Wednesday, August 22, 2012

dark dinners

Yesterday Kristin and I went to Astoria to meet Ann, and she took us to all these Greek stores. I didn't need groceries, I'm leaving for a week this Saturday and don't want food guilt, you know food gone bad, waste of money, etc... But somehow I ended up with bags full of olives, home made tzatziki and feta dip, pita, and savory pastries, which were all right up my alley (also ate about 50% of this food already, so I think I'm ok). The tzatziki especially was so good, all creamy and tangy. Then she took us this Mediterranean fish restaurant called Elias (I think...) and it has no menu, just the catch of the day. I felt so full, but the good kind of full where you've just eaten a lot of fresh food that sits well with you. Not the kind of post-hamburger fullness I know so well.

Greek salad

Kristin says a real Greek salad doesn't have any lettuce in it, and this didn't (or not much at least), so I guess this was the real deal. It's one of my favorite things to eat.


White snapper

Grilled octopus

This was my favorite. I love octopus, but I usually have it only in Korean food, in stews or little pieces, not big tentacles like this. It was so moist. I didn't know I could call octopus moist. Maybe juicy is a better word. Nothing was overly seasoned, just a little bit so that you can get the real seafood-y taste. 

I've been wanting to go to Mission Chinese Food for a while now and I finally did last weekend. It's not-quite-Chinese "Kung Pao Pastrami." Anyway, I'm just gonna copy and paste what I read in the NYT: "Mr. Bowien [the guy with the long ponytail] does to Chinese food what Led Zeppelin did to the blues. His cooking both pays respectful homage to its inspiration and takes wild, flagrant liberties with it. " Google it, I guess.

The wait was ridiculously long, like 3 hours long. And I would have been really mad if it weren't for the free keg (I didn't have any beer but I liked having the option) and the chicken wings that kept coming out of the kitchen and getting passed around. They were amazing. Super moist on the inside and perfectly crispy skin, and for the first time, I actually enjoyed the burn of spicy food. I mean, it could be because I didn't have any water to drink so I had to force myself to endure the pain, but then that sort of turned into a weirdly pleasant slow burn down my throat. I read online that the wings are poached in oil, salted, frozen, then deep-fried because the freezing helps stretch the skin a little so the wings are mega crispy. WILD

It's pretty dark in there. And really red, obviously. I guess it's supposed to be hip. Or Chinese. Or both? The inside looks like a cool bad Chinese take out restaurant and the only thing that makes it you think it's cool are the ~west coast chill vibes~ people that work there. That sounds kind of mean, it's not. I'm from the West Coast too, I'm just not cool. The actual dining area is fun. These are lotus roots, and they were just alright. 

 These are "Beijing vinegar peanuts" with salt, vinegar, smoked garlic and anise. They were really great, somewhere between soft and crunchy and also really vinegar-soury, which I love.

Mapo Tofu with pork shoulder and red pepper

This was also really spicy. Everything was spicy, it's a miracle I didn't burn all my taste buds off. But they were kind of numb the next day because the food was a little salty. Well, I think it's supposed a little salty, but we didn't really have a balance of non-salty things and just ate so much sodium at one time it got overwhelming in the end. I think this was the saltiest. I could tell that it was really good..the tofu was firm but still silky and the pork was so saucy and flavorful, but at that point, it was kinda too much. I would try it again, but maybe just have some rice on the side instead of a million other NaCl-loaded (check it out, I know some science stuff) dishes. It was all cheap for how much food we ate.

Mongolian long beans 

 Pork jowls and radishes with fermented black beans, sesame leaves, and mint

This was so good! Still salty, but I think that's why it was so smart and important to have the sesame leaves. It really created a nice balance and fresh (maybe that's not the right word?) flavor to go with the fatty meat and salty beans. We also got stir fried buckwheat noodles, which I will definitely get again.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Sorry, this is the whole post. I know, really boring but I mostly wanted to show off how fluffy my scrambled eggs look. I put cottage cheese in them. Lactose-free cottage cheese! But as you can see, I'm also eating bread, so I only avoided one food intolerance today. That's more than I can usually say. And those tomato slices are part of some super tomatoes I got at the market yesterday, tomato season is the sweetest and best. I went to Mission Chinese Food yesterday, it's comin up here. Watch out.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

