Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hong Kong Bound

Hey everybody! I'm skippin' town for a little bit, so the blog will be hibernating until I get back in around January 9th. 
I'll be slurpin' noodles in Hong Kong before heading out to Thailand to sweat out some curry.
Expect some stories and lots of pics.  Hopefully I won't get into too much trouble.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The "One Pot Meal"

I speak to a lot of people who want cook, but are only preparing food for one or two people.  In this scenario multiple courses and/or components don't always make sense.  Enter - stage left - the "one pot meal."  A square meal with enough chutzpah to leave you satisfied, and with leftovers, but only requires one pot.  
I'm going to do an on-going series about these, to keep those of you cooking for the few, in the kitchen.   Something you'll notice is that they always be for more than two people can eat, this is because when you're cooking on a small scale, leftovers become a necessity.  Not only to lighten your cooking load, but to compensate for recipes that would otherwise call for a half of a can of tomatoes. . . what do you do with the other half?

and now, to start the series "One Pot Fish" {I used a second vessel for aesthetic reasons}

Roasted Fish with Potatoes and Thyme

1.5-2 lbs  white flakey fish, cut into 4 portions (talapia, seabass, cod, etc)
1 lb small potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch coins
1 box cherry tomatoes, halved
1 small onion, sliced
3 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
1 bunch of thyme, rinsed well
1 1/4 cups of white wine (not too sweet, pinot grigio, savangion blanc, chardonay, etc.)

Heat your oven to 350 degrees

1. Heat a heavy bottomed skillet (not cast iron) over medium high heat.  Once hot add enough vegetable oil to film the pan and give it a good 30-45 seconds to get hot.  This will prevent the fish from sticking.
2. Laying the fish away from you, gently drop it in.  Give the pan a quick jiggle after each piece to work some oil under the fish.  This also prevents sticking.
3. Once the fish is browned well on one side (4-5 min.), remove it from the pan and set aside.  In the same pan, drop in the potatoes.  (you may need to add a drop more oil for this step)

4. When the potatoes have slightly browned, and are creeping up on being fork tender (6-8 min.) add the wine, onion, tomatoes and thyme.  Bring this to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.  The liquid should become a nice pinkish-orange color.
5.   Kill the heat.  On top of all of this lay the fish, browned side up, so that it's partially submerged in the liquid.
6. Place the pan in the oven for around 15 minutes or until the fish is just cooked.  Test this by pressing gently on the thicker part of a piece, you should feel just a slight give between the flakes.  If you see white stuff coming out of the fish, you've gone way too far.

* You should be able to lift the thyme stems right out.  The leaves will fall right off. 

Print this recipe!

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Principal Pasta Principle

 Lately there’s been a recurring question at my stands around the city: People are having problems with their pasta. I get complaints of oily pasta, puddles of watery sauce and bland concoctions. Couples approach me to settle disputes about generations of pasta practices: What is al dente? To rinse or not to rinse? . Somehow I feel like I’ve become the judge, jury and executioner of the collective noodle.

Forms of pasta have been around for millennia, so there’s bound to be some stigma, wive’s tales, various voodoo and placebo affects woven into its history. I wouldn’t dare dispute your grandma, so I’m just going to tell you what I do do . . . . because I think it works just fine. If I don't mention it here, I don't do it.

I love to eat this simple pasta, but the object of this recipe is to gain a firm understanding of pasta with a sauce; to learn how to achieve that flavorful rich emulsion that sticks perfectly to the noodle. For that reason, I keep this recipe very general, use whatever pasta you like with whatever cheese you like. Parmesan is typical, but you could use pecorino or a cave aged Gouda, The simplicity leaves your options open.

