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eG Foodblog: Megan Blocker - Food and the City

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#61 Marlene

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 05:59 AM

Megan, lovely to see you blogging! Pegu definately please since I have to vicariouslyy live through others visiting that marvelous . That garlic soup is on my list to make as well. What is your very favourite thing to cook?

We'll be back in NY in March with my 13 year old son. Suggestions on where to take him to eat? He likes spicy things and is branching out in being willing to try new things. We'll probably do one fine dining experience with him but the rest will be more casual. As he's 13, places that serve large portions are particularly welcome :biggrin:
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#62 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 07:49 AM

I'm in love with the idea of the little cheese shop and the Italian deli with the real Italian meats/cheeses/products.  Are there any of these convenient to you that you can work in?  Also, is frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity too "touristy" these days?  Any chances of gaining kitchen tours of your favorite eateries?

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Don't know about kitchen tours, but I'll do my best!

As for a little Italian market - there certainly are places like this in the city! My neighborhood is historically German/Austrian/Hungarian, so we don't have a whole lot of Italian spots. But an ethnic market is definitely on the schedule. :smile:

As for Serendipity, yeah, it's pretty touristy. The lines can get absolutely ridiculous. While the sandwiches are pretty good, and the frozen hot chocolate is tasty, it's just not worth the hour's wait, most of the time.

I'm sensing a groundswell of support for a visit to Jacques Torres, my dears. :laugh:
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#63 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 07:58 AM

Woke up this morning to a rather gray, gloomy day outside of my window. :sad: However, that doesn't change the fact that I am headed out for a day o' fun. I woke up this morning and gradually realized that my entire apartment REEKS of garlic. Most days, this would be an unpleasant revelation, but today, it just means that I can smell again! :biggrin:

I also realized that I have not done the ritual bowing at the altar of caffeine. There are two reasons for this. The first is that I rarely make coffee at home - I'm not much of a morning person, and so I don't leave extra time in my routine for a cup of coffee. Mostly, I grab a cup at a coffee cart on the way to the office. For those of you who may never have seen one, the coffee carts in New York look like this:

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Even when I'm on vacation, I'm more likely to run across the street for a cup of coffee from a cafe than I am to make a pot at home.

The second reason is that I try to stay away from coffee and alcohol (and if you know me, you know that ain't easy - I love my java and my vino) when I'm sick. However, I feel on the mend, and feel safe saying that tomorrow morning will definitely include at least one coffee run.

Prasantrin, you also asked about pets! Sadly, my building does not allow pets. I'm very attached to my family's dog, Buster, who now lives in California with my mom and is approaching 17 (!) years of age. I am a huge dog person, and a cat person when the right cat is involved, but I don't have a furry friend at present. :sad:

I will be out and about for most of the day, collecting experiences and photos for your viewing enjoyment. I'll be going uptown, downtown, all around the town - Upper East Side, SoHo, Chelsea, Greenwich Village, maybe even a bit of Little Italy. So, sit tight, and I'll be back late this afternoon with a fresh installment!
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#64 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 08:06 AM

Marlene and Smithy, I am thinking about recommendations for both of you! I will keep you in mind today and see what I can come up with. I'd also like to solicit the help of my fellow New Yorkers with this one...anything they can contribute will be very welcome, I know!
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#65 Kouign Aman

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 09:46 AM

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I really like the way you frame your photographs. This bread & jam looks more like bread&jam than it would on my plate! Its like a photo of the Ur-B&J.
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#66 alanamoana

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 10:50 AM

Megan,

this blog is great and makes me a bit homesick! i just moved to northern california from 78th and York about a month ago. just in time to miss the blizzard and also in time to start reading your blog and to think about all the places i never went to or meant to go to when i had the time and now i'm gone!!!!! sooooo sad. my first homesick moments.

have a great time bloggin'...we're all enjoying it...both the people getting their first real glimpses of nyc and those of us who need reminding of everything we've left behind!

regards,
alana

#67 Pan

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 11:58 AM

[...]Are there cheesecakes in Manhattan? I can't imagine it ;)  Back when I was worshipping cheesecake, Brooklyn was Mecca.[...]

