Three epiphanies: café frappé, roast pork and lemon churros
Madrid is in the middle of a long long weekend. These are lazy times. If you stay in the city it takes at least a couple of days to wipe off the smug grin off your face when you hear the horror stories of people locked in nine-hour traffic jams on the way to the beach.
Turning on the computer is an act of sheer willpower. Particulary since to get to it I have to leap over a Scalextric set I´ve been lent (childhood dream), and a pile of rubbish J has promised to throw away after my crazy bout of clearing up yesterday.
So. This post is going to be a lazy, catch-all post, but it will be full of useful stuff. In the past weeks I´ve had no less than three epiphanies, but they are all such simple stuff that I can´t justify a whole post for each of them.
Number one falls under the category of the "how is it possible that it took me 32 years to do this". I can´t understand it, but there it is. A lifetime of sprinkling lemon juice and sugar over pancakes and crepes, and it never, ever, ocurred to me to do it on churros. A true eye-opener. Crunchy salty greasy churro and sweet sugar is a classic, but it can be a bit heavy. The lemon brings freshness and tang and danger: you end up eating quite a few more than you would otherwise.
Number two is, again, one of those duh moments. It took my cousin Pablo to mention the frappé method with Nescafé to send me hurtling to my cupboards to hunt down the cocktail shaker I received as a wedding present and never used (I´m a basic elemental gin and tonic girl, you see).
The pricey and not-really remotely good iced latte of Starbucks can be done at home with minumum fuss and maximum fun.
Just put 2 oz. milk, 3 oz. water (Euro meassures would be 50 ml and 75 ml), ice cubes, a spoonful of Nescafé and sugar as you like, inside a cocktail shaker or a glass jar with a trusty lid.
Shake the hell out of it, dancing to Carmen Miranda, or not, as you will, and pour the icy milky coffee with its creamy beige frothy head into a big glass.
This is a small quantity, but the shaking is such fun that I´d rather make two small ones than one big.
And finally, three. The Dutch oven method for pork shoulder. People. Seriously. What took me so long? I´ll tell you; it seemed too good to be true, that´s why. I just plain didn´t beleive it would taste better than an effortful way. Normally I slow roast my pork shoulders, basting from time to time, and it´s very good, juicy and flavourful. I´m not saying I´ll abandon that
method forever, because it´s hardly a big deal, but compared with the total ease of this other one, I´m not sure.
All I did last Wednesday was put the 1 kg hunk of meat with the ingredients of this marinade in the covered pot and leave it in a low oven for 3 and a half hours.
At the end, the meat really and truly fell apart. It was golden, and when brushed with the thick syrupy gravy, a thing of true beauty.
True, it becomes a shreddy, jellified mess at the slightest touch, but when has that ever been a problem?