A practice pizza!? I’ve never heard of such a thing until this afternoon when I was at A Mano in Ridgewood. Roberto Caporuscio, master pizzaiolo, instructor and owner of NYC’s Keste’ Pizza & Vino makes his pizzaioli-in-training practice making pizze with pasta instead of cheese. It’s cheaper than cheese, but interestingly has the same feel and weight. This is info you only learn from a master pizzaiolo like Roberto! Enjoy!
Living to eat,
‘Nduja, a Calabrian specialty
After long last, it was love at first bite for ‘nduja and me! I recently have been on a mission to find this elusive salumi. For those outside of the salumi loop, ‘nduja is a fiery hot, spreadable salume that is native to the town of Spilinga in the province of Vibo Valentia in the region of Calabria. People in the know say that upon first taste many people are addicted. And case in point, I’ve become addicted to this dark red masterpiece of salumi.
Last week, famed chef Eric Ripert of NYC’s 3 starred Michelin restaurant Le Bernardin recently visited Chef Central (240 New Jersey Route 17 North) in Paramus, NJ. Chef Central is a cook’s wonderland. They have all kinds of knives, pots, bakeware, stand mixers, cookbooks, etc. Chef Central is also a mecca for cookbook authors and chefs. Chef Ripert was at Chef Central to do a Q&A with the audience, as well as sign his latest book “Avec Eric”, which is the companion to his PBS show of the same name. I recorded a few Chef Ripert’s responses, which I am including here. Enjoy!
Chef Eric Ripert signing my copy of his new book “Avec Eric”
Living to eat,
Alessio’s Pane e Panelle
I recently visited Bella Cucina Gourmet Italian Deli in Lake Hiawatha, NJ. The proprietors are great friends of mine, Alessio & Lauren Troia. Alessio is a native Palermitano, meaning he’s from Palermo, Sicily. One of his specialties are a Sicilian street food called pane e panelle, which are deep-fried chickpea fritters served on a sesame seed roll with salt and lemon. I decided to record Alessio as he prepared the pane e panelle. Enjoy!
The other day, I was in the mood for pizza so I decided to visit my friends at Ah’Pizz, a Neapolitan style pizzeria, in Montclair, NJ. Ah’Pizz is VPN (Vera Pizza Napoletana) certified, which means they are striving to make authentic pizza the way it’s made back in Napoli. The centerpiece at Ah’Pizz is their Stefano Ferrara, wood-fired oven (they use no gas) that cooks a pizza in about 90 seconds time.
With Chef Angelo Sosa at his brand new restaurant Social Eatz
Monday night, my wife and I headed into NYC for a late dinner. Since opening this past Friday (March 11), I was eager to try Angelo Sosa’s new restaurant Social Eatz (232 East 53rd Street in NYC). If you’re a “TOP CHEF” fan, you’ll remember Angelo from “TOP CHEF D.C.” and “TOP CHEF ALL-STARS” . When we arrived at the restaurant, it was packed. We waited a few minutes for a table to be ready. The restaurant’s interior is extremely modern. They have a bar, but are currently waiting on the liquor license. I would consider the seating semi-communal.
Louis Coluccio & Me at his store in Brooklyn
Last week after long last, I visited D. Coluccio & Sons on 60th Street in Brooklyn, New York. Coluccio’s is a third generation Italian importer, distributor & supermarket. I’ve always heard great things about Coluccio’s but never made the trek out to Brooklyn from New Jersey. To be honest, in my 28 years I’ve only been to Brooklyn a handful of times.