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Too Good To Mix: 9 Rums Perfect For Sipping

I've never been much for sipping rum, but I recently tried Pyrat and LOVED it. Very smooth, some good citrus notes. I have seen some of these around town and will start tasting.

Taste Test: The Best Fancy Drinking Chocolate

vgordin: I love abuelita! My real abuelita introduced it to me. :)

Sorry, New York; Why Los Angeles is the Best Pastrami City in America

Half-Jewish, life-long food obsessed NY-er. I will say this for our food- it's gone downhill because we got a rep and then got inundated. You can still find good versions of the things we're known for (pizza, bagels, pastrami) if you're willing to hunt, but it's watered down in terms of population because there's SO MUCH CRAP out there. Some of it's new chi-chi crap, some of it's no-name tiny guy crap.

Also- why hate? LA may have us beat but it's a 5 hour plane ride away. I'll get my pastrami here and enjoy it- along with my winters. When I visit friends there, I'll enjoy it there. It's a big country.

30-Minute Pressure Cooker Chicken With Chickpeas, Tomatoes, and Chorizo

I was interested in making this in a regular pot. I would just have a bit more stock on hand, but don't necessarily add it in immediately. I'd sear the chicken, remove it, then proceed to step 1. Thighs can braise for 20-30 min (est), so maybe check around 10 min and see how the liquid is. If you want more sauce, add more stock/tomatoes.

The Best Gin to Buy on a Budget

*Bit more bite. I tend to do boodles for my G&Ts.

The Best Gin to Buy on a Budget

I love Bombay dry for martinis and gimlets. I find it on the sweet side, which I think works well for the stronger drinks but need something with a bit more bit for a G&T or anything with more flavorful ingredients.

I think New Amsterdam is good for the vodka drinker who wants to expand his/her horizons and I'm heard similar things about Bulldog, though I haven't tried that one. NA is very mild and geared toward the vodka swilling crowd who want to be able to say they're drinking real martinis. It's gin with training wheels.

Extra-Crispy Bar-Style Tortilla Pizza

^I asked the same thing a while ago. Kenji said:

I haven't had the best luck with corn tortillas for applications like this. They get a little crunchy, not truly crisp like the way flour does. I mean, not bad, but just different.

Flourless Chocolate-Chestnut Torte

^Ditto above. I've never seen chestnut puree. Is there anything more in it besides chestnuts, or can I just make it in the food processor?

The Best Scotch to Buy on a Budget

Arbeck- if you want to avoid peat and can spend a bit more (and aren't a scotch snob), I HIGHLY recommend Powers Signature Release (green box). It'll run around $40-$45 which is a very good deal for a special edition Irish like that. I love my single malts, but I still think this is one of my favorite whisk(e)ies ever. Smooth, lots of flavor and character without peat.

I'm slowly growing to like peat, but I can only handle the mildest, most balanced peat flavors. The Skye and Monkey sound the most intriguing to me. I don't do scotch cocktails- it's all neat, or maybe a drop of water (yes- I have a dropper for just such an occasion).

Extra-Crispy Bar-Style Tortilla Pizza

What are your thoughts on using GF tortillas for this recipe (like traditional corn ones)? I can't see a reason it wouldn't work, but you're the pros.

Gateway Ciders for Beer, Wine, and Cocktail Lovers

*I know Basque =/= Spain, but the flavors described above are exactly what I don't like in Spanish ciders. :)

Gateway Ciders for Beer, Wine, and Cocktail Lovers

Frackle- I think the idea with these sort of lists is to encourage people who don't like venturing outside of their comfort zone to try something new. Putting it in terms they understand and making it relate to something they know makes the foreign much more approachable. I love trying new things, but it helps me get a handle on what tastes to expect. Oddly- I like sour beers and loathe Spanish cider. Interesting...

I recommend anyone who lives in NYC try the ciders at Queens Kickshaw. They have a VERY impressive list (that changes constantly and never repeats) and the owners are eventually opening up a cider place in the LES. I tried Domaine Dupont Pommeau there- like a super-boozy iced cider, crossed with port. It was amazing.

