Made-Up Minestrone

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My proudest culinary achievements aren’t the ones where I followed a recipe really well or repeated a specific technique demonstrated by a chef, they’re the ones where on a freezing cold night, instead of ordering a pizza or Thai food (side-note: we still haven’t found good take-out in the West Village; anyone?) I whip up something delicious with what I have on hand.

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Caramelized Apple Pancakes

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People who live in warm climates aren’t allowed to eat pancakes.

It’s true: pancakes are for cold winter mornings, still in your pajamas, curled around a space heater and holding your coffee mug close to your face. Pancake batter is basically cake batter and the only way you can justify eating cake at the start of your day is to keep warm; so Floridians, stay away. This recipe is for those of us who saw our breath this morning.

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Cold Weather Lunches in N.Y.C. (Setagaya & Pearl)

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There are cold days and then there are really cold days and on those really cold days you probably want to stay at home, under the covers, and never get out of bed. But then you have to get out of bed and, more importantly, you have to eat and if you’re in Manhattan running errands, you may find it difficult to find the cold weather comfort food you crave. Sure you could snarf a burrito, you could scarf a sandwich, but will that really warm you up? No, it will not. But here are two N.Y.C. dishes that will.

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Rigatoni Bolognese

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December marks the transition from the sweet confections of Thanksgiving to the more complex, rewarding foods of winter. Sure, there’s still Hanukkah with its fried latkes and apple sauce (an easy thrill) and Christmas with its sticky, gooey ham (which could fit comfortably on the Thanksgiving table) but, for the most part, when the weather gets cold, the food gets better. Case in point? Marcella Hazan’s Rigatoni Bolognese.

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