s

sweetpickles's Profile

Title Last Reply

Kale Question

I'm preparing a raw kale ceasar for a large group this weekend. I bought a few giant bags of kale at the farmer's market on Weds, and last night when I went to prep it, I realized that quite a bit of it had gone bad, most likely due to the heat and humidity in my apartment. I threw away the rotting leaves stems and leaves, salvaged the ones that still looked good, washed and dried them and now have them all in paper towel lined bins in the refrigerator. It seems to me that as long as these leaves stay fresh I should be able to use them on Saturday. But some of the people who helped me to do all of this still think it might be risky. Does anyone here have thoughts on this? Is there a real health risk, or is it just that the folks who smelled the rotting kale yesterday might find the thought of eating rest unappetizing?

Sep 30, 2011
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

Anella in Greenpoint

Last night, some friends and I went to Anella for dinner and had a delicious meal. Hiring a new chef has really made a difference for this place. My friends and I had been there previously, and found the menu to be unfocused, and the food inconsistent, bordering on dangerous (one woman had been served very undercooked chicken in one of her visits). I am happy to say that every dish we ordered last night was tasty and well prepared.

For appetizers we shared roasted carrots with whipped ricotta and an order of mussels. The carrots were tender and sweet, and the house-made ricotta was so light and fluffy that it resembled a slightly creme fraiche. The mussels were served in a dutch oven and were so plump that my friend from Portland, MN commented that they were like "Maine mussels." The white wine and butter sauce they were steamed in was delicious, perfect for sopping up with Anella's house-made, but the briny flavor of the mussels was so good on its own that the sauce was almost superfluous.

For mains I ordered a special of short rib ravioli served with hen of the woods mushrooms and scallions. The pasta was chewy, and filled with savory meat that was almost creamy in its tenderness. The mushrooms were lightly crisped and matched well with the aromatic scallions and a light sauce. One friend ordered the house made pappardelle with pork ragu and bitter greens. She seemed to love the dish, and the bite that I tried was great. The sauce was rich and nicely offset by the bitter greens, but was used sparingly so that the dish was not as heavy as some pappardelles can be. Another friend ordered the short ribs and was similarly pleased. The meat was plentiful (a large chunk of boneless rib) and perfectly prepared to be very tender without being mushy. It was surrounded by braised red cabbage and pieces of blood orange or tangerine and tiny round potatoes.

Dessert was the only dish that we were slightly disappointed in. We split a chocolate bread pudding with buttermilk ice cream and toasted hazlenuts. The ice cream was deliciously semi-sweet and the nuts were perfectly browned and crunchy, but the pudding, while tasty enough, has a slightly spongy texture.

The service was good throughout. If our waiter was slightly oversolicitous it was probably because the place was sadly undercrowded. The only complaint we really had was with the music, some cheesy easy listening stuff. All in all, we were very pleased to see that the rumors of Anella's improvement are definitely worth listening to. I hope more food-minded folk check it out. It would be a shame to see such noble efforts go to waste.

-----
Anella
222 Franklin St, Brooklyn, NY 11222

Feb 18, 2010
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Anniversary Dinner near Coney Island/Brighton Beach

The bf and I are celebrating our 8th anniversary next weekend and are looking for an interesting, delicious and romantic place to have dinner. As per tradition, we will be spending the day at Coney Island/Brighton Beach. In the past we have made reservations at various fine dining spots in Manhattan, and those have been great food-wise, but sometimes going to fancy places in the city feels a little stuffy after spending the day eating Nathan's hot dogs and riding the Cyclone. Of course, since it is a very special occasion, we don't want to go just anywhere...

If anyone has a great Brooklyn spot to recommend, we'd love to hear about it. Even better if its near Coney Island or on a connecting subway line. We can drive if we have to, but would rather not, so we can enjoy a nice bottle of wine or champagne with dinner, stress-free.

