When new bloggers join the Slashfood team, we like to make sure they get a proper introduction to our readers. You've met Julie Tilsner, Monika Bartyzel, Stefani Pollack, Ellen Slattery, Shayna Glick, Sarah J. Gim and Alanna Kaufman. Now meet the latest addition to our team, Neil Goldstein. -- Marisa McClellan
Do you have a personal blog?
Yes, I maintain two main blogs, FOFIO! which is my personal blog, and The Eaten Path, which is where I post my food-related writing. Also a freeware blog and one for my late brother Paul. My daughter Amy does most of the photography for my posts. You can see her work here.
What is your day job, or rather, what do you do when you're not food blogging?
I am a techie. I work as a senior desktop support tech for AOL in the East Village of Manhattan.
How long have you been blogging with Slashfood and what is your favorite post?
I started two months ago, with two posts I wrote on wild edibles. My favorite so far, was Sarah Gim's very honest and accurate writeup on the scary Banquet Salisbury Steak Dinner. My kids and I repeatedly joke about TV-dinner style meals. The ones with deserts are even worse since you always end up with a corn brownie or pudding fries.
Do you have any non-food-related, non-blogging hobbies?
Hiking, music, and all things technical.
Not every foodie does, so we have to ask. Do you cook?
Yes. On the weekends I have use of a full kitchen, but during the week, my place near the city has everything but a stove, so I have to get creative!
What is your most prized utensil/gadget in the kitchen?
My favorite grill pan.
List three things in your refrigerator right now.
Jerusalem artichokes, homemade yogurt, and leftover grilled skirt steak.
You have to impress a date with a meal. What are you going to make?
Turkey piccata, with baby green beans, baby carrots, and bow tie pasta.
What is the last thing you ate?
Mixed green salad with cold marinated skirt steak strips (from the aforementioned fridge) and artichoke hearts.
Confession time – what do you eat that will get you banned from Slashfood?
When I first moved closer to the city, I was sharing the apartment with my older brother Paul. Paul only had a microwave and a coffee pot in the kitchen. My first night there he made mac and cheese in the coffee pot using good pasta and a jar of cheese sauce! I couldn't believe my eyes, but I was hungry. I have to admit that I did it once when the kids were visiting for the weekend, and I didn't have any of the gadgets I have now. In all honesty, it actually works well. Not that I would ever do that again.... (nervous smile).
If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Mom's golumpki (stuffed cabbage).
Your Mom makes the best _____.
Which chef would you most like to have come into your kitchen and cook you dinner?
My maternal grandmother. Our family is still trying to recreate many of her recipes. She never wrote them down.
With whom would you most like to eat dinner?
My brother Paul, but since that's impossible I'll say Lewis Black. Now that would be an interesting meal!
Your drink of choice?
Alcoholic: Depends on my mood. Sometimes a good brandy, or scotch. Sometimes red wine. Sometimes beer.
Non-Alcoholic: Plain iced tea, with some ground ivy, wintergreen, pineapple weed, or other wild flavoring.
Where was your best restaurant dining experience?
There was a restaurant in Woodstock, NY, where I grew up called Christie's that we used to frequent. I always used to say that it was the only place I had eaten at that had never disappointed me. Christie retired back in the 90's and I still miss the place.
I rarely send back food. It has to be pretty awful. I once ordered what the menu called a gourmet hamburger in a new restaurant in Kingston, NY. It was so dry and overcooked (I ordered it medium-rare by-the-way) that I couldn't eat it. When the waitress finally brought the replacement it was an exact copy of the first, except they had recycled my fries so that they were also inedible by that time. When I told her that it wasn't any better, she simply said that she wasn't surprised and disappeared.
Do you want fries with that?
Sure! Especially the skin-on boardwalk style fries from Maryland. I think we'll try to make some wild ones for a posting this fall. Maybe water lily tubers.
What foods do you think should be banished from existence?
Canned peas, canned ravioli, and anything described as self heating.
What do you see as the biggest "thing" in food for the coming year?
Do-it-yourself foods. More cooking and baking. The direction the economy is heading in will cause many people to resort to more frugal habits in the kitchen.