It’s Thanksgiving! Yay!
This used to be the holiday I hated most. Then I grew all the way up and it got loads better. There have been some mishaps but this year should be good; I’m excited for it. Except the dinner rolls. I am so pissed off at the rolls, I can’t even begin to describe the anger.
You may think it odd to hate rolls when one is not gluten-intolerant. The actual bread food is not the problem. It’s the lie behind the roll that irks me so badly.
My mom makes the rolls for Thanksgiving and Christmas and other food holidays. If you’ve ever made rolls, you know it’s time-consuming but so worth it. My sister, Noelle, and I have always firmly believed that a good roll had to be made from scratch because of our mother’s shining example. And what an example she set! Getting up at the crack of dawn before her four miscreant children could annoy and obstruct, making the dough, shaping the rolls and letting them rise in the heat of the kitchen…wow. Incredible woman, just like her mother had been before her and her mother’s mother before that. Seriously, we have bread-making pride running in our matriarchal line.
Or so we thought.
A few years back, Noelle was spending Thanksgiving with her in-laws and no one had thought to sign up for rolls. Noelle’s a good food-maker so she said, “Oh, no problem. I make rolls all the time. I’ve got it covered.” Except there was a problem: Noelle didn’t have her roll recipe with her. Please note that Mom has never shared her BEST EVER recipe for these amazing dinner rolls so we’ve each found our own over the years. Now, however, Noelle planned to extract the secret.
She called Mom, explained her situation, and asked for the recipe. Mom laughed. Noelle cajoled. Mom said, “Oh, there’s no recipe,” which SHOULD have meant that she had it stored in her head and it had been passed from mother to daughter since our family began. What it REALLY meant was that she’d been buying Rhodes frozen dinner rolls from the grocery store FOR YEARS. She assumed we knew this because “it was pretty obvious – they were perfectly shaped and the Rhodes bag was always in the trash.” However, as I mentioned, she started the rolls before we were up and by the time we made it to the kitchen, all we saw were the rolls softly, scentily rising (thawing) from beneath a kitchen towel. They were raw and they smelled yeasty and obviously, she’d spent all morning making them. Why would we think otherwise? And why would we be rummaging through the trash to find evidence of store-bought bread?
Noelle told me this little secret and together we were devastated. Everything we’d believed in (regarding holiday rolls) had been a lie. A horrible, cheap, store-bought lie. And the worst part? Those damn rolls are DELICIOUS! They taste home-made! We hate them so much and now call them Mom’s Stupid Rolls (MSR). Because they are stupid.
We learned that our mother is a horrible person and her rolls are not to be trusted. And that is why we drink heavily on Thanksgiving. The end.
May your Thanksgiving day abound with family and friends, with laughter and no choking (because you forgot to swallow before laughing), with games and fun and high spirits, and with good rolls.
**This post is dedicated to Noelle. I am sorry we had to learn the ugly, UGLY truth. I look forward to making Mom feel guilty all day long. It is also dedicated to my evil mother who scarred her poor, trusting children with her dirty, shameful lies. Most of the time I love you, Mom. But not today. Today I dislike you heartily and your little rolls, too!**