Center stage, weighing in at a whopping 12 pounds, is Shepherd’s Pie 2012. Our signature holiday dish is number eight in a line-up of Shepherd’s Pies we’ve made since we started dating in 2005.
Shepherd’s Pie–made the way it should be made–from scratch, with actual lamb shanks (86 the ground beef…come on people, we’re sheep herders) takes five hours to create (and several days to eat). We use every burner, and the oven, plus a small fleet of cookware.
By the time it’s all over, our kitchen is a mess, pans are stacked neck deep in the dish rack, and most of our windows have been flung wide open to stop the smoke alarm from going off (this year we set off the alarm a record five times).
“Is everything alright?” our neighbor hollered across the fence.
“YES,” we hollered back. “Just our annual tradition of making Shepherd’s Pie and testing our smoke alarm.”
And there, on the counter top, it sits, awaiting it’s final hour in the oven. One [very heavy] dish. Our dish. Shepherd’s Pie.
But despite the Herculean culinary effort required, the fuss, and the muss, I love our holiday tradition. What better way to knock-off the year than with one knockout dish?
Especially this year, because this year is a very special year. We added baby shepherd and became a flock.
So here’s goodbye to the year gone by and hello to the year ahead. And here’s to looking at you, kid.
Without tradition, art is a flock of sheep without a Shepherd.