- "$240 rack of veal, $220 shoulder of pork and a $200 whole king salmon for four to eight people ... nearly 20 antipasti ... more than a dozen pasta dishes, one with a jalapeño pesto, another with a tripe ragù, another with partridge ... more than 15 other entrees, including duck wrapped in porchetta; guinea hen with pumpkin; squab with wild arugula ..." Frank Bruni expresses no small amount of awe over the expected offerings at Del Posto, the latest New York mecca from Mario Batali and Joseph "Son of Lydia" Bastianich.
- A holiday job at Manhattan wine emporium Sherry-Lehman is more than just a part-time money maker – it's a real wine education. "Some people offer to go through the course and work the holiday rush free," Frank J. Piral writes. "Some wine enthusiasts...have offered to pay to be allowed to work there." If you're looking for a similar education but live somewhere West of New Jersey, Eric Asimov has a raft of books you might be interested in.
- Nigella Lawson pops in to seduce us with her typically tactile elegance. On pie crust: "I know the idea of pie crust can sound frightening, so it is good to start with crusts that do not need to be rolled out. They can be fashioned simply by using the two hands you were born with." Mmmm ... hands...pie...Nigella...
- Frank Bruni gives Cookshop, a restaurant seemingly obsessed with ethics, two stars: "So you can sip, sup and simultaneously congratulate yourself, all of which might be a bit much but for this: You can also have a merry, heedless time ... Cookshop renders its call to conscience as a murmur, audible to anyone soothed by the sound and ignorable by those who just want to chow down."
- You can have famous chefs come to your home and cook dinner for you and your friends! Guys like Daniel Boulud and Thomas Keller! They'll totally come over and make tuna tartare and Colorado lamb, while you hang out and drink wine with your guests! There's only one catch: you have to be filthy rich.
- R. W. Apple, Jr has a long, fascinating primer on mid-century food critic Clementine Paddleford, one of the first ambassadors of good food in the U.S.
- Julia Moskin travels to Maine for a nine-course meal, in which locally grown potatoes appear in every course. The locals blow away a few popular potato myths: "People always say that Yukon Golds taste buttery, but they actually taste like potatoes ... It's just that people have become used to tasteless potatoes, and 'buttery' is a compliment."
You can make stock out of virtually anything – even vegetables – but the richest, most flavorful stocks are carnivorous in nature; their preparation requires any kind of bone, or any kind of scrap of anything that used to be meat. I tend to eat a lot of poultry, so I often have a box or a bag full of discarded chicken bones in my freezer. This is a non-issue now that I live alone, but when I started making stock, I lived in a ramshackle apartment in San Francisco's Nob Hill with a revolving cast of art students and assorted miscreants. Until my boyfriend appended a note to the front of the freezer (I think it read something along the lines of "Leave Karina's Bones Alone"), my scraps were constantly disappearing to end up in someone's Keinholz-influenced assemblage. Later, I shared a tiny two bedroom in the East Village with a decidedly non-culinary professional type. One evening he had four or five people over, and everyone was drinking beer in the kitchen. I came in and opened up the freezer, and a clear tupperware full of chicken carcasses fell out. Conversation halted just long enough for a communal gasp. "It's .. they're ... chicken bones. For, um, making stock," I said. I started looking for a new place to live the next day.
Nowadays, it's my apartment, my bones. But my living-alone-ness is a bit of a double edged sword: a bachelorette can only eat so many chickens, so I rarely have a huge pile of leftover bones. I totally intended to make a turkey this Thankgiving, but plans changed. This demo is based on the remnants of several chicken-based meals, but you could easily substitute your whole turkey carcass – as long as you can find a big enough pot.
- Marian Burros says the only way you're going to get through Thanksgiving is if you start cooking a week in advance – unless, of course, you want to have a Karina Longworth Thanksgiving, wherein you eat beer and organic macaroni and cheese in front of the TV and give thanks for living alone. But if you go for the former, here's a list to get you started. Or else, you can book a reservation. Meanwhile, Kim Severson offers the single most important Thanksgiving truism I've ever heard: "No one remembers the turkey unless it is bad."
- Forget the pumpkin pies this year, says Julia Moskin – how 'bout apple-stuffed puff pastry?
- Celery root and maple? Florence Fabricant is as shocked as you are.
- Frank Bruni breaks up the Thankgiving overload by paying a visit to Aburiya Kinnosuke, a new Midtown restaurant that's attracting a following of Japanese businessmen. "This restaurant was clearly delighting them, sating them and offering them something much closer to, and more consistent with, what they would get in Tokyo than what they would get in TriBeCa. That caught my attention, and my own delight kept me coming back for more."
Filed under: Newspapers
- According to Kim Severson, some brands of organic milk "are processed so that an unopened carton can last for months." Apparently, Horizon isn't one of them – remind me, some time, to tell you the story about The Day I Made Macaroni and Cheese and It Turned Green.
- Marian Burros on the problems of buying food-related gifts online: "Some items require more than unwrapping, and no company should assume that the customer knows how to roast its heritage chicken or that there's more than one way to make its potato pancakes."
- Today in The Minimalist: "The flavor of peanuts is as distinctive as that of any nut, and it isn't even a nut, it's a legume."
- Suzanne Goin has published a cookbook based on her Sunday Suppers at Los Angeles' Lucques, called – wait for it – Sunday Duppers at Lucques. It's classic comfort food, or as Nick Fox puts it, "basically Mediterranean with a few Mexican touches. Let other chefs reach around the world for inspiration; Ms. Goin doesn't even use soy sauce."
- There's a new, gourmet, all-pizza joint in town called Slice, and even Florence Fabricant can't help but try to puncture its pretentions: "The white brick and black tile suggest the East Village more than the Upper East Side, until you see the prices."
- Eric Asimov tracks down the "uncommon wine shops" of New York City, including Uva, a dark little place known locally as the only place to get wine in Williamsburg on a Sunday. Unless you know something I don't?
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