Jan 9, 2010

boiled

there are few things better than a broth made of long-simmered meat of quality. whole foods has a special on large pieces of shoulder steak that are indivisible because ludicrously inexpensive. at $2.99 a pound, this stuff is cheaper than strawberries--which is wrong on many levels but ultimately quite nice for me. i cut it into large chunks so that it would stay intact, discarded the first boil to remove assorted bad-tasting impurities that are the legacy of a fleshly existence, covered it in water again, then started cooking it in a tightly covered le creuset last night at 6.30pm on the lowest flame the stove will sustain without going out (not a bubble broke the surface, and the thermometer read 200F).

risking asphyxiation and household catastrophe, i left the thing going overnight. i was careful to put the battery back into our over-eager smoke detector before going back to bed. when i woke up this morning, the tiny flame was still burning, the building had not burned down, and the beef fell apart at the mildest provocation. the broth, which is perhaps the more important part (like the scabbard, which was worth ten of the etc) was limpid, pearled with fat, and the gold of an aged tequila. the late-stage contribution of large carrot batons (chamfered at the edges to preserve clarity) and quartered vidalia onions must also be acknowledged.

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