Showing posts with label Chelsea Market. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Chelsea Market. Show all posts


Man Oh Manischewitz!

For those of you who don't know, the Jewish holiday of Passover begins in less than a month. To celebrate, Manischewitz is hosting their first ever pop-up event in Chelsea Market to showcase all of their kosher for Passover products and give new inspiration to old recipes. I attended the press preview last night with Hailey of Barton's Bites, but you can check it out for yourself over the next few days (details below).

First things first, there was a giant "gumball" machine dispensing coconut macaroons. Start dinner with dessert? Yes, please!

Hailey and I with the macaroon gumball machine
Then we made the rounds to the individual food tables. First up was some comforting carrot, quinoa and spinach soup. Then 2 different kinds of matzah pizza--margarita and pesto. Lastly, potato latkes with a multitude of toppings (I chose the apple and fennel slaw).

I must admit, I was surprised (but happy) to see them serving wine other than the notoriously sweet Manischewitz. Instead, they featured Sam Adam's beer and Israeli winery Tishbi.

Now back to dessert. The fact that there are pistachio orange macaroons blew my mind. At the event, they served them with a dollop of cream cheese icing. You could also dip your macaroon in a chocolate fountain and top with sprinkles or coconut. Lastly, the cupcakes (I tried red velvet), were deceptively cakey (always a struggle with pastry items kosher for Passover), and I give them 2 thumbs up!

There were also celebrity chef demos and tastings! Chef Jamie Geller, cookbook author and publisher of Joy of Kosher magazine, showed us how to fancy up your latkes with smoked salmon and creme fraiche. And Chef Katsuji Tanabe, winner of Food Network's Chopped, current contestant on Bravo's Top Chef Boston, and owner of MexiKosher Restaurant in LA, made us some sashimi tuna on matzah crackers.

Chef Jamie Geller

Chef Katsuji Tanabe

We had fun oogling all the new products and brainstorming how we can mix things up for Passover 2015. Carrot cake macaroons anyone? :)

There was also a photo booth and a step-and-repeat, so I'd call it a great event.

Oh, and a crazy awesome gift bag that will get me most of the way through the holiday. It included vegetable broth, garlic and rosemary crackers, carrot cake macaroons (!), red velvet cake mix, potato pancake mix, salmon caviar, The Joy of Kosher magazine, and "The Afiko Mensch" (a Shark Tank product!). Just add matzah and you have an instant seder!

The Manischewitz Experience is free to the public and open at Chelsea Market (75 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011) on the following dates:
  • Thursday March 12: 11:00am to 7:00pm
  • Friday March 13: 10:00 to 6:00pm
  • Sunday March 15: 11:00am to 7:00pm


Alabama in NYC

When you think of Alabama, what is the first thing that comes to mind? I won't fault you if you draw a blank. However, after being invited to the Art of Alabama Food photography and tasting event last week in Chelsea Market, I can definitely say that this southern state ranks high on my culinary list! And no, not everything was fried!

I love a good food event, and this one certainly did not disappoint. I was initially apprehensive that I was going to walk into a room full of good-enough-to-eat photographs without a single edible morsel to nibble on, but thankfully my worries were nixed when I walked in and found several representative dishes and a full open bar.

First up was a Sassy Slider from Lulu's (Gulf Shores, AL), which I wish I a) took a better photo of and b) had room for 5 more! These things were not your typical slider. The beef was fresh and tender and it was topped with bacon, bbq sauce, and pimento cheese (that was the kicker for me). I thought the pickle and tomato on top was awful cute as well.

Lulu's Sassy Sliders

Next up was a BBQ Chicken Stuffed Potato Skin with Alabama White Sauce from Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q (Decatur, AL). Now, I've always known BBQ sauce to be red or brown, but white?! This took things to a whole other level. The chicken was moist and I mean, who can resist a potato skin with bacon and cheese? But the white sauce, which was very peppery, truly rounded out the dish. I would highly recommend you scope this out.

BBQ Chicken Stuffed Potato Skin with Alabama White Sauce

A dish I most certainly associate with Southern-style cooking, Bouillabaisse, made an appearance courtesy of the Hot and Hot Fish Club (Birmingham, AL). This was a fairly typical dish, except for the addition of the only-available-in-Alabama tiger shrimp--those puppies were LARGE! The crunchy bread with spicy rouille was also vital for scooping up the remaining broth.

Hot and Hot Southern Bouillabaisse with Spicy Rouille

I only had a bite of the next dish because I can't really eat raw red onions, but the West Indies Salad with crab from Compleat Angler Seafood Grille & Bar (Orange Beach, AL) was just so pretty!

West Indies Salad

Last on the savory list were the raw oysters with celery root whipped cream and caviar from TRUE (Montgomery, AL). I like oysters, and you know they have to be fresh. TRUE's take on serving these bivalves was unique, although when you swallow an oyster whole, I don't like to get too fancy with toppings in general.