Simple Pasta for Four

1 lb. Pasta (fresh or dry)
2 cups Chicken Stock (low sodium)
½ cup Aged salty cheese, grated
2 tbsps Butter, cut into little chunks
2 tbsps Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1. In a deep pot bring at least a gallon of salted water to a boil over high heat. (1 tsp of salt to every qt.)
2. Once you reach a rolling boil, drop in the pasta and stir immediately, continue to stir every 30 seconds or so for the first three minutes. It’s these first minutes when the pasta will bind together, so keep it moving.
3. In a large skillet bring the chicken stock to a boil and reduce by about half. (Ideally it is reduced about the time the pasta is ready to go)
4. Once cooked to your liking, strain the pasta. Add it to the simmering stock.
5. Working over medium high heat, add the butter, olive oil, and cheese; season with salt and pepper. Moving the pan in a circular motion, use tongs to stir the pasta briskly. (you can pick the pan up and toss it if you're comfy with that.) Good movement is imperative to mixing the stock and the fat (butter and oil) into a sauce while melting the cheese.
To test for the right viscosity, pull the noodles aside, the liquid should go with it.  If it leaves a pool, cook it a little longer. 

6. This is where the learning curve comes in. You have to taste and adjust your sauce. If it’s not saucy enough, add more stock, if it’s too saucy allow it to cook down a little longer over the flame. If it needs salt, give it a pinch or reach for some more cheese.
The final product is ideally moist but not runny.
  There you have it, a delicious simple pasta sauce. It’s a versatile base. If you’re going to give this a shot, know that you can fold in any combination of extras at the end.
- Pine nuts, chili flakes, sautéed broccoli rabe
- Sautéed mushrooms and thyme
- Roasted cauliflower, lemon zest, hazelnuts, raisins and capers
- My personal favorite- Fresh wild arugula and lots of black pepper

Print this recipe!!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

I love codfish, but I have a lot of trouble keeping it in one peice. Any pointers?

The Codfish family (hake, scrod, cod, haddock, et al) has always been one of those trickier fish to dabble in. It's very tasty, but mild, and so goes well with many flavor profiles... but there's a catch, it has a tendency to crumble into a pile of fish flakes if you breath on it.

For this reason I've always operated under the rule - "once it sees heat, don't f----ing touch it". So usually, I would prepare it in a vessel in which it could be served, such as a crock.

There is, however, an alternative- a simple step to give these fillets a little more strustural integrity and build flavor while your at it.  All it takes is salt, but a lot of it.   You simply take them out of the fridge about 20 minutes before cooking time and salt them very liberally, almost burying them.  (if you have a flatter tail section, fold it onto itself and salt only the outside) Let them stand in the salt for about 10 to 15 minutes and then rinse them well and dry them off.

The flesh of the fish itself should become slightly more translucent and noticeably firmer to the touch.   This slight change will make it much easier to handle throughout the cooking process, but you still have to be gentle.   And remember, this process seasons the fish as well, so you won't need any more salt.
For the record, you always lay the fish away from yourself.  So as to not splatter oil on yourself.

See what I made with this here fish. . . .

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Daily Brink

I was interviewed for a very cool site - www.dailybrink.com.  It's a project spotlighting cool people doing cool things.  While I did make the cut, make no mistake about it, I'm still not cool.  Here's the piece. 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Turkey Day Recap

As we're all kind of returning to the real world and at the same time bundling up and bracing ourselves for another holiday (I wish they had given us a little more time between thanksgiving and xmas) I always take a second to remember what a great day my turkey day was.  It was a loose take on an Austrian feast. 

Note: the whole meal was followed by a delicious carrot cake and pies made with home grown fruit. I was too busy eating to capture any of it on film.  Maybe next year.

Here's what our meal was composed of:
A Turkey "Roll-up"- I de-boned a turkey, brined and stuffed it with itself, sausage and gave it a bacon center.

Gma's famous cranberry salad.
A pile of roasted venison, provided by my uncle.  It was served with a sherry raisin sauce. 

Boiled baby potatoes slossed in sour cream, grainy mustard and herbs. 

Brussels sprouts with sour apples and bacon.
Classic Stuffing lots of veggies and herbs.

The Family Matriarch tending to the spread.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Choppin' Herbs - fine or not?

I'm never quite sure what to do when a recipe calls for chopped mint,
chopped cilantro, or other fresh leafy herbs. How do I decide between 
chiffonade vs. a coarse chop vs. a fine chop? On television I've heard
Michael Simon tell a sous chef "only one pass", which presumably means
he wants the herbs coarsely chopped. What should I be thinking about
 when I'm about to cut up leafy herbs for a recipe?
No matter the application  this going to boil down to a matter of preference.   In terms of functionality on the "Chopping Spectrum" you're basically operating between lightly (or not) chopped herbs and finely chopped herbs.  

