So my sister Dusie and I have conflicting food philosophies. She thinks my cooking is too fancy, and doesn't understand why I use new recipes all the time. I think she does excellent comfort food, but it tastes too much like the food we grew up with, ie overcooked and too plain for my tastes.
She is also an intuitive baker, which freaks me out.
I posted this video on Facebook of Melissa Clark making a garlic and herb paste for prime rib and challenged Dusie to consider doing more than just salt and pepper on the roast this year. She took me up on it.
Dear heavens. It was so good. We made some changes--we had to make the paste by hand since my sister doesn't have a food processor and neither of us has a mortar and pestle. 121 degrees is way, way too rare for meat, so we cooked longer and it got to about 140 degrees, which gave us well done edges and lovely rare pieces in the middle for me and my mom (the rest of the family likes their meat more well done). I got to use my electric carving knife to slice it all up.
My sister has had this longing for a family cooking experience, in which we all hang out in the kitchen and help and keep her company, and we finally managed it this year. Friday we had turkey (again, brined!) and I spent an hour hand cutting brussels sprouts and also helped her prepare the beast rub. Then on Saturday we did the roast together and I confessed that I was actually nervous--Clark is still on my list as unreliable, and even if it smelled great. I had my reputation on the line. But it was great, the hit of a wonderful Christmas.