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Two Little Red Hens' flagship store is in Park Slope.

Marlene, for your spice-loving son, you definitely have to go to Grand Sichuan, though if you have plans to go out to Flushing, I'll give you some other recommendations. One or more trips to Korean restaurants are also a good idea, if you like that cuisine. There are several good Korean restaurants in the West 30s. If you want an inexpensive diner-style place, go to Han Bat. Otherwise, consider Kang Suh, Seoul Garden, Woo Chon, and Cho Dang Gol. And then there are Indian restaurants. My standby is an East Village Madrasi vegetarian place called Madras Cafe, and I recommend it. But it depends what you're looking for. At the high end, there are two places I haven't been to: Devi and Tabla, both extensively covered on the New York forum. And in Jackson Heights, Queens, there's the Jackson Diner (don't get the buffet if you go on a weekend) and various other places. And then, for Thai food, Sripraphai in Woodside, Queens is most recommended. [Edit: I left out Malaysian. So far, in two trips, I'm liking Skyway, on Allen St. just south of Canal.]

Edited by Pan, 23 February 2006 - 11:59 AM.


#68 Chufi

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 12:31 PM

At some point, I realized how much money I could save and how much better I could treat myself if I actually started cooking for myself.  I always had the skills (I used to throw brunches and cocktail parties), but just never cooked for myself on a regular basis.

Well, that's changed, and if I'm still not the most accomplished home cook I know (and certainly not anywhere close to it here on eGullet), I am one of the happiest.

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Megan, could you tell us a bit more about what you like to cook for yourself and what inspires you? Cookbooks, shops, things you ate in a restaurant?

And one other question. What place in New York makes you the happiest - foodwise? Is there a cafe, restaurant or shop that will always bring a smile on your face when you visit it, a place that never lets you down because it serves or sells the exact right thing? I would love to hear about that.

#69 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 05:40 PM

Thanks, Kouign!

To give credit where it's due, I think that photo benefits from the ridiculously beautiful bread, but I'll take my compliments where I can get 'em! :wink:

Megan,

this blog is great and makes me a bit homesick!  i just moved to northern california from 78th and York about a month ago.  just in time to miss the blizzard and also in time to start reading your blog and to think about all the places i never went to or meant to go to when i had the time and now i'm gone!!!!!  sooooo sad.  my first homesick moments.

have a great time bloggin'...we're all enjoying it...both the people getting their first real glimpses of nyc and those of us who need reminding of everything we've left behind!

regards,
alana

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Sorry to hear that you're feeling homesick, Alana...the blizzard was pretty great, but things are all back to normal now. :sad: Northern California is a pretty excellent place, too - but I can understand why you'd miss NYC!
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#70 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 06:12 PM

Sorry to have abandoned you all this afternoon, but I hope the trip I'm about to share with you will make up for my negligence! :wink:

I think doing a foodblog must be good karma, because I had excellent train and bus luck today - they came quickly each time I needed them, and I got a seat every time - even on the Lexington Avenue line at rush hour! :shock: :biggrin:

I started out this morning by stopping in at Two Little Red Hens, a bakery based in Park Slope that has a small outpost here on the UES (85th and 2nd). When I popped in around 11:45, there were a few customers in the shop, and when I asked permission to take some photos, the staff was very excited about it, and had me write down eG's address to check it out themselves. So, if they're reading this - thanks, guys!

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As Pan mentioned above, the bakery specializes in traditional American treats. Here's a look at their display case:

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It being (sort of) breakfast time, I steered clear of the very tempting cupcakes and went for a maple wheat scone. It was delicious!

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I ate the scone while waiting for the 86th Street crosstown bus, which I took over to the West Side to meet my friend Lisa. We then headed down to 14th Street to check out Chelsea Market...

