Cooking this afternoon, while A does her homework and John quizzes her. Nice, to have them in the kitchen with me. Little music, little wine, little garlic. Had a good IM discussion with Susie today strategizing potatoes au gratin, inspired me to make them too! She’s doing roasted chicken with rosemary, pancetta, and balsamic. I’m doing a braised pork shoulder roast. Which I did just a couple of weeks ago, a Mexican version that we ate in homemade tortillas, mmmm… Tonight, an Italian version, with garlic and fennel. Just John and me for dinner, which means I can put things like cheese in our dishes (the potatoes, ahhhh). As the roast finishes, my plan is to add sliced carrots and fennel, tossed with olive oil and coarse salt, to roast alongside the pork. I’m sipping an incredible, and to me unusual, Vouvray as I cook, a 1990 Domaine Pichot, very much in the realm of Riesling or Pinot Blanc. Rich, golden, more than slightly sweet, it’s better than I thought it would be. Helped myself to a few thin slices of the aged Gruyere I shredded for the potatoes, pretty decadent little wine-cheese tasty for 4 p.m. Our plan is to build a big fire and eat in front of the fireplace, we’ll see if we pull it off. Sometimes we have good intentions but get too damn hungry and just eat in the kitchen. I also plan to try to take a pic of the roast when it’s done, we’ll see if I can make it work. I’m soooo excited about my new camera!
OK, just ate, my initial reaction is it was too rich – for a moderate epicurean – to have the potatoes au gratin with roasted pork shoulder. Now, it didn’t suck, at all, but to me, over the top. Buttery pork roast with creamy potatoes, eek. Also, I didn’t like the carrots and fennel roasted with the pork and am slapping my head that I didn’t just roast them separately, and then toss in fresh, chopped dill, inspired by our dinner at Luci Ancora, detailed (to death, ha) below. So I’ll revise all my recipes accordingly (in comments). Here are my attempts at photographing the food, hopefully I’ll get MUCH better at this… (I am having WAY too much fun, cooking, writing recipes, taking pics, doing this blog, my family hardly knows me anymore!)