Baked Apples With Oat Crumble From 'Huckleberry'

When it comes to BAKED APPLES (as opposed to pies and baked goods like that), what apples do you prefer? I tend to go Cortland, but they're not always easy to find and I'm eager to experiment.

Every Diner Should Serve a Gyro Omelet

I live in Astoria and have never seen a Gyro omlette! I want one so badly now!

New York's Best Bagel Comes From a Department Store

They sounds great, but that's a lot of planning for bagels. I live a block from one of the top places by other lists' standards. Yeah, they do 10oz monstrosities but they're good and don't require reservations 48hrs in advance and a 30minute train ride on a Sunday morning. May tell my friend though- this is more her speed.

Hey Chef, What Can I Do With Mint?

Mint is great because it can do sweet and savory. Make cocktail syrup. Make whipped cream. Make jelly for lamb. I make thai pesto- basil, mint, cilantro, peanuts, peanut oil, chili flake or sriracha and a bit of soy sauce if it's too thick, or just plain salt. Great on noodles, fish, tofu...everything!

A Beginner's Guide to Mead

You have a picture of Honey Maker, yet you don't list them as a Mead to look for? They have a wide variety of flavors- I strongly prefer the spiced. It's perfect for the holidays. The semi dry is very nice too. Lavender is good, but it's what you'd expect- sweet and floral. The hop one intrigues me.

A Closer Look at Your Italian Bakery's Cookie Case

Yeah- I tend to avoid their sweet cheeses (although the rum raisin was nice- the raisins were liberally soaked). The cucumber dill is great, especially on pumpernickel. :)

A Closer Look at Your Italian Bakery's Cookie Case

Max: regarding rainbow cookie cream cheese, if anyone was going to do it, I bet BK Bagels in Astoria would. They just had baklava a few weeks ago and oreo cheesecake a while before that. Do you powerful food blog people have ways of communicating your message to them?

A Closer Look at Your Italian Bakery's Cookie Case

Venieros (East Village) and Brunos (Greenwich Village) are my favorite italian pastry shops. I can't speak to either rainbow cookie (I've had so many bad ones I tend to avoid them on principle), but the butter ones are wonderful!

Rhubarb Shrub

Just made this and it's great! I did a much reduced version of the recipe- 12oz of rhubarb and 3/4c of sugar and vinegar. Any tips for cocktails?

Where to Drink Outdoors in New York City, 2014 Edition

The only thing I'd add to the Queens list is Astoria Bier and Cheese. They have a lovely backyard and a really interesting selection of beers and cheeses (as the name would imply). Also yummy paninis and SERIOUSLY addictive house-made corn nuts.

Gluten-Free Brownie Brittle

Peewee- the recipe came out in today's recipe email, so I'm just using that.

Gluten-Free Brownie Brittle

Looks great but the page won't let me email it!

Summer Grilling the Cypriot Way

One of my favorite restaurants in Astoria. Their Cyrpus salad is delicious and really shows that mix of cuisines (greek salad, with capers and cilantro- trust me, it works).

Lunch near Columbus Circle or Puck

I'm graduating in a few weeks and am looking for a nice lunch place for the family. The ceremony is near Columbus Circle, but there's a reception a few hours later at the Puck building, so either area is fine.

Sadly, as much as I would eat anything, my family avoids Indian, Mexican and Italian (weird relatives). Thanks in advance!

Hara Maas in NYC?

I recently tried hara maas- chicken cooked in a spiced cilantro sauce- at an Indian place near me. It's so yummy but I can't find it anywhere else. Does anyone know a place, other than Saffron in Astoria, that serves this?

I don't mind other meats- their version only comes with chicken. The only recipe I found online called it Green Mutton, if that helps.

Where to go when ___ is full

I love your section on where to go when you can't get a table at a certain place. I suggest you try "where to get GF food when Risotteria can't seat you"! I love them, but I've rarely eaten before 9pm at that place!

Crispin Boxed Cider in NYC

Has anyone seen Crispin Boxed cider for sale in NYC? I found one box in a grocery store, bought it one a whim and loved it. The website said there's none but I'm hoping!

Please don't mock the boxed cider- it's 3L of awesome.