Raw oysters with celery root whipped cream and caviar

Desserts were on the mark at this event; seriously, I took seconds of each of them! First was a PB&J in Phyllo from Cotton Row (Huntsville, AL); a dish which originated with the chef forgot to bring dessert to an event and quickly improvised using ingredients in the client's kitchen. The result is stupendous and ooey gooey! Next was Chevre Cheesecake from Belle Chevre (Elkmont, AL). OMG! You think you've had cheesecake before, but you really haven't until you have tried this. I'm still going to put ricotta cheesecake at the top of my cheesecake preferences, but using goat cheese give a whole other flavor palate which is super intriguing and the candied lemon blends perfectly. It took all I had not to ask for a pie to take home.

PB&J in Phyllo
Chevre Cheesecake
Serving the Chevre cheesecake

Drinks were fairly representative of the South, but I'm not exactly sure what made them Alabama-specific (does it even matter?). The first I tried was the Donnie Draper with Bootlegger Rye, bitters and orange, essentially an Old Fashioned. I also had a few sips of the Bloody Mary made with Lulu's Perfect Pepper sauce and garnished with pickled okra and an olive. Can't say I've ever had a Bloody Mary outside of brunch hours, but it was very tasty.

Donnie Draper
Bloody Mary

Here are a few shots of the event, complete with an energetic jazz band:


The Art of Alabama Food exhibit will be traveling the country, but until you can get your fix, I'd recommend checking out their website, which will direct you to some excellent restaurant recommendations and even recipes!


AWESOME ALERT: Ain't No Party Like A Cookbook Party

If there's one way to get people to buy a cookbook, it's hosting an exciting party with celebrity chefs in the character-filled, former Nabisco factory building, Chelsea Market, with some of the best food samples from the book and plenty of creative libations. That's just what was done to launch The Essential New York Times Cookbook: Classic Recipes for a New Century, edited by New York Times food editor Amanda Hesser, and I got to go.

The event was split into two hours, with ten chefs sampling everything from vegetable sushi to chocolate bread pudding in the first hour and nine in the second. "Snacks" from vendors like Amy's Bread and Martin's Pretzels were spread out across the room throughout the event. Also, a long bar area featured tasty "Apple Picker" Punch from Cienfuegos and Egg Creams (with no egg and no do they do it?!) from Russ & Daughters. 

I was able to attend this event thanks to Tasting Table, who also scored me a copy of the cookbook itself. After giving it a short peruse, I was tickled epicuriously and would highly recommend for foodies (the holidays are coming up people...hint, hint). My friend Rebecca and I circled the room let's just say more than once, and had tons of fun devouring simple classics and figuring out just how certain abstract dishes were concocted. My favorites were the Tonno Nizzarda by Michael White of Marea, Roast Coriander Chicken Thigh with Petticoat Apple Gin Sauce by Brian Bistrong of Braeburn, Butter Sables by Dorie Greenspan the author of Around My French Table and Bite-sized Grapple Pie with Grape Swirl Ice Cream by Karen Demasco of Locanda Verde.

Enjoy the food porn.

Shrimp Toast by Marc Murphy of Landmarc
Martin's Pretzels (yes, the ones from the Union Square Greenmarket)
Mast Bros. Chocolate with Cocoa Nibs
Addictively delicious Caramel Corn with Honeycomb and Dark Chocolate from Liddabit Sweets
A Russ & Daughters awesome person mixing up my Egg Cream
Me with my Egg Cream
Shrimp Alhinho Canape by George Mendes of Aldea
Albondigas Turcas: Manti Inspired Lamb Meatballs by Alex Raij of Txikito
Bite-sized Grapple Pie with Grape Swirl Ice Cream by Karen Demasco of Locanda Verde
Chocolate Cupcakes with Kabocha Buttercream by Pichet Ong of Spot Dessert Bar
Egg Suffragette by Michael Anthony of Gramercy Tavern
Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream from Van Leeuwen Ice Cream
Rebecca with Tonno Nizzarda by Michael White of Marea
Bill Telepan of Telepan gave a very complimentary introduction to Ms. Hesser and Melissa Clark, author of In the Kitchen with A Good Appetite. A portion of the night's proceeds was donated to Wellness in the Schools, an organization aiming to improve the environment, nutrition and fitness in NYC public schools, and Ms. Hesser introduced the non-profit and explained her passion for nutrition in schools.

Bill Telepan (left) introducing (from left to right) Amanda Hesser and Melissa Clark
Guests left with giftbags filled with goodies like Valrhona chocolate (yes, it's definitely worth whatever you will pay for it) and Food Should Taste Good chips. I left full and happy, and totally envious of Amanda Hesser's job.

Me and Rebecca (from left to right) were ultimately satiated