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The Chelsea Market building houses several shops and bakeries as well as the Food Network and New York 1 (our local cable news channel) studios. The shops range from clothing mixed with food to a produce market to a branch of Bowery Restaurant Supply. It can be crammed at lunchtime with local office workers, but we put the actual lunch bit off to about 2 PM and managed to avoid any ridiculous crowds. In the meantime, we explored.

First up, Eleni's Cookies! These cookies are famous in New York for actually having tasty icing, and for being the socialite's favorite gift not to eat. :laugh: I've gotten a few boxes of these for work-related thank you's, and they're quite good. Their current display is all about the Oscars:

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After that, we stopped in at FatWitch, where they sell delicious brownies. Knowing we were headed for loads of chocolate later in the day, I decided to sample and then buy a blondie - Lisa went for the traditional, fudgy brownie.

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From there we went to Amy's Bread. Walking into that shop made me so thankful to have some semblance of a sense of smell back. It was like walking into the middle of a warm loaf of bread - the scent was warm and just sort of enveloped you in its arms. So good.

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Some of the merchandise in the shop at Amy's Bread:
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And some biscuits doing their thing in the attached, windowed bakery:

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Next up, finally, was lunch. Hallelujah! Lisa is a big fan of all things Asian-food-related, and I was looking for something to blast open my sinuses, so we decided on Thai. Chelsea Thai has a tiny counter where you order, and a few shelves of Asian groceries (including Pocky!). I bought some rice fettucine and sriracha in addition to my lunch.

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That's my lunch in the foreground and Lisa's in the back. I got the Pad gra prow (chicken with chili paste, basil, red and green pepper, scallions and onions), and Lisa got the Pa kee mow, a fried noodle dish with garlic chili, basil, onion, peppers and tomatoes. Both were delicious, and mine definitely took care of my sinuses. :laugh:

The next spot we passed was a bakery called French Oven - we didn't go in, but their display case was too gorgeous not to photograph. The fruit tarts in particular looked unbelievable.

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Across the hall from the Thai place was an Italian market full of goodies. Cheeses, meats, prepared foods, and all sorts of Italian biscuits and sweets. The oil section is huge:

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The cheese section takes up two walls (this is the smaller one!), and they also have quail eggs (for 50 cents apiece):

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Lisa's favorite here was the display stacked with 3 kg jars of Nutella. That is a HUGE amount of chocolate and hazelnut spread, my friends. My favorite was the assortment of meticulously crafted marazapane - a whole platter of fish and shellfish. Weird, and amazing.

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From the Italian market, we paid a visit to the Manhattan Fruit Exchange. It went on and on, full of beautiful and reasonably priced produce, but it was so cold in there that we both got headaches, so we only managed to snap a picture of the colorful heaps of peppers before turning tail and running out.

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Our last stop at Chelsea Market was the Bowery Restaurant Supply, where I flirted briefly with purchasing a stick blender. They have shelf after shelf of cutlery and glassware, like these standard wine goblets.

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Finally, we emerged, victorious and sated, into semi-sunlight (the eG foodblog karma also extended to the weather, which behaved itself and did not rain on us). We then turned southward...where did we go? More on that shortly! :smile:

Edited by Megan Blocker, 23 February 2006 - 06:15 PM.

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#71 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 07:12 PM

Megan, could you tell us a bit more about what you like to cook for yourself and what inspires you? Cookbooks, shops, things you ate in a restaurant?

And one other question. What place in New York makes you the happiest - foodwise? Is there a cafe, restaurant or shop that will always bring a smile on your face when you visit it, a place that never lets you down because it serves or sells the exact right thing? I would love to hear about that.

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Good questions, Chufi!

Things I like to cook for myself...generally, I prefer to cook foods that adapt well to a home kitchen - I'm a big fan of Italian home cooking for its overall simplicity and breadth of ingredients. I love the way it highlights the flavors of its main elements with the other ingredients, and I love the robust, rustic flavors traditionally associated with Italian food. Obviously, Italian food can also be quite subtle, but one of the things I love about its bolder flavors is how easy they are to replicate at home.

