Simple Roasted Goodness

As usual after some cooking crazy (Momofuku’s banh mi of ham terrine and chicken liver pate anyone?) I once again decided to try to tone things down a bit. Before it gets too hot to crank the oven, I settled on some simple roasted pork. And because most pork dishes are best served with a second pig product I knew I’d do something with bacon. At first I thought of making a platform of simmered, brothy, herby beans (also fabulous with bacon) but noticed I had a couple sweet potatoes…another no brainer with pork and bacon. Being overwhelmed with herbs, … Continue reading

    Another Attempt at Simplicity Gone Wrong

    There are certain dishes that are traditionally made by a pile of family members thus turning the making into as much an event as the eating. Labor intensive, but satisfying, the many hands, conversation and comaraderie intensify the pleasure of serving and eating these dishes with friends and family. I know this and yet I continue to plan meals around these bundles of things stuffed in things with multiple sauces and sides. Sometimes I can get into a meditative rhythm, the repetitive stuffing, forming, wrapping a calming series of tasks. But most of the time I am hurried, with several … Continue reading

      Lazy Girl Tacos al Pastor

      Last year I tackled what I hoped to be the most authentic tacos al pastor I could make without a vertical rotisserie. It was a complete pain in the butt but turned out great. And when I found myself with a pile of pineapple and some smoked pork this weekend, I decided to try a quicker version. I knew from the start that the smoked pork would not quite match the crispy, grilled bits achieved on the grill, but hoped it would still be good. I decided to simmer the pork in a modified version of the marinade I used … Continue reading

        Some Darn Good, Pain in the Butt Tacos

        I’ve really tried lately to simplify things in hopes of keeping my head above water long enough to make strides in this crazy chaos of life. Naturally, cooking is an area that can spare some serious minutes. I tend to start mulling over dinner ideas early in the day pondering either what we have on hand and how I can turn it into something fabulously edible, or, I am daydreaming about the random idea to strike my fancy. Both scenarios can end up swallowing up my whole day and night and leave us eating dinner at 10pm with a pile … Continue reading

          Thai Sausage Banh Mi

          A couple months ago I made a big vat of thai sausage, and just pulled out the last batch from the freezer. As we had carrots, cilantro, cucumber and jalapenos I instantly thought of Banh Mi and decided to get a baguette and some daikon. The first time we served the sausage we had cold, sweet corn soup on the side and the flavors went so well together that I started thinking I might have to serve little corn soup shooters with the sandwich. That didn’t seem quite right, but I was pretty sure I needed sweet corn in some … Continue reading

            No Summer is Complete Without Ribs

            We used to eat a lot more ribs than we do now, possibly because we used to camp a lot more than we do now. This has also been a super hot and buggy summer so any sort of al fresco cooking and dining has been limited (in our yard anyway). It’s depressing, but so is the giant pit that used to be a swimming pool and has still not been converted to a fabulous vegetable garden. And so, it was time for ribs. My typical method involves rubbing the ribs with a mixture of brown sugar, salt, pepper and … Continue reading

              Another of My Favorite Things Wrapped in Things

              I feel pretty sure that I had an extraordinary amount of ground pork in various forms over the last month. As I catch up on old posts, I feel surprised by it, though it’s not that crazy around here.  I had made a big vat of homemade thai sausage and had not only the raw sausage left over which I froze, but also some extra ground pork shoulder. On this particular night I made a pretty simple meal seasoning the pork with a bit of sugar, fish sauce, lime, soy, jalapeno and shallot. I wrapped it up in lettuce leaves … Continue reading

                Broccoli ‘Steaks’ with Zucchini Pasta

                This photo has got to be one of the worst in the bunch and I hesitated to show it, but I remember enjoying eating this dinner and we do often eat vegetarian (or at least meat minimal) meals so I decided to include it. When we had first moved back to Denver and were living with, and caring for, my dad, I cooked dinner for all of us most nights. Other than broccoli slathered in hollandaise or endive baked in a cream sauce, my dad was not a big fan of vegetables. So I was always trying to find ways … Continue reading

                  Pork and Collard-Stuffed Kabocha

                  I love kabocha squash. Love love love love love. It has a fabulously sweet and rich flavor and makes the creamiest soup possible. Usually I will slice it into moons, brown it in oil, then simmer briefly in a smokey, dashi broth. But this go around I decided to stuff it with the ground pork I had. And, not knowing what to do with the collard greens that had arrived in our weekly veggie basket, I threw them in too. I briefly marinated the ground pork with a touch of soy, some sherry, garlic and chili flakes. I then browned … Continue reading

                    Carniiiiiiiiiiiitas!

                    Now that the weather is getting nicer…. Wait, let me start again. Now that we had a brief, sweet taste of early summer warmth, promises of al fresco dining, bare feet getting rough and toughened for hot pavement and many shoeless months, our minds are stuck on the long tomato wait, bountiful herbs and the return of lunch or brunch at Pinche Tacos. I say brief because these last couple weeks have been nothing but one Noah-sized storm after another, drenching us, freezing us and making any sort of out door fun impossible. I did, however, manage to slurp down … Continue reading