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Posts from the ‘Brooklyn’ Category

Catching Up in May

I wasn’t really excited about summer (too hot, too soon) until I finished my run this weekend and stopped by the Grand Army Plaza greenmarket on my way home. Seeing some chives in full bloom, I asked the vendor how they could be used. Holding on to the stem, he gently twisted off the light purple puff at the top and presented me with a handful of blossoms – suddenly I could see weeks mint tea, ripe berries, fat peaches and green tomatoes spreading out before me and couldn’t wait to get started. But, before I get lost in the corn fields, I wanted to catch-up on some articles that popped up in May. Read more

Down to the Wire

This is a last minute post about last minute shopping.  Pressed for time and more importantly money, it’s tempting to play it safe.  Buy something you know they want, a gift certificate to a store they love, or the safest of all – not picking an item or even a store – just a pre-paid tab anywhere Master Card, Visa  or American Express is accepted.  All are good options and if any of them is waiting for me under a tree – thank you, I love it!  But if you’ve waited but still want to find something bigger than an envelope and smaller than a bread box (or an actual bread box), I scouted out a few stores in my neighborhood that have never failed me.  With little time to spare, I want to know that I can still find something thoughtful, unique, or beautiful whenever possible.  Here are just a few stores where I found all three.  If you can’t make it Smith Street before Christmas, they’re definitely worth a visit soon if only to use those handy gift cards. Read more

The Hook

It’s hard to know what to get someone for their wedding, so I was thrilled when my friend Achy invited me to guest blog on her site, CityLife: Adventures, Large and Small, In Urban Living, while she enjoyed her honeymoon offline.  A journalist and writer based in Chicago,  I took advantage of the city crawler theme to finally visit Red Hook’s Mercado.  Click here for the complete post. Read more

Food is Art

I’ve written about the Red Hook Food Vendors before (click here) but it’s wasn’t until this past Saturday that I visited them on their home field for a tour led by Chef Aaron Sanchez, part of the Food is Art culinary program, a series of lectures, classes and special events curated by Zarela Martinez in conjunction with the Mexican Cultural Institute of New York. Read more

Shaking It Up

Today I took my first steps in what I hope will end with the triumphant crossing New York City marathon finish line and not sleeping through the Staten Island start, crying on the 59th Street bridge, or passing out in Central Park’s closing stretch.  Looking ahead the long Saturday training runs I have planned between now and November, I decided to play around with fresh fruit batidos (also known licuados or preparados depending on the accent). Read more

Asopao de Pollo

A few weeks ago, a friend gave me a list of Puerto Rican classics to try that included asopao de pollo.  As she described it, it’s a Puerto Rican risotto that’s not quite soup and not quite stew.  My soups often go to gumbo by mistake so I was curious to know what would happen if I made it that way by design.  At Jennifer’s suggestion, I checked my Puerto Rican Cookery book first.  I realized after additional searches that there were thousands of recipes for asopao, a one-pot, comfort food solution for family dinners and leftovers.  After reading them over, I finally circled back to Carmen Aboy Valldejuli. Read more

Rites of Spring

In the two years since it opened, the Brooklyn Flea has gone from a neighborhood novelty to something that I look forward to each year.  I knew it would be crowded but made a plan to meet a friend there when it re-opened its outdoor location in Fort Greene’s Bishop Laughlin Memorial High School this weekend.  Slowly working our way through the aisles, I always go with the same hope, that the stands will be full of new (to market) retro kitchen gadgets and that the Red Hook Vendors will be  there selling pupusas, tamales, grilled corn sprinkled with chile, and agua fresca. Read more

Ritual and Repetition

A couple of weeks ago, I attended a talk at my Brooklyn’s Book Court between Thomas Keller and Peter Kaminsky.  Though technically about Keller’s latest cookbook, Ad Hoc at Home, it wasn’t strictly about food and cooking.  From process and baseball analogies, he got to ritual and repetition and I realized what I’d been missing.  Trying to post regularly, I’d become sharkish, cooking in constant motion.  I’ve gotten used to being just a few clicks away from French-Italian-Regional-Seasonal-Indian-Mexican-Caribbean.  It’s tempting to jump from one to the other, trying everything once then moving on.  Having set out to write about traditional food in a new medium, I forget that the best part can be going back, trying again, and making it a little better.  I had ritual, but my repetition was lacking.  Read more

Tennis Anywhere?

When I first found this recipe for a Brazo Gitano de Guayaba in Eating Cuban, I couldn’t wait to make it.  Then strangely enough, I waited almost a year for the right occasion.  I always associate brazo gitano (or jelly roll cakes) with my childhood, mostly because it was the object of a big sister-little sister showdown over a last bite that got us both in trouble (I’m sure I’ve been forgiven by now, though technically I may still be grounded).  When my friend Aaron sent an invite for ORANGE, the opening of a tennis inspired playroom installation, I thought this orange-rum-guava rolled cake would be a good choice to bring.  An avid tennis player, Aaron decided to create an indoor court in his Brooklyn apartment.  Last night, the usual conversations-careers, politics, art- didn’t seem so adult when broken up by turns in a bright orange light-box court, smashing foam tennis balls around.  A little summer, no waiting.  The perfect tonic on a brutally cold day.

ORANGE from Aaron Cedolia on Vimeo.

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Apples and Oranges

Every year I go to Miami for few days in December and return to find that my favorite farmer’s markets have all but vanished.  Like Brigadoon in Brooklyn, the courthouse square is almost barren and there’s no trace of the small but convenient, last-chance Sunday market at Carrol Gardens.  Of course Union Square and Grand Army Plaza are still active, but it’s not the same.  For the next few months my only choices are apples or really cold apples from the few hold out vendors left at Boro Hall.  It’s one more reason to burrow away till Spring. Read more