Lightly chopped herbs, when mixed into something - let's say whole tarragon and mint leaves into a beet salad- provide powerful but periodic bursts of herby aroma.  So you'll get a little variety from bite to bite, and variety is the "herb of life".

Finely chopped herbs, on the flip flop, if used in a preparation like a risotto, will disperse flavor more evenly.   Giving a more subtle affect that pervades a dish. 

For me, I tend to chop on the lighter side for drier applications (beet salad, chickpea salad, roasted potatoes, etc). Where I'll chop a little finer for preparations with a higher moisture content. (risotto, soup, fricasee, etc)

Everything else is in between.  And of course I often make exceptions to my own suggestions. 

P.S.- The "only one pass" they were talking about I would think refers to rocking your knife across a pile of herbs only one time on a cutting board.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Sunday Interactive Demo

This Sunday I'm going to be hosting a small class focused on one of my favorite winter appetizers - Winter Panzanella with Butternut Squash and Kale.  The cost is $15, which includes the 45 minute hands-on lesson and a plate of the dish itself to fill your tummy.   There might even be a cup of cider to wash it down. 

It's happening at the New Amsterdam Cooking School (224 Front St.) Demos take place at 12 noon and 2pm. Pay at the door but you must reserve a spot by emailing info@newamsterdammarket.org and indicating whether you prefer the 12pm or 2pm session.  Sign up now because classes are small and they're filling up. 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Some Thanksgiving Ideas

Hey everybody,  in the midst of the crazy haze or holidays I'm throwing together this list of some family friendly recipes.   
Some conventional and some not-so-conventional, but all of them are delicious. 

They're just to get your wheels turning. 
Enjoy, and good luck with your thanksgiving dinner. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

What is Grill-a-Chef?

This is sometimes the toughest question for me to answer.  The overall goal never changes, but the finer points are very elastic, so it's a challenge to stay focused and be articulate about what is happening and why.
Here is my latest attempt to wrap up a tight explanation.  I hope you enjoy it.

This is a flash presentation, you have to click the arrow and give it a second to load. Then move your cursor over the word "more" and select "fullscreen"    It is best to click through at your own pace.  (In other words don't use the "Autoplay" option. )

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What should I do with this?

One of the perks of this thing I'm doing is I get to meet lots of interesting people; food growers and producers among them.  Every so often somebody puts something in my hand that I've never seen before.  This happened a few weeks ago when Sharon Tomaselli from Cooperstown Cheese Company handed me this goat's milk ricotta with the question: "What should I do with it?"
I smiled because my first reaction is something like- "I don't know! You made the stuff!" but I thought of my fridge, overflowing with homemade sauces, pickles and condiments.  I have no idea what to do with any of them.  I'm no stranger to cooking first and asking questions later.  Why not throw this ricotta in there and see if anything happens.
Like many a ricotta it's mild flavored and rich, but like any goat cheese, this ricotta comes with a gamey punch like I've never had before.  Very tasty stuff, but the questions still stands: "What should I do with it?"
The answer has to be something simple, otherwise the ricotta will just be a vehicle for a stronger flavor,  too often a decent ricotta's fate.
So what I ended up doing is not going to blow your minds. . . unless you try it.
I just made a simple cheesy garlic bread. . . salty and rich.  Also, it's a fine alternative to wearing a garlic rope around your neck in order to ward off vampires.  

Garlicy Ricotta Cheese Bread

1 pint of ricotta cheese (Mrs. Tomaselli's if you can get your hands on some)
4 cloves of fresh garlic, grated or chopped
3-4 tbsps of extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup grated hard aged cheese such as Parmigiano-Reggiano
salt and pepper to taste
1 baguette, fresh and crusty

1. In a bowl combing the ricotta, garlic, olive oil, Parmigiano along with the salt an pepper and mix very well.
2. Simply half the baguette lengthwise and then across.  Spread the ricotta mixture evenly over bread.
3. Bake on the top shelf of your oven at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until the bread is toasted and the cheese is lightly browned.

Be sure to share this with whomever you plan on being around for the rest of the day.  The say mutual garlic breath will cancel itself out. . . and you're gonna need that.

