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Archive for December, 2006

in which she finds some lovely cheese

As well as many other good things. After much debate, I chose Hearth for John’s birthday dinner. Hearth is a cousin of Union Square which John liked very much a few years ago (there is a famous story of a one year old Naomi plundering his exquisite shrimp risotto there) and of Gramercy Tavern, a standby favorite of our very New York savvy Anne. Pluswhich, The Amateur Gourmet likes it, and his recommendations are kind of infectious.

First off, it’s great. What makes me sigh is that it’s great in the way probably a few dozen restaurants in New York are great. The food is honest, flavorful, creative and pretty. It’s served with respect for the serious business of eating, but without pretension. It’s a little expensive, but you don’t feel like you’re getting gouged (and a great big, bad, Chateauneuf de Pape and two snifters of lovely Calvados will do a little damage to the bill . . .) I love the fact that there are many places like this in the city, and am most sad about the fact that in Ann Arbor there are only one or two.
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My beloved’s birthday falls on Christmas. This always presents a bit of a problem, as we try to find the right celebration balance. We want neither to neglect the man nor indulge to the point of wretched excess (ok, maybe the latter once in a while). This year, it’s a notable birthday (the one that’s not forty and not sixty, but somewhere in between), so I decided to separate the celebrations and make a fuss, and arrange a weekend in New York to mark the occasion. My planning was all about where we would eat. Not least of the many ways in which John is my partner is enthusiastic approach to a good meal.

With the children safely stashed (Naomi with her Mom; Nick with my sister in Westchester county — where he was stuffed with fig newtons and learned to say “Santa”), we made our way into the city on Saturday morning, dropped the bags at our midtown hotel and began a long walk uptown to Eli Zabar’s Vinegar Factory and the Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial. (more…)

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Maria: Much to Say

After a weekend in New York with much culinary investigation. But right now I can’t say anything because I have brought home a horrible cold and laryngitis as a souvenir. So this is just a placeholder while I type up a more detailed account, and John drills Naomi on state capitals (when did the capital of New Jersey become “crap!”? The capital of North Carolina, necktie??). Meanwhile, inquiring minds want to know, just what did the girls who stayed at home make for Saturday night dinner? There was much talk of celery puree and short ribs and chicken and green olives before I left, but I never heard the results.

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Since we are (self-proclaimed) food bloggers now we (and the one or two other people who look at this blog) should all think about making a donation to Menu for Hope. Organized by fellow foodie and blogger Pim, Menu for Hope is an opportunity for food bloggers all over the world to ban together and support hunger relief. This year the money raised through the Menu for Hope campaign will go to support the UN World Food Programme. And get this – for each $10 you donate, you get a raffle ticket towards a prize of your choice, also donated by food bloggers. The prizes include cookbooks, meals at various restaurants, food products, and more. I’ve already got my eye on meg’s (of megnut) donation – a KitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Mixer in Empire Red!

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My chocolate crinkle cookies, as Maria mentioned, were a smashing success. The co-workers and the boyfriend concurred. Not only did they tempt with their perfectly cracked exterior and rich, brown-black interior. If cookies could flash a “come hither” look, bat an eyelash, and expose some shoulder, these cookies did exactly that.Unbeknownst to those who played Odysseus to these confectionary Calypsos, my chocolate crinkle cookies represented another level of success, more political than gustatory. The story goes like this: (more…)

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Thursday nights are a bit of a problem for us. My fleet-footed Naomi and her running-obsessed father go to the indoor track for speed workouts. The track doesn’t open until seven. And young Nick (aka The Littlest) has to be fed and in the bath by seven. Somewhere in there, dinner has to be produced.
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Anne: Where to Begin

I think I’m having blogger’s block already but maybe I just have to plunge in and say something here (plus I promised Maria I’d do this last night!) (Maria is a bigger nudge than me) (I mean that in a nice way). OK. About myself. I love to talk about myself so I don’t know why I should be blocking. There is so much to say about my life as a foodie. It’s just, where to begin?
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