No post last weekend because Adam and I were both off and we wanted to spend every second together. We did some fun exploring, including a quick trip to Montclair for sourdough doughnuts and bon bons and hot chocolate.
It’s always odd as a blogger when the newest horrifying thing happens in America – it feels strange not to talk about it but at the same time there are so many (smarter, more informed) people already talking that it also feels strange to add my voice to the mix. I’ve been reminding myself that Wednesday was the darkest day of 2021 but it was also the brightest — two extraordinary men made history claiming Senate seats in Georgia and the majority for Senate Democrats! Also, this story about Senate aides saving the Electoral College votes as they evacuated makes me cry every time I think about it.
Some highlights from my personal life included…
The best drink: Quad shot, skim milk, add ice, Australian iced coffee from Bluestone Lane. Not going to lie, I had some form of ice cream every day this week.
The best lunch: Brazilian food from Berimbau. We started with a passion fruit caipirinha and Brazilian cheese bread.
Skirt steak with tomatoes, red onion, and yucca fries. My dish was the best thing we had, the stewed tomatoes were amazing.
Brigadeiro for dessert.
The best dinner: Vegan hot dogs with ketchup/yellow mustard/relish on a brioche bun + potato chips + wok stir-fried green beans with chili crisp. This whole meal was wonderful but the green beans were definitely the best vegetable I’ve ever made at home.
Last week was great, and filled with great eats. It worked out that I was off from work most of the week, which was just lovely! And Adam and I were both home together for Christmas, which has rarely happened in our marriage. The absolute best part of the week was walking around Manhattan (8 miles!) admiring holiday decorations and checking out the Rockefeller tree – – it was impossible to capture in a photo but even in the daytime the lights were stunning.
Other highlights included…
We obviously had to buy both of these eggnogs to do a comparison taste-test (premium was a bit better!).
Christmas morning dalgona coffee with eggnog.
Max Brenner‘s peanut butter hot chocolate blew our minds.
Trader Joe’s peppermint mini marshmallows are great.
And we loved this peppermint seltzer.
Birthday cake scone from Sweetie Pies on Main. We went out to Cold Spring Harbor to admire their decorations. And yes, we do have a car tree.
This snowball doughnut from Comfortland was insane. It was coated in coconut and stuffed with marshmallow cream.
Plain Greek yogurt bowl with banana, chocolate cashew butter, and cinnamon.
I’ve had my eye on this salmon candy spread for months and it did not disappoint. Paired wonderfully with everything-style crackers.
Still very into this frozen meal. Also fresh mandarin oranges.
Best meal I’ve ever made – crockpot five spice chicken thighs / celery, bok choy, and scallions / rice cakes / gojuchang brown sugar sauce. Topped with chili crisp.
We broiled the leftovers with mozzarella cheese and it somehow got even better.
The best meal we’ve ever eaten came from Milu. Mandarin duck with duck fat rice and marinated cucumbers / brisket with chili garlic mint sauce and tofu seaweed salad / chili crisp fried chicken with scallion mayo. Plus egg tart soft-serve. Every single bite was swoonworthy.
A roasted sheet-pan meal with brussel sprouts, cave aged blue cheese, turkey sausage, dried sweet cherries, yellow raisins, and sweet and spicy pecans.
Soft-scrambled eggs with roasted broccoli rabe and purple cauliflower, cucumber salad, and hot-smoked salmon.
Strawberry jam filled / salted brown butter caramel glazed / pecan hawaij sticky bun.
Lunch at Nowon. I thought I didn’t like soju but this Tiger Bomb cocktail with jasmine, yuja citron, and mint syrup changed my mind.
I kept warm with Fire Chicken – spicy chicken with cabbage, rice cakes, and mozarella.
And lost my mind for the honey butter tater tots with labneh and seaweed.
Checking out Leyenda‘s Sleyenda decorations is our favorite holiday tradition and this year’s outdoor set up did not disappoint.
I had a Coquito Ho Ho – tequilla, sherry, coconut liquor, and coconut with cinnamon and egg.
And a Candy Striper which was hands-down our favorite cocktail/beverage of the year. I said at least ten times “this drink is making me so happy!” It’s a frozen blend of cachaça, coconut, vanilla, maple, lime, peppermint, and cardamom.
Hummus and pretzels with nougat and candied apricot candies my parents sent me.
Malai‘s toasted nutmeg ice cream basically tastes like eggnog! And the consistency is out of this world.
We made a batch of my Bahn Mi Chicken Salad and it was even better than I remembered. With roasted veggies and local sourdough.
Sourdough also made an appearance in great turkey sandwiches with cheddar, jam, and garlic mayo. Plus baby carrots and salted egg yolk chips.
Buffalo chicken meatball sandwiches. With sauteed carrot and celery in a mustard sauce.
I had a black bean and pepperjack kolache and a soft taco with cheese, eggs, and hot sauce.
We went to L’imprimerie to get a loaf of bread for next week and ended up with a fantastic lunch. 10/10 sandwich with duck pate, cornichons, and arugula.