Aug 23, 2008
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Boston Butt in a crock pot

I'm going to be in a cabin with about 20 or so friends for 4th of July and I was thinking that slow cooked pork butt would be a good way to feed a crowd with little hassle. I've never made it before, but some preliminary investigation shows that most recipes recommend simply cooking a butt on low with some spices for several hours and then adding some barbecue sauce towards the end. Is it really that easy? Do any of you have any tips to share about what kind of sauce or seasoning works best?

Jul 01, 2008
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

What to make with preserved lemon

My boyfriend just made up a batch of preserved lemons and they look gorgeous. But now that they're done, we aren't actually too sure what to cook with them. Does anyone have any favorite uses? We know that moroccan style chicken dishes are given, but what else can we use them in? Whole fishes (sardines maybe?), salads? rice dishes?
We would appreciate any suggestions.
Thanks!

May 10, 2008
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

What to make with a mortar and pestle

I got this lovely new kitchen device from the boyfriend yesterday, and I'd like to make something tonight that showcases my new ability to fresh grind spices. Any suggestions?

Mar 31, 2008
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

French Dip Sandwich

Since I just got a crockpot, I decided to try this version. It made a delicious au jus, but the beef roast was too dry. I would suggest cooking it for half the time that recipe calls for. Still, with the rich jus, a crusty roll and some horseradish, my craving was satiated.

Jan 22, 2008
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

French Dip Sandwich

I'm looking to update this treat that my dad used to make when I was a kid. I'm thinking I'll buy some good roast beef, butter and toast some crusty rolls, and maybe add a slice of horseradish cheddar. But the au jus part has me stumped. I've never made it before. Can I just spice up some regular old consomme or is there a better way to do this?
Does anyone else have a favorite way to make this?

Jan 20, 2008
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

Buffalo wings in N. Park Slope/Prospect Heights?

Tavern on Dean has really tasty wings.

Jan 20, 2008
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Ordering lunch in Red Hook

We actually ordered from Viva last week. And it was delicious, but a little pricey for lunch ($9.50 for a burrito, etc.).

Nov 21, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Collards in a Slow Cooker

It seems like a recipe for slow cooking collards should be easy to find. But for some reason I've seen neither hide nor hair. Has anyone done this, or have a good recipe?
Thanks!

Nov 21, 2007
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

How long can cooked chicken last in the fridge?

I made a roast chicken last Saturday and refrigerated the carcass because I was intending to make stock. I have been busy all week and I finally have time to put it together today. I'm a little worried that I might have waited too long. Is the chicken still good after a week in the fridge?

Nov 17, 2007
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

Recipe for Tonnato Sauce

I recently had this with some veggies and it was beyond delicious. does anyone have a good recipe for it?

Nov 16, 2007
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

Ordering lunch in Red Hook

I have a small dilemma: Me and three coworkers work out on Van Brunt St in Red Hook (near Fairway). As far as we know, there are only a few places that deliver to us. And our old stand bys (Dub Pies, House of Pizza and Calzones, Hope and Anchor, Dafontes) are really getting too old at this point. Unfortunately, we can't get out of the office very often and we're so far away from most restaurants that we wouldn't have time to do much more than scarf something down even if we did. Does anyone live in the area and know of any hidden gems inthe neighborhood that we have yet to discover?

Nov 16, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Croissant in Park Slope

Its more in the Prospect Heights area, but Joyce on Vanderbilt has delicious croissants in many different varieties.

Nov 09, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Tia Pol for B-day Dinner?

Its my boyfriend's B-day on Monday, and I was thinking about taking him to Tia Pol because I've heard they have great tapas and wine. However, I've also heard that the place can be cramped and the service slow. Is there any chance that we can eat here on a Monday night (around 8:30) and have a relaxed, leisurely meal?

Oct 18, 2007
sweetpickles in Manhattan

Franny 2 Star

I have to say that I find all of this Frannys hating unfair and actually a little snipey. I know that folks on this board have constantly moaned about the prices (which match many of other upscale restaurants in the neighborhood) and the "scene" (which I think is pretty funny considering every time I go there, there are at least as many parents with young kids as there are "hipsters"). So I felt a sense of vindication when I read Bruni's review which I felt to be completely accurate in its appreciation for a terrific restaurant with consistently great food and wine. I really think that people who care enough about food to chime in on these boards would be a little less eager to make unimaginative comparisons between restaurants (do you really think that Franny's is comparable to a place with a 2 slice and soda deal?) , and a little more generous to the idea of a restaurant creating its own unique niche.