Along those same lines, I also love a lot of the classic French dishes, especially the stews and the stew-like...cassoulet, boeuf bourgignon, coq au vin, and so on. These are especially good for a single gal like myself, as one big pot made on Sunday can last for three or four dinners during the week.

Since I work fairly long hours and pretty much deprive myself of any convenience options by not having a microwave (a conscious decision which really does help me eat better), I have to plan my meals in advance. An easy way to do this on a week-to-week basis is to prepare meals based on similar ideas, and to supplement my weekly shopping with an occasional return to the store to buy a special vegetable or cut of meat. This is one reason you see me make a lot of green salads on the Dinner thread - I don't get tired of them, and I buy the same ingredients for them each week.

Inspiration I get everywhere - a lot of inspiration for my pasta dishes has come from my experiences at Paola's, a little Italian place around the corner that I love for its pastas and its salads. I read Gourmet each month, and will regularly return to my cookbook collection for ideas or when I know I want something with X, but have no idea where to start. Sometimes, though, the idea for a meal just comes from seeing something in the market - a glorious piece of meat or a beautiful vegetable...especially in the summer and fall, I try to cook as much as possible from what I can find in the farmers' markets, which in these parts leads to a lot of tomato salads, apple pies and corn risottos.

And, like all of us, I gain inspiration from what I see in the eGullet forums - I've made your butter-braised chicken and Susan's champagne vinegar chicken, and have been spurred to make my first puff pastry and carbonara by what I've read here.

As for your second question - I have a few places like that! One is Saigon Grill, a Vietnamese place that I order delivery from once or twice a week, at least. Their food always hits the spot and kills my cravings, plus it's cheap!

Another place like that is somewhere I'm planning to bring you all sometime this week...Java Girl, a little coffee place on 66th Street. It's warm and cozy, and they make an incredibly good cup of coffee. You can sit in one of the tattered chairs and read a book for hours. I love it there.

Edited by Megan Blocker, 23 February 2006 - 08:17 PM.

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#72 Rebecca263

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 07:32 PM

Dear Megan, Cheery Girl of NYC, and Blogger of The Week,
Please eat lots of solid food for me, as I am on a liquid diet this week(yum, broth :sad: ), and am living vicariously through my eGullet friends :biggrin: .
Yours in cheer,
Rebecca
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#73 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 07:39 PM

So...back to the rest of my day downtown. After leaving Chelsea Market, Lisa and I headed south on 8th Avenue to Chocolate Bar, a great chocolate shop between Horatio and Jane Streets.

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I first tried their chocolate at the Chocolate Show last year, and fell in love with their dark chocolate bar filled with raspberry jam, one of the items that is part of their "Retro" line. You can bet your butt that I bought one of those today. It was all I could do not to buy the whole shelf-ful.

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Lisa bought one of these, the Milk Salty Pretzel bar.

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Chocolate Bar is known for their delicious hot chocolate (they call it "Liquid Chocolate"), and it definitely didn't disappoint. I ordered a small, thinking there was no way I could down a larger cup if it turned out to be as rich and sinful as promised. It was divine. With a consistency somewhere between your usual watery hot cocoa and pure melted chocolate, it was velvety and slightly frothy, and not overly sweet or rich. I will definitely be back for more, and soon.

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Leaving Chocolate Bar, we turned southwest to head for Hudson Street, and decided to stop in at Li-Lac Chocolates, where the ambience is decidedly more old-fashioned and flowery than the hip, modern Chocolate Bar. The treats looked good, though, and I've never been able to resist marshmallow, so I grabbed a couple of fluff bars - marshmallow covered in dark chocolate.

