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eG Foodblog: bergerka - An opera about cooking, with pictures


bergerka
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  No sex, though, although some think cooking is inherently sexy (Nigella much?).

Hmm, I would suggest breadmaking, but the yeast reproduce by budding, not sexually, so that doesn't work.

Finger food is inherently sexy.

Come to think of it, so is chocolate, which you keep saying YOU. DO. NOT. NEED.

Give in to your inner vixen :wink:

I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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I'm amazed that you're doing this operatic foodblog without a rehearsal pianist, ehh hem.

Well, I have been known to play rehearsals, so technically she's not completely without.

Sex and violence, hmm, let's see. Cutting up a chicken is violent. No sex, though...

Have you ever seen "Pink Flamingos"?

The black beans have definitely piqued my curiosity.

My restaurant blog: Mahlzeit!

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I'm back! Got a little work done this morning, thank goodness.

For lunch, my friend Juli and I went to Bistro NY on Lexington Avenue between 40th and 41st Streets. Bistro NY is one of those ubiquitous sort-of-chains of sandwich/salad/soup places that crop up all over New York City, mostly clustered in places with a lot of office buildings. This particular one, however, is definitely a desired lunch spot, for me at least, because of the really good salad bar and especially Thomas and Itico, the soup gods. These guys make 10-12 different soups every day, and they are absolutely terrific, flavorful, fresh ingredients, creative, and only rarely do I need to spice mine up with extra salt or pepper.

I spoke to Chester and Raiza, who are higher-ups at this particular location, and got permission to take some pictures of the very shy soup guys, which I'll post later along with the food pix. They also told me that this location will be doing the catering for the Rockefeller Center tree lighting party, because their catering offerings are so impressive. I believe it. I wish my day job would order from them more often. They have a nice burrito bar, too. You can get a small soup (plenty) and a small salad or half sandwich or half burrito plus a soft drink for $5.45 total, and they throw in a roll or - my choice - the bagel chips they make every day.

Some pix:

Today's soup choices

gallery_8920_3_421449.jpg

Thomas and Itico, the soup gods

gallery_8920_3_647609.jpg

Lunch, with reading material (in case Juli hadn't been able to make it)

gallery_8920_3_838351.jpg

Juli had the tomato basil soup with cheese tortellini, which I have every time I crave comfort soup. I tried a new one - butternut squash and apple bisque. Wow! Terrific. I also got a small salad of spinach, roasted cauliflower, roasted red and green peppers, parmesan cheese and red wine vinegar, and drank an A&W diet root beer.

I just got a call from another secretary on this floor - there's all kinds of food left over from a meeting over by her. I think I'll go grab some fruit and maybe just...ONE...cookie for a snack later.

Genny, you guessed it, I'm making black bean soup, with jalapeno cheese biscuits and salsa fresca. And oh yeah, ferrets running around late at night can DEFINITELY impede one's sleeping, especialy when they decide to jump ON the bed and bite the toes of the nearest person (people toes, deliiiiicious). Last night they were pretty content to just run around in their tubes and paper bags, though, and the rustling was kind of relaxing. Must've been tiring, too, the baby (the golden one in the picture above) was absolutely conked out in the laundry basket all morning.

Ok, jsolomon, what the heck is bubble-and-squeak? I've read about it for years, it even got a mention in one of my favorite sci-fi/fantasy books ("The Folk of the Air," by Peter S. Beagle). It sounds vaguely scary.

Edited by bergerka (log)

Basil endive parmesan shrimp live

Lobster hamster worchester muenster

Caviar radicchio snow pea scampi

Roquefort meat squirt blue beef red alert

Pork hocs side flank cantaloupe sheep shanks

Provolone flatbread goat's head soup

Gruyere cheese angelhair please

And a vichyssoise and a cabbage and a crawfish claws.

--"Johnny Saucep'n," by Moxy Früvous

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First things first. Black beans are sexy.

Chocolate, asparagus, chiles, coffee, basil, grapes, strawberries, honey, artichokes, black beans, oysters, rosemary, edible flowers, pine nuts, avocados and figs are all displayed on the body in a tasteful way
Ok, jsolomon, what the heck is bubble-and-squeak? I've read about it for years, it even got a mention in one of my favorite sci-fi/fantasy books ("The Folk of the Air," by Peter S. Beagle).  It sounds vaguely scary.

From foodreference.com. . . Bubble and Squeak.