Friday, November 5, 2010

I ALWAYS make soup when I get butternut squash, what else can i do with it that highlights the flavor?

It's so easy to get stuck on an ingredient's connotations and forget about how versatile such a simple thing can be.  We get so used to one preparation of an ingredient, say squash soup, that it's all we can think of when we see it in the market.  We cease to see a squash for all it could be, and rather than attempting a different application, we snub our squash cravings because, simply, "We're not in the mood for soup"

Here's an idea for using squash that stems from one my favorite family meals while working in restaurants in Italy.  It starts with squash that is roasted and then crushed or pureed.

Squash Pasta Sauce with Sage and Amaretti

1lb. Pasta (fresh is best with this sauce if u can swing it)
2 cups of crushed squash (any variety or mix of varieties)
1/4 cup Sage, roughly chopped 
1/4 cup roasted walnuts
1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
1/4 cup roughly crushed Amaretti cookies

1. In a pan, warm the crushed squash over medium heat with enough liquid (veggie/chicken stock or water)  to make the consistency of a very thick soup. 
2. Drop in the walnuts and sage.
3. Toss in your pasta (cooked according to the directions or your taste)  along with the Parmigiano Reggiano and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
4. Place on a serving platter (or individual plates) and top with the crushed ammaretti and a little more cheese.

Print this recipe!

Monday, November 1, 2010

What's the deal with Balsamic Vinegar? Why is some so cheap, and some so expensive?!?

I have brushed on this topic numerous times with passers by in the markets.  
For the record: I grew up thinking "Parmesan Cheese" came in a green plastic tube that, mysteriously, never went in the fridge.  While I was working in Italy I came to know Parmigiano Reggiano,  an outstanding cheese that has to meet many criteria to be called by it's name,  and presumably is the pure bred ancestor of the green tubes of my upbringing.  
Every food product has its place,  you'll still see me vigorously shaking that green tube over meat spaghetti some times.  But I think it is important to keep the maintain the integrity and origin when creating derivatives.  Capitalism lets us call anything whatever we want until the consumer pushes to address quality and origin 

In this vein, Balsamic Vinegar may be one of the most misunderstood ingredients on the shelves.   Meathead Goldwyn over at amazingribs.com.  did a really good job summing it up.   He also describes the process behind making true (or Tradizionale) Balsamic, which is very interesting in and of itself. 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Cataplana Leftovers

Earlier in the week I made Octopus Cataplana.
Since it was huge, there were some leftovers.  I simply tossed them with some pasta, olives, capers and chopped parsley and then topped it all off with a few too many chili flakes.
If you ever take the "Octopus Cataplana" leap, remember this for your plan B; it's very good stuff.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Octopus Cataplana

I love octopus, so when I saw a nice one in a frozen block the other day I had to grab it.  I was turnin' my wheels in hopes of some seasonal-seaming application and then it hit me, like a big copper pac-man.
Hammered Iberian Copper Cataplana - 10.5 inch/27 cmDuring a brief stint in Portugal a few years back I had a very unique combination that has stuck with me. Octopus and sweet potato, stewed together slowly in a "cataplana"- which is one of those terms that acts as both the name of the vessel it's cooked in and the name of the dish itself.   I'm sure the memory was made more outstanding by the fact that is was at a cute little spot right on the beach . . . during sunset,  but the flavors stood out in my memory as being very harmonious. 

I know this recipe might not be for everybody, but if you're feeling adventurous, believe me when I tell you this will be worth your while. 

Octopus and Sweet Potato Cataplana
4-6 lb Octopus, cut into large chunks and seasoned well with salt
6 cloves of garlic, minced
3 Sweet potatoes, cut into half inch slices
1 green pepper, sliced into 1/2 inch slices
1 large onion, sliced into 1/2 inch slices
2 cups stock (lobster, shrimp or fish if you can, otherwise use veggie stock)
1 28oz. can of crushed tomatoes
1/4 red wine vinegar
1/2 cup of white wine (what ever your drinking with dinner)
1 bunch of parsley

1. In a small stock pot, combine the stock, crushed tomatoes, vinegar and wine. Bring it all to a simmer.
2. Heat an 8 quart pot (with a lid) over medium heat.  Add enough oil to just put a film on the pan and lightly cook the garlic.  Little or no browning should occur.
3.  Add 1 cup of the tomato/stock liquid to the pot and layer a few slices of onion and pepper, followed by half of the sweet potato slices, followed half of the octopus chunks.
The layering process
4. Add another cup of the tomato/stock liquid and repeat the layer process.
5. To finish, top with a final layer of onions and pepper, and distribute the remaining liquid or the top.
6. Bring the whole thing to a simmer,  cover and place in a 350 degree oven for two hours.

