Posts in Restaurants
Can You Love a Vegan Sushi Roll?

Sometimes the proof is in the flavor, and it’s almost impossible to convey something through a video. That’s how I felt when I tried a Beyond Sushi roll - because as a huge sushi lover it was hard for me to believe I could also fall in love with a vegan version. But Chef Guy Vaknin came by to share his methods and explain that his plant-based take on the classic Japanese dish could have its own excitement. And while I might never give up the real deal, I am definitely a convert.

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What Exactly is a Pu Pu Platter?

I grew up with an American lens to Chinese food. In Charleston, where I was raised we had Chinese food that mirrored a lot of other places across the country, with its own unique dishes. When I moved to New York I started to learn more about more traditional versions of Chinese food but it also gave me an appreciation for the unique sub-culture that is Americanized Chinese cuisine.

One of the best things to me - and apparently, one of the most American - was the Pu Pu Platter. It was a dish that any children who grew up in the latter third of the last century would find familiar. It had everything you could want - fire, spinning and lots of choices.

But as our culture tried to move towards greater authenticity in different cuisines a lot of these stalwarts fell by the wayside. It had been a long time since I saw a Pu Pu Platter on a menu until I recently had dinner at Kings County Imperial. So I just had to sit down with Chef Josh Grinker to get his thoughts and to really hash out the special place of this uniquely multicultural dish

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Alex Guarnaschelli's Lemon Ginger Cocktail

Every party needs a good cocktail to start and it shouldn’t be made in a vacuum separate from the food. Instead it should all flow together like different elements to the same meal.

Alex Guarnaschelli - chef at Butter and a judge on Food Network’s Chopped - is of the same mindset, which is why she included an entire section for cocktails in her book The Home Cook. So when we had a chance to catch up with her I wanted to get her chef’s perspective on a good cocktail to serve to kick off a party. Her take is a classic and simple lemon ginger concoction that goes perfectly with easy bar snacks.

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Perfect Pizza Dough Is Within Reach

There are a few items I avoid making from scratch, and pizza dough is high on the list. It always seems like something you need to perfectly calibrate and since I live in New York it has always seemed like someone else around me could make it better.

But anything you fear is worth trying to conquer, so I made my way to Rosemary’s Pizza to try and get a taste of how they make their crust. I am a huge fan of this style of dough because it feels like the middle ground: not too thin that it falls apart but not too thick and doughy that the rest of the ingredients are drowned out. It turns out pizza dough is a simple process that just requires a little practice. So what are you waiting for?

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Make Mezze Your Appetizer Plan

I hate to sound old enough to say I've enjoyed following someone's career, but apparently today I'm going to. I have loved watching whatever Eden Grinshpan does next. She is a barrel of laughs and a breath of fresh air wherever she goes. I first interviewed her when she had a show on Cooking Channel. She has since moved on host Top Chef Canada and now she has opened her first restaurant, Dez. It combines all of her Israeli, Middle Eastern and  other travel experiences into one spirited and flavorful fast casual spot. 

And since I can't possibly pick a favorite I decided instead to pick her brain about mezzes. It's an all-encompassing word but it can help outline one of the best appetizer plans possible.

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The Easy Secret to India's Best Street Food

I lived in India for a year and its food will always have a special kind of hold on me. But one snack in particular is near-impossible for me to resist: Bhel Puri. It's an Indian street food snack that you can find everywhere. When made well it has the perfect ratio of sweet, tangy, spicy and crunchy. It is every kind of flavor packed into one delicious bite.

So when I tried Floyd Cardoz's version I knew we needed his recipe. I have loved his cooking for years but I am so in love with his newest spot Bombay Bread Bar. It brings me back to my time in India but with a New York twist.

Watch the video below or follow the recipe to make your own!

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A New Look at New England Cuisine

No one knows New England like Matt Jennings. He has lived and cooked all over, from his former restaurant Farmstead in Providence to his current gem in Boston, Townsman. And now he has taken all of that knowledge (and more from his global travels) to create a book, Homegrown, that is a celebration of all things Northeastern. 

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