Sunday, January 4, 2009

New Year's Eve

Now that it's the fourth of January (where does the time go??), I figure it's time to post about our New Year's Eve celebration.

I've been dying to make a pork crown roast for ages now, or some other of impressive holiday-table-but-not-a-turkey sort of meaty magnificence.  We're not huge New Year's Eve partygoers (for the last few years, we've simply taken a very late reservation at a nice restaurant), so we figured a night in with friends or family, cooking good food, would be just about our speed.  Happily, Michael and Maureen were more than willing to oblige.

We pulled out the Christmas china one more time and got the table all dolled up for the occasion . . .

 . . . and David and I got down to cooking.  We'd ordered a pork crown roast from our local butcher, and he'd been kind enough to tie it up for us already.  I felt a little bit like we'd cheated, but I'm not complaining.  All we had to do was make the herb rub while David pulled together the stuffing (with onions, apples, and pecans).  We slathered the meat with the herbs and got our hands really dirty shoving the stuffing down into the center of the pork.  

Here's a photo of the roast just before it went into the oven:

And when it came out.  It got a little bit lopsided as it cooked (the end chops didn't have bones in them, so the side where they came together was softer than the bone-in sides), but it was still delicious.  

After dinner, we played my absolute favorite game, Taboo.  Typically, I am a Taboo MASTER, but for some reason I was off my game that night.  David and Maureen beat Mike and me handily, and I'm still a little bitter about it.  I'll be demanding a rematch sometime very soon, provided we can talk David into playing again.  

It was a nice, low-key way to ring in the new year, and I'm proud to say that we all made it to midnight awake.  Happy New Year!


Maureen said...

Thanks for the great night!

Joe Bondi said...

Lauren, some thoughts on the crown roast. I, too made one this year for a Christmas dinner, also went to LMOTA (did I just coin that?). First of all, you weren't cheating. No one frenches, divides and ties their own crown roast. That's a butcher's job.

Now, my beef with Steve (so to speak) is that he wasn't listening when I told him I was feeding 11. You should serve at least a rib and a half for each person. So conservatively, we're talking 15 ribs. When I got there, he had only one "side", which is usually 11 bones, but in this case was 10. Certainly not enough for 11 people. What he did was tie in four boneless ribs, so I had a 3/4 crown. Still looked good and tasted great, but I was less than pleased. I thought he might throw in the boneless section gratis, as it was his mistake he was fixing, but alas, I ran through my card for an additional $17.

All in all, it's a great alternative to turkey for a celebration. Got lots of oohs and aahs.