Meet & Eat: Hannah Howard, Serious Eats Intern
Editor's note: And so we continue the getting-to-know-you routine with the folks behind Serious Eats. Today, we give the treatment to SE intern Hannah Howard, who's with us for the summer. In addition to the extemporaneous blogging she's been doing on the site, she's jumped right in and has started an entertaining, heartfelt, and insightful column for us called Served, which gives readers the inside scoop on her job as a waiter. So without further ado, here's Hannah! --Adam
Name: Hannah Howard
Location: Upper Upper West Side, New York City
Occupation: Student and waiter
Favorite comfort food? Different pasta incarnations. At home, pasta with olive oil, garlic, red chile flakes, lots of black pepper, and pecorino. At Casellula, where I work, mac and cheese with caramelized onion and lardons. And greasy lo mein or pad thai, always.
Guilty pleasures? This list could be long! I love dessert. I love sweet and salty, chocolate and peanut butter. City Bakery chocolate chip cookies. Boardwalk fries with lots of salt and malt vinegar.
Describe your perfect meal. It's a jubilant affair with people who I love, cooking and eating excessive amounts of excessively delicious things late into the night.
What food won't you eat? I'll try anything once!
What would you like to try but haven't yet? Street food in Singapore, Thailand, the Caribbean. And I want to eat at The French Laundry before I die.
Favorite food person? Ruth Reichl.
When did you first realize you were a serious eater? During a seventh grade field trip to New York. On the agenda was "lunch in Chinatown." My group, indifferent to my protests, chose McDonald's. I cried. My math teacher appeased me with a trip to a little restaurant next door. I don't remember where we went, but I do remember the steaming, juicy roast duck we shared and feeling giant relief.
What do your family and friends think of your food obsessions? They either "get it" or they don't. The former are happy to cook, eat, and drink with me. I try not too worry to much about what the latter think.
What is your favorite meal of the day and what's your go-to spot for that meal and what do you usually order? I love weekday brunch at Pastis, when it's not a total zoo and the light is streaming in. Their steak sandwich is killer. But usually dinner is the meal I get to share with people, and thus my favorite.
Do you ever cook? What's the best dish you make? I am always wanting to cook new things, so I don't have many dishes that get made repeatedly. My recent success stories are braised short ribs; scallop, mint and pea risotto; thai peanut noodle salad; a simple summery berry crumble.
Most memorable New York City meal? It's a tie between a grand tasting at Eleven Madison Park, my birthday celebration in Artisanal's "cheese cave," wd~50, and an amazing Feast of the Seven Fishes dinner party at a friend's apartment, complete with wine and cocktail pairings and a few more than seven courses.
Best pizza in the city? Una Pizza Napoletana.
Favorite burger? Sadly, I don't eat too many burgers. When I worked at Beacon, I thought the burgers we grilled for ourselves at the end of a sweaty kitchen shift were perfection.
Favorite bagel? Mini bagels at Absolute Bagels. Bialys at Kossar's Bialys.
Best late-night eats? Blue Ribbon.
Undiscovered gem? If I knew, I wouldn't tell.
What is New York missing, foodwise? I have no complaints. There is still so much here I have yet to explore and eat.