I made my first stir fry this evening: broccoli, fresh beans, red peppers, and carrots, along with spicy baked tofu. For no good reason I’ve been hesitant to make these kinds of dishes; I think it’s the sound of popping garlic and ginger irrationally made me think that it was somehow complicated to make. I’m glad to have finally overcome that hesitation and look forward to making more of these dishes going forward.


The Forgotten History of New York’s Bagel Famines

Natasha Frost haswritten a really great piece on the history of bagels in New York:

The men of Bagel Bakers Local 338 were not to be trifled with. Founded in the 1930s, all 300-odd initial members were Yiddish speakers who descended from these hardy early bakers. Joining required a family connection—though this wasn’t sufficient on its own. Only after three to six months of apprenticeship, once a “bench man” had attained a minimum rolling speed of 832 bagels an hour, could members’ sons and nephews be grudgingly brought into the fold and given labor cards.

But Local 338 was different. Bagels were acquiring a special cachet among Jewish Americans, and bakers grew wise to the value of their special skills. Within eight years of formation, the union had contracts with 36 of the largest bakeries in the city and New Jersey. They had a ferocious reputation—non-union bagel makers were few and far between, and the holdouts experienced threats and day-and-night picketing until they toed the line.

I had no idea just how political bagel making was, nor how significantly the union was brought to its knees following the creation of Thompson’s ‘bagel machine’ in the 1950s. If you love your morning bagels — and spend the time to hunt down places that still make them by hand — you’ll love the article that Frost has put together.




Ian and I are going to Texas De Brazil in less than two weeks:

Treat yourself to our 50-60 item seasonal salad area including appetizers, gourmet vegetables, soups, and salads. Turn your place card to green and prepare to be swarmed by a troop of carvers generously serving various cuts of seasoned beef, lamb, pork, chicken and Brazilian sausage, all accompanied by traditional side items and house-baked Brazilian cheese bread. As you dine endlessly on Brazilian fare, let one of our in-house wine connoisseurs select the perfect pairing from our extensive, award-winning wine lists, or sip on a freshly-made signature cocktail-the Caipirinha. Complete your dining experience with one of our many decadent dessert selections, and then relax with an after-dinner drink, steaming espresso or a hand-rolled cigar and enjoy the ambiance and service perfection that is uniquely Texas de Brazil.

So, I mean, if we die in Ron Swanson’s wet dream, it’s been real, y’all. I’ll just be singing MEAT to the tune of LMFAO’S SHOTS until then (EVERY ANIMAL!).

Apologies to my non-meat-eating followers, but “Ron Swanson’s wet dream” is right; next to being in the same room as my wife, this is the thing I’m most excited for. As I said to Anaïs, we are going to feel so awesome/horrible after.

Brazilian BBQ is just a terrific experience. Was sad to not get a chance to enjoy it last time I was in Rio.