I Love Mama’s Cookin’

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There's no question that it's easy to find good food in New York City. You can sip a Bloody Mary on the roof of a restaurant in Brooklyn while taking in perfect views of the Manhattan skyline. You can go to a food festival in Brooklyn and eat black-eyed pea falafel from Seersucker, or Roberta's margarita pizza straight out of a wood-fired oven. You can partake in the likes of authentic Mexican tortas at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant in the heart of the Bronx, or pay very little for a very ...

A 151-Year-Old Cake for a 2012 Family

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One flew in from the west coast, I from the east, and sixteen others arrived from their respective corners of Wisconsin and Illinois. We descended on Aunt Sue and Uncle Jim's house in one fell swoop, armed with platefulls of baked goods and paper bags filled with intricately wrapped gifts. The dogs raced a quick loop around the house before they were exiled to the breezeway; the beer bottles were cleared from the living room floor to make space for the toddlers to unwrap their ...

Celebrations and a Picnic

This post marks three important milestones: 1.) This is the first post I'm writing as a college graduate; as a Citizen of the Real World. While the most memorable moment of the two-hour graduation ceremony this past Sunday is my tassel falling off my cap just as I accepted my diploma from the Dean, the friends and family who helped me celebrate throughout the weekend will never be forgotten. And as some of us know well, when my family celebrates, a vast, delicious spread of food inevitably ...

The Best Darn Pizza You Will Ever Eat*

*It will only be the best if my mother is the chef. Other attempts to recreate such a masterpiece are welcome, but if you want to taste this creation in its prime, I suggest you befriend my mother, or me, or find a way to break into my mom's fridge after the leftovers are stored. Seriously, I wouldn't be mad if you did--you need to get a cut of this. -This is the most requested meal in my parents' household. Whenever someone returns from college, or ...

Back to Sunday

When I say "back," I mean way back. Back to the days when families came together to share a meal for no reason other than, say, it was Sunday. Back to the family-style meals cooked with soul and meant to satisfy, not just curb an appetite. A recent afternoon cooking with my mother led to this hearty dish. The ingredients reminded my mom of her mother's soulful cooking; its comfort factor made me grateful I got to share it with my family. Sunday Stew with Pan-seared Chicken, Bacon ...

Pleasurability

Growing up, my brother and I had completely different approaches to food. He was the kind of person who would forget to eat, who wished he could take a magical once-daily pill to fulfill his nutritional needs rather than taking time out for several meals (luckily, he has since reversed that mindset). I, on the other hand, regarded meal time as sacred, and often wondered what was for breakfast soon after finishing dinner. For me, food isn't about sustenance. It's not even about achieving optimal nutrition (I'll devote ...