Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Xmas

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Axed too soon. 

 I had such high hopes for Jennifer Carroll. 
Here's her exit interview...The rest of this season will be sad. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Top Chef All Stars!!!

My favorite guilty pleasure! 10 minutes in and everyone (especially Spike) seems to be hamming it up.  
I'm calling it...Antonia is the first one out....She's had too much airtime and we aren't even past the Quickfire Challenge...

I could be wrong, but I don't remember her being a standout.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Fun with Transglutaminase

a.k.a Meat Glue

Vegetarians beware...

Friday, November 26, 2010

Turkey tryptophan

Winding down from all the Turkey day revelry. My sister prepared a feast for 20!!! Kudos to her...Hope everyone had a great thanksgiving dinner!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Fried Turkey Videos

....oh  these never get old for some reason....I'm pretty sure I posted these last year too.
Happy Turkey Day.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Chicken with a Tarragon and Thyme Cream Sauce

Prepared by my cousin using a Cooks Illustrated recipe. Comfort food!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Applejack old fashioned

At Barricou!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Aperitvo hour!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Avocado fries El Almacen

Monday, October 25, 2010

Quince Seltzer

Northern Spy Food

Monday, October 18, 2010

Patatas Bravas

Pretty tasty tapas at Cadaques on Friday night...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


Sabina and I took a trip to the Oyster Bar in Grand Central before seeing the Language Archive. The Kumamotos were quite a tasty treat before our night of theater!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pretty Pictures/ Homemade is Best

Who doesn't have a soft spot for Ikea? I am a sucker for Scandinavian design and Scandinavian cuisine is not bad either. After a day of looking for modular living room furniture and reasonably priced paper lanterns, a plate of swedish meatballs and ligonberries always hits the spot. So, I was so pleased to hear that the mega-retailer published a new cookbook!  I'm not sure if the recipes are worth trying (or Swedish for that matter), but based on the images circulating around the internets,  I would put this book on my coffee table any day. The photography is truly stunning. Love the art direction and styling.

Via: Today and Tomorrow 

Monday, September 20, 2010

Eggplant Gratin

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Who wants to see this with me?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Top Chef Finale

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Sunday, September 5, 2010

Pumpkin Patch in Wainscott

It's fall!
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Monday, August 30, 2010

Who you gonna call...for a caffeine pick me up?


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Wasabi Warning

The Japanese invented a fire alarm for the hearing impaired that sprays out wasabi scented vapors into the air...

Holy Horseradish!


Thursday, August 12, 2010

I Drink Your Pancake Milkshake!

Via: TokyoMango

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pasta Night after Inception

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Friday, August 6, 2010

Mad Men Meatloaf

Greetings from the LIRR, en route to the beautiful, bourgeois beaches of East Hampton. I have at least an hour to my destination, plenty of time to mull over the menu for Sunday night's dinner before Mad Men. Last week, we made a veal/pork meatloaf, garlic mashed potatoes, and a fresh watermelon w balsamic salad to honor The Dysfunctional Drapers. (The meatloaf was made with the Mark Bittman recipe.) It's my turn to make dinner this week. I think Chicken Kiev will be the piece de resistance...BUTTER BOMB!
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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Korean Style Tacos ...

...are the new Banh Mi?  I haven't seen them in New York, but any day now...


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Have the Chicken Kiev

 Butter Bomb!

...Butter squirts EVERYWHERE!

Oh that Roger Sterling!  Always at the ready with his witticisms.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


For the eco-friendly tail-gater...

Three Flavors: Rosemary-Beet,  Lemon-basil, and Ginger-Mint 

Translucent cups made of gelatin and agar agar, designed by The Way We See the World

"Once used, the Jelloware can be simply tossed onto the grass where agar agar would nurture the plants to grow, making these cups an ideal substitute for disposable plastic and paper cups."  

Bottoms up....


