I have always been one to plan our meals, shop the food ads to stock up on sale items, and read cooking magazines just for the pure enjoyment of it. I am a foodie. That is no surprise to anyone, I am sure.
In my latest issue from Cook's Illustrated (the best cooking magazine in my opinion), there was a recipe for Carnitas. I love carnitas, but they can be time consuming and involved to make at home. They are usually something I would just order in a Mexican restaurant. But since I currently live in the boonies, miles and miles away from Southern California, and most Texas Mexican restaurants serve "Tex-Mex", carnitas aren't really even a restaurant option anymore. Hence my being thrilled with a easy to follow, not a huge amount of work involved recipe for carnitas. Thank you Cook's Illustrated.
So lately I've been thinking about carnitas and decided to make them this week since I already had the pork in the freezer, and we bought a butt load of avocados at Costco on Saturday. What could be better than carnitas with homemade guacamole and salsa? Throw in a cold beer or margarita, and it's a reason for celebration.
Last night I pulled out a three pound package of pork shoulder, well wrapped in foil, to defrost. Vince was very pleased to hear that that "big package of frozen meat", was going to be used to make Carnitas. To say I've been looking forward to dinner tonight would be an understatement. I even ran out to the grocery store, with four kids in tow, to be sure we had fresh corn tortillas, and tomatoes, cilantro, and serranos for a fresh batch of salsa.
Imagine my surprise this afternoon when I opened that, "big package of frozen meat", to find out that it wasn't pork shoulder after all, but ground beef. Now, I usually wrap my meat in foil, then seal that package in a freezer bag, label and date it. But this package was so big, it wouldn't even fit in a gallon size freezer bag. I now remember thinking, "Oh, I won't forget what that it, it's too big". Yea, right.
So as I stood there, staring at all three pounds of now defrosted ground beef with my mouth hanging slack, realizing that all my pork shoulder was frozen solid, my taste buds thoroughly disappointed, it occurred to me. Tonight, we are having meatloaf. Nothing better than Old-Fashioned Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Carrots & Peas, right? Throw in a good bottle of red wine, and it's a reason for celebration.