Print this recipe!! 

The finished product is a rich flavor stew.  Allow it to cool down just a bit and be careful when you go to serve it,  everything in there is nice and soft, so you don't want to break it up too much. 

See what I did with the leftovers!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Red Jacket Orchard Winter CSA

Several days back I went out and answered questions for Red Jacket Orchards CSA in Carroll Gardens Brooklyn at The Brooklyn Farmacy and Soda Fountain.  Definitely worth checking out if you're ever in the 'hood.

I'm impressed with the quality of stuff this CSA peddles and they're going to extend for a winter run through December.  Here's the info:

Interested in getting farm fresh fruit at an affordable price? Would you like to support a local, family farm? These are two great reasons to sign up for a CSA! Through a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), members pay a farm up front for share of produce that they can pick up from a distribution location once a week. The price they pay for this share is cheaper than purchasing the same quality of produce at a grocery store or farmers' market. At the same time, a CSA ensures a certain amount of revenue for the farm. By joining a CSA, members can also familiarize themselves with their farmer and the seasonality of local fruit.

Red Jacket Orchards is proud to announce a CSA for the winter season.  The winter fruit CSA will provide members with weekly shares of farm-fresh fruit from November til December.  Throughout the CSA winter season, Red Jacket Orchards harvests over 25 varieties of apples.  Winter shares will also feature our fresh pressed juices and our pantry items, such as Apple Butter, Apple Sauce, and various flavors of jams.

The Red Jacket Orchards CSA will have three distribution locations, which are listed below. Full and half shares are available. Full shares are priced at $17 per week and half shares are $10 per week.  To see a sample share list and for more information on how to sign up, visit http://redjacketorchardscsa.wordpress.com/ or e-mail redjacketorchardscsa@gmail.com

1.  The Urban Assembly Academy of Arts & Letters
 - 225 Adelphi Street, Brooklyn (Fort Greene)

Wednesdays, November 3 to December 22 from 4:30pm – 7:00pm
Applications are due October 23, 2010

2.  Brooklyn Farmacy and Soda Fountain
 - 513 Henry Street, Brooklyn (Carroll Gardens)

Tuesdays, November 16 – December 28 from 4:00pm – 7:30pm
Applications are due November 5, 2010

3.  92 Y Tribeca - 
200 Hudson Street, Manhattan (Tribeca)
Wednesdays, November 24 – December 29 from 4:00pm – 7:00pm
Applications are due November 12, 2010

A Full Share, how can you resist.

Monday, October 18, 2010

I'm always on the hunt for a simple meal, do you have any suggestions?

There is something, I was just futzing with a recipe this week.  It's very easy.
It's a take on a Middle eastern way to prepare rice and chicken.  The result is a crispy flavorful rice with aromatic chicken to boot.  The method alone should broaden your horizons.  I use chicken thighs, but breasts could be substituted, or even a fat piece of fish. 
Chicken with Crispy Dill Rice

6 chicken thighs, (skin on and bone in)
1 1/2 cups of long grain rice (Basmati, Jasmine, or American long grain)
1 bunch of dill, rinsed well and chopped roughly
2-3 tbsps butter

1. Boil the Rice for ten minutes in 3 qts. of rolling boiling water.  Strain it well, return it to the pot, and mix in the chopped dill. 
2. While the rice in cooking,  brown the chicken thighs well in a ten inch skillet (that has a lid) over medium high heat.  I did this in two batches.
3.  Remove the brown chicken thighs and dump out the excess oil.  Reduce the heat to medium and drop in the butter.
4.  Once completely melted, add the dill and rice mixture to the skillet and spread it out evenly (no packing down) Lay the chicken on skin side up.
5. Using a non-terry cloth tea towel, wrap the lid and place it snugly over the skillet.  Reduce the heat to medium low and set your timer for 25 minutes.

