Saturday, May 8, 2010

Good Shabbos!

Yelled at the chef today.

Undercooked eggplants, excuse me? First of all, they were perfect. Secondly, I can stop caring any second you want. Family meal can leap back into the Dark Ages. Eggplant salad and grilled pork. You're going to come up here and talk shit? Someone else say something about family meal. Please, take the one thing that makes my workday worthwhile. I insist.

Girlfriend is on vacation and what does a disgruntled brunch cook eat on a Friday night?
Still not lunch, but this will do anytime. The pickles are spicy, so this covers the flavor spectrum. Hot, sour, salty, sweet, and let's not forget bitter. Provecho!

For anyone not at home watching "Man Push Cart" alone with a cilantro pickle bagel and a tamarind whiskey drink, maybe you're out at one of the many Inwood bodegas. Guzman Food Market down the leisurely Sherman Ave.,and past the whitewashed iron work, was near capacity with the Yankee game blaring. A tamarindo there and I was on my way. The doorman and I exchanged goodbyes. The yellow metal marquee box glowed where its multicolored bulbs would allow. The red top and trim gave me the proper accompanying drink to match my low-priced boubon. One can yields three cocktails.

The bagel was from my morning Bagel Boss stop way down by the 1st Ave L stop. Just above 15th. They were a bit less seedy than I prefer, but for an oversize bagel it is tasty and the only real option near work. But seeds on both sides which for me is crucial for a respectable bagel joint.

Family meal was Pok Pok style, or at least my interpretation with what the restaurant has as far as thai ingredients. The bottle of Squid brand fish sauce at my side I worked my way through the large silver mixing bowl of pork chops, ribs, bones scrap, pancetta scraps, and other assorted chunks from various whereabouts. Thai chiles were replaced with jalapenos and a micoplane functioned as my mortar and pestle. Fish sauce, ginger, black pepper, garlic, jalapeno, lemon juice, and some sugar soon coated the pork. Some was reserved as sauce for the grilled meat. The last of the acorn squash, whose skin had changed to orange, had been pureed and then made its way into a thickened curry. The powder was of undistinguished origin and simply said curry powder. The last dish was a roasted eggplant salad, the one the chef said looked underdone. Whole Japanese eggplants grilled until just barely soft then sliced into rounds and topped with lime fish sauce dressing, hard-boiled egg, red onion instead of shallot, mint, cilantro, fried garlic, and fried shallots. It was all served with Uncle Ben's brown rice.

Hours later after Shabbat candles, La Croix du Prieur rose from the bottle, tamarind whiskey, bagel supper, a smoke in the tub while watching Daily Show I did everything in my capacity to mellow myself for the weekend of Mother's brunch. I needed a night cap. Since summer arrived I had not had a crappy chocolate wafer ice cream sandwich. So I went to my second bodega of the evening. The Yankee game was long over at Zuley Deli Superette, but the crowd was still alive. The Broadway and Dongan Pl. establishment had no doorman. They did have ice cream sandwiches. Hershey's Mighty Mini to be exact, not that it was different from any other versions. Two for $.70 was just what I had in mind.

Anything else need to be done? No, don't worry, everyone thinks we're gonna fail. So I feel great. Just don't undercook the eggplant and we'll be fine. Maybe it's the Evan Williams talking, but fuck brunch! What I mean to say is those ice cream sandwiches were all right.

One of these days we'll have lunch.