Food History

BUBBLE AND SQUEAK

An old English dish, named for the sounds the ingredients make while cooking (or from the sound one's stomach makes after eating it). Some sources say it was originally cold boiled beef and chopped cabbage, others claim it was originally mashed potatoes and cabbage, while some claim it originally contained all three.

Today it is typically made from leftover potatoes and cabbage fried together.

I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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SarahD and I went to the green market at Dag Hammarskjold plaza.  I got two things from "Not just rugelach," one magically delicious potato/cheddar/broccoli knish, which I'm currently noshing on, and 1/2 pound of the most incredible chocolate hazelnut rugelach ever (NO, I didn't eat the entire half pound for lunch, only one).

I love the rugelach from "Not Just Rugelach". It's so good it kind of makes the name seem silly, since it very much IS the main reason to patronize them. They often operate out of Bowling Green park, so I've had it from there a few times when working downtown. The chocolate hazelnut is my favorite too.

I'm just catching up (great start bergerka!!) and I have a question....

What is rugelach??? I haven't heard of it, sorry!!

Also bergerka will you explain your screen name?

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oh yum, just got a plate of grapes (red and green), canteloupe, pineapple, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and um...two little cookies, a palmier and an oatmeal/raisin. There's some kiwi on here too, but it tastes bizarrely...fishy. Not what I expected or wanted from kiwi.

My pretty fruit plate:

gallery_8920_3_74476.jpg

Fried potatoes and cabbage, while delicious, do not fall under the category of sexy foods. :blink:

Hi, little ms. foodie! I love your screen name. Rugelach are pastries made with, I believe, a cream cheese dough, and filled with various things - walnuts and cinnamon are common, so are raisins, raspberry filling is delicious. The dough has a crunch similar to puff pastry, I find. They're cut into little bite-size pieces, and are completely addictive if made correctly. :wub:

My screen name is my last name followed by part of my first (Kathleen Berger). Sam likes it because it sounds like "berserk," as in "I've gone stark raving bergerka!" When I got my first email account ever, on AOL (no longer there, thank goodness), every other permutation of my name - including kathleenberger, kberger, kaberger, kathberg, and bergerk - was already taken, bergerka it was and bergerka I have remained.

ALERT ALERT ALERT - plan change for this evening!

By popular demand (which is to say that scheduling for me and a couple of other people is getting tricky and I'm going to have to do some serious prep work for Saturday tomorrow evening), I'm switching tonight's and tomorrow' night's plans. Therefore, the beans will have to languish in the fridge one more day - tonight, it's fried dumplings and a trip to Pegu! Maybe I'll see you there?

K

P.S. Eric, yeah, we all know you're more of a rehearsal pianist... *ducks and runs* (inside joke, don't panic if you don't get it)

Edited by bergerka (log)

Basil endive parmesan shrimp live

Lobster hamster worchester muenster

Caviar radicchio snow pea scampi

Roquefort meat squirt blue beef red alert

Pork hocs side flank cantaloupe sheep shanks

Provolone flatbread goat's head soup

Gruyere cheese angelhair please

And a vichyssoise and a cabbage and a crawfish claws.

--"Johnny Saucep'n," by Moxy Früvous

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I never said bubble and squeak was sexy, just musical. And, on the tactful end of the menu, even.

And, thanks, Sam. Pets, couples, and beds reminds me of a [gone horribly wrong] romantic encounter in the misty recesses of lost time... that really ought to stay repressed. Now I'll have to worry about my head exploding the next time I read "sexy" on this food blog.

I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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Many thanks!!! (voice inside says "must find rugelach in Seattle!")

I bet you'd have good luck with your rugelach quest at this establishment.

Rugelach are indeed a great good thing ... I may "need" some myself fairly soon, but fortunately I know where to look for them here in Sandy Eggo. :smile:

(Now I'm trying to think of operas about food. (More Songs About Buildings And Food? Oops, sorry, wrong musical genre!) Okay, let's see: there's "The Love for Three Oranges" ... and ... ????)

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(Don't ferretts running around all night impede sleep?)

They usually jump up on my side of the bed. . . :hmmm:

Ah, but seeing that you are out of town, if the cute ferret critters are anything like my cute kitty critter, a substitute is in order when the primary sleeping target is not available. :biggrin::blink:

(Hope it is a good trip!)

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(Don't ferretts running around all night impede sleep?)

They usually jump up on my side of the bed. . . :hmmm:

Ah, but seeing that you are out of town, if the cute ferret critters are anything like my cute kitty critter, a substitute is in order when the primary sleeping target is not available. :biggrin::blink:

(Hope it is a good trip!)

