Celebrating Life with Friends

It doesn’t take the weather breaking for friends and I to get together, cook for each other, and to eat a great meal. It’s just a matter of whether we do these things indoors with the screen doors shut, or whether we have them open, enjoying our own backyards. My good friend Aric Mei, who own the Parlor, just a ten minute drive up Camelback Road from St. Francis, has a great backyard, buried down at the base of Camelback Mountain. In particular, he has a great outdoor kitchen, with a big wood-burning oven, counter space, and sink. Even when the weather gets cool, I manage to end up drawn back in front of the fire, with a glass of rosé in-hand. I wanted to cook a rack of pork, marinated in chimayo chile, lathered with butter, cooked with herbs. For a side dish, I cooked up a little potatoes, mashed and set over caramelized onions, and finished in the wood oven. I also prepared squashes picked from my garden, served with a fresh jalapeno pesto.

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