Eating my way around the world

Month: January, 2015

Blizzards are Fun: An Inspired Menu


A snowstorm is about to slam into the East Coast. I don’t know about you, but blizzards always mean one thing to me: get cooking in the kitchen. Staring into the silence of a snowfall, your home gets all toasty-warm with the oven working in over-drive. Better yet, invite some friends over, have them bring the wine, and make this little menu tonight. It’s fairly easy to throw together at the last min as you rush home from work. And if you have people coming over, you’ll have some extra hands to help out. How is that blizzard sounding now?

  • Popcorn gets no love. It’s the best appetizer: it’s cheap, can feed a crowd, and is simple to make. My method: heat 2tbsp coconut oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over med-high heat; put a lid on it. Add 4 test kernels. Once they’ve popped, add in 2/3c popping corn kernels. Shake the pan vigorously as the popcorn pops. Once the popping begins to subside, turn off the heat and let it pop a bit more. Once it’s done popping, pour the popcorn into a large bowl. Add salt to taste, toss (I do 2 large pinches of salt). Pour 3tbsp of melted butter over the popcorn, toss, taste, repeat if necessary with more salt and/or butter. Makes a very large bowl.
  • The best roast chicken. It’s the lemon in the cavity of the bird that makes it super moist. A tip: blast your bird at a high temp for a 1/2hr when you just put it in to get the skin super crispy: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/chicken-recipes/perfect-roast-chicken/#Y8uq3jzizkrRKdiy.97
  • Mashed potatoes with a twist: http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/mashed-potatoes-clouds-recipe.html
  • Greens are so much more tastier as a gratin. You don’t have to use kale, you could use Swiss Chard, Collard Greens, Spinach, or a mix of all: http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/winter-greens-gratin
  • Dessert should be simple and comforting. You really can’t go wrong with chocolate chip cookies. Grab some ice cream or gelato if you want to get fancy: http://www.marthastewart.com/344840/soft-and-chewy-chocolate-chip-cookies

Dirty French

Was able to try Dirty French in the Lower East Side last night with a good friend. It was a great welcome meal to my second night in NYC. We split the chicken & crepes. It was amazeballs; you get an entire chicken to split with another person, although this could have easily fed 4. The white meat arrived on a wood cutting board in a cast iron pan with a simple dijon sauce. Delicious with the creme fraiche. The dark meat, complete with chicken feet, came separately & was served on the cutting board beside the pan. It was fragrant from the lemongrass & coconut, & the skin was melty-caramely in your mouth. You popped that into your crepe with the radish & mint accoutrement. Tast-y.
That was all we had. That was all we needed, save for the glass of red we each had with dinner.

And if you get there between 3:30 & 5:30pm, waiting for the restaurant to open as we did, lounging at The Ludlow Hotel’s lobby with their wine list isn’t such a bad way to kill time.