October has been a rough month, for various reasons. So, when I e-mailed drricky and told him, "I'm feeling bummed out, want to come up and cook?", he was here less than two weeks later. drricky is the kind of friend that I am truly lucky to have. Friday, we spent some time exploring the Italian bounty that the Greater Boston area has to offer, and on Saturday we cooked up a storm, as we have done together in the past.
Twelve dishes, no repeats (nothing we've done together before). We've gotten better at timing the dishes, and giving ourselves enough prep time to throw everything together. We started making sauces on Friday, and started serving around 6 p.m. on Saturday.
Small dishes, small servings, served over 6 hours. More detailed descriptions will follow, over at drricky's blog and here.
We started with pizza scones, hoping that the word pizza would lull the children.
Next up, bánh xèo, a coconut milk pancake, wrapped around all kinds of crunchy goodness.
An easy-to-prepare course, the ham-tasting: 3 prosciuttos served with drricky's excellent homemade loquat jam. Interesting note, La Quercia's prosciutto Americano was the far-away favourite (and the least expensive).
The following dish was the evening's most fascinating dish (and one of the most successful, in my opinion). Huitlacoche-monkfish chowder. The grey of the huitlacoche is a challenge to make beautiful, but I think that is accomplished here against the bright yellow of the corn (source of the huitlacoche fungus) and the white of the monkfish.
Next up was the Burmese thoke, a crunchy salad with fried lotus root. Lightened things up before we went heavy again.
Salted, seared duck breast, served with blueberries we picked in August. Beautiful and delicious on top of home-baked sourdough. I know that several guests are looking forward to drricky's post describing how to make this sauce.
Beef oysters (Joe Beef, that is). A mix of soy sauce and salt beans made this a tad too salty for some, may require a bit of refinement for the future.
Another hit of the night, chicken-fried, home-smoked bacon, served with a trio of New England sauces. Blueberry, rhubarb and cranberry sauces, this is another one that I eagerly await the details for.
On Friday, I smoked a pork butt, and made pulled pork. We split the pork into the next two dishes. First, bbq pork potstickers, with a mustard-serrano sauce.
Followed by pulled pork fishsticks (I'll be posting about this soon).
The final two dishes: Scottish sundae, consisting of grilled peaches and jackfruit, served with caramel-oatmeal ice cream and candied oats.
And the final dish of the night, chokecherry panna cotta with a nutty cookie.
A crazy evening, but everyone went to bed with full and happy bellies. An epic evening, I can't wait to do it again.
EDIT: Will continue to update with links for individual dishes.
By Bbq Dude