I recently downloaded the Monterey Bay Aquarium app for my iPhone. It’s a great way for those of us who want to buy sustainable seafood to know what’s ok and what’s not. Only a few fish get the designation “Best Choice”–most fish, like monkfish, cod, flounder, and skate are to be avoided, and other fish like haddock, hake, and pollock are “Good Alternatives”–but “Best Choice”? That’s an exclusive designation. And I was surprised to see, while checking the app at Citarella, that catfish–which is actually pretty cheap–is a “Best Choice” fish.
Two Sundays ago, after a morning of bird-watching with our ornithologist friend Morgan Tingley, I ate my first soft-boiled egg. We were at Cafe Sabarsky, one of my favorite places in New York, and Morgan recommended the Wiener Frühstück for breakfast: a continental breakfast of orangensaft, ein weiches ei, weißbrot, butter, marmelade & honig von staud. Translation: coffee, orange juice, brioche toast, country bread, butter, jam, honey from Staud and, our subject today, a soft-boiled egg.
When I get invited to dinner parties, these days, I pretty much make it a policy not to take pictures. This takes the pressure off the host or hostess, who may be nervous that their food blogging friend is scrutinizing every bite, preparing to skewer them for all the world to see on his food blog the next morning. Mostly, though it takes the pressure off me: by not taking pictures, there’s no expectation that I’m going to blog about it. So if you’re wondering why the sweet potato souffle you cooked for me didn’t make it on to the blog (that’s just a hypothetical) it’s most likely a function of my policy. Unless, of course, you cook me the lasagna in the photo above.
I’m trying not to be dramatic here, but I can’t avoid the second half of this sentence: if you haven’t had a Meyer lemon, you haven’t lived!
Yes, that was a pretty dramatic thing to say, but let’s look at the facts: (1) A regular lemon isn’t very subtle, it’s an acidic attack on your taste buds. A Meyer lemon? It’s a subtly perfumed orangey lemony hybrid—it makes a regular lemon look like a punk; (2) regular lemons are around all year long, they pile up in their sad bins at the grocery store, and you grab them more out of pity than anything resembling delight. But Meyer lemons? They’re only here for a short time–the winter months up through the start of Spring (i.e. right now!)–and discovering a bin of Meyer lemons at the store is, for a food lover, like a baseball card collector stumbling upon a (insert rare baseball card here) at a garage sale. It’s cause for celebration.