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Vegetarian Chili: favorites?

I've been using the recipe from The Silver Palate Good Times cookbook since the book came out. My only change is to use to use 2 teaspoons of chipotle chili powder instead of 2 tablespoons "regular". I'm not a big spicy fan.This is an absolutely fool-proof recipe!

Feb 12, 2013
joannabar in Home Cooking

Unique Group Dining in Manhattan?

A good guide to the "health" of a restaurant is the large A,B or C posted on a restaurant's front window or door. If you have to look for this rating, it probably isn't a good thing...or it can mean the place just hasn't had a health inspection recently. "Grade Pending" is ambiguous for the same reason. It sounded to me as though this isn't a business dinner per se, more like a group of business people looking for a good place to eat after the day is done. I've recently been to both places mentioned and they were fine. Not fancy, but clean...I made a good attempt at looking into the kitchens. I prefer Amazing 66 over the other one. It's also much larger than NY Noodletown and has numerous tables for up to 10 or 12. As to safety of C-town, I don't think that's too much of a worry either, but then I'm there frequently and have no fear. There is a major police presence at all times.As to whether there's anything to do other than walk around, that's different issue Pretty much everything except the restaurants closes up after 8pm. The LES has its problem spots too... Negotiating the streets is simply a matter of being aware of what's around you, and a large group is not likely to be bothered by anyone. I would suggest that olympusnyc gets hold of a Zagat guide. They group restaurants by type (family friendly, romantic, etc) and might have a great recommendation for a large group of people. Olympusnyc would do well to make reservations somewhere, which largely leaves out C-town but would guarantee a place for 25 people to eat all at once!

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Amazing 66
66 Mott St, New York, NY 10013

Sep 20, 2011
joannabar in Manhattan

Unique Group Dining in Manhattan?

Get thee to Chinatown. One place my husband and I like is Amazing 66 on Mott St. They have large tables with lazy Susan wheels for convenient sharing.the menu ranges from fairly tame (chicken chow fun) to parts of animals not found in the local ShopRite. The waitstaff we've encountered speaks English well ( or well enough) and service is speedy and efficient.they also take credit cards,something that many C-town restaurants don't. Another good place is New York Noodletown (not sure of address,could be Bowery south of Canal). That's in all the tourist guidebooks so it's a bit more crowded.

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Great New York Noodletown
28 Bowery, New York, NY 10013

Amazing 66
66 Mott St, New York, NY 10013

Sep 20, 2011
joannabar in Manhattan

It's Not a Party Without Deviled Eggs

I bring eggs and cold water-about an inch over the top of the eggs-to a gentle boil for 1 minute. Then I turn off the heat, move the pan away from the burner, and cover it for 11 minutes. At the end of that time, I immediately spill out the hot water and fill with running cold water until the eggs have cooled off. Refrigeration follows.
I keep it simple when it comes to making deviled eggs. Hellman's Real mayonnaise, dijon mustard (grainy or plain depending on who is going to eat them) and sea salt go into the food processor with the egg yolks. I like the smooth paste the fp creates. Then I use a pastry bag to swirl the mixture into the egg whites. Finish by sprinkling a mix of Hungarian sweet paprika and smoked Spanish paprika over all.
My friends have dubbed these "crack" eggs. I am highly complimented!

Feb 18, 2011
joannabar in Features

Ebinger's Blackout Cake Recipe in Cooks Country Magazine

The pudding part of the Cook's Country recipe is poorly written. I started to follow it exactly but when it didn't bubble the way pudding should bubble (ie...thickly) I didn't stop at 2-4 minutes. It took about 7 minutes total for the pudding to thicken. If you make it whisk until the mixture feels as though it is thickening and just begins to bubble. The heat has to be carefully controlled at this point and stirring must be constant. Catch it at just the right moment and it will be perfect.

Aug 23, 2010
joannabar in Home Cooking

Good Cocoa Powder??

