We’ll be holding a graduation party for our son mid-June and need help. We’d like to avoid the giant sub, pulled pork sandwich, and sheet cake standards in favor of something more interesting. Very flexible as to time of day and type of party, although we’re inviting close to 100 people and can’t afford to have it totally catered (college tuition looms). Ideas, Eaters?
New titles from two heavy hitters (Pollan and Bittman), plus a rowdy kitchen memoir and a controversial feminist work—these are just some of the books on shelf this month.
Not to be confused with the thick-as-fog, sits-in-your-stomach-like-a-brick winter-time version, this pea soup is subtle and light, fragrant with lemon and mint. The soup is only simmered long enough to cook through the peas and let the flavors come together; a handful of Parmesan at the end adds salt and a touch of creaminess.
Philadelphia possesses one of the richest and most dynamic beer-drinking cultures in America. Here are the 10 must-visits in the Philly beer-bar scene.
Versions of this traditional rye bread abound in Finland, ranging from crisp and cracker-like to thick and hearty. This is in the latter camp: a slightly dense bread that's great for toasting and slathering with jam or honey.
A quick Google search revealed that kale and tahini are not such original bedfellows, but the first time I tried a kale tahini salad it was a mind-blowing revelation. I added almonds and apricots, sticking with the Mediterranean flavor profile, and added some chicken as well to make it a more complete meal.
This kuchen combines a rich yeast cake with a spring-inspired fresh strawberry rhubarb puree and yes, plenty of spiced crumbs on top.
A three to one ratio of rhubarb to cherries yields the perfect balance of tart and sweet. Half a vanilla bean and a generous splash of orange liqueur make for one fancy jam. It would be delicious over waffles with a dollop of crème fresh, or sandwiched in a biscuit with a wedge of brie.
I call ricotta gnocchi "fast food" Italian, as with just a little practice you can make ricotta gnocchi in as little time as it takes you to boil the water to cook them in. This really is a dish, sauce included, that can be prepared and cooked in under 30 minutes which makes it a fabulous choice for busy mid-week meals.
Jeweled rice is a magnificent dish. Adorned with dried fruit, toasted nuts, rose petals, and pomegranate seeds, it is a panoply of flavors and colors. In Lousia Shafia's The New Persian Kitchen, the jeweled rice is made even more compelling with a combination of grains included. The mixture of quinoa and brown basmati rice adds an earthy complexity to the dish that counters the sweet and rich flavors from the toppings.
The tart flavors of this jam make it a perfect compliment to sweet breads, cakes, and other desserts. Try it spooned over vanilla ice cream or swirled into rice pudding.
Huaraches are my new favorite Mexican street food. But what's a huarache you ask? Picture a slightly thick, massively oversized homemade tortilla. Then picture this tortilla stuffed with refried beans. Then add more beans, spicy chorizo, cheese, lettuce, salsa, and tomatoes on top. Make it hot. Make it crisp. Make it over-the-top. And, thanks to Alexandra Penfold and Siobhan Wallace's new book, New York à la Cart, you can make this version, from Red Hook's popular Country Boys truck, in your own kitchen.
Shucking fresh peas is not a quick task, I'll admit. But if you can get your hands on some fresh peas in their pods at a farmers' market in the next couple of weeks, grab them and commit to an extra half hour of meal prep. Deborah Madison's unassuming Peas with Baked Ricotta from her new book Vegetable Literacy is worth it. The bright sweetness of the buttery peas matches perfectly with the creamy richness of fresh ricotta, and baking the ricotta with olive oil and fresh bread crumbs transforms cheese and peas into an actual meal.
Cemitas and tortas are similar sandwiches, but most great cemitas have some special equipment, like a squishy sesame seed bun and the aromatic herb papalo. At Cocina Economica Mexico on the Upper West Side, we were happy to find that and more on their chorizo cemita ($8).
Making mole has a reputation for being an arduous process with dozens of steps and even more ingredients, but not all moles are particularly difficult or time consuming. The Yellow Mole with Masa Dumplings from Pati's Mexican Table is one such mole. Pati Jinich's recipe only takes an hour or so, and almost all the ingredients can be found in most grocery stores. The thick brick red sauce is tangy and just a little spicy, a worthy accompaniment to braised chicken. Cute, dimpled masa dumplings make the mole into a full meal.
Both Yankee Stadium and Citi Field have put more effort than ever into their in-house food, and hey, Parm or Shake Shack mid-game is a great thing. But if you've made the trip to the South Bronx or Corona, how about trying some of the local fare? You'll find shorter lines (and largely cheaper food), we promise.
The sad truth is that most crab cakes stink. Literally. The vast majority out there are made with canned, pasteurized crab meat which instantly takes them out of "sweet and succulent" territory and into "fishy and please god take that smell away from me" land. But this damn well better be for the best possible crab cakes out there.
Diana Kuan's dry-fried green beans in The Chinese Takeout Cookbook are less embellished than versions seen at Chinese restaurants; she keeps things simple by skipping the ground pork and preserved vegetable that are often included. Instead, the beans are bolstered by minced and browned fresh shiitakes and the requisite Sichuan pepper, chili bean sauce, and dried red chiles. These changes not only make the dish easier to prepare with grocery staples, but they also give the beans themselves a greater chance to shine.
This Curry Row newcomer offers a slew of tasty, reasonably priced vegetarian and vegan dishes.
Diana Kuan's egg drop soup in The Chinese Takeout Cookbook is a simple affair, just as the bare-bones soup should be. Her broth is flavored with just a bit of ginger, rice wine, white pepper, and sugar; bolstered with meaty dried shiitakes; and thickened (just barely) with a cornstarch slurry. The broth's simplicity allows the just-set sunny egg to shine. Turning off the heat while stirring in the egg keeps its texture tender and light.
When it comes down to it, most of our favorite things to eat are pretty darn cheap. Sandwiches, burgers, pizza, ice cream...you have to work hard to get these over the $10 price point. But if we had to choose, what would be our absolute favorites? Here are nine ways we answer that question.
Little pots of satiny molten chocolate are the ultimate chocolate fix in under 30 minutes.
After toasting olive oil-brushed baguette slices under the broiler, I rub the crisp bread with fresh garlic, then spoon on a mixture of tomato and serrano chile that were grated on a box grater. A drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of sea salt are nice finishing touches for this simple Spanish tapas dish.
This elegant take on the classic Caesar salad is the right combination of innovative flavors and simple technique: greens (either baby kale or romaine), croutons, dressing, and parmesan. The creamy dressing is what really sets this salad apart.
It takes a lot for a printed food guide book to feel worth it these days, but the Korean Food Foundation's Korean Restaurant Guide: New York may be one of them. We're giving two of them away right here.
There is something so satisfying about a farro salad, especially when it's a complete meal. All you have to do is toss some in a big bowl, grab a fork, and dig in.