Thursday, May 26, 2011
California eating and the Cutest kid alive...I swear
I was home from work and knew that I needed to be getting ready to go to California. I didn't feel like it so I cooked instead. I decided to try Amateur Gourmet's "The Best Chili of Your Life"
It was very very good. It also afforded me the time while it was cooking to get my stuff together for the trip. I also threw together some "Paula Deen" Cheddar and Garlic Biscuits. Meh.
Not my favorite. It could be because I can't bake worth beans (what does "not worth beans" mean in reality? We should take a look at this at some later date).
I also went to my farm store and when I saw these I couldn't help myself! Lookie here Mrs. Wheelbarrow Duck Eggs. Need I say more?
They have "ice cream" written all over then. Not literally. You know what I mean.
Now to the best part of my blog post. . .
I went to visit my baby Parker. I love my Annie and Tim, and was excited to see them, but it was Parker that has grabbed my heart and has me wrapped around his little finger. My meat man. Grammy set him up and got him started on the right path.
I think he had my number the minute I held him. All he has to do is smile at me and .... well, you know.
We got to spend lots of time together. Shut up, I know I look like a homeless person. It is called jet lag. Go away, it is dammit!
This little guy is getting started off right. Mom cooks all his food for him. No "Gerbers" for him.
What is that beautiful plate of food you ask? Even if you didn't I am going to tell you. Tim got us tickets to the Sharks hockey game. I love hockey but pretend I didn't tell you that, ok? It was the playoffs and before we went we ate brunch at Camino. I had the Sardine and asparagus. All ingredients were so fresh and flavorful. They cooked everything in a wood burning oven.
Can I just say that the food was amazing. To be honest the service was pretentious and standoffish (treated us sorta like we stepped in dog poop. It could have been I was still looking a bit disheveled. I am no spring chicken anymore [another phrase we will have to explore]. I recommend this restaurant highly though.
Potatoes cooked in Duck Fat.
Tim had this. It was the Polenta, poached egg and spring peas.
Annie (my meat lovin girl) had the Meaty thing with fava beans and poached egg.
I also had a baked egg that was baked in the wood burning oven. Yum! All in all this meal rocked. It made me even more homesick for California. California has my family and the best simple and fresh food and ...and... LOOK AT THIS FACE!
Off to the Sharks game. Tim got us box seats. Ooooh baby, Penthouse! Parker's first game.
I think I may have watched Parker more than I watched the game. "Sharks" lost anyhow.
I don't know if I told you but Parker is a chick magnet. This is one of his girlfriends.
He was more into the game than into her. I heard him ask her to go get him a beer but she was way too smart for that. She wasn't going to wait on him. She could get herself another guy. Maybe not as good looking but.... Ok, I will stop.
Before I knew it my heart was breaking as I walked out the door and my trip was over. I did leave my heart in San Francisco though. Really!
Michael Symon's Pork Cheek Chili
from "Live To Cook"
I got it from Amateur Gourmet Go read his blog!
1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
5 pounds pork cheeks or pork shoulder, cleaned, trimmed, and cubed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound slab bacon, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapeno chilies, seeded and very finely chopped
2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and finely diced
1 12-ounce bottle amber ale or porter
2 cups chicken stock
1 28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, with their juice
2 canned chipotles in adobo, seeded and minced
1 pound dried black-eyed peas (1 2/3 cups) picked over and rinsed
1 small cinnamon stick
Shredded smoked cheddar cheese
Fresh cilantro leaves
Sliced scallions, white and green parts
IIn a large bowl, combine the coriander, paprika, and cumin and toss with the pork cheeks(or shoulder). Season with salt and pepper.
In a large enameled cast-iron Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium-high heat. Add half of the pork and cook, turning as needed, until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer the pork to a plate. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and brown the remaining pork. Transfer to the plate. Add the bacon to the pot and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until browned and slightly crisp, about 7 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, jalapenos, and bell peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes.
Return the pork cheeks (or shoulder) to the pot along with any accumulated juices. Add the ale, chicken stock, tomatoes, chipotles, black-eyed peas, and cinnamon stick and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over very low heat until the meat and beans are tender, about 2-1/2 hours.
Season the chili with salt and pepper. Spoon off the fat from the surface and discard the cinnamon stick. Serve the chili in bowls. Pass the smoked cheddar, cilantro, scallions, and creme fraiche at the table.