Yes, exactly - when Sam is there, he grabs them and gently boots them off the bed before they ever get to me. Most of the time I don't even know they've done it.

NOW, though, I'm wondering how it is HE ever sleeps. :blink:

jsolomon: now you're catching on to my eeeeevil plan.

It's almost DUMPLING AND COCKTAIL TIME. :wub: I may actually have time to go home and upload the lunch pix first, too.

Operas about food...hmmm...perhaps someone ought to write the opera of "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover?"

Never mind. Forget I brought it up. :shock:

Basil endive parmesan shrimp live

Lobster hamster worchester muenster

Caviar radicchio snow pea scampi

Roquefort meat squirt blue beef red alert

Pork hocs side flank cantaloupe sheep shanks

Provolone flatbread goat's head soup

Gruyere cheese angelhair please

And a vichyssoise and a cabbage and a crawfish claws.

--"Johnny Saucep'n," by Moxy Früvous

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Samascott Orchards is nestled inside the Village of Kinderhook, about 3/4 mile from my house. They do bake all of their pastries and pies on site, at their apple barn right here in the village.

They are very well supported here in the upper Hudson Valley, and very nice to see you supporting them also.

Very hard working fruit and vegetable farm family by the way, and well respected I might add.

very nice blog

woodburner

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(Now I'm trying to think of operas about food. (More Songs About Buildings And Food? Oops, sorry, wrong musical genre!) Okay, let's see: there's "The Love for Three Oranges" ... and ... ????)

I emailed a friend who's a real opera buff asking about food references in opera. He said there were plenty of drinking scenes, but he could only think of a few that involve dining.

Gaetano Donizetti's Lucrezia Borgia Act III scene II Gerano Lucrezia's son, but who doesn't know he's her son and 5 of his friends are poisoned with wine. Lucrezia appears, tells them a supper has been prepared for their hositality, and they've been poisoned, and 5 coffins await them. Son pops out cries you need 6 goes to stab her, but she declares she's MOM and he dies in her arms.

Verdi's Macbeth Act II scene 3, a banquet!! Lady Macb invites everyone to drink, but is interupted when Macbeth sees the ghost of Banquo (whom he just had killed) no one else can see him, and are puzzled. The ghost goes away, and then comes back and really interupts things. End of banquet.

Puccini Tosca Act II Tosca stabs Scarpia with a knife left on the table with his finished earlier dinner/snack.

SB (supposes that's maybe because it's hard to eat and sing at the same time?):wacko:

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gallery_8920_3_401739.jpg

Your cappucino looks remarkably un-sea-foam-ish. I saw your Silvia on the first page. Do you use some special attachement on the foaming wand? Or as it came from the factory. If so, what is the trick to lining up the hole with the surface. (Our current machine has the holes on the sides which makes life easier, but makes crappy coffee so we are strongly considering the Slivia.)

edit: I picked up the apple & PB habit from a college roommate, but I didn't think it was such a widespread thing. My spouse finds it obnoxiously healthy.

Edited by Behemoth (log)
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Steve, I'm sure we could think up numerous other banquet scenes in operas. Mozart's Don Giovanni comes to mind immediately. I suppose someone could start a thread on the topic of operas that have food or drinking scenes (which reminds me of the bar scenes in La Boheme and Carmen...).

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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Actually, someone wrote an opera about Julia Child, or rather set the "lyrics" from a couple of episodes of her cooking show to music. It was performed here in Vancouver, but (dang) I never got to see it.

Zuke

"I used to be Snow White, but I drifted."

--Mae West

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Actually, someone wrote an opera about Julia Child, or rather set the "lyrics" from a couple of episodes of her cooking show to music. It was performed here in Vancouver, but (dang) I never got to see it.

Zuke, are you thinking about Bon Appétit, the mini-opera that's based on an episode of Julia Child's show on how to make a chocolate cake?

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Steve, I'm sure we could think up numerous other banquet scenes in operas. Mozart's Don Giovanni comes to mind immediately. I suppose someone could start a thread on the topic of operas that have food or drinking scenes (which reminds me of the bar scenes in La Boheme and Carmen...).

And La Traviata... I'm picturing Bergerka breaking out into song and creating a sensation at the Pegu Club right about now... :smile:

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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Operas about food...hmmm...perhaps someone ought to write the opera of "The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover?"

That's outright genius!

I'm on it right frikkin' now...

