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In a Manhattan Kitchen, Part 1

New York City’s Chinatown offers everything you could possibly want while seeming completely inaccessible at the same time.  That’s why I really wanted to take advantage of the market tour and Filipino cooking class offered by a member of my blogging group, Annette Tomei.  Annette is a chef, writer and teacher at the International Culinary Center.  Her blog, Wander, Eat and Tell, chronicling her travels and food experiences is always a push out the door, especially when she turns her attention to nearby neighborhoods I can explore with new eyes.  One of her trips was to the Philippines to visit her brother-in-law Benjie’s family.  While she was there, she spent time in a Filipino kitchen learning from four elderly women who shared their recipes and cooking knowledge in exchange for a promise that she teach it to others in her own country.

To that end, Annette planned today’s class.  I met the group at the ICC and we walked over to Chinatown to pick up the final ingredients (and do some snacking you can read about here).  The group was made up of Annette; Steven, our writing teacher; Hayley, another ICC instructor; Benjie and his friends, Luisa and Raqui.  Food markets in Chinatown can be overwhelming so it was great to work our way through with a sense of purpose and Annette prepped guide.  Looking the pictures now, it all seems so vivid.  Before today I never felt like I could find the same spot twice, now I can’t wait to go back.

Rambutan, cherries, mangoes, lychees and mangosteens at Tan Tin Hung Supermarket.

Steven, Hayley, Benjie, Annette and Raqui check out a fruit stand on Mulberry Street.

All the rice in the world at  Sun Vin Grocery

and everything you could use to cook it with.

Live fish stall at Hong Kong Market.

Picking out toppings for the ebu ice cream.

Some candy to stop with.

Shopping completed we worked our way back to the kitchen and Annette and Benjie put us to work.  I’ll post more tomorrow to show what we did with it all!



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