Sunday, December 5, 2010

The 3 P's - Braised Pork over Polenta with Peas

When my life was all about telecommunications and managing people, I never had an opportunity to focus on food.  I had sticky notes in my office on the three P's, only at that time they meant Patience, Persistence and Perseverance.  Boy has my life changed!

This morning, we picked out our Christmas Tree and did so without Jim getting cranky when I consistently try to pick out trees too big for our house.  We found the perfect tree within minutes!  Yes, our day started out wonderful.  We also got it into our living room and in the tree stand without an issue!  Smiles all around.

To celebrate, I decided to make a pork dish using a pork butt found in my freezer.  You see, I promised Jim I would clear out our freezer since everything began falling out whenever we opened the door.  Ever since this summer, I save more and more food working to use every last bit and not waste.  I also began making my own vegetable and chicken broth and have many containers stacked high of just about everything you could think of.

Sitting there looking at my pork butt, I decided to braise it in shallots and garlic and used a fig shallot finishing sauce to deliver that wonderful fall flavor.  Once the onions and garlic are sauteed, I put the heat high, seasoned the pork with salt and pepper and browned on all sides.  I added the vegetable broth and lowered the heat.  After an hour, I added the finishing sauce and let the flavors blend for a few more hours.  When it comes to pork butt, the longer you cook it, the easier it falls apart with a fork.

I also watched Giada yesterday afternoon and she was cooking up her holiday dinner that included polenta.  Since that was all I thought about, I decided to head into the pantry, grab the bag of polenta and then back into the freezer for a half empty bag of peas.  (more space)

The goodness of the polenta came after it was cooked.  I added both parmesan and romano cheeses, milk along with a half stick of butter.  The milk gave it a soft consistency to go with the pork.  For flavor, I added a teaspoon of chopped rosemary.

As I said earlier, today was a great day!  A tree ready to be decorated, a fabulous meal and dinner with my husband.  Life IS good...  Now fingers crossed that his Steelers win tonight!

Fino a quel momento (until that time)


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