Poppy seed and marzipan croissant.
The whole family enjoyed a lovely afternoon at Evil Twin.
Best brews (in my opinion) were the “Sour Pepper Cherry Vanilla Float” soda-style sour ale / the “I always Look Forward to Outdoor Dining in My Snowsuit” triple IPA / and the “How Much Cheese is Even More Cheese” raspberry cheesecake sour ale.
Also we had the Sweet Revenge, the most “me” cocktail of all time – a frozen blend of vodka, aquavit, Aperol, pink guava, cinammon, citrus, and milk punch.
An easy homemade dinner. Trader Joe’s frozen kung pow chicken zhuzhed up with added celery and extra peanuts.
I worked all weekend – crazy busy but super interesting days; we’ve had a ton of micronutrient deficiencies lately and I’ve really gotten to flex my nutrition-focused physical exam skills – but Adam and I managed to have some excellent date nights.
Homemade fish taco bowls. Roasted cabbage with lime Sriracha crema and beer-battered cod.
The new best dinner of the year from Canary Club. We ate in the frigid wind on the stoop (it could not have been any more safely socially distanced nor any more cold) so I couldn’t take photos but the the meal was a 10/10. Spicy mezcal cocktail with genepy, lime, pineapple, and pink peppercorn plus a berry rickey with cinnamon cachaça and citrus wild berry cider // black sesame tempura carrots with chili tahini and dill // smoked delicata squash with pecorino, creole butter, and Malaysian peanuts // duck fat broccoli and cauliflower with cilantro and toasted almonds // hanger steak with olive relish, crispy corn cakes, and French onion sauce.
An epic take-out spread from Birds of a Feather. We piled giant plates with numbing-spicy goodness!
We ordered a million things so we could try everything that sounded good and have leftovers for dinners next week: steamed curry chicken dumplings // chive pancakes with egg and dried shrimp // poached wood ear mushrooms with pickled peppers and cucumbers in a vinegar sauce // sautéed Chinese broccoli with soy sauce and scallions // string beans in ginger sauce // spicy and sour tofu pudding // shredded chicken with sesame and chili oil // spicy cumin lamb with bell peppers and miso // cold Sichuan noodles with peanut paste, chili oil, and peppercorns // fried rice with mustard green shoots // fried rice with shredded duck.
It’s beginning to taste a lot like Christmas! Very excited about this year’s ridiculous line-up on on-theme items.
Highlights from this past week include…
Eggnog + Trager Brothers Coffee (<– the stuff from the hospital coffee shop in Virginia that I was obsessed with).
Plus I made an eggnog dalgona coffee!
A very pepperminty breakfast. I was expecting the peanut butter/mint combo to be strange but that Perfect bar was actually amazing.
Greek yogurt bowl with cranberry sauce, cinnamon, and butter rum trail mix.
Still really loving these cocktail hour truffles from Trader Joe’s.
We are even more excited about these buttermints that my parents HANDMADE!?!
Turkey taco night. Corn tortilla with homemade chipotle salsa / sautéed white onion, yellow and orange bell pepper, and poblano pepper / ground turkey / shredded cheese / sour cream / hot sauce. Plus a taco-less pile fillings on the side.
Taco bowl night. Everything from the previous meal plus cranberry sauce and minus the tortilla.
We took a break from tacos with take-out from our favorite Japanese place. Garlic sautéed veggies, tempura veggies and chicken, seaweed salad, edamame, and tofu.
I hope all of my American readers had a safe but satisfying Thanksgiving. Adam and I both worked the holiday but were able to continue our tradition of Thanksgiving night nachos! And thankfully our days ended early enough that we had time to chat with my parents while taking the dog on a cocktail walk and Zoom conference with all of my in-laws in the evening.
We spent a little time talking about things we are thankful for which was an easy assignment for me because I feel like thankful is actually my primary state of being – at least five times a day I thank my lucky stars that I just get to know Adam and Webster, let alone have them both love me back.
By the way, even my non-holiday eats were still pretty much on-theme because the short list of superficial things I’m thankful for definitely includes coffee, boba, sprinkles, ice cream, and pizza! Highlights from the past week include…
Thanksgiving nachos. This year we did Trader Joe’s horseradish and chives potato chips / shredded cheese / duck fennel sausage / shishito peppers / cranberry dressing. Plus roasted brussel sprouts on the side.
And we stayed on theme with maple margaritas.
No pie for dessert, but we did have these festive truffles.
Roasted broccoli and cabbage with spicy cashew sauce and rolled tofu.
We lucked out that Taglio is so close to our apartment because they are currently my favorite pizza in the city. This roasted potato and vodka slice were both 10/10. Plus they have given a ton of food to the workers at Adam’s hospital throughout the pandemic so I am thrilled to support them (multiple times a week!).
Homemade chili topped with sour cream, jalopenos, and pimento cheese. I used duck sausage, black beans, orange bell pepper, poblano pepper, sweet onion, diced tomato, spices, and beer.