El Rey (whole foods) cocoa powder has great depth of flavor....Valhrona, Callebaut, Scharfenberger, Ghiradelli, and yes, even Hershey all have their place in my kitchen. I'm a pan-chocoholic, I suppose. I used the El Rey in Julia's "Reine de Saba" cake and it became a chocolate cake on a whole new level!

Nov 20, 2009
joannabar in General Topics

Spiced Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake

Either make it with butter and milk for a non-meat dinner or don't make it at all. Margarine??? Soy milk? Yech. These substitutions do not make for better taste. Apple pie spice? Why? You can measure your own cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg etc.

Toodie jane is right.

Nov 17, 2009
joannabar in Recipes

Tufts U graduation dinner

My stepdaughter is graduating in May. We'd like to take her someplace special but not over-the-top. She likes pretty much any cuisine, but her younger sister has severe allergies to sesame and tree nuts. That eliminates Middle Eastern and any other sesame-prone cuisine...but anything else is probably fine. Suggestions for places in a radius of Medford are welcome. Going into Boston isn't ruled out so someplace not far from the T might be ok. I think everyone is willing to cast the net fairly wide but we do have to get back to her house to pack her up...so nothing really far from Medford. I hope this all leaves room for lots of suggestions! There must be lots of other commencements that day so I want to reserve early.
Thanks!

Nov 06, 2009
joannabar in Greater Boston Area

Mint

What else can you do with chocolate mint besides put it in ice tea or sprinkle over ice cream? That's the kind of mint popping up in my yard! bunnies won't touch it.

Sep 25, 2009
joannabar in Home Cooking

Nick Malgieri's Supernatural Brownies - is there really a better recipe? I think not.

I didn't think I could love a brownie recipe more than the Supernaturals until I bought Nick's "The Modern Baker". He has a recipe using cocoa nibs that makes me swoon. It isn't better than the supers....just different, perhaps slightly less sweet. Wonderful.

Sep 25, 2009
joannabar in Home Cooking

Are there any authentic French patisseries in the city?

This is probably old news for this thread; Payard closed at the end of June 2009. As I haven't seen it posted, I thought I'd do it myself...now I continue my quest for a great coffee eclair. I've tried making them, but while I had a good shell and filling, I just couldn't get that glaze right. Has anyone tried to make coffee, or for that matter, chocolate eclairs? I just need the glaze part!

Sep 01, 2009
joannabar in Manhattan

French macarons for dummies

Macaroons are those awful tasting things one eats or doesn't eat at Passover (unless you know how to make them). They are made from coconut and flavorings. Ysusi, the recipe above is for French macarons, which bear no resemblance living or dead to macaroons. If you know how to pronounce French, the two words sound nothing alike. Please read her recipe. She includes the one for a filling. I'd like to do a coffee and a caramel filling...would you have a quick recipe for those, afteryouwho?

Sep 01, 2009
joannabar in Recipes

Saturday Lunch in Paris for 4 girls celebrating a 30th

Oh...it is on the rue Beaujolais in the 1st arrondisement.

Aug 07, 2009
joannabar in France

Saturday Lunch in Paris for 4 girls celebrating a 30th

If you are going after the end of August (they vacate for July and August) try Le Grand Vefour. There is a set 88 euro lunch and it is a lovely, elegant and probably not what you'd consider a bistro as it is a bit more formal. The website is: www.grand-vefour.com You'll be able to see the place and also an example of their lunch menu. Look at "dejeuner" and you'll find it. It is rated a 28 out of 30 by Zagats. I think it is a very special place.

Aug 07, 2009
joannabar in France

Cilantro

How I wish I could like cilantro. It is in so many good cuisines. However, it makes my lips tingle, my throat swells a little and has an extremely overwhelming, bitter taste like soap. Therefore, good cilantro lovers, I request that when you make a dish with cilantro mixed into it (so that it isn't obvious), please tell your guests unless you're sure they all love it. Some of us do have some pretty severe issues with cilantro....as strange as that might sound.

