Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Project Pork Chop continues with Julia Reed's brined chops. (And it's almost worth paying for that article to read why she predicted the failure of Howard Dean, if you missed it.) Julia has a complicated, herby brine, that called for lots of things I had growing on the porch- thyme, marjoram- things I had handy- allspice, peppercorns- and juniper berries.

If Whole Foods don't carry it, it's hard for me to get too excited to track it down. So I skipped the juniper berries. No matter. The pork chops were the best brined version yet, without them. I served them with brand new teensy peas, which I cooked according to Mastering The Art, with about half as much butter. Even then, they were swimming in butter and wonder.

Last night I finally cracked open Bistro Cooking At Home, which had been just sitting there, and I made grilled flank steak with blue cheese butter and broiled tomatoes. I was also going to make pommes Anna, but truly, that seemed like too much of a hassle. Plus, there was no way we could have eaten all that food. The tomatoes were great- the not quite yet in season tomatoes, once cooked in the oven for a while, were much more tomatoey than they would have been fresh. And the steak.

Y'all, I love flank steak. It's steak, and it's delicious, and it's practically as affordable as chicken! It's a miracle cut. With blue cheese and shallots and butter? It's heaven. And since it is cooked on the grill pan, it may replace roast chicken as my go to dish for the summer. (I'm roasting a chicken tonight and then may not turn the oven on again until September.)