(To Do List:

1) Learn to read music

2) Learn to write music

3) Learn to orchestrate

4) Pirate a copy of movie script

5) Translate same

6) Write libretto

7) Write score

8) Translate back, 'cuz opera doesn't sound right in English)

Actually, writing an opera is my personal "dream big" project, the accuracy of the above To Do list notwithstanding. :hmmm:

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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Actually, someone wrote an opera about Julia Child, or rather set the "lyrics" from a couple of episodes of her cooking show to music. It was performed here in Vancouver, but (dang) I never got to see it.

Zuke, are you thinking about Bon Appétit, the mini-opera that's based on an episode of Julia Child's show on how to make a chocolate cake?

Yes Moosh, that must be it. I wonder if I can find a recording. I'll have to phone the Magic Flute store and see if they have it on CD.

Zuke

"I used to be Snow White, but I drifted."

--Mae West

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Your cappucino looks remarkably un-sea-foam-ish. I saw your Silvia on the first page. Do you use some special attachement on the foaming wand? Or as it came from the factory. If so, what is the trick to lining up the hole with the surface. (Our current machine has the holes on the sides which makes life easier, but makes crappy coffee so we are strongly considering the Slivia.)

Kathleen probably won't know the answer to this, so I'll chime in. The steam wand on my Silvia is outfitted with a custom-mod three hole steam tip from 1st-Line Equipment. This means that, instead of a single jet of steam pointed straight down, there are three jets of steam pointing out at an angle in three different directions (the configuration is triangular). This makes it much easier to achieve the crucial "turn over" of the milk that leads to proper microfoam.

--

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Behemoth: what Sam said about the Rancilio. I have no idea what its components are, so I'm very glad he answered.

Oh man, it's turned out to be a much later evening than it was supposed to be...

So! Eric_Malson and I headed down to Chinatown for dumplings. We like to go to Dumpling House, on Eldridge just south of Broome Street.

Here's the sign.

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Here's the nice lady who takes the order and makes the dumplings.

gallery_8920_3_148057.jpg

I had a picture of the menu in front of her on the counter, but it came out um...kind of blurry...I don't have this picture taking thing down yet.

I ordered fried dumplings (duh!), a small hot & sour soup (best I have ever had, bar none. no idea how they do it, don't want to know. Some things should remain a mystery), and a sesame pancake filled with carrots, cilantro and beef.

Eric ordered the same.

Total for two people: $7.00 (10 dumplings, $2, 2 sesame pancakes with beef, $3, and two small hot & sour soups, $2).

Here's what dinner looked like.

gallery_8920_3_302997.jpg

That's a lot of food for one person!

We then made our way to Pegu Club. Audrey was there, looking beautiful (um, duh) and so were Toby, Phil, and the wonderful Brian, whose drinks I had never had before. These pictures will be even more blurry, dark and lame than the ones I usually take, as I didn't use flash out of courtesy to the other patrons (the guy next to me had no such inhibitions. :angry:).

First, Brian made me a Last Word (please, please, I beg you, don't ask me what the heck was in these. Gin, something and green chartreuse. It was delicious and refreshing).

gallery_8920_3_684615.jpg

Then, he put together a beautiful applejack tombstone (applejack, a touch of demerara syrup, a dash of bitters). This also had a twist, but the only non-blurry pic I took was before he put it in.

gallery_8920_3_61399.jpg

Then Phil stopped over to our end of the bar and made this, which he called "A Drink," when I asked him what it was. It's gin, something, and fruit cup (ask someone else what that is, please...I have no clue), with a grapefruit twist.

gallery_8920_3_434456.jpg

oog, that one's really dark. Hope you can see it.

Phil also came by and made me a NONalcoholic drink after I cut myself off (it's a work night, after all. Three is plenty) that had ginger beer, muddled cucumber and muddled strawberry (I think) and lime juice. Very refreshing and tasted good, with a nice sour bite at the end.

I can't for the life of me remember all of the drinks Eric had, but I know he finished up with a New York Sour, which was delish. Pegu is, in my opinion, the epitome of what a bar should be - I'm just never afraid to sit down and say "oh, hell, what do you feel like making? I like everything."

I really, really need to go see the ferrets and collapse into bed now. More thoughts on the opera version of The Cook, etc., tomorrow ("try the cock...").

Good night, everyone!

Edited by bergerka (log)

Basil endive parmesan shrimp live

Lobster hamster worchester muenster

Caviar radicchio snow pea scampi

Roquefort meat squirt blue beef red alert

Pork hocs side flank cantaloupe sheep shanks

Provolone flatbread goat's head soup

Gruyere cheese angelhair please

And a vichyssoise and a cabbage and a crawfish claws.

--"Johnny Saucep'n," by Moxy Früvous

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