Thursday, October 05, 2006

Due tipi di carne cotti con il vino

And now some meat recipes. They have in common the fact that I cooked them with wine.
The first one will be chicken and the second one pork.

Pollo ubriaco (Drunk chicken)

These chicken drums were bought in the farmer's market, so I was sure they would be good. I removed the skin, then sauteed them together with small pieces of garlic in olive oil, until they were starting to get brown on the outside. Then I added salt, ~1 cup red wine (it was a good wine, but we had the bottle open too long so it wasn't as good to drink, but that's when it's perfect to cook) and some of the rosemary that I grow on our balcony. The house was smelling so good, with the wine/rosemary smell diffusing everywhere. Let cook covered, until the wine is almost all consumed (about 40 min). Lift the lid, taste and adjust the salt, and add a bit of cornstarch to thicken the sauce. The chicken becomes all purple! And it's so tender, juicy and tasty :).
I served this chicken with some mashed potatoes (everyone knows how to make them, right? I add a very small amount of butter to it, and then milk and pepper). I love it. :)

Arrosto di maiale al vino bianco e spezie (Pork roast with white wine and spices)
I bought already two other pork pieces from my friend at the Farmer's market (the goat cheese guy). His pork is just delicious. He has only humongous pieces, but it's ok, I make a roast and then freeze part of it so I have to cook only once and we can eat 4-6 meals over the course of two-three weeks, and we don't get bored of it.
First, I remove most of the fat that's on the outside of the meat (this was the shoulder but it was as fatty as the butt that I bought last time). I don't like too much fat but a little bit is ok. Then, I heat a little bit of olive oil and garlic pieces, add the meat, and with high heat I roll it in the pan until it's browned on all sides. Only after that I add the salt: if you add it before, it makes the meat juices come out and it's not good. So, I add some coarse salt on the meat. Then, in this case, I added 1 cup of white wine (again, some good white wine that had been open for too long) and lowered the heat. Then I added a lot of different spices: my goal was to spice up the meat surface and the wine. So I added some spices directly on the meat and some in the wine that was in the pan. I added a few cloves, thyme, a bit of mint, and oregano. Then I covered the pan and let cook for more than one hour, turning it from time to time to cook it evenly.
The result was amazingly good. I am happy to be learning how to make good roasts. I didn't like to cook big pieces of meat until I tried this meat from the farmer's market :). I always serve it with some veggies. In this case I made some zucchini sauteed with garlic and oregano, to match the spices.

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