If I were running a marathon (which I wouldn’t be), I assume there would be markers to let me know where I was along the track. In the road of life, my mile markers are meals. Anywhere I’ve ever been, at any time in my life, the way I remember a place is by what I ate there. Which is why most of my early memories, and photos, are of me stuffing my face. Year 6, dissected lobsters at Malaga off of First Avenue. Year 8, deconstructed chicken fingers and waffle fries and Best Health black cherry soda at Ottomanelli’s. And Year 10, down in Chapel Hill, the best pizza this New Yorker had ever had.
Aligot is the ultimate comfort food—think, ski lodge, by the fire, warming and filling you up. It’s kind of like a potato fondue: mashed potatoes whipped with melted cheese until it gets gooey and smotheringly delicious. I like eating it with just a light green salad alongside. Continue reading …
There’s a tea house in Paris called Ladurée. Maybe you’ve been there. You probably have because it’s nearly impossible to make it out of Paris without being stopped by their vibrant macarons and pastries. Continue reading …
My grandmother’s sister used to make the most amazing lemon chicken–a whole chicken, on the phone, with whole round potatoes roasted underneath. This is the working girls’, not retired aunt’s, version: chicken legs (yes, you can use breasts instead) and potato wedges, roasted together on a single foil-lined tray (no clean up!). The whole thing takes about 3 minutes of time to prepare, and then it’s a waiting game, until the chicken skin is golden and blistered and the potatoes are crispy and steaming hot. The oven really is magic.
Lemon Roast Chicken and Potatoes
2 whole bone-in, skin-on chicken legs
Salt and pepper
1 thick slice lemon
2 teaspoons olive oil, plus 1 tablespoon
4 Yukon Gold potatoes, cut in 6
Lemon zest to taste
Preheat oven to 450°F. Wash and dry the chicken with paper towel. Season with salt and pepper, and then lightly dress by squeezing the lemon slice on the chicken. Rub the chicken with 1 teaspoon olive oil per leg. Toss the potatoes with the tablespoon of oil, and season with salt and pepper. Arrange everything in a single layer on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, and cook for 45 minutes.
I remember the first time I went to the circus, I thought it was a spectacle. It was all purple cotton candy and glittering acrobats and kneeling white horses. And then the last time I went, the man sitting behind me stood up, walked down the aisle to the center of the ring, got down on one knee, and proposed to the woman right behind me. Under the big top, with clowns grimacing behind him. Just call him the ringmaster. I wanted to turn around, and mouth at the woman “run!” It was certainly a spectacle. Continue reading …