Sunday, August 21, 2011

costco mania

Since I'm moving into a new apartment with no furniture or anything, I have been hunting for good deals and obviously Costco is where the fun is. So my parents took my mom's name off their Costco card and put mine on it. Since then I have seriously abused my Costco card privileges. My mom says she wants to take my name off of it now that I have the things I need, but I think she just misses it. I NEED IT MORE THAN SHE DOES. In two days, I have visited all 3 Costcos in the New York City area. I've always known that Costco is the best but it didn't really hit me because since I've never gone there to shop for myself. Now I know, and it is dangerous territory. My mom keeps trying to give me this advice about how shopping at Costco can actually end up being more expensive because she knows I will buy everything and I only have to feed myself. But I am in complete control.

Neal and I went to the Brooklyn Costco and wasted away nearly two hours freaking out. If we had only a little bit less self control, we would have walked out of there with a digital camera, a jumbo back of peanut m&ms, wasabi doritos, lobster tails, ribs, and cocktail shrimp. And a box of Bagel Bites. We only ended up with bagels, the ingredients to make our dinner and a set of frying pans. Except neither of us had bags or one of those crazy lady carts, so it was a little bit of a work out (for Neal) to get those things on the train and back home. I have to invest in a cart.

So we got steak, obviously. This is not a hot picture, and it looks sort of gray, but I promise you it was super delicious. I cooked it the way Erik told me to, with a lil bit of sea salt and pepper rubbed into it, cooked in butter til its brown on both sides, then put in the oven for about 10-15 minutes. Holy cow (HAHA), so juicy and meaty. I also made those mushrooms in the steak butter juice with garlic and wine. Also excellent. Same goes for the mashed potatoes. And we also made some salad with goat cheese, walnuts, and pears.

There was also a big piece of wild salmon that this guy I work for gave to me. I would have cooked it another day but I immediately hopped on a train after work to go to Costco because I only thought we would have 15 minutes to shop. Turns out we had a lot more time and so the fish sort of sat out for a bit. I found a pack of frozen shrimp to keep it cool while we shopped. We cooked that with just salt pepper and lemon, and it was very flaky and tasty.

Then vanilla ice cream with warm peaches and walnuts (thx Rachel)

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Melissa's sister had a BBQ at their dad's really great apartment but it was good mostly for the grill...There was so much food, I almost didn't eat lunch today, but who am I kidding? I had breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. We went to this grocery store called Fairway and I didn't get to spend enough time freaking out there. It's big and beautiful and has so many food options. I'm going to get one of those wire old lady carts so I can go shopping on the Upper West Side. I also got a Costco card!! Actually my dad just put my name on his card and took my mom's name off... industrial sized packs of bacon HERE I COME!!!!

Baguette, olives, and this dip that is super simple and deadly if you're lactose intolerant like me. It's ricotta cheese, a little milk, olive oil, salt, and pepper...and maybe some lemon juice? It is so so good. I couldn't stop eating it. **Not pictured: cheese with caramelized onions in it, prosciutto, salami, and...spicy salami. Maybe it has a fancier name?

Most of the food. I had to keep taking new pictures because new food kept coming in off the grill. Starting from the top right corner and zigzagging down: sweet potato salad, grilled zucchini, grilled bell peppers, sausage, corn, bahn mi tasting coleslaw, grilled onion, chicken, radicchio in a balsamic dressing. **Not pictured: fat, juicy grilled tomatoes.

Close up of the potato salad because it was my favorite! It has beans in it and I'm not sure what else, to be honest. It's not super thick like regular, mayo-eggy potato salad, but the potatoes are creamy enough themselves, and it also doesn't feel like you just ate a packet of mayonnaise and eggs.

A little bit of everything. Building a plate at a BBQ or a picnic is like making a burrito. It always seems like there's not enough of anything but somehow you end up with more food than you can eat. I could have eaten more if I hadn't eaten half a loaf of bread. There was also grilled peaches and ice cream for dessert. UGH

