Good morning! Hope everyone is staying healthy and safe. Last week, we went to the city for the first time since the pandemic hit in mid-March. Phoebe had a doctor’s appointment and we figured we’d use it as an excuse to grab some good pizza (since I know you’ll ask: that rainbow piece is cheese striped with marinara, pesto, and vodka sauce) and walk around the streets we’ve missed so much. Here’s what else I’ve been into this week…
Pantry: NYC-Style Egg Sandwich
Speaking of NYC food, let’s discuss the classic deli egg sandwich. I can count on three fingers how many places (one in Shelter Island, one in Cobble Hill, one in Bronxville, NY, and zero in Manhattan!) execute what I think of as the perfect version: fluffy, tender un-blistered scrambled eggs, American cheese, the right amount of hot sauce, and, most important, a not-too-doughy roll. Last week, I somehow managed to replicate this at home (it’s harder than it looks), largely because I had picked up a bag of Bread Alone kaiser rolls, which I sensed were the perfect level of breadiness. If you can’t find that brand, look for rolls that are as thin as possible. Here’s what I did:
NYC-Style Deli Egg-and-Cheese Sandwich
1 tablespoon butter, unsalted
3 eggs, the freshest you can find, whisked with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 slices American cheese, preferably Kraft
1 plain kaiser roll (preferably from Bread Alone), halved
1 tablespoon hot sauce, or to taste
Special equipment: foil and parchment paper
Heat your broiler. Add butter to a nonstick skillet set over low-medium heat, swirling so it distributes across the entire surface. Add eggs and toss gently, folding the edges in on itself every 10 to 15 seconds and keeping it in an omelet-like patty. When eggs are slightly less cooked than you like them to be (I like scrambled eggs on the wet side) slide them on to a piece of foil, top with cheese and place under the broiler along with the kaiser roll halves facing up. As soon as cheese melts, remove from oven. When the roll is toasted (it should take about as long as the cheese to melt) place it on a piece of parchment paper. Splash hot sauce on one half of the roll and eggs on the other. Wrap sandwich in parchment paper (this will prevent the filling from spilling over the sides when you slice it) and slice down the middle, deli-style.
Project: Two Salads & Some Learning
Last weekend, we decided to head up to our favorite lunch spot, Blooming Hill Farm, a working organic farm in Orange County, NY. We’ve been eating there ever since our kids were young enough to splash around in the creek that runs behind the main building and breakfast was served from behind a counter in the same room where they sold their produce. A few years ago, though, they built a beautiful restaurant across the field, and even though it’s a solid hour drive from our house, it’s a delicious way to spend a weekend day. (Especially if you tack on a hike.) The menu is mostly vegetable-forward (there is meat though) and everything is unbelievably fresh and delicious. We ordered virgin Bloody Marys and two salads, each of which was upgraded by something interesting….
…nuts! Not just any old nuts, but nuts crushed to the point of almost powder. They did this with hazelnuts on the beet-strawberry-radish salad (definitely trying this at home), and also with pistachios on a ranch-dressed purple kale, cucumber, and fried-egg-topped salad. Why does this matter? Well, for starters, it looked cool — and visual appeal of food should never be underestimated — but also, it meant the nutty flavor and texture was evenly distributed over the vegetables. You never had to precariously spear a pistachio chunk with the too-thick tine of a fork in order to include a taste of nut in the bite. So there’s your learning for the day. Crushed nut powder. Try it at home!
Purpose: Full-Circle Kindness
The “Humans of New York” feed is always a reminder of how darkness and goodness coexist, often in lockstep. This particular entry from last week is a prime example and stunned me.
The goal of the Project, Pantry, Purpose series to keep us sane, distracted, connected, and USEFUL. It began in March 2020. Please continue to comment below with suggestions for recipes, projects (for kids and adults), good deeds, donation ideas, stories, movies, games, puzzles. Or just tell me how you’re doing, what your daily routine is, and especially how DALS can help you or people in your community. You can also email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.