My apartment is still a long way from being done, but I do have a new dining table, which is HUGE (and gorgeous). I didn't have a dining area in my last apartment, so this is a real upgrade. Consequently, I didn't have much in the way of serveware (as you could probably tell from all my photos of vintage Pottery Barn ceramics).
Today, with the rental car I still had from last night (I attended a party in Westchester), I went on a field trip to Ikea to get some temporary fill-in items so I could serve at my new table. Holy cow! I got so much stuff for so little money! And maybe I have no taste, but these plates seem totally respectable - plain white with a rim, classic. Someday, maybe, I'll spring for elegant dishes, etc., but for now, these will do just fine.
And while I was at Ikea Brooklyn, how could I resist a trip to Fairway Brooklyn? I'm wandering the long, jam-packed aisles of the store, and I think: This is too great of an opportunity. I have to make something tonight. There's no one coming over, just me, but I'm going to make a big hunk of meat.
Roasted Pork Loin (p. 134)
At $8 and change, this two-pound pork loin was inexpensive enough for me to screw it up and not care. I was sort of shocked that it was so affordable - this is a nice chunk of meat. The joke is that the pancetta that gets wrapped around the pork is more expensive than the pork itself.
So, yes, I did roast a big pork loin for myself. It was relatively easy and completely delicious. All you have to do is brown this baby on all sides in a cast-iron skillet, let it cool, then rub it down with chopped rosemary (mmmmm), wrap it in slices of pancetta, slap a rosemary sprig on top, tie it up with twine, and stick it in the oven. Oh, and baste every so often.
Taking a suggestion from Martha, I threw a sliced pear and a sliced apple in there about halfway through the roasting time. Delicious!
Now, can we discuss flavor? This has it in spades! The rosemary and pork combination is a good thing. And pancetta-wrapped anything is a very good thing.
I was so excited to eat this that I forgot to take a picture of it, but you should know that it's quite cute when it comes out of the oven, pork gift-wrapped in pork.
The bad news is: No one was over last night to enjoy it with me.
The good news is: Leftovers!
Until we eat again....