Thursday, December 25, 2008

My Christmas Dinner

Roast organic aged rump marinated in rosemary, garlic and wholegrain mustard plus a roasted whole turkey… that was my contribution to our Christmas dinner last year. I remember rushing around making orders for the vacuum packed meats from my butcher in Perth so that I could fly with them back to Singapore… Just in time to cook up and share in a Christmas meal with my family.

Ever since my brother, sister and I started developing a love for cooking, we made it a point to prepare dinner at this very special time of the year when we all gathered back in Singapore to be with mum and dad. Not all our attempts were successes… and this was the case with the Christmas dinner of 2007. My turkey was slightly overdone and my roast beef… ever so under. But – it didn’t seem to matter… I remember my dad thoroughly enjoying the tough white meat and remarking how tasty the beef was.

You see - even back then we were already suspecting that it would be our last Christmas meal together as a family… Dad was starting to really deteriorate in health and had been told of the relapse of his cancer by doctors. And so – whilst the quality of the food was probably lacking… the appreciation for it was overwhelming. Food at that Christmas dinner was not just about how perfectly everything was done… but how perfect it was that we were all partaking of it at our family table. That night, we remembered stories that made us laugh… and for a moment, forgot about illness and suffering.

Fast forward 12 months to Christmas Eve and I find myself on a flight with my mum to Perth where we will join my brother and sister. Perhaps we have all been a little preoccupied of late… but even right now our Christmas dinner menu still remains unwritten. And whilst my dad won’t be joining us at the dinner table this year (he’s probably having a heavenly feast beyond our wildest imaginations)… my wish is that our Christmas meal will just be like our last… a blessing we’ll always remember.


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