At the very tippy top of the New York restaurant pyramid sits Jean-Georges. It’s up there with Daniel, Per Se, Del Posto, Eleven Madison Park and Le Bernardin; the only restaurants that currently have four stars from The New York Times.
What separates Jean-Georges from the bunch, though, is that you can eat lunch there for $28. Let me say that again. You can eat lunch at one of New York’s only four-star restaurants for $28.
Amanda Hesser has lived in my kitchen for as long as I’ve been cooking. Well, in cookbook form: her “Cooking For Mr. Latte” (which I refer to as a cookbook even though it’s really a memoir (with recipes) about her courtship with New Yorker writer Tad Friend) is a constant go-to resource for me. The almond cake in it? It’s one of my all-time favorite recipes. So it was a big deal to have her and her Food52 co-creator and collaborator Merrill Stubbs here in my kitchen today for this latest installment of “Someone’s In The Kitchen With.” We chat about The New York Times Cookbook (Merrill assisted Amanda in writing it), the creation of Food52, and–later on in the conversation–what it’s like being women in a male dominated internet start-up world. Plus, I served them this coffee cake and Amanda already Tweeted that she’s coming back for more tomorrow. I cooked for a cookbook hero and she wants to come back for more (that’s a good feeling).
Previous Episodes: Ed Levine, Matt Armendariz, The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.
Restaurants that are institutions don’t have to be good. Before it closed, Tavern on the Green in New York was like that. You didn’t go for the food–no, you definitely didn’t go for the food–you went for the chandeliers, for the topiary, for the chintzy souvenirs you could buy in the gift shop.
My first experience with guacamole was the one in The Barefoot Contessa book, a flavorful guacamole that has the requisite avocados, red onion and lemon juice, but departs from the norm with fresh garlic and a few hits of Tabasco. Up until last weekend, if I were sent to the store to shop for guacamole ingredients, I probably would’ve stuck to The Barefoot Contessa formula. But then my friend Mark entered the picture.
It was only after I’d started making this coffee cake, mixing the butter and sugar, that I realized this wasn’t a round 9-inch cake sort of deal; this was a 13 X 9-inch beast.
Yes, I know, you’re supposed to study a recipe carefully before proceeding; and yes, you’re supposed to butter the pan before you start (I tend to do it right before adding the batter). But the point is: I made a giant coffee cake. And the larger point is: it was so outrageously good, with a chocolate cinnamon swirl inside and pecans on top, that it was gone in a matter of days.
When word spread that Nate Appleman, a chef anointed by the James Beard Foundation and Food & Wine for his San Francisco restaurant A16 (where I ate in 2007), was working at a Chipotle in Chelsea, the food world was incredulous.
He’d left San Francisco to help open Pulino’s here in N.Y.C. and when that didn’t work out, no one knew what his next move would be. His next move, apparently, was to run a Chipotle in Chelsea.
Sunday Morning Oatmeal is not your average, every day oatmeal. It’s an oatmeal that, if you ate it every day, might kill you. But on Sunday morning, death is the furthest thing from your mind; you’ve got the Sunday Times Magazine crossword puzzle open on the table next to you (you look for all the food clues first, naturally) and Bon Iver playing on iTunes (well, Craig does, I just liked it and asked “What is this?” and he said “Bon Iver.”) There’s no set formula for this Sunday Morning Oatmeal, you just wing it as you go. But it’s best if you start the night before, right before you go to bed.