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Finally, after a bit of a walk down Hudson Street, Lisa and I arrived at the final destination of our chocolate pilgrimage: Jacques Torres' Chocolate Haven. At this point, we were running out of time - I had a hair appointment at four, halfway across SoHo. But, we dashed in to do a bit of reconnaissance for all of you!
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The bar and retail area is surrounded on all sides by the chocolate-making magic - Lisa said it was like walking into Willy Wonka's!! On our way in, we spotted these molds:
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Inside, there's a retail counter with loads of truffles - they also sell the chocolate bark here that we saw at the Chocolate Show.
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There's a beautiful bar where you can get hot chocolate and coffee, and lots of little tables at which you can sit and enjoy...this guy decided to stay at the counter.
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After our quick stop in Jacques' shop, Lisa and I parted ways...I headed to Mercer Street to have my hair done, and Lisa headed uptown to get some work done. :smile:

However, after my hair appointment, I could not resist a quick peek into Sur La Table, which was on the way back to the subway in any case!
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I managed to avoid a lot of pricey stuff, but got really psyched over these creme brulee dishes, which were less than $2.00 each - I bought six, and also picked up a Microplane zester, something I can't believe I don't already own.
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SoHo is very pretty, with mostly low-rise buildings graced with huge, loft-like windows. Anyone who's fought their way down Broadway between Prince and Spring knows how ridiculously crowded the neighborhood can be, but it was pretty calm tonight. Here's a view down Broadway, looking toward Chinatown and the Financial District beyond.
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Finally, one last peek into a food spot before hopping on the subway. I still have half a loaf of my Eli's bread to get through, but I couldn't resist a little window shopping at Balthazar.
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Finally, it was back to the subway and up to 86th Street and home...
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Edited by Megan Blocker, 23 February 2006 - 07:43 PM.

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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#74 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 08:04 PM

Dear Megan, Cheery Girl of NYC, and Blogger of The Week,
Please eat lots of solid food for me, as I am on a liquid diet this week(yum, broth :sad: ), and am living vicariously through my eGullet friends :biggrin: .
Yours in cheer,
Rebecca

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Rebecca, I'm so sorry! You can bet on my consuming loads of solid foods, but I also hope you get better and back to the solid stuff yourself sooner rather than later! :biggrin:

Dinner tonight was, per Karen's request, spaghetti carbonara. Well, farfalle carbonara, because I am out of spaghetti. :laugh: I made my first carbonara sometime late last fall, and promptly became addicted. This incredibly fast meal is made even faster by the fact that Schaller and Weber, a German market just down the street, sells bacon cut into 1-inch lardons. :shock: :biggrin: From start of cooking to the washing of dishes, this dinner took less than an hour. SWEET.

Here's the aforementioned bacon (drool, bacon), first in the bag, then crisping in the pan:

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I mix the cheese and egg together first, put the crisped bacon in the bottom of a medium mixing bowl, and wait for the pasta to be ready...

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I mix the whole lot together, add loads and loads of black pepper, some more cheese, and serve that baby up in a bowl. After my pasta, I have a small salad of cucumber, tomato and red onion, dressed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. I'm just happy to be able to taste...I don't need anything fancy tonight! :biggrin:

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Phew. Now it's time to watch the figure skating!!!!
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan
eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

#75 monavano

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 08:14 PM

Megan,

That was a FANTASTIC!! chocolate tour. I've seen the Chocolate Bar featured on tv for sure (foodtv? not sure). Thanks for covering so much ground, so many shops and stores.
This has been great. Thanks for all your hard work, cooking , eating and tour guiding.
eta: found the website http://www.chocolatebarnyc.com and am going to order the retro bars and I'm sure a little somethings else as well :wink:

Edited by monavano, 23 February 2006 - 08:17 PM.


#76 Abra

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 08:19 PM

Holy smokes girl, that was an epic blogging odyssey! Were you on foot for all of that? What a lot of beautiful food you managed to see in just one day. And now please excuse me while I go see if we have anything chocolate in the house.

If you're not completely cured, try this garlic soup. I swear, it cures all ailments.