Monday, July 19, 2010

Royale w Cheese

Despite the weak adoption of the metric system in the good ole US of A, there is a place in the East Village that sells a Royale w Cheese and for $7.50!! Quite a bargain and TASTY!

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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

National French Fry Day

Grrrrr. Animal Fries from In-n-Out.  Salty, but seems to be a fave for most. 

I found out today is National French Fry Day, so before the fritter commemoration ends, I would like to take the time to opine on some noteworthy fries in the city.

Best French Fries...

...with a burger and a beer: Corner Bistro
...with a fancy burger and a beer: Spotted Pig
...when you have a hankering for artificial tallow flavoring:  McDonalds, Large
...after a facial at Ling's: Coffee Shop's Fries with Thyme (Questionable, I realize, but on a rainy day, after the spa, shared while discussing the latest episode of a  Bravo reality show--this basket hits the spot.)
...uptown: J.G. Melon's Waffle Fries
...downtown: Pommes Frites with ketchup, mayonnaise and onion
...if you are partial to crinkle-cut and hellacious lines: Shake Shack
...with a plate of Steak Tartare: Balthazar

Feliz Patatas!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Brooklyn Bowl

Took the L to Billy-burg today to catch the World Cup final at Brooklyn Bowl. After enduring a 45 minute wait in the sweltering heat, we finally were given the blessing to enter by the bouncer and were pleasantly surprised by how comfortable and sufficiently roomy the venue was , considering the hellacious line! After the rousing Spanish victory, we all decided to get some grub. I was craving the fried chicken. As a matter of fact, I've been craving everything and anything remotely battered and thrown in a vat of oil, since I've been training. The chicken didn't disappoint--tasty crunch, well-seasoned, moist inside-- but somewhat expensive. $21 for a fairly generous plate of fried chicken, mash potatoes (excellent), and collard greens. Well worth the wait...
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Thursday, July 8, 2010

Domino's Photo Shoot

I'm in no way a shill for Domino's(because the pizza is like a eating hardtack with cheese-flavored rubber and tomato paste), but I thought this was a post-worthy behind-the-scenes look at a food photo-shoot.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Water Grill

Dinner in Lala land...
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Friday, June 25, 2010

Cheese Plate Before dinner

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Crab Boil at Back Forty

Off to a crab boil at Back Forty tonight after watching Obama's speech about the  oil spill in the  Gulf-- where I grew up and had many Old Bay crab boils.  Hoping that the mess will get cleaned up soon!

Photo: Flickr

Friday, June 11, 2010

Chef Boyardee Biography

I have fond food memories of eating piping hot bowls of Chef Boyardee's Beef Ravioli (and Beefaroni) while watching  rereuns of You Can't Do That on Television...  Clearly, I had no metabolic concerns in my latch-key pre-teen days.

Check out the interesting feature on Eat Me Daily of the ACTUAL Chef Boiardi...

Going to experience another take on Italian cuisine-- off to Pulino's tonight! 

Via: Eat Me Daily

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Visiting Home

This long weekend I hit Casbah in Pittsburgh, grilled some BBQ,  slurped down sotanghon,  and got the extended birthday treatment at West Spa.  But all  I'm doing today is dialing in for one conference call and surfing for my next pet project, like making homemade ketchup:

...while trying to decompress.

 I just made myself a strong cup of coffee and about to sprawl out on the deck to read the new-ish Michael Lewis book.  It is unbelievably quiet here. How unnerving! See you in New York soon...

Sunday, May 30, 2010

More bbq

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Tonight's Birthday BBQ

Nothing like grilled corn, pork chops, burgers steaks and the requisite Memorial Day treat...WATERMELON!
I am still training, but one night isn't going to kill me...
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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Raw bar prep

Oysters and clams: last class treat
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Flambez-ing Lobster Sauce

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Saturday, May 22, 2010


Burnt my tart crust (slightly)...
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Palmiers and Pot au Feu

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Chicago-chef Rick Bayless Tapped to Prepare Next State Dinner for President of Mexico

I'm really never in the Windy City, but  I know Rick Bayless from my mild fascination with chef life and unhealthy addiction to Bravo reality shows--more specifically Top Chef and Top Chef Masters.  Apparently, he runs a stellar Mexican place in Chicago that the Obama's favor and is quite the culinary star. So, it makes sense that he has been selected to prepare the state dinner for President Felipe Calderon of Mexico. On the show(s), he has the most cheerful disposition and seems like he knows his stuff...

