From the destruction of Sandy, a Far Rockaway bagel shop rises. [Eatocracy]
A look at Katz’s through the years. [EV Grieve]
It’s almost Purim. Check out this guide to hamantaschen in NYC. [Village Voice]
10 beautiful and edible gifts to give Purim. [Food 52]
Which brisket was crowned king? [Serious Eats]
Head to Mile End when you feel like Montreal-Jewish-Sichuan. [Bon Appetit]
Preparing traditional Jewish deli meats is no easy process. Though a bright red slice of pastrami or dark, moist piece of tongue might look simple by the time it’s served on rye, meats like these have already spent up to several weeks soaking in brine, curing in a chilly walk-in, hanging up to dry or smoking in a precisely-tuned machine.
Noah Bermanoff, chef and co-owner of Mile End Deli in Brooklyn and Mile End Sandwich shop in Manhattan, is intimately familiar with this labor-intensive practice. He’s been serving up exemplary cured and smoked meats at his Brooklyn flagship since 2010.
“It’s not like making a hamburger,” Bermanoff said of his product. “It doesn’t just happen overnight,” he added.
So when Hurricane Sandy wiped out the restaurant’s custom-tailored production kitchen located on Red Hook’s Pier 41 last October, Bermanoff and his team had to make some tough decisions, fast: how were they going to prepare their signature pastrami without a working smoker? Where were they going to hang and cure their meats without access to the kitchen’s 6,500 square feet? How were they going to continue baking bread and bagels now that their oven was destroyed?
There are few Jewish restaurants I love more than Brooklyn’s Mile End. The Montreal-style deli made a name for itself by updating the idea of deli, taking the time and care to smoke its meats in house, bake its own bread and for a long time, drive bagels in weekly from Montreal to hold true to their vision. The team has also been behind some of the most exciting Jewish dinners in the country in recent years.
When Sandy came pounding into New York harbor in November, it devastated homes, communities and the restaurants that fed them. Mile End’s commissary in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn was no exception. The space filled with water, leaving untold damages in its wake.
Eater visited the commissary recently and talked to owner Noah Bernamoff about getting the deli back on its feet. Check out what he had to say in the video below.
People don’t talk about “delis” anymore. They talk about “Deli,” the culinary genre under threat of extinction — one that a few chefs are fighting to bring back.
At least that was what they were talking about this past Thursday, at the Deli Summit in Berkeley, Calif. The summit was convened (so to speak) by Karen Adelman and Peter Levitt, owners of Saul’s, in Berkeley. They invited owners of three other cutting-edge delis — Noah Bernamoff of Mile End in Brooklyn, Ken Gordon of Kenny & Zuke’s in Portland and Evan Bloom of Wise Sons popped-up in San Francisco — to talk about the pleasures and challenges of running a deli on a panel moderated by Jewish cookbook maven Joan Nathan.
The sacrificial lamb of the Passover story rarely makes it into the Passover meal other than as a symbol on the Seder plate. But, by serving it as a main course — smoked, smothered in harissa and sprinkled with fresh rosemary — chef Aaron Israel of Mile End Deli enlivened the Passover story for 80 diners at the Seder in the James Beard Foundation pop-up restaurant at Chelsea Market on Tuesday night. The event was one of a number of iterations of the Foundation’s pop-up restaurant, which will host noted chefs for 27 days this spring.
The Passover story, Seder and food are framed in many Jewish circles as things to be reinterpreted each year, by each family or group performing a Seder. Many cooks turn to Sephardic traditions to spice up the standard Ashkenazi staples or even look to other cultures (a co-worker made a Mexican brisket for her Seder this year). But it is rare that cooks look back at Ashkenazi culinary traditions and think how they can reinterpret the Seder classics.
The Beard Seder honored both tradition and innovation through a surprisingly creative and yet familiar meal. Each of the five courses Israel created was inspired by an item on the Seder plate — karpas, haroset, maror, betzah, the egg and zeroah, or the lamb shank. The dishes, which were served communally at long tables, looked deep into tradition for inspiration, bringing modern food sensibilities to the table as well as a handful of ingredients from other traditions.
If you’re like us and cannot wait to see what’s in store for the Bon Appetit relaunch, check out Eater’s interview with the magazine’s editor-in-chief, Adam Rapoport.
Fifteen Boston-area chefs attempted to update Jewish food at the “Beyond Bubbie’s Kitchen’’ event held last Sunday. Tzimmes inspired Japanese yam maki and culinary ruminations on borscht led to a beet salad with blood orange and homemade ricotta, Boston.com reports.
Serious Eats’ ‘Sandwich a Day’ highlights the mother of Montreal deli sammies — Smoked Meat at Schwartz’s Montreal Hebrew Delicatessen.
There are few Jewish foods in America as iconic as the bagel and lox. We eat it at Sunday brunch, after funerals, for Yom Kippur break fast and at brises. It is a staple food of Jewish lifecycles and traditions.
Rarely, though, is your bagel with shmear actually accompanied by lox. What, you say? Then what have I been eating all this time? In most cases, the answer is smoked salmon.
Lox, which originally comes from the German word for salmon, lachs, and the Yiddish word laks, is actually a salt-cured fish, a method that was used for preserving fish in Northern and Eastern Europe.