A-pizza!

It’s been a pretty big week for pizza (when is it not a big week for pizza?): we went to Grimaldi’s new location in an unspoken celebration of Ann Marie’s return to the East Coast, and today I’m leaving to meet my Mama to take a pizza making class as part of her ongoing JUBILEE celebration. We’ll stay with our town mouse friends, have much wine and lots of food, and generally make merry in the best of ways. On a related note, did you know that a standard baking stone is, like, $30? I’ve been under the illusion that they’re hundreds of dollars and that’s why I don’t have one. GET THEE TO A CHEF SUPPLY STORE! In love and pizza, have a wonderful weekend.

 

Grimaldi’s image from here.

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We Jam

I’m a sucker for good packaging. When I went to the co-op this week, these concord grapes were laid out like a hot breakfast in their own specially designed little cardstock bag, a squatter version of an apple sack, with a long white stitched handle and perfect Manischewitz-y purple font extolling their delicious and organic status. And, they smelled so very grapey, an olfactory punch powerful enough to create lush sense memories on the spot. I bought a bag and carried them home. By the time I got them back to the apartment, the bag was a crumplety mess, and when I liberated them from their 4x6x4 home it was like a grape clown-car. They just kept coming and I realized I had way more grapes on my hands than I could reasonably eat. Sharp-sweet, tannic, and full of seeds, what to do? Obviously, make Grape Jam. I got out my laminated “making jam without added pectin” chart from the very back of my recipe binder, and went to work. Skinning, seeding, boiling, sugaring, boiling, pouring into jars, putting hot hot hot on toast. Sweet, simple, at once fresh and old fashioned, this jam turned out fantastically, and it’s the most glorious rich dark purple color. Oh boy!Quick jams like this are sort of just about the easiest thing you can make. Have a pot? Can you stir? Good. You’ve got what it takes. If you’ve never made jam before, this tutorial is ah-mazing and has great pictures of each step. This kind of lazy-man’s jam plays fast and loose with canning/preserving requirements, so it will only keep for a few weeks in your fridge (add “the space to store a pot large enough for water bath canning” to my “homesickness vs. wanderlust” chart) but with enough crusty bread and one or two friends who should be gifted a sweet little pick-me-up-in-a-jar and you’ll go through it in no time.

Basil

In anticipation of the frost, we pulled up all of our flourishing basil and made a huuuuuuge batch of pesto. We’ve now got at least 15 summer-bombs in our freezer to make it through the long winter. I continue to be wowed by the perseverance and successes of our little backyard garden. The last basil plant I kept in the city committed herbicide by jumping out of our 6th floor window and landing, crime scene style, at the bottom of the airshaft. I bet it’s still down there. Are my snack-sized frozen zip-locs a glorious root cellar full of pickles and preserves? Not quite, but, hey, baby steps. Have a wonderful weekend!

Fingers Stained Red

Sweet. Fancy. Moses. “Hot Cheetos and Takis”. I know I’m a little late to the game on this, but if, like me until this morning, you haven’t clapped your ears on what is the hypest summer jam since this one then you. must. watch. All your questions (are these kids real? yes. did they write this song, really? yes. as part of an after school program. What’s a taki?) and more answered here. I’m on point like an elbow, Hands red like elmo, My mama said ‘have you had enough?’, I look and I said ‘no ma’am’. Happy Friday, indeed.

Play Ball!

Oh, New York Metropolitans, I apologize. Summer’s been here for about a month it seems and I’ve yet to go to a baseball game. This feels especially derelict given how far the sweet underdog Mets have come since last year’s walk-off-balk (and may I remind you that that was back when they had Jose Reyes? I say good riddance.): Johan’s no-no, Dickey’s almost no-no, and the thorough drubbing of the Rays this week. Well, Mets, I’m going to get my baseball fix tomorrow, but it’s not going to be at Citi Field (and gawd knows it’s not going to be at Yankee Stadium). Meags is in town and we’re taking the free ferry out to Governor’s Island to see the Gotham Baseball Club of New York take on Eckford of Brooklyn. Vintage baseball for modern times. Since the original New York Gothams of 1864 were heated rivals of the Metropolitans (and went on to become the New York Giants which in turn became the San Francisco Giants, oof), AND since Eckford’s original ballfield was just a crow-hop away from where I live, I’ll be rooting for Brooklyn as means of absolution. I’ll let you know how it goes. Let’s go Mets, Let’s go Ecks, and Let’s go summer.

 

1882 Metropolitan Nine image and Brooklyn Bridegrooms Image from the Library of Congress. Which is, of course, totally amazing.

Glorious Weekend

In New York, the literal distance between friends- the few blocks separating a single neighborhood- can be the difference between weekly wine dates and once-a-year-in-review catch ups. You live in Cobble Hill? Are you free next September? You live in Clinton Hill? Come over for cocktails this very minute. Le sigh. It can be daunting. BUT- after much karma, zen real estate, and wise choices in love and loft we find ourselves with four very good households of friends all living within a five minute walk of each other. This seems a New York miracle. Yes, Virginia, Brooklyn sometimes feels like Virginia. Ever since I read this post from Oh Happy Day!- a progressive dinner carousing from arrondissment to arrondissment through the streets of Paris- I’ve been dying to try it. A Progressive Dinner, in short, moves from house to house with each stop serving a different course of a meal. A Moveable Feast of Brooklyn intuition. I’m thinking that the whole shebang will probably look and feel like the above picture from Comet in Moominland– which Eben and I both read as children and made mental notes that we wanted our lives to be like this-  as he agrees: so far so good. I’ll let you know how it goes. Cheers to good friends and a lovely weekend to you!

 

ps. I also made these for tonight. They are so absurd and wonderful!

pps. Love and congratulations to Dear Rav, tying il nodo in Tuscany this very night. My heart is full for you.

 

Moomin image from here, naturally.