Tuesday, April 26, 2016


10pm & still playing nicely

I wish, I wish I could write in accents. Like, I wish I could say "THREE HENS PER FAMILY" in a Philly accent, like Jen when she was yelling it. I hear it in my head and just chuckle to myself. One of things I love about her is that she sounds like my friends from college- Rider U. So many of my friends were from the South Jersey/Philly/Bucks County area so that accent is so comforting to me. I can't even spell out how they say the words phonetically- it's just something you have to know. It's the same as how I love listening to people from Staten Island. Comfort accent.

Last Friday was the start of Passover. The last few years, we've been passing right over Passover. We don't "keep" Passover. I think Liz and the girls went away last year and it's just not a thing for us. It's one less brisket meal for B to have to endure. This year, Cunningham, as I call her (and now E does too!), invited us over for a little Seder. Funny enough, both my parents are Jewish, as is B, but I've only been to one "real" Seder, with the whole traditional thing going on. That was years ago. Meanwhile, Cunningham's husband isn't Jewish (as if you couldn't tell my the name) but she was planning on doing a short "kids"-length Seder. Go Jen! Another friend of Jen's and that friend's son were coming over too. It was a full on party!

This dinner was something to look forward to because the kids get along well, Jen's a good cook, and they live down the street, so it was also very convenient. Jen told me she ordered some food from Fresh Direct. I didn't ask what she ordered. I said I'd bring my brisket and a kugel. I also scored a Zadies Meltaway from Shop Rite. Clearly, not kosher for Passover, but none of us were going to care.

We got there at six o'clock so Jen and I immediately started heating up food. She had gotten Cornish game hens. I'd never had them but they sounded good to me. Except that neither of had any idea how long they take to cook. They're on the smaller side- it's not like cooking a turkey. Why would they take particularly long? No idea.

They were not cooking. It got later and later and these hens were refusing to cooperate. All of a sudden B started paying attention and exclaimed- "OH, hens? Those take FOREVER. My mother would make them, it would be hours and they'd still be bloody!" What? We figured- how long could it be? We decided to forgo the actual Seder part and just start with the matzoh ball soup. It was getting late. Jen's kids usually eat around five o'clock and it had to be at least seven o'clock. After the soup, the hens still weren't done. Out came the brisket and kugel. We were eating, talking and having fun. Then, some of the best lines of the night go to Christian, Jen's husband.

Christian, who was sitting next to me, says, "This macaroni is great!". I said, confused, "What macaroni??" He pointed and said, "It's really good. There's like, a sweetness to it". I started laughing and said, "That's my kugel! I made it!" He said- "Wait, you made this? You made the brisket and the kugel- what did WE make??" Jen's face was priceless, because she was still checking on those uncooked hens. Again, if only I could put his voice in here, it would be that much funnier. Anyone that knows Christian though could totally hear this whole conversation in their head.

Jen was fit to be tied about these hens. I will say, she didn't let those bloody hens ruin her night. She maintained full on composure. All her side dishes came out great and at least we got to have all of those. I loved the potatoes.

I think the hens were finished cooking some time around when we were eating dessert. We'd been joking about the hens all night- having them for breakfast and such. Jen kept saying how we were taking hens home. I just thought she was joking. I also didn't realize how many hens there actually were. She was serious about taking those hens home. Her most memorable line- "Oh, you're ALL taking hens home! THREE HENS PER FAMILY!" We all just started cracking up. B asked her if she can make a swan out of the tinfoil like they do in fancy restaurants. Anyone that knows me is fully aware I love a good doggy bag, so I was happy to take my three hens. We had them last night and they were fab.

The kids played nicely all night and we didn't leave the C's house until around ten o'clock. Considering their kids go to bed normally around 7-7:30p and E goes to bed around 8-8:30p this was a long night for them. They all did really well, just going with the flow. Ethan actually ate, so that was a victory for me.

I just wanted to thank the Cunningham family for having us over to celebrate. Even though we didn't do anything particularly Passover-y, which was fine by us, it's always nice when someone takes us in for a holiday dinner. It's even more special when you can really look forward to spending time with people because there is no typical family drama. You know it's just going to be a good time and everyone is relaxed. Next time, we'll just know that hens take an excruciatingly long time to cook or we'll ditch the hens altogether for some other bird. Oh, and that regular, paper napkins work better for actually cleaning faces and hands over pretty napkins that can also double as evening wear.

Happy Passover! By the way- Fresh Direct makes a kick-ass trifle if you ever find yourself needing one of those. I only knew of a trifle from Friends (the meat trifle!) but this was MUCH better!

Very pretty, but not so functional

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