Sunday, October 31, 2010

New Blog

Lilly and I have recently been inspired by the work of Ogden Nash, a humorous poet and early contributor to the New Yorker (circa 1930's). So in the proud tradition of mildly amusing poetics we're trying another blog of our own limericks and such.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Abusing the oven

A few months ago I bought Artisan Breads Every Day by the much-lauded Peter Reinhart, but have only lately begun playing with his recipes...

 Mushroom, caramelized shallot, and (one 1/4) anchovy pizza.
3/4s pepperoni & basil, 1/4 tomato and anchovy pizza.

The pizza dough is from the Bread Baker's Apprentice but is also available on
It's a very easy, chewy crust.  The recipe instructs you to divide the dough into 6 pieces to make a very thin pizza.  We made 2 thicker pizzas which were still tasty, but I look forward to making them thinner next time.

 Rosemary foccacia.

Sesame, poppyseed, and salt bagels.  

We made pretzels as well, but didn't remember to take pictures until they were all gone!  (you can sort of see them in the jars in the 2nd picture from Pickles Part III

With the bagels and pretzels I still have a ways to go in terms of my shaping (as evidenced by the lopsided bagels shown above). 

Not from Reinhart's book, but worth mentioning is this chocolate peanut-butter cake I made for our friend Charlie's birthday party last week. This is what was left after serving it to 20 people... its kind of a monster of a cake.  It's another recipe from Smitten Kitchen, and was so good that just looking at this picture makes me want to make it immediately - despite all the effort (and multiple jars of pb it uses)!  

I hope everyone has a Happy Halloween!  (what are you dressing as?)  

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Pickles, Part III

 Kimchi: day 1 (recipe a combination of the New York Cookbook & David Lebovitz's)
 Pickle Party!

bread & butter pickles, daikon & carrot, dill

Monday, October 25, 2010

Burger Brunch: Holeman and Finch, 2277 Peachtree Rd NE #B

 Continuing on our burger quest, we recently found ourselves at Holeman and Finch, a public house styled restaurant in Atlanta.  Their burger is renown for its scarcity; during the week, its an off-menu item only available at 10 pm when 24 double-patty cheeseburgers on house-made buns are announced with a resounding "It's burger time!"

According to their website (on which "burger" is its own header, alongside "menu" and "contact"), their burger has been known to sell out in under a minute.

However, the burger is an on-menu item on Sundays for the weekly brunch.  And so, a few Sundays ago, it was "burger time" for Al and Lil.
A burger isn't the first thing we crave on a weekend morning, so we started with fresh-squeeze grapefruit juice and a trio of deviled eggs.

 Spicy, ham, and chow-chow.
 Followed by a cheese plate with house-made bread, pickled grapes*, and a smear of honey.

*our pickled grapes are tangier, spicier, firmer... we prefer our own.
 We split a country hash with 2 farms eggs and of course,
the burger.

Verdict?  This double patty cheeseburger is without a doubt delicious.  But I'd be surprised if it wasn't, with detailed touches like the house-made bun, ketchup, mustard, and some pretty amazing fries.  However, the double-patty would be better as a doubly-thick single to make it extra juicy.  It was good, but not mind-blowing.  We'd probably hit up Farm Burger again before Holeman & Finch if we were just looking for burgers, but the overall meal at Holeman & Finch will have us coming back soon for the weekday dinner.  Though when burgers are announced at 10pm, we'll be long gone.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pickles, Part 2

Left to right: pickled grapes, green tomatoes, cherry green tomatoes.  

New jars, soon to contain Moroccan pickled lemons.

Also, suspenders.  

More Mr. Potato than Mr. Pickle, but worth including anyway.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

American road trip to Asheville (our 50th post and longest lived blog)

It's fall break at Emory so Lilly and I took advantage of the time off to get out of Atlanta. We made the short road trip to Asheville in North Carolina. Besides seeing a new city we also wanted to attend a conference at UNC Ashevill about the history of Black Mountain College.

Black Mountain College was an experimental college started in 1933. It's founding members believed that the study of the creative arts was central to the liberal arts. Their novel approach which put painting, poetry, music and dance at the core of a collegiate education attracted some of the most important artists and thinkers of the time.

A few notable participants were: Joseph Albers (pictured above instructing a painting class), Robert Rauchenberg, Merce Cunningham, William Dekooning, John Cage, Buckminster Fuller, and last but not least John Dewey. It was an important meeting place for the American avant garde . Sadly the school shut down in 1957, but has left it's mark on American culture and Lilly and my imaginations. The conference was enlightening and I was able to make contact with people who will be very helpful as my research on Dewey progresses.

Besides research we of course made time for sightseeing and southern food. Of particular interest is Asheville's many early 20th century skyscrapers.

I really like the red brick art-deco city hall.

But the most striking feature of Asheville is not the skyline but the street life. The downtown was bustling and on every corner was a new street musician. Like this drum circle...

or this old-timey folk group. You can just make out the washtub base behind the guitar.

With this old-timey music we were able to find old-timey candy (sold by the pound at Mast general store

With such forgotten confections as Horehound drops.

We were also thrilled to find Blenheim Giner Ale. This Ginger Beer is brewed in South Carolina and in unusually tasty and unusually spicy. (

We rounded out the weekend with some proper Carolina bbq. This dinner was at Willy's BBQ in Franklin NC on the Highway outside of Asheville. ( . It was our kinda place. No frills with rolls of paper towels on each table.

Lilly got pulled pork.
John got baby back ribs.
I got a catfish sandwich.

A delicious meal and a fun weekend.

p.s. I didn't know how to fit this image in but I feel compelled to do so. This sign was pasted at a gas station we stopped at just before the Georgia state line. My favorite part is the punctuation.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Flip Burger, 1587 Howell Mill Rd, Atlanta

This past weekend we got two special treats.  The first was a spur of the moment visit from my brother Lee. The second was a trip to Flip Burger in celebration of this visit.

Flip Burger is run by Richard Blais, who apparently was a Top Chef contestant in a season I did not watch. Flip Burger is pretty trendy (long lines of hipsters, bumping club-music) and a large bar with diverse offerings.   Flip was recently named one of the Top Ten Best New Burger Spots by Bon Appetit for his experimental burgers.  However, being recent burger purists we stuck to the mostly stuck to the more traditional burger offerings.  The milkshakes were another story.

 Bacon cheeseburger with fries.
 Nutella & toasted marshmallow shake, Pineapple upside down cake shake.
 Southern Burger with Buffalo sweetbreads.
 Farmer Burger with onion rings.
Farmer Burger with Duck Confit nuggets.  
We got two farm burgers, one bacon cheese burger, and a southern burger (fried green tomato, pimento cheese ((foam?))), fried duck confit nuggets, onion rings, fries, buffalo sweetbread nuggets, a Krispy Kreme shake, Rice Krispy shake, Pineapple Upside Down Cake shake (with cake on the bottom and a pineapple ring on top), and a Nutella and Toasted Marshmallow shake.

 Our friend Charlie was gracious enough to indulge with us.  I think this expression sums up how we felt about this meal.

It was delicious and a lot of fun, but the overall verdict?  Farm Burger in Decatur has a better overall burger, though perhaps the "flipped" burgers @ Flip (made with nontraditional burger ingredients) are where the place shines.  The milkshakes were incredibly fun and inventive (also on the menu: Turtle shake, Key Lime Pie shake) but thinner than I like my milkshakes, while the nutella one was too rich to finish (a pro and a con).

However, it was a great place to take out-of-towners and townies who hadn't been yet (that includes us) but for a better burger and more relaxed atmosphere, I'll head to Farm Burger.