#77 mizducky

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 08:33 PM

Okay, now I'm getting hit with a king-hell wave of New York nostalgia too. :smile:

#78 Megan Blocker

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 09:07 PM

Thanks, Monavano!

You know, Miz Ducky, you can always come visit us! :raz:

Holy smokes girl, that was an epic blogging odyssey!  Were you on foot for all of that?  What a lot of beautiful food you managed to see in just one day.  And now please excuse me while I go see if we have anything chocolate in the house.

If you're not completely cured, try this garlic soup.  I swear, it cures all ailments.

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Yes, Abra - the whole thing was on foot! Except for the bus and the subway, of course...I tried to cab it from Jacques Torres to my hair appointment, but none came up Hudson, so I had to hoof it across Houston...I am tired, but it's probably a good thing, considering all the food I ate. :laugh:

This is for all of you out there who are curious about Magnolia Bakery...Lisa and I passed it on our way from Chocolate Bar to Jacques Torres, and I took the opportunity to shoot a pic of the line for you. It was out the door and snaking back around the corner - at 3:00 on a Thursday afternoon. My guess? It was a Sex and the City tour group. They stop there and also visit the block used for Carrie's apartment, which is just two blocks from the bakery.

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Also, for Sandy, who requested a view of my fridge. I haven't done a big produce shopping in over a week, since with my mom here I ate out for four days straight. The lower shelves are usually filled with lettuce and fresh herbs, and whatever meat I've bought or am defrosting for dinner. As you can see from the door and top shelf, I am a condiment fiend!!!

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And now, it's off to bed. I'm going to try and get some actual work (yes, WORK :wacko:) done tomorrow morning, so I need some good, honest rest. Till tomorrow, then! :cool:
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan
eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

#79 Pam R

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 09:35 PM

Wow. You're day leaves me speechless! (well, not quite).

I'd like you to take me on that tour the next time I'm in NY :biggrin:

If you have the chance - I'd love to see a good NY Deli sandwich. Pastrami on rye - that kind of thing. If not, that's ok too. I'm enjoying what you're showing us anyway!

#80 Rebecca263

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 10:01 PM

Oh, Chocolate Bar! I love their Key Lime Bar, and a few months ago when I was there we had chocolates with port in them, heavenly! I wonder, is it OK if I DRINK chocolate... if I make my chocolate sans milk tonight? I better not tempt the fates. :huh: *sigh*

Edited by Rebecca263, 23 February 2006 - 10:02 PM.

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#81 Ling

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 01:04 AM

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! CHOCOLATE TOUR!!!!!!!!!! :wub: !! :wub: !!

Best. Post. EVER!!

Thanks for showing us around, Megan! All the places you went to today looked great. I've read about many of those places, but I'm so happy that I got to see the actual shops through your post! The shots of the raspberry fruit tart and the Balthazar bread are incredible. I'd be 50 pounds heavier if I lived in NY, no doubt! :laugh:

#82 Chufi

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 01:30 AM

Oh my goodness. This must be the next best thing to shopping in New York.. have Megan take you on a virutal tour!! Thanks soooo much for walking all that way and showing us so much! We Want More!!

#83 FabulousFoodBabe

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 04:15 AM

Wow, Megan. What a great time you're showing us! Keep 'em coming -- and glad you're feeling better. Nicely done!
"Oh, tuna. Tuna, tuna, tuna." -Andy Bernard, The Office

#84 Daniel

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 05:56 AM

You really are doing such a wonderful job.. Doing New York proud..

#85 Jake

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 07:59 AM

Fabulous blog, Megan! I, too, love SoHo and oh I want bread from Balthazar now!

Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.


#86 daniellewiley

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 08:27 AM

Megan, Do you get together with other eGulleters in NY? I'm so jealous of the number of eGulleters out there!
Danielle Altshuler Wiley
a.k.a. Foodmomiac

#87 Megan Blocker

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 08:45 AM

Megan, Do you get together with other eGulleters in NY? I'm so jealous of the number of eGulleters out there!

