April 2010

Ramps: What Up With That?

There’s this SNL sketch that Craig and I find pretty funny. Actually, I’m not sure it’s even that funny; it’s more amusing than funny. Essentially, there’s this talk show host (played by Kenan Thompson) who hosts a show called “What Up With That?” and he sings a theme song (also called “What Up With That?”) and every time he starts to interview his guests, he starts the song again and nothing ever gets done and there’s a man in a red track suit dancing and sometimes a choir and weird cameos and confetti. Maybe you just need to see it, after the jump.

Meyer Lemon Meringue Pie

Ok, I promise, this is it with the Meyer lemons. You’re sick of them–after this post, and that post–I know, I know. And when Lindy drew lemons (that sort of look like Meyer lemons) into my banner this month, who knew I’d be writing so much about them? Unless this was Lindy’s master plan? What if she works for the Meyer lemon industry? What if her banners are prophecies and whatever she draws in them comes true? What if next month’s banner features me…DEAD?! This is like an episode of the X-Files!

But even Mulder and Scully would tell me to come off it and just get to the recipe for that gorgeous-looking pie in the lead photo.

Meyer Lemon Chicken & Asparagus

There are two dishes referenced in Kim Severson’s “Spoon Fed” that don’t have corresponding recipes: the first is a chicken stuffed with Meyer lemons, the other is something called a “Jewish muffin.” I haven’t had any luck parsing the mysteries of the Jewish muffin, but after an exchange on Twitter I was able to extract from Kim a Tweetcipe for the chicken: “Meyer lemons, cut in half, shoved inside a well-seasoned chicken along with some fresh parsley and maybe thyme.”

Tartufo at Lupa

The Brown Bonnet from Carvel Ice Cream was a staple of my childhood. It’s hard to believe it now, but our family would ride our bikes together to the Carvel on Long Beach Road in Oceanside, Long Island, where I grew up. We’d dismount, mosey inside and place our orders and my parents’ orders were always the same: a brown bonnet for my dad, a brown bonnet for my mom. What’s a brown bonnet? Essentially: soft-serve ice cream dipped in a chocolate glaze that instantly hardens. You can get it at the Mr. Softee truck in New York; there it’s just called a chocolate-dip. Wherever you get it, there’s something immensely satisfying about ice cream in a chocolate shell. And after years of brown bonnets and chocolate-dips at Mr. Softee, I thought I knew everything there was to know about the magical combo of chocolate on the outside and ice cream on the inside—that is, until I had the tartufo at Lupa.

Kitchen Grease Hand Soap

I don’t normally take pictures in restaurant bathrooms. Ok, so maybe I do, but that’s not something I like to talk about on the blog. The point is that the other day, I met my parents for lunch at Lupa (I’m going to blog about their tartufo, the best I’ve ever had, later in the week) and something in the bathroom made such an impression on me that I took a picture of it. You probably can’t make out the words, though, so let me explain.

My Favorite Cooking App

Cooking Apps are all the rage these days. If you don’t own an iPhone or a computer (how are you reading this??!) you’re probably wondering: “What’s a cooking app?” Basically, it’s an application that you can download that aids you in your cooking. So there’s Michael Ruhlman’s wonderful Ratio app which calculates precisely how much butter and sugar you need if you have X amount of flour in order to make a batch of cookies. That’s really cool. And then there’s Mark Bittman’s “How To Cook Everything” app which Matt Armendariz writes about here. There’s also one from Epicurious, one from Martha Stewart and more and more cooking apps on the way now that the iPad’s here. But which one do I use most often in my kitchen? The answer may surprise you.

The Coco Winner

There were some incredible entries this weekend in the Coco Cookbook Contest. The most impressive, technically, was this mushroom stuffed quail with risotto by Joe; the funniest was “Become a Master Chef in 5 Easy Steps” by Cristin (she burned her feet like I did in this old post). There was also a masterful Southern dinner, a great post about roasted marrow bones & parsley salad (did you know Anthony Bourdain picked that for his last meal?), a gorgeous honey-braised côtes de boeuf with creamy polenta, a sweet potato and goats cheese galette and a quiche aux champignons. The winner–as suggested by the picture–is this post: “Adventures in Biryani Land.” The post met all my criteria–difficult dish, an impressive finished product, but, most importantly, great storytelling. A perfect post for Mother’s Day too; congrats Lawyer Loves Lunch! Contact me to claim your prize.

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