A quick post as the beginning of a (hopeful) return to recipes. To be honest, I was not ovenless this Thanksgiving; I was in Connecticut at my parents’ house, using their beautifully equipped kitchen. However, we gave some ovenless turkey a shot to see how it would work out. How? Sous-vide. Continue reading
Tag Archives: cheap food
So there’s a great place right in our neighborhood called Bocca Lupo, with nice tapas options, a great whiskey selection, and a DJ on the weekends. We’ve been there a few times by ourselves or with friends and really enjoyed everything, except for one pasta dish that sounded great, but was almost unbelievably bad: a special pasta with brussels and guanciale in a cream sauce. The sauce was described as light (it was heavy), the pasta was gummy, the guanciale was overly chewy, and the brussels were nonexistent. Really one of the worst dishes I’ve ever been served. However, the idea stuck with us and on Sunday, searching in vain for a supermarket or butcher’s shop to be open, we were left without any ideas for dinner. Rachel suggested just going home, seeing what we could put together with what we had, naming the brussels, pasta, and soppressata as some things we had on hand. Smart girl.
It’s been over a week since this recipe actually happened, and almost a week since we’ve posted anything here, so hopefully I can remember it in enough detail to make it work again. I stopped at Los Paisanos Meat Market on Smith St. to take a look around and pick up a sausage for lunch (their lamb sausage on a roll with Newpond Farm cheese and red onions was delicious). While I was there, I saw some cheap pork shoulder ($3.50 a pound, I believe) just asking to be braised, so I picked up a couple pounds and planned to make some pasta sauce.
So when you’re legitimately uncomfortable walking around outside, in the middle of the day, without a light jacket or sweatshirt, it’s time to give it up: fall is here.
A few days ago I stopped by Holbrook Farm in CT (I know we keep mentioning them; don’t worry, we’ll pass on a bit more info soon) and was lucky enough to grab a bag of their first Brussels sprouts of the season. Though the first frost hadn’t hit yet (which always makes the sprouts sweeter) I was craving them. I knew I’d sear them with cranberries, as I learned from John Holzwarth at The Dressing Room, but not quite sure if that would be all, or what I’d end up pairing them with.
So in the next couple of weeks we’ll really get going with recipes and ideas on the site. At the moment, I’m scrambling to finish a Fulbright application, and Rachel is busy as ever at the studio and with her music (keep your eyes out, by the way).
In case you’re not entirely clear on the premise here:
1) We live in Brooklyn.
2) We do not have an oven.
3) We might as well call the site Moneyless Brooklyn.
So the dishes we’ll be putting up here are going to be, aside from delicious, generally things you can make on a budget, though there’s sure to be the occasional splurge. For example, we’re going to do something with fresh duck, since a couple of friends of mine, Lynn and John Holbrook at Holbrook Farm in Bethel, CT have been getting some great duck, capons, and chickens in at their farm recently. And with Fall upon us, I’m craving some root vegetables and pink, succulent duck breasts. Maybe some ragu made with the braised legs.
Since we officially began this thing, there hasn’t been much kitchen excitement, but sometimes the most straightforward meals are the best. I made a burger last night, nothing special, but the bread was from Mazzolo’s on Henry and Union, which has some of the best Italian pastries and breads in the neighborhood. There’s also, on a side note, a great cafe called Marius on the corner across the street. According to the barista, the cafe has been there for a minute, but ownership just recently changed, and they’re doing a good job. Free wi-fi, some coffee and bagels…all you really need.
On Wednesday I was craving that duck, since I’d had a chat with Lynn and John earlier in the day when I stopped back in Connecticut (side note: apple picking in Bethel tomorrow…can’t wait). So on the way home I stopped at Trader Joe’s on Atlantic and picked up the closest thing to it: chicken thighs. They get a bad rep for being cheap and somewhat fatty, but that’s what I was looking for. I think it cost me just over 7 bucks for the thighs and piece of butternut squash ($16 if you count the six-pack of Brooklyn Brewery Brown Ale I grabbed while on line). I’ll do a separate post with the ‘recipe’, but combined with some sopressata we had in the fridge, a little rosemary and sage, and some potatoes and turnips I had picked up from Holbrook that morning ($4? Maybe?), we had a pretty serious eat.
Note: Must give credit to the potato hash and eggs that gave me the strength for this post.
2nd Note: Sriracha in hash browns. Done. (Credit to Rachel)