Meet and Eat: Jodi Lapidus, Serious Eats Intern


Name: Jodi Lapidus

Location: New York City / Philadelphia 
Occupation: Student at University of Pennsylvania

Guilty pleasures? Everything from Wawa. Chicken finger sandwiches, cream filled donuts, mac and cheese. It all just tastes better after 3 a.m. Also, Nickelodeon cartoons, Legos, and boy bands. What can I say? I grew up in the 90s.

Describe your perfect meal. Anything with a lot of good cheese. It doesn't matter what kind. A crispy grilled cheese sandwich with Kraft slices, a fig stuffed with tangy goat cheese, a pasta dish with a pungent gorgonzola sauce. If it's impossibly creamy and rich, it's perfect.

What food won't you eat? There's nothing I would refuse to eat, but eyeballs and brains are probably the closest things to crossing the line. As a biology major, I've done far too many dissections for my appetite to be encouraged by either organ.

Favorite food person? Marc Vetri. I haven't had the chance to eat at Vetri yet, but I don't think I would hesitate to sell my soul to have the opportunity to do so. His food is tremendous, and his efforts with the Vetri foundation to affect the community are incredibly admirable.

When did you first realize you were a serious eater? When I was in elementary school, Cardinals games were a semi-regular family activity. I've always loved baseball, but my overwhelming love for food won out when at every single game I would eat my way into a fourth inning food coma. When I couldn't eat anymore, I figured it was a good time to go home.

What do your family and friends think of your food obsessions? They are perfectly happy to accompany me on my food adventures, though I don't think they enjoy waiting to dig in while I take dozens of pictures of every dish.

Favorite food sites or blogs? Smitten Kitchen and GrubStreet.

Everyone has a go-to person they call for restaurant recommendations. Who's yours? My uncle. Whenever he travels, he's got comprehensive research done about his destination's biggest, most outrageous food. Who could say no to a two pound donut?

What is your favorite meal of the day and where do you get it? I'm a big proponent of brunch. There are few things I love more in this world than a mid-morning trip to Honey's Sit and Eat for some downright awesome Jewish comfort food.

Do you ever cook? What's the best dish you make? As a college student, I don't get to cook as often as I'd like. If I cook something and it tastes halfway decent, chances are I learned how to make it from my mom. Matzo ball soup and grilled cheese are two of my best impressions, but I still have a lot of work to do until they are as good as hers!