Neighborliness isn’t a word you hear much in New York City. Sure, we’ve met our neighbor neighbors a few times (the man right next door asked me to stop playing show tunes on the piano at 3 AM; can you believe the nerve?) but I’d never call our relationship with our neighbors neighborly. No, I haven’t experienced much neighborliness in N.Y.C. until, last week, when a food writer named Deobrah DiClementi, partner of Rebecca Charles (chef/owner of Pearl Oyster Bar) responded to a mention I made about my favorite cookie–the rainbow cookie–by messengering me over a homemade batch. Isn’t that the most neighborly New York story you’ve ever heard? And not only that, she included the recipe.
The first meal that you cook in a new apartment is very, very important. We all remember what happened last time, don’t we? I attempted to inaugurate our Park Slope apartment three years ago with Edna Lewis’s fried chicken (fried in butter and lard) and didn’t get the fat hot enough. The result? Gooey, gloppy, undercooked chicken and a cursed apartment that gave us bad heat over three harsh winters. (OK, I exaggerate: I liked that apartment. But the heat did suck).