The Coldest I’ve Ever Been

Yesterday my brother and I returned from California where we celebrated our father’s 60th birthday. I don’t know that the difference between American climates has ever been so stark for me. We left a snowy Albany to land in the mid 70’s wonderland of Sacramento and upon returning were met with a 22 degree blast to the face that caught me with my sandals around my ankles.

This is the coldest weather I’ve ever been in, but I’m not complaining as this is also the most cozy place I’ve ever been. Coziness is hard to quantify but can be roughly measured by the presence of woodfires, massive socks, blankets and furry animals lookin’ for laps. Any measure of coziness would have to put Ithaca high up on any per capita measure.

This morning the newest member of the family, Ulysses the puppy, woke me up with his incessant whining. I hope this is no indication of my future parenting strategy but I figured chorizo would shut him up.

So I opted for a spanish omelette, or depending on your inclination, a frittata. The difference is slight, but the little guy I made this morning blurred the line a little bit more. I saw something similar to this on one of the 3,000,000 Jaime at Home’s we have on TiVo back in California. When I’m going on one of my Law and Order binges sometimes I’ll break it up with a Jaime at Home. It’s like eating, only its television.

So this frittomelette or whatever, employs the holy trinity of fat: chorizo greasejuice, lard and butter. All in moderation, though. The lady of the house (a nutritionist, no less!) is on a huge lard kick. Apparently its got more monosaturated fats than butter, which is a good thing. Also, its got a kickass marketing arm.

This has to be named after Jamal, because even as he swears up and down that he doesn’t dig on swine when the Hot and Ready gods bless us with pepperoni he knows better than to reject their providence.

And awayyyyy we go…

The Jammer

2 medium red waxy potatoes Lego Style
1/2 red onion
1 clove garlic
6 ounces chorizo rough chop
1/2 tbsp lard (this house gets lard from a place in town called The Piggery
1/2 tbsp butter
3/2 tsp rosemary (less if youre using fresh!!!)
1/2 tsp oregano
3 eggs, beaten up with the the spices and a little salt and pepper
1/3 cup chopped tomatoes, I used the strawberry guys left over from the PETA.

It only resembles a scramble because of my poor execution of the final step. Don’t worry, it won’t happen to you.

Preheat your hotbox to 420ish, real hot.

Get your lard and butter hot in a well seasoned cast iron skillet. Since we’re going to toss this in the oven you can’t use one of those ergonomic grippy guys. It might get smoky, but don’t be afraid of some smoke. It means is hot enough. Toss your legos in and fry like always. All you’re really doing is making potatoes and essentially baking eggs around all the goodies. And there are spices too.

Starting to crisp? Awesome, toss your chorizo, onion and garlic. Why chorizo now? Well, it’ll add more oil and since the pan is probably starting to get drier, thats a good thing here. Also, you don’t want to overcook the chorizo and make it jerky.

Stir stir stir. When it’s essentially ready to eat, remove from heat, add the egg spice mixture and toss in the oven. Don’t stir! You want the oil on the bottom to keep it from sticking. It won’t take long but it will cook more evenly and retain more texture in the oven. Give it like 5 minutes and see how its doing.

Take it out and serve with tea! I’m rolling on some Tao of Tea oolong, Wuyi, right now that makes this meal downright Eurasian.

In honor of the Eurasian-ness of this, I’ve chosen a thematic representation for each country represented.

Bowie – China Girl
El Cuchano – Viva Tirado (in case its spanish)
ABBA – Mamma Mia (honestly this is the most Italy relevant song I have on my computer)

The snow just picked up and now its time for some serious day.


3 responses to “The Coldest I’ve Ever Been

  1. can i buy lard in portland?

  2. Mike and I are going on an Oregon Excursion. Any good tips on great breakfast restaurants outside the Portland/Salem area?

  3. Oh hello Jamal! Of course you can buy lard in Portland. Any butcher worth his salt will carry it. Check out Edelweiss at 12th and Powell.

    Also, I’ve put down some serious hash at the Otis Cafe in Otis, OR but otherwise I’m mostly familiar with Ashland and Eugene, sry!

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