May 15, 2009
joannabar in Home Cooking

Smoked Paprika and Rutabaga Bisque

Re dye in paprika...look on the label. There should be no dye as paprika comes from red peppers as far as I know. Get high quality paprika and paprika is all you should see on the label. The smoked kind is delicious in a lot of things, but it MADE this excellent soup.

Feb 21, 2009
joannabar in Recipes

That Old Silver Palate Standby: Chicken Marbella

Never use cilantro and only use about a tsp. of sugar to correct the balance of flavor... that might work for you if you are willing to try again.

Feb 11, 2009
joannabar in Home Cooking

That Old Silver Palate Standby: Chicken Marbella

I made it tonight and served with the orange-scented couscous in Lukin's menu. Wonderful mix of flavors. Broccoli as a nod to something green. All looked pretty on the plate and tasted great! The beet salad is also very tasty and pretty with this meal.

Feb 11, 2009
joannabar in Home Cooking

Ultimate Brownies

My new Nick Malgieri favorite is his recipe for Cocoa Nib brownies. It appears in The Modern Baker, his latest book. Cocoa nibs are the immediate antecedent of cocoa powder and other chocolate products, so they are not sweet. In this easy recipe the combination of sugar (not a huge amount), bittersweet chocolate, and cocoa nibs combine to make a sophisticated brownie. The bitter is perfectly in balance with the sweet. The butter quotient is half that of Ms. Garten's.
His "Supernatural Brownies" are entirely different, yet again, not so sweet that your teeth ache. These brownies are typical of other brownies, but they are also madness-inducing among chocoholics in a way I've rarely seen.

Jan 01, 2009
joannabar in Features

A Tip for Inexpensive, Good-Quality Spices

Is Kalustyan's market on the same level? Is it as inexpensive? Haven't been in there in years but it used to be quite reasonable. I don't know about any Mexican markets in NY...where are they?

Dec 26, 2008
joannabar in Features

Latkes (Potato Pancakes)

I made a test batch of latkes today. I used Arthur Schwartz' recipe, but in a slightly different order: first made the simple batter, THEN I peeled and cut the russets quickly and then right into the food processor. I lined the strainer with cheesecloth and dumped the almost pureed (emphasis on word "almost") and proceeded to do a little squeezing. It took about 5 minutes as russets are the driest potato to use. Yes, it is still messy, only slightly less so with the cheesecloth squeeze. Added potatoes to finely grated onions, beaten egg/matzo meal/ salt mix and used Arthur's GREAT suggestion to stir with a tarnished silver-plated spoon. Worked very well, no blackness or any other color but white for the potatoes. Proceeded to fry in 1/8 inch of oil as per A.S. and the result was light, not greasy (I put them on a cooling rack with paper towels under it, and it was hard for me NOT to eat the whole batch. For the complete recipe see Arthur's new-ish book on Jewish home cooking. Haven't had a bad meal yet....and I too am a little suspicious of this recipe...my latkes puffed up a bit without baking powder, which I think would make for a very odd taste. Thanks for the thoughts, Ruth.

Dec 15, 2008
joannabar in Recipes

Latkes (Potato Pancakes)

What good is a latke without onions? How bland...
the vitamin c idea, if used to protect potatoes from turning brown, is wonderful. It also seems as though you don't squeeze any moisture from said potatoes. It is the one reason I make latkes only once a year...I hate the squeezing part. I'm curious as to why you don't do it.

Dec 13, 2008
joannabar in Recipes

In need of a brownie recipe

I love Nick Malgieri's supernatural brownies, but he has a new one in The Modern Baker that is even better. He uses cocoa nibs and the brownies are terrific.
He came to Kings Supermarket in Short Hills, NJ to give a demonstration class. This was one of the recipes from the book so I can vouch for its chocolate effectiveness.

Nov 14, 2008
joannabar in Home Cooking

complicated Thanksgiving

Pamela, do you think it would double exactly? It looks great. Did you have to stand by it and stir, and if so for how long?

