I spent a mostly quiet day. The sister was off for five hours or so with the mom doing an 80th surprise birthday at an Elks’ Lodge for a member of a branch of the family I long ago pulled away from — they live in a very different reality than I do, a group most of whom would vote for someone I consider a fascist, if they bother to vote at all.
I read. And I cooked. Because Sunday is free day on the diet and, also, has always been for me a day of comfort-food meals.
Last night I slow-cooked in a Dutch-oven in the oven at 200 degrees a pork shoulder with bone broth, garlic, and onions, until the meat fell from the bones. I let it cool somewhat and then refrigerated overnight. This morning I pulled the meat apart, drained the fat, removed the bones, and put the Dutch-oven on top of the stove at simmer, added a few cups of water, celery, carrots, a bay leaf, and started its day long journey to becoming Pork Shoulder Pot Pie.
While dinner simmered all day I finished Ruth Rendell’s The St. Zita Society and started Nell Zink’s Nicotine (I will book-blog about these in another post), and, too, caught up with some trash television I had on dvr.
Sheeting the cookies, full of hope, and LOOK! My new holiday hot pads.
The finished delicious product, cooling.
Then, I made some cookies. I had discovered at the grocery store that Nestle is now making miniature Sno-Caps — like chocolate chips, and there was a recipe on the bag. I adapted it. Which I always do. I didn’t think it sounded chocolate-y enough, so I doubled the vanilla amount and melted some Hershey Kisses and Hershey Dark Chocolate miniatures to add to the dough along with a quarter cup of almond flour to make up for the extra moisture. Let me just say, these are keepers! A cross between a cookie and a brownie and freaking delicious.
The Pork Shoulder Pot-Pie, almost ready to be served — so tasty, so comforting, so delicious on a diet-free-day.
While I was baking/cooling the last few batches of cookies, I added Pennsylvania Dutch Egg Noodles to my day-long pork-shoulder-pot-pie project. The noodles only need about 20 minutes to soak up the juices and become good and tender. I had the JUST PERFECT amount of broth (a miracle, that) so that by the time the noodles were done, there was very little liquid left, and what starts as soup the first day (or, last night late in my case — I had an extra hour, after all) becomes casserole-like at completion.
Sister loved the pot-pie and the cookies. I was happy to bring her some joy — which is why I cook; it gives me such warmth to nourish others this way.
It is my pleasure to give people cookies. To give people comfort.
The faraway-sometimes-impossible-never-going-to-happen-we-can’t-be-a-thing-lover of whom I spoke a few entries ago, who texted me one night for comfort and advice while I was furiously rearranging my furniture in my ongoing effort to find some peace, some balance, well, turns out he was in town this weekend. Turns out he was terribly busy and there wasn’t time or opportunity for us to get together. Turns out he thought that would be a great thing to message me today as he was on his way out of town again, along with the “I really, really miss touching you” and “Thank you for always being there for me.”
Which seems a funny thing to say when you are on your way out of town without having seen me. Or, been here.
I could have given him some cookies to take along.
Holy fuckballs I am tired.