Mid-Summer Update

by Meg Cotner on August 1, 2014


Watermelon Salad at The Queens Kickshaw—one of the best things I’ve had all summer.

Well, it’s been a while since I gave my poor blog some attention. Perhaps this will be the beginning of its resurrection, maybe not; I won’t make any predictions.

Things are going well—I’m writing a lot on We Heart Astoria and We Heart LIC, which is the kind of fun times that don’t feel like work. I was on the radio again! Always a good time. I’m swimming a lot, too, so I’m SO HUNGRY. I’ve been eating a lot of egg-and-cheese-on-a-roll breakfast sandwiches post-swim workout—which, by the way, burns about 800 calories. I love these sandwiches at Zorba’s, a little neighborhood spot that also makes my current favorite frappe, an iced coffee beverage popular in places like Greece and Bulgaria.


It’s a slightly sweet and milky coffee drink made from Nescafe coffee. I’m a big fan.

Other summer food activities include making sun tea (yes, I’m a child of the 80s), horchata, cold brew coffee, and eating a lot of vegetables from my CSA, which is in full swing now. Recent restaurant trips include The Queens Kickshaw, where I tried their new fabulous Summer menu (see the watermelon salad above); Spicy Lanka, a Sri Lankan restaurant in Jamaica that is awesome; Pye Boat Noodle, home to incredible noodle soups and tasty snacks; and Khao Kang, a new Thai steam table restaurant with some seriously good food. And cheap! I think 3 dishes were $7.50. More on all these later.

Guilty (not really, but you know what I mean) pleasures: Bounty Bars and Days of Our Lives.



An amazing selection of Bob’s Red Mill products at a local market.

I made this classic Moosewood dish, African Pineapple Peanut Stew this weekend and it was fantastic.

You can this class—either just audit or take it for a certificate—called Food For Thought. It offers “a scientific framework for understanding food and its impact on health and society from past to present.”

Braised Chicken with Preserved Lemons and Olives from Tasting Table sure sounds really good right now.

Before I read this Southern Foodways Alliance article, I had never heard of Delta tamales. Now  I want to eat a whole plate of them! Two major differences—these are made with cornmeal and are simmered, as opposed to being made with masa and cooked by steaming.

The big local kefuffle over new Mayor De Blasio eating NYC pizza with a knife and fork.

These grain-free crackers from Zen Belly sound really good. I might use cumin seeds in them, too.

Glad to see an injera recipe made with 100% teff from Yum Universe! Looks easy to make, and would go good with Nom Nom Paleo’s recipe for Doro Wat.

These vintage food-oriented posters are a lot of fun.

Food52′s version of an M. Wells’s brussels sprouts salad also looks pretty good.

This Kale and Sausage Soup from Holistic Squid looks like a terrific winter meal.

Food Republic’s Onion Tart is the kind of recipe that encourages me to buy the good puff pastry at Whole Foods. Or learn to make it myself.

My recent meal at Mu Ramen, which was a delight.

I love this Chowhound thread on hole in the wall places in NYC. Not surprising, a lot of them are in Queens (and are awesome).

Delicious Food at Mu Ramen

by Meg Cotner on January 10, 2014


The other day I decided it was time to check out Mu Ramen, a pop-up ramen spot in Long Island City, Queens, so I met a friend there Wednesday night. By day the space is Bricktown Bagels, and at night on Tuesdays through Saturdays it transforms into an intimate ramen joint. They serve a couple kinds of ramen, a couple kinds of buns, a few appetizers. The menu is simple and the food is amazing.


The folks behind this venture, Joshua Smookler and Heidy He, started things up a couple of months ago. Joshua Smookler, who has worked at places such as Per Se and Nobu, starts working on the food each evening around 5 p.m., and they start taking reservations after 6 p.m. There are only 14 seats available, and they fill up pretty fast; we hear the busy time is between 7 and 9 p.m each night. I was happy to be there at 6:30.


We started with the short rib buns, which were meaty, rich, and delicious. Continue reading…

The Joy of Pudding Cake, Meyer Lemon Edition

January 8, 2014

This Meyer Lemon Pudding Cake is like having two desserts in one – a light, airy cake atop a tangy, creamy lemon pudding.

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Eat the Web, January 7, 2014 – Mu Ramen, Red Lentil Dal, Socca, and More

January 7, 2014

This edition of Eat the Web features stories on pop-up Mu Ramen, Steirereck im Stadtpark, red lentil dal, galette des rois, silver dollar socca, slow cooker recipes, and Rego Park’s Georgian restaurant Marani.

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Hoppin’ John and Happy New Year

January 2, 2014

I started 2014 with a walk, pancakes, the Rose Parade, and a bowl of Hoppin’ John.

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13 in 2013 – Good Eats in Queens (and Brooklyn)

December 23, 2013

13 dishes I enjoyed in Queens and Brooklyn in 2013. A year-end food roundup.

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