Monthly Archives: January 2011

Warming Winter Soups

The compressor on our “soup freezer” went belly up yesterday, but it’s all better now thanks to refrigeration genius Charlie Groeter who swooped in to the rescue! Thank you Charlie! In the process of pulling all the soups out we took stock of what we had and now we know why our savviest customers walk in and head straight for the freezer. We’ve got a pretty impressive collection to suit most anyone’s taste.  All our soups are made in house with fresh stocks, herbs, vegetables and lots of love.

It may sound trite but as any true cook will tell you, there is nothing more satisfying than making a delicious soup. (Pictured above is the ever-popular Curried Mussel Soup.)  We make two fresh soups each day for our customers to enjoy and freeze the rest. Many are vegetarian, some are vegan, all are fresh, clean and delicious. The mix is constantly changing, of course, but to give you an idea of what’s most popular, here’s a partial list:

Chicken Soup, always the best seller, they don’t call it Jewish penicillin for nothin’
Butternut Squash and Apple, made with local cider and Granny Smith apples
Carrot Ginger, smooth with lots of fresh ginger and yogurt
Italian Minestrone, rich with beans, tomato and packed with vegetables
Minestrone Verde, a green vegetarian version of the classic
Potato Leek, sometimes vegetarian, sometimes classic with chicken stock
Harira, spicy with lamb, barley, lentils with lemon, traditional to break the fast of Ramadan
New England Clam Chowder, we steam fresh chowder clams ourselves!
Vegetable Beef, packed with vegetables and beef in a rich beefy broth
Curried Mussel, one of the most requested, check our specials menu for dates
Chili con Carne, stew meat and ground meat with multiple layers of flavor
Turkey Black Bean Chili, a popular lighter version of chili con carne
Split Pea and Ham, simmered with smoked pork shanks

We take requests and are always happy to be reminded of something we haven’t made in a while. We also make marinara, putanesca, bolognese and vodka sauces along with traditional and vegetarian lasagnas. Occasionally, you will find chicken pot pies or our chicken burgers with feta and olives in the freezer as well.  Stop in, check it out, a couple of quarts of soup or sauce can be a real lifesaver if you get snowed in!

Porchetta, a New Year’s Treat

New Year’s musings from Chef Richard Erickson

I have been wanting to eat porchetta ever since I first heard that Sara Jenkins (daughter of the famous cookbook author, Nancy Harmon Jenkins) opened a place in the East Village by the same name.  In Central Italy a whole pig is roasted and then sold from a cart, (street food – this has to be the epitome of “slow cooked fast food”).  A pork loin covered with garlic, fennel and rosemary wrapped in a pork belly and slow roasted for hours is how they do it.

“Amazing”, I thought. “The loin is continually basted as the belly melts around it. We HAVE to do this.”

Well, with the end of the year drawing quickly to a close we still hadn’t done it.  Summer catering ran into Thanksgiving ran into Hanukkah ran into ….. you get the picture.  Well, I’m sure the kitchen staff thought I was nuts but sure enough, right in the middle of Christmas and New Years preparations came a whole pork belly from Hudson Valley Meat Co.  We opened it up, scored the skin in a diamond pattern, seasoned it with plenty of chopped garlic, salt and savory herbs. After sitting for several days we wrapped it around one of our Berkshire pork loins tied it up and set it to slow roast for almost seven hours.

 

Crispy skin, fatty belly, and lean loin all heaped on a semolina baguette make a killer sandwich. We’ll also be serving it as a plate with garlicky greens and cannellini beans.  Stop in today and have some, the parking is easier and the price much cheaper than on E. 7th Street!