A couple years ago I stumbled on this recipe for “False Mahshi: Layered Swiss Chard, Beets, Rice, and Beef” in the New York Times. In an article about the Iraqi New Year, Joan Nathan had included this recipe, adapted from Esperanza Basson. Well, even that seemed a bit labor intensive so I cut it down into a super simple, healthy, and yummy version.
Who doesn’t love a pile of spicy, smoky, diced tomatoes with cilantro, lime, jalapeno, and onion, all mixed together and placed on top a corn chip, burrito, or taco? In Colorado, you go to a Mexican restaurant and immediately they serve you a ramekin of garlicky tomato puree, rarely the bowl of fresh pico de gallo you get in New York (which people mistakenly call salsa).
But as New York Times writer Julia Moskin dives into the new Mexico chic cuisine that has popped up all over the city, she finds that a lot of places are getting this simple sounding, but not so simple dish, right. Surprisingly, as a Mexican food snob, I totally agree with this article. There are some great places to get some unique and tasty salsas. Her list includes: Cascabel Taqueria, La Superior, Hecho en Dumbo, and more. I would definitely add Cabrito, one of my personal favorite taco spots here, to the list.
Who has your favorite salsa? And, what is the best way to make it?
Today New York Times writer Manny Fernandez wrote about the 99-cent pizza craze that has been spreading across Manhattan. But, he isn’t the first one to note cheap, $1 and under food. About a year ago, I did a round up for Serious Eats that included pork buns, noodles, and sticks of meat from Flushing, Queens’ Chinatown; $1 falafel sandwiches; cheap sushi; and 39 cents an ounce frozen yogurt. Josh Bernstein has also been rounding up cheap eats by neighborhood for Metromix. He recently stumbled on the Hell’s Kitchen area and talked about the same pizza Fernandez did in his article.
What’s up with this craze? Is 99-cent pizza worth it? Adam Kuban of Slice didn’t say in his cheap pizza battle last year, but he also didn’t say he really liked either pie. Some things I think work well as $1 items, like ices on the street in the summer, hot dogs, and French fries. But overall, I would rather pay $2 for a really good slice, then bother with a kind of gross one for less.
Can I just tell you that I love coffee? Love, love, LOVE the stuff, and, because I drink it black, it totally makes my day when I stumble across a really good cup. At RBC NYC in Tribeca, they have gone all out there. Enter, the Slayer. This variable pressure machine is the only one on the East Coast, and one of 20 in the entire WORLD. Wow. Handcrafted in Seattle, I can see why this beast is so special. The three level system (which I am writing about for the New York Press right now, so more later*), draws out a perfectly smooth, buttery shot of espresso. I was buzzing so hard core after going there. Of course, I also sampled a cup of drip Sumatra. Yum. It’s no wonder the New York Times included it in their great coffee shop round up. But there was a downfall, all that coffee and no bathroom.
*Update: Here is the New York Press piece about RBC NYC.
Really? There are safety issues with a pot pie? Yeah, I didn’t believe it either but the New York Times video, Pot Pie Confidential made me think twice. If you can get over Michael Moss’ deep, awkward voice and the silly staged “pot pie making” skit, this video actually opens up some good questions about the safety of the food we naturally trust, like the pot pie. › Continue reading
Have you ever given much thought to Heinz Ketchup as a style statement? No? Me neither. But I completely agree with the New York Time’s assessment of this classic image.
“Yet there is one example of something that is generally considered to be “good design,” which does break the golden rule. It is part of our daily lives, and has been designed to similar specifications for more than a century — the glass Heinz Tomato Ketchup bottle. If you asked the millions of people who use that glass bottle whether it is well designed, they would probably say “yes.” If not they would be fools, because they could achieve exactly the same outcome — seasoning their food with fresh ketchup — by buying one of Heinz’s plastic bottles, which are not only cheaper, but do the job more efficiently.”
I don’t even like ketchup, but do have a bottle in my fridge. At least some things stay reliably the same.
The 2008 James Beard Foundation awards took place this past weekend. A shout out to some of the journalists in the winners circle:
Newspaper feature writing without recipes: David Leite for The New York Times, “In a ‘64 T-Bird, Chasing a Date With a Clam”
Newspaper feature writing with recipes: Katy McLaughlin for The Wall Street Journal, “A New Taste Sensation”
Magazine feature writing about a restaurant or chef: Howie Kahn for GQ, “The Wandering Chef”
Magazine feature writing with recipe: Betty Fussell for Saveur, “American Prime”
Magazine feature writing without recipe: Manny Howard for New York Magazine, “My Empire of Dirt”
Writing on spirits, wine or beer: David Darlington for Wine & Spirits Magazine, “Postmodern Deliciousness: The World According to Clark Smith”
For a complete list of winners check out the website by clicking here!