6.  Once the thing is cooked, remove the thighs, and use a skinny edged metal spatula to loosen the rice.   You can turn it out onto a platter and serve the chicken right on top. 

Print this recipe!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Is there a big difference between sea salt and regular salt?

 Sea salt usually comes with a lot more minerals, and sometimes even remnants of seaweed.  (japanese sea salt) and so has a little more character.  This character doesn't come through as much in a longer cooking process like a soup or stew, but is better savored sprinkled over sliced steak or maybe to finish a piece of fish. 
Some people suggest it's saltier, but I don't know if it actually is.  A big part of what can affect salt's "saltiness" is the granule size - If you imagine difference between filling a bulldozer scoop with boulders or with gravel, the difference is considerable. 
This holds true on a smaller scale,  so there is a huge difference between a tablespoon of kosher, table and fine sea salt. For this reason a lot of recipes call for weights of salt, or at least specify the type of salt to be measured. 

Monday, October 11, 2010

Video Sessions This Week

You might have noticed a "video sessions" page I added to my site a couple of weeks back. 
I haven't yet had a spare second to try it out, but I'm going to set up a regular time so those of your who aren't in NYC can ask me questions in person - kind of.
It's going to happen this Wednesday night from 8:30pm to 10:30 Eastern Standard Time.
Stop by and ask me a questions.  All you have to do is come to the site and participate.
This is going to be my trial run, so there might be a few technical kinks to work out, otherwise it should be a gas.
I hope to see you there.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Pig Island Affair

Hey everybody, I've been off the radar for a little while now. 
I was slammed with a few big events and a move, but I'm back now and it's Fall.  As we brace ourselves for months of root vegetables, we should take full advantage of all of the fall brassica (cabbage stuff) while it's still here to make us gassy.  Expect some recipes soon.
In the meantime, Pig Island happened, a benefit for Food Systems NYC.  I was given four whole pigs to do with as I saw fit.  It was a big event for Grill-a-Chef to take on, but I think the whole thing went down pretty well.  I owe big thanks to all of the people that pitched in to help out.  Those that volunteered were amazing and they all went above and beyond.  Here are some pics from the whole shebang.

 (extra special thanks to Deborah- who helped out the day before when I didn't have my camera. so there's no photo of her pretty face)

Jimmy Carbone - the crazy mofo who organized the whole thing.

Thanks to Brooke from Red Table Catering for donating his kitchen and helping cut up pigs.

A cooler full of salted root beer, were the pork soaked over night.

The Grill-a-Chef Kiosk

Special thanks to this guy for like pork so much. (note the tattoo)
Me and the "Carls".  (each shirt had a Carl name tag)
The assembly line.

Some Carl's slinging pig.  (aka Jorge and Megan of the A Mouse Bouche blog)

Some other Carl's, saucing and garnishing. (aka Jeff and Emily)

A by product of all the labor- root beer head cheese.
The final product of all the work - Root Beer Glazed Pig with Crushed Kabocha and Sage Cracklin's

You could make some yourself, here's the recipe.
Root Beer Glazed Pork Shoulder

2 bottles good root beer
6 cups of water
1 ½ cups Salt
1 Pork Shoulder 7-9 lbs (bone-in)
3 bottles of good root beer
1 ½ tbsps Chinese Five Spice
2 1/2 tbsps mustard powder

1. For the brine, dissolve the salt in 3 cups of water.  In a storage vessel big enough to hold your pork, mix in the salted water with the remaining three cups of water and the root beer and allow to cool. Completely submerge the pork and soak for at least 12 hours and up to 36. (If you have a small or cramped fridge, this can be done in a cooler by substituting some of the water for ice)
2. For the cooking part, place the pork shoulder in a roasting pan, tent with tin foil, and roast @ 325 degrees until it pulls apart easily.  (Approx. 6 hrs, but it’s not done until it’s soft.) 
3. Set aside the pork to rest. In the meantime reduce the remaining liquids over medium high heat until thick and gooey.  Whisk in the five-spice and mustard and season to taste.  Simmer for 5 more minutes and brush onto the pork. Serve more root beer goo for a sauce.
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