What to do with pomegranate seeds

I just hacked up a big pomegranate and managed not to make my kitchen look like the set of Dexter. Now I'm not sure what to do with the seeds. I throw them in yogurt and on cereal. Any other ideas? There are a lot (close to 2 cups).

Go-to "impress your date" recipe

I love cooking and am pretty good, but I lack confidence when it comes to cooking for a date (just dates- friends and family aren't an issue). Most of my cooking is experimental/throw things together, so I don't have any basic, go-to recipes I know will work and will impress someone.

What are your go-tos when you want to impress someone? I'm not looking for Cosmo's Engagement Chicken, just something that is yummy.

Can I freeze Tempeh?

I bought tempeh a while ago and haven't had a chance to cook with it. It's going to expire soon unless I cook it (still no time) or freeze it. It's still in the package, but it doesn't say anything about freezing. Is it ok?

Orgeat in NYC?

Any tips on places that sell orgeat in NYC? My go-to (Astor Wines) doesn't have it, according to their website. Any suggestions?

Harissa recipes!

I have frequently come across recipes that call for harissa which, despite living in NYC, I struggled to find. I stopped saving the recipes and now I FINALLY have a jar of that peppery goodness.

What do you recommend? I was going to mix some in homemade tomato sauce and bake eggs in that. What else?

Tarragon ideas

I have a bunch of tarragon leftover from lobster salad. I know I can freeze it, but I'm not sure what I'd put it in once frozen.

Any ideas for what to do, either before freezing or after?

Softshell crab in NYC

Where should I go to get some good softshells (prepared- I'm not looking to cook them myself)? I live in the city and will take the subway anywhere, but I don't have the time/resources to go much beyond that.

Mirin labeled "cooking wine"

First- I live in a state that doesn't sell real wine in grocery stores.

I know you're not supposed to cook with wine labeled "cooking wine," which is all grocery stores here carry. So far, that's the only place I've seen Mirin. Is that ok, or should I try to find it in a liquor store? I only plan on using it for cooking, not drinking.


Cheese for lemon-spring veggie risotto

I've recently started playing around with risottos and I decided, in honor of spring, to do a spring veggie one with lots of lemon (inspired by an asparagus one I made a while ago).

I'm trying to figure out what cheese to use. There's always the classic parm, but what else? Any thoughts/tips/experiences?

How long to macaron last?

Just a quick question- I want to buy some macaron for my family (the last time I mentioned having them my mom got all pouty that she's never had one from the fancy NYC places).

How well do they travel? Also, if I get some on Thursday night will they still be good by Saturday night? Any special care I need to take?

GF Fruity Malty beer or other sub

I want to make a pulled pork recipe (link below) that calls for "Matilda, or another malty fruity ale." I have GF guests coming so regular beer is out. Do you have any suggestions, either a GF beer or something else (cider?), for a sub?


NYC Vegan Baked Goods

I need to get vegan baked goods for a work event and have no clue where to go. We want something desserty (cupcakes, brownies etc). Sadly, Cinnamon Snail will not be near us close enough to the party date.

We're in the financial district, but people come from all over. Any place in BK, Queens or south of 59th street could work.


Switching regular butter and browned butter in baking

I have an awesome butterscotch brownie recipe that I think could be made even awesome-er with browned butter. The recipe already has you melt the butter, I'm just not sure if browning it changes more than the flavor.

Do I need to adjust the amount of butter I use? If so, any rough estimates?

Food Quotations

You could probably get through life without knowing how to roast a chicken, but the question is, would you want to?
- Nigella Lawson

I saw this on HuffPo today and liked it, so I'm sharing it with my fellow foodies.

Using Bittersweet for some Dark chocolate

I'm making a fudge recipe that calls for 1lb of dark chocolate. I have a little over 13oz, but I have half a bag of 60% bittersweet morsels I was thinking of using to for the remaining chocolate. Will that work?

There's no added sugar to adjust- it's just chocolate and sweetened condensed milk (yes- I make cheaters fudge. Sue me.)


