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Blue & Gold

17 Sep

Do you feel that?

Brooklyn Heights Mint Warehouse

It’s perfection. It’s September in New York.

Days are sparkling blue, shimmering gold, fluffy white clouds, incandescent air. Nights are snappy, chilly, perfect for curling up on the couch in my favorite fuzzy pants and sinking into the glory that is end of season baseball.

The games finally mean something. Each at bat counts. Fans (and the squirrel) stay until the final pitch. And if I’m a very lucky girl, by the end, I’ll be happy enough to sing along with Frank. God, I love September!

Urban Sailing

But, no matter how sustaining baseball may be, you can’t eat it. Which brings us to the other very best thing about September in New York. It’s finally cool enough to add a little heat to all the glorious produce still bursting forth from the Upstate farms. It’s a best of all worlds scenario. The summer produce is at it’s peak, but “putting up” vegetables are beginning to appear and can actually be a welcome change from all the tomatoes and squashes of the last few months.

Brooklyn Bridge

Last week the Boy went to the greenmarket over by the UN. It’s a good excuse for him to take a walk and get in on the produce procuring fun. He brought home some wonderful lettuces and two slightly mangy looking, but tiny, cute orange cauliflower. The greens went fast, but the chou were sent to malinger in the damp, disgusting pits that masquerade as our refrigerator’s produce bins.

Manhattan Bridge

Sunday, we settled on taking a long walk (I know, you’re all shocked) and using the cauliflower in a curry. We took the subway to downtown Brooklyn, wandered over to the Heights, had brunch at Jack The Horse Tavern (highly recommended), saw someone famous (I really wish I’d had this book in my pocket) and then headed to the Brooklyn Book Festival.

Manhattan

The festival was a total wash. It was full of cranky jostling people and I was really hoping someone from St. Martin’s Press would be there so I could excoriate them for publishing an absolutely awful piece of fiction. Alas, they were not. Seriously though. If you ever see this book in a store, walk away. Do not be seduced by the cover, or the nice blurbs on the back. Don’t listen to them when they tell you it’s the heir to The Alienist‘s throne. Just put the book down, even if it’s only $1, and walk away. There’s a reason it’s so cheap. The reason? It’s unreadable. The writing is awful, but the editing (or lack thereof) is even worse. It’s embarrassing. There, I feel better now.

Manhattan Bridge

We then carried on with an amble through Dumbo, a jaunt over the Manhattan Bridge, and a dash for the Lower East Side and nirvana, the annual Pickle Festival. But alas, as the Boy put it, “You sure know how to find the crowds today don’t you?” I could smell the brine, I could see the cornucopia of pickled delights, but no, it was not to be. Not one pickle passed my lips. And so we wandered up to d.b.a. so I could drown my sorrows in a pint of cask-conditioned ale.

Mmm... Beer

And then it was home to make this very complicated but oh-so-worth-it curry while listening to the Yankees play the Red Sox on the radio (the only way baseball should be enjoyed, honestly).

Chinatown

There’s quite a few steps to this meal, but if you’ve got some homemade yogurt sitting in you fridge begging for a noble end, this is it. The depth of flavor and aroma are spectacular. The recipe is supposed to be made with potatoes, but I’m here to say it works perfectly with cauliflower. It’s one of those, “I can’t believe I made this!” meals that would seem more at home at Tabla than in a humble kitchen in Bay Ridge.

Slow-Cooked Cauliflower Curry

I feel really bad that I let the Boy’s cauliflowers get moldy. I had to toss them and send him out for a new, non-greenmarket, flown-in-from-California version, but I think between the excellent feast and Jeter’s heroic efforts in beating Boston, all is forgotten and forgiven. God I love September!

Head below the jump for the recipes for Slow-Cooked Cauliflower Curry and Perfect Masoor Dal.

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