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First Photo Friday

March 1, 2013

Let’s call this a February retrospective.

I mentioned a while back that there might be some changes on the blog as I tried to better manage my time. Part of that plan included the occasional use of more pictures. Well, as February comes to a close, I look back and realize how much I never shared with you all.

Usually the pictures simply serve as reference points for me. More of visual note-taking than actual photography. Still, I’m going to share these today in the hopes that some might prove to be either helpful, inspring, or illuminating.

My hopes are probably way too high for snapshots. We’ll just have to see how it goes.

So you may have heard that Dante’s frozen yogurt is now my favorite place in the region to go for the stuff now that their spoons don’t make my mouth feel like it’s under attack. Well I’m also a creature of habit. And pretty much this is what I get every time I’m there.

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It’s just a wee little bit of tart yogurt dressed with some crushed blackberries, canned mandarin orange segments, and a little bit of Gatherer’s granola. My favorite part is how the blackberry juices freeze onto the yogurt swirl and create little ice crystals. Notice how empty the cup is. I love being able to get a modest serving of a sweet treat. This usually sets me back about $3.50.

February I ate a lot of oatmeal. I’d make a big batch overnight in the slow cooker. Then I’d put the leftovers into cylindrical bowls. They made these dense hockey pucks of steel cut oatmeal. In theory I could have put these in the oven to warm through and eat. But I had another idea.

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It took me a while to master frying oatmeal in the cast iron skillet. It’s harder than you would imagine to build a crust like the one above. The secret is barely any oil in the pan at all. Pretty much I would pour in a little oil, work it into the pan with a spatula, and dump out the excess. After a while on medium heat, it would smell toasted and delicious. Then it’s time to flip. Taking the pan off the heat for a minute before flipping gives the oatmeal a chance to release a bit so that all this hard earned crust doesn’t get scraped away. Time intensive, yes. But it’s delicious.

Remember how we were talking about Stewart’s eggs? Well, this is one of theirs. It’s poached and served on top of a roasted medly of winter root vegetables from the Schenectady Greenmarket.

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Yep. Stewart’s eggs on top of organic produce. Honestly it would make me feel better if this egg were raised using the more humane practices found in backyard coops. However this egg is every bit as delicious, with the rich golden yolk I require. Seriously, the eggs I have gotten from the farmers markets haven’t looked this good. Maybe I’ve been getting the wrong eggs.

Maybe you can guess where this is from. You know, since there is really only one Mexican restaurant I ever talk about in the region. Hello La Mexicana Grocery & Restaurant. Your tacos make me so happy. This is a beef one and a chicken one. But there’s a catch.

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That beef comes from inside the mouth of the cow. Yep. It’s the lengua taco. Now that doesn’t look so scary does it? Let me tell you, the texture is rich from the melted collagen in the muscle that yields after long slow cooking. It’s quite beefy and remarkably pleasurable. To balance out all of that pleasure I was compelled to have a straight chicken taco, because you know, diet.

Finally, I offer this snapshot as a public service. I captured this specimen at The Kosher Choper on Central Avenue in Colonie. People keep complaining about not being able to find good Black & White cookies. I grew up with these cookies in Brooklyn Heights, but despite positive childhood memories, they don’t really hold any appeal for me as an adult. To each their own.

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If you get real close to the screen, you’ll notice these are made in Brooklyn. Maybe these are the cookies you’ve been looking for. Maybe they aren’t. But at the very least I thought someone might be interested to know they’re here.

Don’t forget that today is the last day to vote in the Metroland poll. Also you may want to consider checking back on Saturday and Sunday just in case I’m able to pull off a certain giveaway. No promisses though. Negotiations are still under way. But I’m cautiously optimistic.

 

 

6 Comments leave one →
  1. -R. permalink
    March 1, 2013 11:17 am

    So-called “Black & White” cookies do nothing for me either. However, since I’m originally from the Utica area, “Half Moons” as developed and popularized by Hemstrought’s bakery are the best damn cakelet ever created. The difference? Half-moons have chocolate cake beneath the frostings, whereas black & white cookies are vanilla. The difference is not subtle. From your picture I can also tell that the frosting material is completely different: your photo cookie features something that looks like glazes; half-moons contained an actual vanilla frosting light and airy, and a fudgey type chocolate frosting on the dark side which never became brittle or chunky, but had a creamy smoothness all its own. While replicas have appeared in Utica area bakeries over the years, in my opinion none have ever matched the quality of the originals.

  2. March 1, 2013 11:56 am

    Pan fried oatmeal?
    You are my hero.

  3. March 1, 2013 12:06 pm

    Your poached egg: Drool! I usually lean towards fluffy scrambled eggs (little cream and salt and pepper) with chopped scallions as my “breakfast choice of egg”. There is something I enjoy about a toasted bagel and trying to pile the scrambled eggs on top as I take a bite (of course they always half fall off the bagel and I end up finding bits of scrambled eggs under the kitchen table, but that’s half the fun). But that – there poached egg makes me think twice!

    Perhaps Saturday morning, I will venture off to the local Stewart’s and poach us some eggs. It has been a very long time since I have done that. It’s also been about 10 years since I even thought about Stewart’s Eggs. (Side note: I recall, when I was a child, my parents would go to Stewart’s and buy the “Box” of potato chips. They were great chips! And we simply loved the fact that they came in a box).

  4. March 1, 2013 1:32 pm

    I think the color of the yolk is influenced by the feed at commercial egg farms. Adding marigold to the mix is supposed to produce bright yolks.

  5. March 2, 2013 12:13 am

    Where’s the pig rectum? (that was a question.)

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