Nov 02, 2008
joannabar in Home Cooking

complicated Thanksgiving

Thanks to all! I do the separate main course precisely because I really love these people and want to make something special for them. When there's enough to share, which there usually is, there is no feeling of being singled out. I have the Wholefoods cookbook so I'll take another look at the veg mains. I did the veggie pie but if I do it again will have to modify it. I seem to recall that no one liked it. The mushroom idea is good. I do make the roasted butternut squash with (lots of)onions, sage and dried cranberries from the WF book, but that is a side. I change the sides except for that one every year, so I don't know what else I'm serving; the final choices aren't in yet.It isn't that hard to make this dinner because I do so much in advance. My "trademark" is soup as a starter, then the rest. Thanks also for all those great links. I should have asked this question last year!

Oct 31, 2008
joannabar in Home Cooking

complicated Thanksgiving

Help! My daughter is a no-meat/poultry person and 2 of our friends are vegan. The rest of us will eat anything that doesn't move. Last year I made a cold poached salmon along with the turkey and sides,but this year I need a vegan main dish too, one that isn't too obviously "just" for them. I would make enough of whatever for everyone. Any thoughts? I don't want them to feel like they can only have sides. All sides are, except for the dressing, vegan friendly.
Thanks!

Oct 31, 2008
joannabar in Home Cooking

Serendipity 3 for my 70-something UK cousin ?

oops...it is "bar boulud".

Sep 13, 2008
joannabar in Manhattan

6th Avenue Cafe or Cosmic Diner for Breakfast?

I don't know about 6th Ave Cafe but I do know that Cosmic is a good choice. Huge menu, Large, shareable portions, tasty but not haute cuisine...actually perfect diner food. Take it from this diner-loving Jersey girl...it will do the job and they get you in and out very quickly. The address is easy to remember (888 8th Ave) and it is between 53rd and 54th St. (check me on that one).

Sep 13, 2008
joannabar in Manhattan

Serendipity 3 for my 70-something UK cousin ?

Bar Bouloud is a good for charcuterie and wine, but apparently for not much else. I was unimpressed with the hostess ("Sorry. We lost your reservation but you can stand at that table over by the window"). It is also expensive. Do you any kind of planned itinerary?

Sep 13, 2008
joannabar in Manhattan

Serendipity 3 for my 70-something UK cousin ?

Serendipity3 may have closed. I know it was closed last year for health code violations. I also know from having been there that it is SO not worth it. Touristy, lines out the door for food and drink that isn't worth it, extremely crowded tables, just awful service and a dated setting in which you cannot hear yourself think, let alone talk to someone. Frozen hot chocolate, if you MUST go there,the place is open AND you must have one, is fancy chocolate milk. Order only 1 as they are very big. Truthfully, I'd save my money for something better.
A somewhat better choice is Good Enough to Eat on Amsterdam between 83 and 84 St. www.goodenoughtoeat.com It isn't FANTASTIC but it is good, serving American comfort food. It has been about a year and a half since I've been there...can't vouch for it now. Serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
If you are in the Theater District, think about 44X10 on Tenth Ave and 44th. It is a short cab ride for someone who isn't up to walking long blocks back to the center of the action on Broadway between 8th and 6th but it is a fine choice for upscale American. The waiters are pleasant and easy on the eyes. Reserve. If you go at 5:30-6:00 the noise is not a problem, but it can be when people start filing in pre-theater, around 6:15-ish. Not hugely expensive and definitely not touristy. Portions are shareable. www.44andX.com
Balthazar is fine (in Tribeca) but also can be very noisy. No one seems to put carpets on floors anymore!
For "fancy" lunch I'd suggest the $28 3 course lunch at Nougatine, the daytime Jean Georges in the Trump International Hotel on Columbus Circle. Reserve if you want to do this. Service is superb, it is surprisingly not noisy although there is no visible sound-proofing, and the food is as you would expect in a Jean Georges establishment.
If and when you have any clearer idea about where you are planning to be at mealtimes, it would help us figure out how better to help you!

Sep 13, 2008
joannabar in Manhattan