The Vegan Experience, a Retrospective: All 28 of Kenji's Vegan Recipes

Kenji's monthlong Vegan Experience has come to an end. Over the course of that animal-product-free month, he shared many vegan recipes with us. And whether you're vegan or not, you have to admit, these soups, sandwiches, and shoot even a vegan Frito pie (!), looked pretty darn delicious. Here's a roundup of all 28 of his vegan recipes. More

It's Pimm's O'Clock: The Pimmlet

The problem with Pimm's is that it's indelibly connected with the Pimm's cup, and as much as I like that drink, there's a tiny voice in my head that kinda resents the fact that I enjoy sipping a cocktail flavored with strawberries and consumed at fancy-pants boat races. So I've recently started looking for slightly manlier ways to incorporate Pimm's into my life. More

Dining Out With Celiac Disease and Food Allergies

Dining Out With Celiac Disease and Food Allergies: "Imagine you're planning a Saturday lunch out with two good friends, and each of them weighs in on what they'd like to have: one pal is crazy for Italian; the other, Thai food. And no matter where they eat, they both want to stop by the local panaderia afterward for fresh-baked Mexican pastries. If you have celiac disease, or you're allergic to seafood or peanuts, you're out of luck." Jenni Prokopy's essay in Gaper's Block lays out the questions to ask restaurants when you've got food allergies, and gives ten good tips for eating out.... More

Making Ice Cream the Low-Tech Way

When I tell my friends that I spent my weekend making ice cream (which has so far happened five times this summer), they usually comment with something like, "Oh, that sounds cool. I'd like to do that, but I don't have an ice cream machine." Well...that's no excuse. David Lebovitz's post about making ice cream without a machine should instill confidence in those who want to make ice cream but who only have a bowl and spatula on hand. The manual method takes more attention, labor, and time (2 to 3 hours) than just popping the ice cream base into a machine, but as dddg commented on David's post, at least you'll burn some calories before digging into a bowl... More

Photo of the Day: Beet Gnocchi

Iron Stef didn't expect her beet-enhanced gnocchi to come out a shocking shade of magenta. Shocking...and alluring. If I didn't hate peeling beets, I'd want to try out the recipe for beet gnocchi with rosemary butter.... More

Photo of the Day: We Waited

Waited for 30 minutes, at least. I particular like the emphasis given by the mustard underlining. Read more reasons why people hate their servers (and vice versa) at More

Photo of the Day: Shrimp Army

The shrimp in Zach's photo of a giant pan of paella look like they're simultaneously searching the sky for a UFO...or someone to save them from becoming part of a tasty dish. Ah, too late—they're dead. And sooo delicious!... More

Michael Pollan's Twelve Commandments for Serious Eaters: Can You Live By Them?

Here they are, Michael Pollan's Twelve Commandments for Serious Eaters, from his new book, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto. As Jamie Forrest noted yesterday, a few food pundits are taking him to task for a number of them. I'm down with most of what brother Pollan is preaching. What about you? These commandments are made to order for serious fat-chewing. 1. "Don't eat anything your grandmother wouldn't recognize as food." Hard to argue with that. I don't think my grandmother would have recognized porcini mushroom foam as food, though. 2. "Avoid foods containing ingredients you can't pronounce." Hey, what about bouquet garni? 3. "Don't eat anything that won't eventually rot." 4. "Avoid food products that carry health claims."... More

Late Night Eating: East Village

What makes New York City "the city that never sleeps" is the fact that there's always someplace open to eat at any hour. Intern Jenn Sit checks out the classic nocturnal nosh spots in New York City's East Village, a neighborhood that is the epitome of cheap delicious late-night dining. More

Come on in 'The Kitchn'

This week The Kitchn features spaghetti squash and gives tips for choosing the best one and how to cook it, including related recipes. Also on The Kitchn, a review of Epicurean boards, what to do with leftover egg whites, how to make your own wedding cake, and tips for cooking with lavender.... More

Photo of the Day: Dipped Cones from Mister Softee

Photograph from Pabo76 on Flickr Mister Softee may not be the best soft serve you'll ever eat, but on a hot day, a cone full of creamy goodness may just be what you need. Young Yun captures the beauty of Mister Softee's chocolate-dipped and strawberry-dipped cones.... More