Monthly Archives: April 2010

Mint and Pea Risotto for an Old Friend

My dear friend Emily is visiting and I wanted to make her something special for her visit. But it was sort of last minute so I threw together this risotto that Cia had made for me not too long ago. It’s an easy risotto but you must focus.

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Chocolate Cupcakes – Sweet Thursday

Two weekends ago my mother made this scrumptious chocolate cupcakes! I was so excited to share them with you but I didn’t write down the recipe…wah wah.  So, I have some pictures and I will make her send me the recipe as soon as humanly possible (that will probably be tonight since she’s at work right now).  The frosting was kind of a fluke, but really yummy.  Here are some pictures.

Hipstamatic Camera version

Regular Version

Great Cafe au Lait on oilcloth table cloth - has nothing to do with cupcakes.

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Filed under Chocolate, Dessert, Sweet Thursday, Uncategorized

Emily’s Post


It is not this entry’s intention to be intolerant of our younger generation, but if it is to be any use as an aid to good manners, it must say what it can to make both boys and girls realize that it is not the feebly old or the weakly ill who call upon “information” to a degree that is literally crippling to the service. Investigation has proved that the principal offenders are the lazy young who have seemingly neither their spines long enough to look up a number in a city telephone book; they ask “information” to do it for them!

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Sushi D

Sushi D
207 Dekalb Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11205

Jess and I love living in Brooklyn.  The list of reasons we love it would be long and in depth, but every once and a while we long for the life on the other side of the river.  When we lived on the Upper West Side one of the best things about our neighborhood was the endless array of food options, all of which delivered.  What does this have to do with a Tuesday review?  Well the truth is our neighborhood has very good restaurants; some of the best I have eaten in, but the choice is sometimes very limited.  Luckily we do have a great sushi restaurant and on Friday night we went out to Sushi D.

Sushi D is a blessing, because the only other sushi restaurant in walking distance to us (which will remain nameless) has made us both sick on multiple occasions.  Now you may be asking yourself, “Why would you get sick on multiple occasions?  That would mean you went BACK after getting sick!”  Yes, well sometimes you are lazy and you want to give people a second chance.  Sushi D on the other hand has never made us sick, rather it makes us full and very happy.

The menu at Sushi D is wonderful in that they change it seasonally and have wonderful specials.  The prices are very reasonable considering how good it is, and the sushi is always very fresh and tasty.  We have been enjoying the winter menu up until recently and we luckily caught it right before it changed.  Start with the Spicy Salmon Crisps, which consist of spicy salmon over rice crisps topped with roasted pine nuts and balsamic vinaigrette.  We always split a few rolls and the following are the usual suspects:

  • Rainbow Roll: Colorful Assortment Of Sashimi Over California Roll
  • Sunshine Roll: Spicy Salmon with King Crab and crunchy tempura flakes.
  • Volcano Roll: Spicy Tuna, Tempura Flakes + Avocado With Sriracha On Top
  • Happy Crab: (a winter menu special!) King Crab in a deep fried tempura shell with a balsamic reduction dipping sauce.

Shrimp Tempura, the jade roll (all vegetable) and the “D” Roll: Eel, Tempura Flakes Topped With Masago + Avocado, are also very good.  The salmon teriyaki is excellent, if not a bit too saucy, and the beef negimaki is also a favorite with savory beef wrapped around scallions.  I have had this appetizer in some of the best sushi restaurants in the city and the beef can be chewy and tasteless.  Sushi D does right and I often go there thinking about the beef negimaki in advance! Pair your meal with a Nagori saki (unfiltered and cold is best).

Sushi D is also extremely accommodating, and will make almost anything you like.  Jess is a huge fan of a spicy scallop hand roll and they make a wonderful version for us whenever we go.  The service can be a little slow, but they finally take credit cards (it used to be cash only) so that makes up for it.   They have great outdoor seating in the spring and summer so head out on a arm night and enjoy!  Kampai!

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Filed under Brooklyn Places, Review

Chicken Soup for the Spring

Music: Hope to Stay – The Mix

James and I have a collection of chicken soup recipes and are always searching for more.  When I found Thomas Keller’s in Ad Hoc, I very much wanted to try it.  He uses a pate a choux recipe for the dumplings which looked so delicious.  He says it is “simple” but I disagree wholeheartedly.  It was very complicated and time consuming but, in the end, delicious. Be prepared to spend some time on it…I trimmed some of the edges and made it less of a commitment. Here’s how:

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Fettucini with Walnut Ricotta Pesto

Music: The Shepherd’s Dog – Iron and Wine

First things first…yes, we’ve been negligent.  We haven’t posted our new schedule for the spring yet and spring is here. I promise, we’re working on it. And it’ll be totally worth it.

So, my friend Cia made this for me not too long ago and I really wanted to replicate it.  It was so easy and delicious and I love fresh ricotta on my pasta (and nothing else).  This is a Lydia Bastianich recipe from her show Lydia’s Italy.  I didn’t actually see this episode, nor did I have the recipe in front of me…I just sort of mimicked what Cia did (I think, maybe she’ll chime in and tell us otherwise). I always thought Pesto had to be the basil dish we all know and love.  But that’s not true. Pesto is any sauce pounded with a mortar and pestle.  I didn’t do that either so I guess this isn’t technically a pesto.  I guess you can say pesto is a raw sauce.  That’s fair.

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Filed under Cheese, Food Anecdotes, Pasta, Recipes, Sauces

Grandma’s Wedding Cakes – Sweet Thursday

Music: Famous Blue Raincoat – Leonard Cohen

My grandmother, Rose, is a domestic goddess of mythic proportion in my mind.  She could do everything.  She made dresses for my mother that I am still able to wear.  She hosted dinners for over 50 people on a weekly basis. Everything she created in the kitchen was extraordinary and the best I’ve eaten  – even just spaghetti with meatballs (which was really the only thing I ate as a kid, earning me the nickname “the spaghetti wrangler”).  She hosted pea parties where only dishes with peas were served (and it wasn’t gross!).  She left her Christmas tree up all year long.  She could knit an afghan, read a book and watch “Days of Our Lives” all at the same time. She had a built-in brick oven in her kitchen.  She used to buy me gold lamé bathing suits and took me to the diner with her friends.  Maybe it was her special Grandma touch, but she could do no wrong.

She also used to make the most remarkable wedding cakes.  I was sorting through some old photographs with my mother this weekend and we found these pictures of cakes she made in the late 60’s to the early 80’s.  They aren’t in the greatest condition but you’ll get the picture.  These are the wedding cakes of yore – you’ll be hard pressed to find a baker who still makes them like this (except for maybe in the Bronx?) and, although, it’s not necessarily an aesthetic that’s stood the test of time – you can certainly appreciate the artistry that goes into them.  They have electric fountains and angels and sugar roses for crying out loud!  I don’t know who they belonged to.  I wish I did.  Even though they were promptly eaten on someone’s wedding day I am happy that I can share them with you here.

My Parents' Wedding Cake

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Filed under Dessert, Food Anecdotes, General Rantings, Sweet Thursday