According to the New York Times, 
"Officials said no to Mr. Bayless’s request that he be allowed to make two or three long-simmering, complex sauces ahead of time and ship them frozen to the White House where they could be tested. So Mr. Bayless and crew will be coming to Washington two days earlier than planned to begin preparing a 28-ingredient Oaxacan black mole."


If you read the article, it mentions something about "pyramid plating style". I have absolutely no idea what that means. Anybody out there know? Google didn't seem to know either



Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fish sticks!

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Remoulade lesson

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

Fish en Papillote

Fish dish:  Bass with mushroom, tomatoes, celery, leeks, carrots, thyme, butter and smashed garlic.

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Cleaning fish today....
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Saturday, May 1, 2010


Watermelon, chili and salt candy...
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Friday, April 23, 2010

Chocolate Bar at Fatty Cue

Pretty damn good... Hope I don't wake up with a migraine!
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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Food Photos

 Me (with my mama to the left) photographing my meal at Onyx Étterem in Budapest last July.

Great article in the New York Times about the phenomenon and motivations  of  why people photograph their food. 

Via: New York Times Dining Section

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter

Marzipan sheep from Fortunato Brothers.
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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Fun with Tarts

Tart class was the best. The pace was manageable and we had 30 minutes to spare. 
Gorgeous, isn't it?
...I didn't make that one, but I made this one:


We explore the wild world of potatoes on Saturday! 

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


The art object du jour is:

Whimsical americana served up on a platter.

The installation piece is part of  Christopher Chiappa's series called "High Fructose Corn Syrup" showing at the Kate Werble Gallery, in conjunction with an exhibition at Moss.  The inspiration behind the show is less about food culture and more about the nostalgic twinges of the artist's childhood memory.
"The title 'high fructose corn syrup' is a reference to the artist’s transition from adolescence into adulthood, and his realization of the disappointment of human experience. a daily coke drinker, he hit puberty just as coca cola’s formula switched from using sugar to high fructose corn syrup. chiappa uses a simple switch of the ordinary to emphasize an omnipresent disequilibrium in the photographic
portrait of the artist in his studio."

Via: Designboom

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Culinary Techniques Update

I have hit the 1/3 mark of the Culinary Techniques at FCI and I haven't suffered any severe injuries, apart from a mild peppering of oil burns from trying to flip an ungodly number of eggs over easy in last week's exercice de oeufs. We went through 800 eggs or so. Don't worry everything is composted, so it's not a total waste! 

My omelet was perfect the first time around. The second time around I didn't really roll it down the pan properly, but the color, texture and cooking technique were fine.  Refining my presentation will be the goal for the next batch of eggs I prepare.  NOTE:  When you find yourself at any lovely brunch place and decide to order an omelet, you should know that it will be LOADED with butter.  We used TUBS of clarified butter.  Clarified butter gives your omelet a very pale yellow coloring.  You can try to cook with olive oil (use a low flame, b/c olive oil burns faster), but it doesn't taste the same or look the same.  In addition to several omelets, we made Eggs en Cocotte, poached eggs, fried eggs, eggs over easy, medium, hard.  The pace was frenetic, so I don't think I would ever want to work in a kitchen trying to expedite breakfast.  Today, we made Eclairs (made from choux pastry dough and  creme patisserie (vanilla, coffee and chocolate), creme de chantilly, Pot de Creme, and Creme Caramel.  Pace was much better, but measurement and precision are critical. Bon Appetit! More updates later...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kom Tang Kalbi House

Last night, I  had dinner at Kom Tang Kalbi House in Korea-town with Eric and Mark.  I was a little fuzzy from the residual effects of a migraine and  didn't want to stray too far from home, so I suggested Dok Suni's--a solid go-to Korean in the East Village. But, alas,  Eric really wanted to experience the authenticity of K-town, so I popped a few more pills and hailed a cab to 32nd street.

