Thursday, January 07, 2010

They're All Pink On The Inside

It has no doubt become tiresome for you all to hear me plaint repeatedly about the lack of time each evening affords me to whip the grub together. So I won't. But it did(n't).

A trip to the market made for some good fixins: ground beef, romanesco, blue potatoes, a leek. The sky, ostensibly, was the limit, though ironically was itself limited by the hour flat I had to make something happen. Iron Chef maybe not, but zinc for sure.

First up, I seasoned the meat with a blend that will get its own post in the near to come. I quartered the romanesco and put it to bake with oil and water, covered, then briefly to broil, uncovered. The spuds I peeled and steamed until yielding to a fork, then puréed with yogurt, olive oil, salt, pepper, and their steaming water. I formed the meat into balls and browned them all over, then removed them to a warm spot while I put a ferocious caramelize on thinly shredded strips of leek.

The meaty, leeky fat in the pan positively brayed for wine, so I obliged. "Another broken sauce!" I hear you whisper, accusingly. And well you should. I am a lazy man. I didn't even strain that shit. But it lubed the balls plenty, and gave the fractalicious brassicas something to titter about. The spuds, well, there's a blue balls joke in there somewhere, but they were creamy goodness, and crispy leeks became a Tired Trope Of The Nineties for a damn good reason.

The other night, with an otherwise unremarkable dinner, we popped a 2001 Guigal Châteauneuf because I haven't bought any everyday wine so we're out. And it was a good thing I did(n't). Just gorgeous. At its peak, it's a mix of leather, licorice, and lavender, all wrapped around a core of black cherries on hot rocks. Tonight, since I still haven't gone out to get a case of the regulars, a 2003 Ada Nada Barbaresco. Not yet peaking, it's still a luscious mouthful of tarry violets and tannic tobacco. The meatballs should have thanked me.


Julia said...

We had balls for lunch. Yours look great; especially with that awesome romanesco. Where'd you get that in the middle of winter??

In an unrelated note, what do you use to cure your bacon? Can you divulge that information? I am assuming you do not use pink salt. I can just use sea salt, right?

cookiecrumb said...

Billy Bob likes them french fried purple potaters.

peter said...

The Romanesco came from Mother Earth in Kingston.

And if you hot-smoke the bacon to an internal temp of 150˚ in the space of a couple of hours, you can leave out the pink salt.

peter said...

Oh, and CC: Mmmm-hmm.

Julia said...

Many thanks-- I figured it out. Cured, as it were.

Miss jane said...