An Inspired Dinner with Friends: Deconstructed BLTs with braised pork belly

An Inspired Dinner with Friends: Deconstructed BLTs with braised pork belly

We had dinner with our dearest friends Kim and John last weekend, and as usual, had a foodie night of wonders. All four of us are seriously into food, cooking, wine, and of course enjoying all of it immensely! Because we have all cooked and eaten together so often, one of the best parts about getting together is experimenting on new dishes. This past time was no exception! None of us had ever cooked pork belly before, and we’d all been wanting to do so. Kim and John were hosting and cooking, and all I can say is that they were struck by some pretty awesome inspiration to come up with the dishes we enjoyed that night. We started with a fresh pea, goat cheese and mint puree spread on crostini with some parmesan, which was perfectly with the light rose we drank outside in their garden.

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But the main course was truly amazing. The pork belly had been marinated for four days in a combination of lemon juice, herbs and other wonderful things, then slow braised in the marinating liquid. John then finished it on the grill, brushed with a bourbon and vinegar glaze, and finally let it rest with a sprinkling of olive oil, lemon and chives. The pork belly was served on baked fingers of delicious bread brushed with butter, and on the side were sliced heirloom tomotoes, fresh basil aioli, and arugula lightly dressed with lemon vinaigrette. The result was spectacular, delicious, mouth-wateringly good, and I could eat it all over again as I type!

Dessert wasn’t so bad either…grilled white nectarines served with blackberries over vanilla ice cream, and I’m sure there was some yummy sauce on it too, but by that time the 3-year vertical of Pinot Noir that we’d nearly polished off had set in, so I can’t remember the elements of the sauce anymore. 🙂

All in all, a meal to remember and one I hope we recreate soon. Cooking and eating with Kim and John is always a delectable pleasure!

Bon appetit!

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