A Sarcastic Appetite

Thirsty Thursday Round-Up for the Week of October 20
October 20, 2011, 6:58 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I decided to stop calling these “Restaurant Round-Ups” since half the time I’m not even talking about a restaurant, but instead directing you to some great food festival or recipe. To wit:


Let’s get down to business, and let’s stuff our faces on Sunday at the Grub Street Food Festival, which is taking over the Hester Street Fair from 10am to 6pm. It’s going to be madness: more than 100 vendors selling their stuff, in a space far larger than the actual Hester Street Fair; they’ve taken over the adjacent tennis courts to accommodate the hordes….which will include me.

The boys at Immaculate Infatuation have outdone themselves, relasing a (free) iPhone app that maps out all the restaurants they’ve reviewed. So if you ever find yourself in a nabe you don’t know well, it’ll show you what’s good nearby. You can also save a list of restaurants for your “Hit List,” which would be great for me since mine is currently a scrabbled note pinned to a wall in my office. Helpful, no? Get it here.

Red Egg has been getting a lot of love on Serious Eats lately; their Peking Duck Sliders  ($24) and Beef Chow Fun ($7 at lunch) are all good eats.

FloFab has the low-down on some new openings in town, including Toloache 82. I checked it out last night; the service was exuberant and the tacos decent.

Sea Bass Poached in Soy Sauce
October 19, 2011, 7:11 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

This is one of those fantastic meals where a few good ingredients make all the difference. I know we’re not supposed to be eating sea bass because illegal fishing makes it nearly impossible to regulate, but it caught my eye at the Grand Central Market and I jumped. It also strays from the recipe – Bittman advises you cook with fillets or steaks about an inch thick, so the sauce can really reduce and become syrupy. My fat filets required a lot of liquid, so there wasn’t much reducing, but it was delicious nonetheless.

The best part was pulling this together – rice, roasted broccoli and all – in about 30 minutes, even with my crashing around the kitchen in a hunger-induced craze. It’s actually a sophisticated meal, which belies the state I was in when I cooked it. It’s also quite forgiving, so don’t worry about overcooking. It’s nearly impossible.


Sea Bass Poached in Soy Sauce

From The Minimalist. Serves 2.


1/2 c. good soy sauce

2 tsp. sugar

1/2 c. water

1 dried or fresh chile (I didn’t cut mine open so its effect was minimal. This step is optional)

2 filets of striped bass – or sea bass – or other filet or steak that’s about 1 inch thick. Go bigger if you’d like but be forewarned the sauce won’t do what it should

1 bunch of scallions, cut into 1 inch lengths


In the smallest saute pan you have, heat the soy sauce, sugar, water, and chile if using on medium high heat until it boils. Add the fish skin side up, and add more water if needed so the liquid almost covers the fish. Add the scallions. Adjust the heat – you want it bubbling but not uncontrollably. Turn as the sauce thickens so the sauce covers the fish. My fillets probably took closer to 15 minutes, but 8 to 10 minutes should suffice for thinner fillets.

Serve over rice, with roasted broccoli, and spoon the sauce over.




Restaurant Round-Up for the Week of October 6
October 6, 2011, 7:30 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Hello reader(s)! I’m here to canvas the food blogs, so you don’t have to. A few highlights this week:


The photo above was taken at Weather Up Tribeca. It’s a great little spot – just don’t tell anyone about it. I’ll go anytime.

Donny, a regular Midtown Lunch contributer, has been working on Hidden Gems, a new foodie microsite from the Wall St. Journal. There are some, ah, gems in there so you might want to check it out.

The boys at Immaculate Infatuation venture up to my neighborhood and check out Jones Wood Foundry to good reviews. Guess I better get in there before the place blows up, Scotch eggs and all.

The Siftster checks out Tertulia and gives it two stars, I’m sure mostly for the Ibérico ham. Seriously, he waxes poetic about the stuff, served plain or stuffed into croquettes or melded into sauces. But Serious Eats also filed a review today, saying they “just don’t get it.” Guess we’ll have to try for ourselves.

If you’re cooking, the adorable Alexandra of Alexandra Cooks posted about this plum torte from the adorable Talley of House to Haus, whose charming blog about food and life in Zurich is now on my must-read list.

Jason Lam at Me So Hungry gets hopped up for The Food Porn Party, courtesy of Saxon + Parole, for the NYC Food Film Festival. Tickets are $75 and bacon-wrapped anything (even turtle burgers) sounds pretty good to me. If you go to the festival, be sure to check out Mistura, about the Peruvian food festival.

Madison Square Eats
October 5, 2011, 7:54 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

If you don’t make it to Madison Square Eats before it ends on October 21, you will have missed out on something really special. Like Arrested Development coming back for a fourth season kind of special.


It’s like a smaller version of Smorgasburg, but it’s ten times better, both for being in Manhattan and for serving alcohol. There’s nothing like being able to wash down your Maine-style lobster roll with a nice Allagash White from The Cannibal, a new shop from the people behind Resto.

Next we tried a BBQ pork bun from Fatty Snack, which was a little too saucy and sweet for my liking, before venturing over to the Milk Truck Grilled Cheese to try their All Day Breakfast Sandwich. Hey, anything involving caramelized onions, gruyere, and a fried egg is alright by me, and this did not disappoint.

Lastly, one of my favorites: Wafels & Dinges. I love a Throwdown with bananas (for the potassium, of course). It’s so delicious. Robicelli’s is also there if you are feeling cupcakes over waffles, and don’t forget the birthday cake truffles from Momofuku Milk Bar.

We didn’t get to Calexico (the line was too long) or the Hong Kong Street Cart (my belly was full). But I’m totally hitting them up next time – and yes, there will definitely be a next time. Meet you there?