Crash or Rise Above It!

                     How does simple, yet creative become so out of control?

When you are working outside in 97 degree weather, with warm turkey and dull knives!

This is what happened the weekend of the BBQ cook-off competition, another couple, my husband and myself compete in.


This year’s “mystery meat” for the Iron Chef Competition was a whole 11 Lb. frozen turkey. After much tossing back and forth of ideas, the decision is made turkey kiev, kind of like chicken kiev except I will use pie dough instead of bread crumbs, and it will be “baked” in a smoker.  Relatively simple, I see it so clearly, cut off 8 thin slices of the turkey breast, (assuring 1 for each of the judges) pound flat and thin, wrap around a frozen pat of tarragon butter, roll up in pie dough toss in smoker for 30 – 40 minutes, Voila, this is going to be great! I get to work knowing this is even better than last year’s entry that we took 5th place with.

What happens when the vision you have created in your mind, starts falling apart right in front of your eyes? That moment that you know with all your being this is just not going to work? Has this ever happened to you? Can you relate to that feeling of crashing hopes and so wanting to throw your hands up, walk away and cry!.

What do you do when there are 6 judges and you manage to carve off 2 barely there cutlets a few strips and lots of chunks of breast meat? You suck up your tears of frustration, rise above it and get creative!

As I look through stinging tears at the time on the clock, the warm turkey strips and chunks, melting tarragon butter and piecrust that is soft and stretchy, creativity strikes, turkey kiev bundles, presented on a bed of white rice mixed with sundried tomatoes, chopped fresh parsley and marinated artichoke hearts. I share the vision with the group, we are pumped and excited. Yes! We have a winner now! Gary cut the dough the best he could, I put together 12 bundles, gave them a pretty little twist at the top, handed off to Maralyn to put in the pan and off to the smoker. Big sigh, high fives all around and back to work, the clock keeps on ticking. Pressure! Rice is cooked, ingredients chopped, mixed in, 15 minutes to put it all together and over to the judges tent. We check the turkey bundles and reality strikes. They are not going to be done in time for entry, they need another 5 minutes!!! The smoker never got hot enough. Now what? No time for tears we have 10 minutes to get something together and over to the judges. Once again rise above it, move on and get the job done.

Rick to the rescue. When he saw what was happening with the turkey cutlet carving he went to work on plan B, 6 bacon wrapped turkey meatloaves grilled to perfection! We presented them on my rice and came in 12th out of 67 entries. Not bad.  As for the turkey bundles, they were delicious! Definitely a winner! We all enjoyed eating them. I came home with a winner new recipe, appreciating the value of teamwork and once again understood the importance of being able to “Rise Above IT”!

I invite you to consider, when faced with the feeling of crashing hopes and so wanting to throw your hands up, walk away and cry, to Rise Above It. Who knows what you will discover about yourself and/or others.Smile




8 Responses to “Crash or Rise Above It!”

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  3. Nanette

    Isn’t it funny how some of our most important lessons come in the most ordinary of packages?
    Thanks for sharing this heartfelt story of “Rising Above it” with creativity, strength, resilience and a little laughter, too!
    Wishing you well–

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