I like this picture. It sort of reminds me of scanwiches, clean and organized. I was talking to Erik and Neal about the food pictures I like, and I think that regular old crappy pictures like from my iPhone or point and shoot are the best kind. I mean, I appreciate good food photography and all those fancy pictures on Tastespotting and nice food blogs and magazines, but a lot of the time they are too perfect. It's always the perfect, sunny day with the happy friends and children, pistachios scattered nicely around the home-churned ice cream, beautiful mise en place shots (do people REALLY cook like this? Unless you're, like, Giada or Ina Garten, who is such a wet blanket), but let's get real. When I cook, the sink always has dishes and the stove is maybe a little spattered with oil, and I use 99 cent paper towels instead of freshly scented soft towels, but I still think my food looks good and tastes good. When I look at food pictures, I want to feel like I could eat what I'm looking at. If you only look at digital SLR photos of grilled watermellon on a clean, new grill, when you actually make it on your own grill, sort of crusted with burned marshmallow bits, it's not going to seem as good! Or it's like looking at shoes you can't buy on the internet. That's why I like this guy's posts. They're not great pictures and they're not even of food that particularly great either, but I always get the hungriest when I look at them because I feel like it's something I could eat right away. I also like this guy's posts because the food is not set up or constructed, but they still look real and beautiful because he has a nice camera.

Friday, August 12, 2011

food from this week

Tuna sandwich + avocado, tomato, and lettuce from Cafe Prague...this sandwich was ok. I like the idea of putting avocado on everything but the tuna is already so soft, so it doesn't really do anything for me, texture wise. I made my own version of this sandwich, except my tuna didnt have celery but had pickles instead. I also put mozarella cheese on it and toasted my bread and left out the tomatoes so it wouldn't get soggy. I think my sandwich tasted better.

Tried Papaya Dog for the first time...what's the big deal? It's not a great hot dog, just some cheap-o dog that everyone gives 4 stars on Yelp. It was a satisfying $1.50 hotdog though...sauerkraut and ketchup.

My friend Matt made some great fish tacos tonight. Yeah, updating this less than 24 hours after it happened...welcome to the rest of my Friday night!! This was too good, and now this is what I want to eat for the rest of the week while I try to mostly not eat gluten or dairy...but yeah right. But I even bought most of the ingredients at like 130 am as soon as I got of the train. It was that urgent.

Tilapia, a vegetable medley (maybe it has a real name) of avocado, peppers, tomato, cilantro, lime juice, and this aioli made with quail eggs on a blue corn tortilla

Sunday, August 7, 2011


I haven't really had breakfast since I moved away from Providence, probably because I don't live above 3 different breakfast places and my apartment doesn't always smell like bacon. So I guess this is my first breakfast in New York, except it was at 3 in the morning but that still counts.

Challah french toast and corn beef hash from Vesleka. Is this place actually good? I mean, I thought it was so tasty and it was really crowded, so the answer is probably yes, but I couldn't tell if it was just me being me. I almost got 2 eggs, potato pancakes, and corn beef has because I always pick savory over sweet, but then I usually regret it when I'm feeling bloated from the sodium overload. So it was a good thing I got the french toast, though I don't think that stopped me from feeling too full. These ladies at the table next to us were sharing a salad while I was ordering, and I was being such a self-righteous jerk about it because who goes out to eat at 3 am and gets a side salad? Then their order actually came and it was mac and cheese, perogis, and something else really large and greasy. And I was so jealous. MY BAD LADIES

Thursday, August 4, 2011


There's this place in the Flatiron District on 22nd & 5th called Eissenberg's, and I always thought it was just some run of the mill sandwich shop, but then I forgot lunch and googled "best sandwiches flatiron" and it came up. They also have breakfast and hot plates. Today's special was meatloaf and mashed potatoes, but I didn't get it. I regret it. So I decided to try a sandwich, and I guess a BLT isn't complicated but it's easy to get it wrong...soggy bacon, soggy bread, no lettuce, NOT ENOUGH BACON. This is a problem more than it should be. You can't make a BLT then only put in 3 paper thin pieces of bacon.

This BLT great, except the bread was a little too toasty and it scratched up the roof of my mouth. Wah wah wah. But there was a lot of crispy bacon and just enough mayo, plus the perfect amount crunchy lettuce and super juicy tomatoes to prevent my body from feeling like I was overloaded with sodium. I don't think the ingredients are anything special, but who am I kidding, I don't get fancy at the grocery store either. The sandwich looks like a regular size sandwich and I thought $6.50 was too much to pay for it, but judging by how full I felt after, it was totally worth it. Next week I'm going to get the meatloaf sandwich.

Did this blog entry sound professional? I applied for this job on Craigslist to be a food blogger/recipe tester...I almost cried because that would be my dream job. Then I read all these other food blogs and they involve so many adjectives and proper grammar and this nice tone of writing that really makes you feel like the blogger cares about you. I don't care about you (j/k I do) I just want you to be jealous of the food I eat.