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December 23rd

Ketkrókur – Meat Hook

Second to last is Meat Hook; he arrives on December 23rd. Meat Hook is crackers for meat. He climbs up onto the roof and lowers a long hook through the chimney to snag a smoked leg of lamb hanging from the rafters. Sometimes he reaches through the doors or windows to hook something from the table or out of a pot. Again I suspect his original appetite was for miscreant children to serve as meat in Mother Gryla’s stew. 

Since we are on the topic of meat …..

We are having a ham for Christmas dinner so we need to be on our toes lest our dinner is hauled away by a crook with a hook. We would be forced to have the last can of Who Hash. 

Mother always had a Honey-Baked ham at Christmas time. It was easy to do and everyone liked it.  I am not a big meat eater, or a man for the sweets but I adore Honey-baked ham. Alas, Babylon! They can be expensive and it is hard to buy one small enough for two. Not that leftovers ever go bad!  This year in my craze for cooking I thought of making my own from a recipe in Cook’s Illustrated but Someone feels we can do just as well with a modest store-bought ‘loaf’ ham. I dubbed him “Ham-Master”, the on in charge of Christmas dinner. He came home from Uncle Albertsons with a ham wrapped in plastic, in  the shape and size or an ostrich egg – enough for two and then some.  I’ve never cooked a ham and I don’t know what he is going to do with it. He mentioned making a glaze but he hasn’t said what sort. There was mention of horseradish which is good as I like horseradish. 

With my ham I like a good mustard, no rubbishy types.  My parents liked ‘Mucky duck” mustard, which was on the sweet side. To taste it evokes childhood memories of Christmas hams. I despise “yellow classic’ mustard yet I adore Coleman’s (when I can get it).  Dijon-style mustard is my go-to ‘house mustard’. My favorite mustard is ‘Chinese hot” which I used liberally to make my eyes water. 

I suspect there will be enough leftover ham to make all sorts of dishes. Diced ham is especially good with scrambled eggs.

When the holidays are over we will return to more virtuous cuisine viz. our near-vegetarian regimen. However, for the holidays, we are acolytes of Mr. Meat Hook..


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December 2020

Spo-Reflections 2006-2018