celebrating the glories of eating in brooklyn. from the gut.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Scenes From a Late Summer Garden

Today is the first official day of fall, right? Our garden seems to be a late bloomer, which is nice, but we feel like we have more flowers in bloom now than we did all summer. We've got passion flowers, geraniums, morning glory among others. My absolute favorite is that flowering vine growing up the cables on the back of the house. It really took off this summer!

Monday, September 18, 2006

Off the Beaten Path in Cobble Hill, From the New York Times

They pick five restaurants in Cobble Hill, from Alma (technically Red Hook and oddly no mention of the rooftop dining) to Sweet Melissa Patisserie.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Some of the City's Best Coffee Found in Brooklyn

Is it just me or is the New York Times' super late jumping on the coffee trend band wagon? Anyhow, Williamsburg's Gimme Coffee and Greenpoint's Cafe Grumpy feature in this article. I'm still partial to Cafe Regular.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Spuyten Duyvil Goes BBQ, D.O.C and Kush Expand

Nothing goes better with beer than barbeque. I was reading in the latest edition of Time Out that the owners of the beer palace Spuyten Duyvil are opening a barbeque restaurant called Fette Sau or fat pig also in Williamsburg (345 Metropolitan Avenue). It's slated to open in October. Maybe it will be a European take on barbeque?

Also in Time Out, the owners of D.O.C. wine bar in Williamsburg have opened a full-fledged restaurant located at 331 Bedford Avenue, 718- 388-7438. The restaurant, PT, has a Southern Italian, market driven menu. We've heard that one before.

And lastly, word on the street is that Kush of Clinton Hill fame is opening an outpost in Bedford Stuyvesant where Lewis & Ruby's inhabited for a very short period on Lewis Avenue. Before Lewis & Ruby's it was Akwaaba Cafe. Let's hope Kush has better luck.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Homemade "Sun-Dried" Tomatoes

A few weeks ago I had a friend over for dinner, but I didn't prepare for it. I was left Sunday evening scrambling to come up with something to eat. Pasta is almost always at hand. And I came across a jar of sun-dried tomatoes hidden in the pantry. I roasted a head of garlic and blended it with the sun-dried tomatoes and added about a tablespoon of aged balsamic vinegar and some oil olive. Then I mixed it with some penne and parmeggiano. Well, although it wasn't horrible, I was kind of embarrassed because it's really not something I would normally serve, but laziness got the better of me. The moral of this story: jarred sun-dried tomatoes are gross.

Unfortunately, they end up in everything from pizza to salads. So anyway, the next weekend I was determined to make my own. Here's what I did:

Take as many tomatoes as you want. I used probably about 3-4 pounds of large plum tomatoes and cut them into quarters or halves. Season them with salt and layer them on a cookie sheet with oil on the bottom. Then simply slow bake them in the oven at 225 degrees for about 7 hours or more. Depending on the size, some of the tomatoes will shrivel and turn dark red and some of them will be redder and more plump. It's up to you! I had a mix of both.

Then I jarred them by putting a layer of the oven-dried tomatoes, then sprinkling with chopped fresh oregano and mint, layering slivered garlic. Repeat until you run out. At the end pour good oil olive into the jar until full. After sitting in the fridge for awhile they were soft, yet intensely flavored.

The best part is you know what's going into them.