This week had some solid dinners - had a wonderful carne asada set of tacos, scallops with a spinach and goat cheese salad but the real winners came towards the end of the week.
Pie - apple version:
I made pie because it had been too long and needed to woo Erin a bit. Apple pie is just wonderful in the summer. This time I tried a different recipe for the topping below. Erin cored and sliced the apples, then we just mixed them with sugar, cinnamon, lemon juice and zest and into the pies with the following on top:
3/4 cup white/brown sugar mix
3/4 cup flour1 stick butter
3/4 cup oats
- blend all of that together to a crumble and in one version, I put it on top of a pie with crust already and another just with the crumble. Both were delicious and enjoyed in good company - a party for some mentors and with friends who visited from Providence, RI.
Pie - pizza version:
Erin pulled off a real surprise on me twice this weekend for my birthday - the first was a pizza party. Noah and Deb came down from Providence, and I thought we were just going out to dinner. On the way, the sky opened up and closed at the same time in a way that only seems to happen in the summer around here... a complete torrent and darkness at the same time. We were weaving our way between overhangs in Spanish Harlem on the way to Patsy's - the original one founded back when Spanish Harlem was Italian Harlem. Their little Leah, 5 months old, was the only one who managed to stay dry and happily slept through the whole thing - resolute about her naps for sure.
So we get to the place dripping wet and I wanted to sit down at one of the small open tables but Erin was acting quite peculiar about waiting for another table - we go around to the bar to wait and low and behold there was Mike, Lan and eventually a whole host of friends. We ended up just hanging out at the bar, having appetizers, thin, burnt crust pizza that was quite impressive in quality and talking for a few hours - it was wonderful and I was completely surprised. The pizza is good: very thin crust, the sauce is understated but good and the toppings were top notch as well - we had sausage, a sun-dried tomato, a garlic and olive, a Margherita and a portabello mushroom.
The Farm on Adderley:
Adderley is a main thoroughfare in Cape Town and to have a farm there is somewhat of an impossibility. “If that ever happens I’ll buy you a farm on Adderley.” This was the place, in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, that Erin and I decided to celebrate my birthday. Quite appropriate considering we had just spend part of the day stand-up paddle-boarding on the Hudson - same type of impossibility in some ways. Erin was a trooper as always - between the camping and the paddle boarding and her general can-do attitude, she never ceases to amaze me. It was pretty fun to be on the Hudson seeing New York from a completely different view - it's not as good as surfing on the ocean, but it was a lot of fun, and also a complete surprise.
Here's the website:
http://thefarmonadderley.com/It's in a somewhat unlikely location befitting the name. The interior and staff were both laid back and the food was incredible. Not often am I that impressed with food - but they did great things with fresh ingredients and inventive combinations of flavors.
Summer beans with buttermilk dressing - went perfect with the kale but sweet
Kale salad with lemon, parmigiano, radish and olive oil - bitter but with tang from the parmesan
Summer squash and sungold tomato crostini
Steak with okra and collard greens - perfectly cooked, impressed with the lack of stickiness and solid taste of the okra too
Pan roasted fluke with corn, fennel and potato - the whole fennel pieces went really well with the sweet corn and the fluke had a nice crust on it but still juicy inside
French fries with curry mayo - could have eaten a pound of these
Milk chocolate mousse with salted cream - the salted cream was a nice touch
Peach and blueberry cobbler
This week in preview:
- I got a stove-top grill for my birthday from Erin - very excited to be able to grill some veggies inside