In Mexico”. And if you google, you’ll be able to find lots of blogs on RVing in Mexico. I am not sure I’d want to do it or not, but with proper preparation, perhaps. Quite a few RVers caravan together, especially first-timers, for safety and support. One thing I’ve read over and over is daylight driving only. 🙂

        Like

  1. Sounds like a fine feast ahead for you all.

    Like your tradition of cooking something new each year.

    ===

    Have you ever thought of combining RVing with cooking, and doing some of those pop-up restaurants on the road? 🙂

    ===

    Signs of leaves changing started back in September, and so we are past peak here now. The first snow was on October 20. A few days later, temps were in the seventies.

    Things right now are on the colder side with days in forties, nights below freezing.

    That’s typical fall mountain weather up here.

    Won’t be long before we get the big snow.

    Like

    1. I’d love to do that, Kahuna. But moving around most of the year would mean we would have no regular customers, hence no idea of how much food to by. And, my MBA be damned, I suck at marketing.

      Besides, I foul up the kitchen enough just cooking for two.

      If our paths should ever cross, we’ll cook for you, using whatever is available locally.

      You’re in charge of the sparkling wine. Kat and I will cover the chow. You may spend more than we do.

      Jackson

      Like

    1. Roger that. It was a fine Halloween. No urchins beat on our door. I mean, who in his/her right mind trick-or-treats in a trailer park?

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s