Sunday, November 15, 2009

the porchetta

the idea of having a pig roast came about a couple of months ago, when a group of us got together to create a lovely meal. this was a couple of months in the planning and come hell, high water, or recovery from food poisoning, i was going to make sure i was there.

i had been looking forward to the event for quite some time and a lot of effort went into dressing the pig into a porchetta, the rigging of the roasting spit, and ensuring that many of us would be there for the event. there was also a loved one's friend that was visiting from nyc that had decided to delay his return to nyc for the event as well. so, there were many reasons for me to get myself to richmond.

AB ordered the pig through her work and dressed quite beautifully into this porchetta....


lovely isn't it? just lovely.

AB dropped it off at the best friend's house the night prior. interestingly enough, AB mentioned that her chef decided to lend a hand with dressing it, "just because". i thought that was particularly nice as i would think this particular chef has his hands full with the running of two extremely popular spots in the city. yet, it made me smile to hear this as it just reaffirmed to me that AB works with some pretty cool people, which is as it should be...since AB is pretty cool herself.

i arrived early to the event as i wanted to see the set up and such....because...well, i'm a nerd like that.

i have never pretended to be cool. the nerd in me was interested the mechanics of the spit and well, me likey fire. ooohhhh, look....fire.....

then it was skewered ......

mounted.....





then came the hours of monitoring, roasting, and anticipation as the fat dripped down into the coals, creating spontaneous fireworks, and it was lovely to watch the colors change......







and hang out with loved ones around the fire, the roast, and the food. despite the very stern instructions from Dr. Spitfire about not eating any solid protein and going easy fats, when VG (loved one's friend from NYC) offered me half of his bite of crackling, i was quite tempted. very. but alas, it was recalling Dr. Spitfire's remark about how eating outside of her prescribed instructions landed other people right back in the ER, that forced me to mournfully decline. VG, being the nice guy that he was, tried to valiantly lie and say that it wasn't that great....which was such a blatant lie since about two seconds beforehand he looked like he was in heaven when he took that first bite and said how good it was. my reply was that, if it wasn't good, then i would have been disappointed for him...but that i knew it was good. see? as i have mentioned before, this is why i think there is something up with the ladies of NYC if they aren't parked out on VG's doorstep.

anyway, LM was in charge of performing all of the grilling activities. by performing, i really do mean performing. LM was in his element. not only is he a "grill master" down to the wanting to ensure that he has a particular type of mesquite...


but he also peppered his moments of super seriousness with being a ham (no pun intended) with the guests. LM is not an introvert, but this rather loving, outgoing, and affectionate extrovert that loves being in the middle of everything and he received much adoration from the crowd that evening for his great performance at the grill. i loved showing CK some of the more silly LM pics during the evening and saying "he's yours!". CK arrived later on and it was great to have a chance to catch up with what is going on with her and throw around ideas for the next outing. i think there are many places that we need to visit quite soon.

not to mention the start of a conversation in the kitchen with AB about what it means to be "progressive" with food and how she takes so much inspiration from knowing where the food comes from and knowing the farmers. i love listening to AB speak from her heart and her head about food. i know that i am not the only one. i find it rather funny that AB doesn't partake in or follow social media outlets, but there are a heck of a lot of people that like to listen to her speak via a certain sous chef's podcasts or see glimmers of her via his flickr page, and blog. i think i'm just lucky to know her.

for me, i think being progressive means immersing yourself in what you are passionate about and pushing yourself to learn, experiment, and understand your passion....yet what that passion is....well, that is up to the person. it is one of the reasons why i love the bay area....the diversity of foods and styles....provides folks with the freedom to pursue their passions and they don't have to be boxed into a single category.

do you see dear readers? why living here is so amazing? i feel quite fortunate. speaking of fortunate, i think the best friend is bringing me leftover porchetta for me tomorrow since i should be able to eat protein tomorrow......hmmmmm, c'mere piggy piggy....i've been waiting for you for a long time.

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