another lunch

I feel like I spend half the time at work eating, and most of that eating time isn't just "eating" it's feasting. So that means Kathy was back for a hot minute before she flew away again. So here it is, another big Pace lunch made by 1 Kathy person. I don't know how she does it, like really. She came in with like 500 bags of food and was like "oh I wasn't able to make a cake but I made cookies!" What?? Yeah I forgot pictures of the cookies, but lemon chip cookies with vanilla ice cream and blueberry sauce. Not the pre-made kind, obviously.

Fresh orecchiett, tomatoes, basil, and fresh mozzarella

And there was a pesto pasta I forgot to take pictures of. And a salad. And smoked mozzarella too...I was too busy eating. I got to chop up some things, and while giving off the impression that I was being helpful, I was really just sneaking bites of the food before it had to be shared.

Quinoa with cilantro, corn, and lime juice

Carb fest


Oh and here's my breakfast, I thought it looked kind of nice. Boring, but nice. That's usually not very flattering but this is about food and not a human so it's alright. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

lonely nachos

There is this pretty mediocre "Mexican" restaurant in Cobble Hill that I am really into. I've been going there and getting a table by myself and reading a book. Then getting some sort of cheese or sauce on my book, but hey that's what books are for? This last time I went there I sat behind this group of middle aged women having an early girls night. Holy cow, give a mom a margarita and she just isn't gonna stop talking about Twilight or 50 Shades of Gray (like for real) or all those other sort of jokes that takes moms like a few months to catch on to. Anyway, it was sort of hard to read my book so I just busied myself with these nachos. I think 80% of the chips were soggy under the beans and crushing weight of the cheese and I could count the number of tomato pieces on one and a half hands. But I was all over it, I even used a fork to eat the soggiest chips and I liked it. A low point, some might call it. Whatever

Saturday, August 11, 2012

picture dump

Nick and I signed our lease today, well I re-signed and he hopped onto the lease. That also means it's been over a year since I've been in New York, which, I know, is really no time at all but it feels like it's gone by so fast. Totally freaks me out. Yup, there you go. 

Here are some other miscellaneous crappy pictures because it was too dark or I was too hungry. Or I sliced my thumb on a mandolin slicer and my iPhone wont respond to the touch of my bandaged fingers. It happens.

This fried mess is an oyster roll from the Lobster Joint and yeah, I dig it. Good pickles.

David made lots of sushi. He can do that, you know? 

See, proof

This is sort of ugly because I sort of made it

Monday, August 6, 2012

burgers in the summer, can't stop, won't stop

Today is my beautiful friend Christina's birthday! It's nice to have such good people in my life.  

Sunday, August 5, 2012

a tale of 2 sandwiches

There's not much of a tale to tell though, sorry.

Vegetable sesame pancake "sandwich" from Vanessas, but the one on Bedford that is severely lacking in cracked out nutjobs and Chinatown stench. It's got carrots, cilantro and cucumber smooshed in between to pizza-like slices of super glutinous, greasy, chewy sesame pancakes.

 My mom and dad were visiting me a few weeks ago and we went to Peter Luger (what a meat fest, post on that coming soon, if I ever recover). There was a lot of left over steak.

So I made this sandwich with arugula, gorgonzola, spicy mustard and avocado. I think the avocado was definitely unnecessary because it takes away from the creaminess of the cheese and almost is too much but I love avocados and when they're in the fridge, I have this weird sense of obligation to eat them. Or something like that. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

peach pie

Something that I noticed after living here is that people are always coming and going. It's weird, I'm not used to it, I'm not into it. I guess I'll probably be going somewhere soon too though, right? Who knows. The past few weeks have been like a mass exodus at Pace. I don't like saying good bye but it helps when there's pie involved, especially when that pie is made by Jody. I'm gonna freak out if she leaves before I do.

There was vanilla ice cream too. I like it when fruit pies let the fruit speak for itself and don't assault you with too much sugar. That's what the ice cream is for!