There are a few places on the  north-side of 32nd Street at which I've eaten and had some decent dining moments. But, I have never tried any of the places on the south-side of the street that didn't involve unruly karaoke sessions and plenty of soju.  So, we just sort of randomly decided to go to Kom Tang Kalbi House. The restaurant purports itself as being the oldest Korean restaurant in New York City (which intrigued us) and based on the dilapidated interiors and well-tread flooring, I wouldn't contest that proclamation.  It looked pretty beat.

The food was not that great, but not horrible. I had the vegetarian Bi-Bim-Bop, which was certainly edible, but slightly gluey. The dumplings are nothing great.  I didn't try the pa-jun, but it looked really greasy.  Can't say that I would go again, but maybe I ordered wrong?! It's been around for a while for a reason, right? 

Sorry, no pics. Here's one from Flickr.... The restaurant is in the middle of the frame.

Kom Tang Kalbi House
32 West 32nd Street
New York, NY


Monday, March 22, 2010

Chief of Staff Gash at Arby's

I am well aware that this is very wrong and politically incorrect among the culinary cognescenti, but when it comes to fast-food, I actually have a soft-spot for Arby's and its BBQ roast beef sandwiches.   I'm sure Rahm's doesn't share my sentiment after what happened to him. Based on his detailed retelling of the gruesome incident, you can tell he's quite proud of his war-wounds as a short-order cook.

Watch CBS News Videos Online

Via: 60 Minutes

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Top o' the Morning

 A slice of Guinness.

Due to my self-imposed moratorium on beer-drinking (green brew or otherwise!), I don't think I'll be wholeheartedly celebrating with the Irish today.  But check out this fun NPR interview with Nigella Lawson and her brilliant recommendations for St. Patrick's Day.  Her recipe for the Guinness Chocolate Cake is below:

Ingredients for the cake:
1 cup Guinness
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups superfine sugar
3/4 cup sour cream
2 eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
Ingredients for the topping:
8 oz Philadelphia cream cheese
1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream

Nigella's Suggestions:
For a simpler dessert, replace the frosting with a light dusting of powered sugar.

Preheat the over to 350 F, and butter and line a 9 inch springform pan.
Pour the Guinness into a large wide saucepan, add the butter — in spoons or slices — and heat until the butter's melted, at which time you should whisk in the cocoa and sugar. Beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla and then pour into the brown, buttery, beery pan and finally whisk in the flour and baking soda.
Pour the cake batter into the greased and lined pan and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Leave to cool completely in the pan on a cooling rack, as it is quite a damp cake.
When the cake's cold, sit it on a flat platter or cake stand and get on with the frosting. Lightly whip the cream cheese until smooth, sift over the confectioner's sugar and then beat them both together. Or do this in a processor, putting the unsifted confectioners' sugar in first and blitz to remove lumps before adding the cheese.
Add the cream and beat again until it makes a spreadable consistency. Ice the top of the black cake so that it resembles the frothy top of the famous pint.
Makes about 12 slices

From Feast by Nigella Lawson. Photographs by James Merrell. Copyright 2004 Nigella Lawson. Photographs Copyright 2004 by James Merrell. Published by Hyperion. All Rights Reserved.

Via: NPR. com/Morning Edition

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Dinner at Hundred Acres

Soho locavore joint. Great space. Unfortunately, the food is only so-so. The fish dish (special) I ordered was too salty for my taste, but the mixed green salad with hazelnuts was decent. Cocktails were notable. The apple tartine was not terrible. My guess is that brunch is the way to go with this place...
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