Christmas with my family.
I kind of “fell off” my blog…for years ::crickets chirping:: I have been eating and enjoying like crazy for the last several months. I am only mildly embarrassed that I can no longer fit into my jeans. Anyway, I have decided to enjoy and eat what I want until the New Year, after which I will reign it in and go back to healthy eating (and enjoying a treat meal once a week).
The best things I ate this year (in no particular order):
Tyler Florence’s “Ultimate Lasagna” – My family tested this recipe out on Christmas. We don’t really have a set Christmas menu, so we kind of put together a mish mosh of items. Previously, I was a die hard fan of Ina Garten’s lasagna recipe, however, Tyler’s recipe is truly ‘ultimate.’ I think the cinnamon is the key ingredient. Recipe can be found http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/the-ultimate-lasagna-recipe.html
Fried Chicken – From Blue Ribbon . Bet you never thought the best chicken you’d have was at a bowling alley! I tried this fried chicken at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. This chicken was perfectly crispy on the outside – I believe I heard “as crispy as a potato chip” in a description as my cousin shoveled a drumstick into his face – and nice and juicy on the inside. This chicken was not greasy at all, and coupled with a round of beer – hits the spot. Almost makes the almost two hour wait to bowl worth it. Almost.Try it here.
Ramen Burger – I knew something was up when I saw that the longest line at Smorgasburg was for Ramen Burger. Ramen Burger serves a juicy burger with the bun made from ramen. Genius! Love ramen. Love burgers. The end.
Lamb Burgers – Can you tell I like burgers? New York Times magazine did a feature on burgers. I wanted the recipes but was too cheap to purchase the Sunday issue and instead used my iPhone to take photos of the recipes. A girl’s gotta eat right?! I will share my version of the recipe with you. 1 1/2 lbs ground lamb. 1 small onion, minced. 1T toasted cumin seeds (can sub cumin powder if that’s what you have). 1T toasted sesame seeds. 1T chili powder (I use 1t of homemade Indian chili powder sent from relatives in India (which contains other seasonings such as garlic and salt) . Mix with your hands, but don’t overmix. Place on the grill and cook to medium rare, or medium (really medium rare, I’m just pretending you can enjoy it another way). Enjoy on toasted buns (like Martin’s Potato Roll). Top burger with a little cilantro and perhaps a little tzatziki.
Cronut. Dominique Ansel’s played, but oh so freaking delicious doughnut dessert. Get them now. I don’t think people are selling them on the ‘black market’ for $50 anymore. Tejal Rao tweeted about these “one ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.” It’s mine! My precious.
Tuna Dumplings – at Ki Sushi (Brooklyn, NY) Lobster salad, avocado and crunch with spicy sauce, wrapped in paper-thin tuna. Rich and light at the same time. Served on a bed of salad. An oldie, but a goodie. Perfect for a weekday lunch.
Lobster Roll – Red Hook Lobster Pound (Brooklyn,NY) . You can pick these up at their food truck, at various street fairs they participate in, or at their location in Red Hook. These lobster rolls aren’t cheap at $16. I prefer the Connecticut roll with warm butter and lemon. Filled with chunks of lobster. Wash down with a nice Allagash White.Glug, glug, glug.
Coconut Velvet Cake – Piece of Velvet (Brooklyn,NY). We used to frequent Brooklyn’s famous Cake Man Raven. He once made a cake for President Bill Clinton! Anyway, I guess the rents got too damn high and his workers lifted his (publicly available) recipe when he could no longer afford the rent and opened a place in the very same spot. Anyway, the new location for the original Cake Man is kind of out of the way, and against my better judgment, we go to the its competitor (PoV). I get the coconut velvet cake. It’s an unholy shade of green and covered with cream cheese coconut icing. Usually so moist (I will admit there have been times it has been dry). They sell gigantic slices for about $6 each. Best enjoyed Sunday evenings with a glass of wine (maybe a late harvest Riesling or even Prosecco) while watching Homeland. This will prepare you to face Monday. Trust me.
Capocollo Pizza – Saraghina (Brooklyn, NY). This Bed-Stuy eatery serves pizza that dare I say rivals Brooklyn greats like Totonno’s and Di Fara (I have yet to try Lucali or Roberta’s). Don’t kill me, but I think it may be true! No need to wait, just come on down to the home of Jay-Z, Biggie, and now me! Prosciutto & Funghi is m next fave.
Nutellasagna – Robicellis (Brooklyn, NY). Creator Allison Robicelli describes it as “layers of buttery lasagna noodles, cannoli custard, copious amounts of Nutella, crushed roasted hazelnuts and chopped chocolate, with some marshmallows on top for additional sweetness.” ‘Nuff said.
Berenjena Torta AKA Eggplant Sandwich – The Taco Truck (Jersey City, Hoboken, Morristown, NJ). Great for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. This sandwich is creamy, rich, crunchy, spicy, flavorful and so much more I can’t describe. At $8.50, not exactly cheap (in my mind for a weekday lunch), but so worth it. Follow them on Twitter so you know where
to stalk them the truck is located.
Okra Fries- The Cecil (Harlem, NY). Came here for NYC Restaurant Week (don’t judge), these fries were perfectly crispy, crunchy and salty on the outside and soft and gooey on inside. How do I make these at home? This is healthy right? Okra is a vegetable and it’s green!
Fish Sauce Wings- Pok Pok NY (Brooklyn, NY). Juicy, tender, sticky and spicy. I will admit, I licked my fingers a few times. Of course I washed my hands before and after.
I could go on, but the memories may make we want to go eat more. 2014 – it’s been great!