View Post

Sometimes, yes! I've had drinks a few times with SLKinsey, M.X.Hassett and Johnder (at Pegu, mais oui :wink:)...I know there are a lot of people who see each other more often, and who either met via eGullet or know each other through different avenues and then happened to both join eG. It is nice to be surrounded by so many eG'ers. :smile:

This morning I woke up a bit later than intended...not till about 8:45 or so. I then leapt out of bed and turned on my work laptop (blech) and did some emailing and damage control on that end. Then I realized that today is the day I get to have COFFEE!!!! I threw on my overcoat, raced down the stairs, and sprinted to DTUT, a coffee bar on 2nd Avenue between 84th and 85th Streets. DTUT serves coffee all day and late into the night, and also serves wine and beer after five...a very popular spot for first dates, since you can get a coffee OR an alcoholic beverage. It's full of broken-in couches and armchairs...it has a sort of Central Perk-ish vibe.

Here's the outside, a view of the counter (blocked by a plant, sorry) from just inside the front door, and quick look at one of the seating areas.

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I wasn't hungry this morning, so I just got a cafe au lait made with their house coffee, called "Broadway Blend."

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I add a bit of raw sugar to this and slurp it all up - this is my usual weekend cup of coffee; since you now can't take coffee on the subways, I don't stop here on weekday mornings - there's no way I could choke down a whole one of these on the three-block walk to the subway.

The plan for this afternoon is still pretty open...my reservation at Babbo isn't till late, so I think we may try to sneak in a pre-dinner drink at Pegu. Grocery shopping should probably go on the menu...any other requests? :smile:
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan
eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

#88 I_call_the_duck

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 08:52 AM

Megan,

This is a great blog. I’m glad your sense of smell is returning.

A great chocolate tour. The hot chocolate at Chocolate Bar looks incredible, as does the rest of the merchandise there. I must go there the next time I'm in that neck of the woods.

And we're also just about due for a trip to Chelsea Market. The marzipan seafood platter was amazing. I love that store.

Thanks for making the carbonara. Oh, that bacon!! The salad looked good too.

Cool coffee cup. Do they actually enforce the no-coffee-on-subway rule?
Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

#89 Megan Blocker

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 08:56 AM

Megan,

This is a great blog.  I’m glad your sense of smell is returning.

A great chocolate tour.  The hot chocolate at Chocolate Bar looks incredible, as does the rest of the merchandise there.  I must go there the next time I'm in that neck of the woods. 

And we're also just about due for a trip to Chelsea Market.  The marzipan seafood platter was amazing.  I love that store.

Thanks for making the carbonara.  Oh, that bacon!!  The salad looked good too.

Cool coffee cup.  Do they actually enforce the no-coffee-on-subway rule?

View Post

Thanks, Karen! I'm glad you enjoyed the carbonara...I know I sure did. :wink: Wasn't that marzipan ridiculous? I wish I had some reason to buy it, but I really can't think of a good one. :laugh:

As for the coffee/subway rule - I have to admit, I haven't seen it enforced. The stricter rule and harsher fine went into effect toward the end of last year, along with similar changes to the rules for taking more than one seat and walking between cars while the train is moving.

However, better safe than sorry, I guess, and I'd really rather use my free-not-hanging-onto-the-pole hand to read a book in any case. Most mornings, anyway. :laugh:
"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan
eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

#90 Susan in FL

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 09:01 AM

What a tour! I am so not-a-city-person. Your blog and others including the city sights are probably the closest I will ever get to experiencing such a world of food as you have... Truly awesome.
If I ever do make it to NYC, obviously I will have to limit what I do. I've always had Babbo on that wish list, and I recently added Starwich. You're right up my fantasy alley! I know you've posted about Starwich before, but if you just happen to stop in to one of them again while you're blogging, that would be very fine. :rolleyes: :wink:
Life is short; eat the cheese course first.





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