We planned Wednesday night as ours to hang out in the apartment and get down to some Christmastime decorating (see previous post for fireplace pic). In order to do so, I put together a greenmarket pot roast to feast on while stringing popcorn and stitching stockings (almost sickeningly cute). It was seriously delicious. Continue reading
Category Archives: Recipes
Sometimes you want to eat like it’s summer, even when it’s forty degrees outside. Continue reading
Since November tripped into December way too quickly for my liking, I’m hurrying to markets to salvage the last bits of warm light, vegetables, and flavors that have hung around this long. I know Mark Bittman stole our thunder on this one, with his fancy curried turkey leftovers bit on NYTimes.com, but this dish is somewhat different, a little more seasonal, and, of course, ovenless.
Also cramping our style today, Grub Street posted about the Chang/Batali session at the Strand last night that Rachel and I checked out (although we left as the audience questions started, missing the Rachel Ray appearance). The two chefs, along with Peter Meehan, appeared with Heinekens on stage and still managed to be not only funny but, at times, insightful as well. Anyway, on to the recipe. Continue reading
Thanksgiving is just around the weekend, and many poor souls out there have been turned from sweet potatoes (or improperly converted) by the old marshmallow-covered standby of Novembers past. While it may have its charms, there is a place to balance between the cloyingly sweet traditional preparation of sweet potatoes, and the just-the-right-touch of sweet and salty coming together in good mashed sweet potatoes. As versatile as any regular potato, sweet potatoes can be mandolined and laid out in a delicious gratin, sliced into medallions and sauteed or fried, roasted into sweet potato fries or tossed cold into a salad, and mixed with a wide variety of sweet and savory additions ranging from maple syrup to bacon. They go extremely well with steak, sausage, chicken, pork, and, of course, turkey.
So there’s a great place right in our neighborhood called Bocca Lupo, with nice tapas options, a great whiskey selection, and a DJ on the weekends. We’ve been there a few times by ourselves or with friends and really enjoyed everything, except for one pasta dish that sounded great, but was almost unbelievably bad: a special pasta with brussels and guanciale in a cream sauce. The sauce was described as light (it was heavy), the pasta was gummy, the guanciale was overly chewy, and the brussels were nonexistent. Really one of the worst dishes I’ve ever been served. However, the idea stuck with us and on Sunday, searching in vain for a supermarket or butcher’s shop to be open, we were left without any ideas for dinner. Rachel suggested just going home, seeing what we could put together with what we had, naming the brussels, pasta, and soppressata as some things we had on hand. Smart girl.
I imagine I’ll end up saying this a few too many times, but: braise. There’s nothing, save a big pot of soup, that is more comforting to me in cold, wet weather than the aroma and depth of a long, slow braise on a pot simmering in the oven or sitting on the stove. We’re in the process of picking up a dutch oven on the cheap, but shipping issues will delay its BK debut for at least another week. However, our little saucepan has been working its ass off, turning out some excellent dishes.
It’s been over a week since this recipe actually happened, and almost a week since we’ve posted anything here, so hopefully I can remember it in enough detail to make it work again. I stopped at Los Paisanos Meat Market on Smith St. to take a look around and pick up a sausage for lunch (their lamb sausage on a roll with Newpond Farm cheese and red onions was delicious). While I was there, I saw some cheap pork shoulder ($3.50 a pound, I believe) just asking to be braised, so I picked up a couple pounds and planned to make some pasta sauce.