IMG_4849.JPGOnce again, it’s a Friday and once again, our stalwart buds will be coming over to share in an evening meal which, god help me, I simply cannot scrimp on.

Not that the dinner is expensive (pork butt roast, heavy cream, buttermilk, garlic, sage), but as usual, as I insist on a decent dessert, I’m pushing both ends of the candle. No, wait. See, I can’t even get my metaphors straight. Plain fact is, I’m just sorta tired and lethargic. I just want to sit back and have a cup of coffee, eat a damn pastry, read one of my books, and chill.

But. But…I enjoy it, despite the fatigue I feel. Tonight I’m preparing Pork Roast with Garlic and Parmesan Cream. A big ol’ 3 lb hunk of pork butt which will gently be braised in cream, buttermilk, butter, garlic, and a Parmesan rind for something like three hours.

Really, braising meat is not a particularly grueling challenge for a home cook–much less a trained chef. You season the protein, you soak it in its liquid, be it broth or milk or water, and then…wait. In at a little past 4pm, will finish a little after 7pm, where I’ll let it come to room temperature and put all into the fridge where I’ll finish it off with the oven with a browning dry roast while the braising liquid is cooked and reduced down.

So why am I complaining? I’ve still got the dessert to do, something that is often the very first item to complete for any dinner event. And I unfortunately found myself intrigued by a recipe from the Spanish Table for steamed clams, chorizo, and sweet peppers. Given my other tasks, I needed something like a simple one-pot meal for this evening…though of course, my wife may demand we eat out, given its a payday for both of us.

And so…I wait…and plan the accompanying dishes. Broccoli rabe I think, a simple amount of rice to soak up the hopefully tremendous sauce, some sardines and bread and cocktails for starters, and that dessert…