In New York, we are lucky enough to have a huge variety of cuisines and dining experiences. There are times when all you want is a something quick, cheap, and delicious and countless places fit the bill. But for my money, when I want to splurge on a delicious meal, with good wine, made with the freshest, quality ingredients, I would rather go to Franny's than any of the other restaurants that are constantly talked up on these boards (Al Di La, Tempo, Blue Ribbon).

And one last thing, many of the previous comments seem to be from disgruntled folks in the neighborhood who want Franny's to be something it isn't. One of Bruni's big points was to confirm that Franny's is a destination restaurant for people who don't live in the neighborhood. Would anyone say that about Olive Vine, Lucali, or any of the other places mentioned in these posts? I doubt it.

Aug 30, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Food Adventures with Parents

My parents are coming to NYC for a week and I want to plan some fun adventures that include both New York style adventure and good eats. My parents are very good sports, and have sat through long crowded subway rides to go with me to Arthur Ave, Spanish Harlem, and Brighton Beach and they've enjoyed themselves every time. So, chowhounders, any new ideas for food related sightseeing in the five boroughs? We'd even take a day trip on the LIRR or NJT if I could justify the destination with something fun and unique.
Thanks!

Aug 29, 2007
sweetpickles in Manhattan

Food Adventures with Parents

My parents are coming to NYC for a week and I want to plan some fun adventures that include both New York style adventure and good eats. My parents are very good sports, and have sat through long crowded subway rides to go with me to Arthur Ave, Spanish Harlem, and Brighton Beach and they've enjoyed themselves every time. So, chowhounders, any new ideas for food related sightseeing in the five boroughs? We'd even take a day trip on the LIRR or NJT if I could justify the destination with something fun and unique.
Thanks!

Aug 29, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Prospect Heights Restaurants

I enjoy most of the places mentioned already-Tavern on Dean for wings and burgers, Le Gamin for brunch, Christies for pattys, and the Usual for great atmosphere and good basic diner food- but I thought I'd add a couple that I'm surprised were left out. Franny's is my favorite in the neighborhood and now that they have pasta in addition to pizza and small plates, its even better. Also, Geido for sushi, especially if you sit at the bar, and indulge in their freshest catch and unique specials. Both are on Flatbush and both make me happy that I live in the neighborhood.

Aug 13, 2007
sweetpickles in Outer Boroughs

Good Eats in Atlanta

I'm going to be in Atlanta this weekend for the first time (my first time in the south actually) and I'd appreciate any suggestions about where to eat. I'll be with my brother who is on leave from the army, so wherever we go, the food should be hearty enough to feed a guy who's been eating "S--- on a shingle" for the last few months.
I don't need anything real fancy, I live in New York so I have just about all the gourmet offerings I could want here. Just something yummy that I could only get in the south; BBQ, Soul Food, what have you.
Oh yes, and I'm staying in Buckhead....

fantastic mozzerella, lackluster tomatoes...

I have a ball of wonderful fesh mozzerella and usually i would show it off in a caprese salad, but I can't find any tomatos worth serving it with. Any suggestions for how i can make a dish that will feature my delicious cheese but does not rely on fresh tomatoes?

Mar 23, 2007
sweetpickles in Home Cooking

Using up good cheese-brie in mac n cheese?

I have a block of delicious gruyere and a wedge of good brie and i'm thinking of combining them to make a super rich mac and cheese. Does this sound crazy? Has anyone cooked with brie before? I imagine I will want to cut out a lot of the cream if I do it this way, and perhaps add some leeks to add some texture. Does anyone have any suggestions for how I might pull this off?

Feb 26, 2007
sweetpickles in Home Cooking