Months of planning and we're finally here! Our USA foodie adventure starts in New York and after a long flight and practically longer wait in customs, we get on the subway. Now I'm not blaming Steve but (I'm blaming Steve) his suggestion to get off at ...street was horrendously wrong and resulted in an hour long walk which doesn't sound bad but between us we were carrying 40kilos of luggage, on our backs, and it was 31°C....I'm sleeping on it..he may be forgiven.
Its a 7am start for us today because we're off to join a queue! (Sad british habit) however this queue is special as at the end of it, a Cronut awaits at the Dominique Ansel bakery. This months flavour, 'peach bourbon with lime zest sugar' looks fab and we're not at all embarrassed to say that we are willing to stand in line for an hour to buy this sexy, deep fried, pastry magic.
It turns out that 7am is just not early enough. I felt very sorry for the sweet staff member that had to come out and tell a line of 30 hungry people that all the Cronuts were sold out. It's not all bad news, 5 minutes later we walk out of the shop with a little bag of goodies. We chose a ( seriously gooey centred) flourless chocolate and pecan cookie and two DKA's (think caramel crusted crossiant dough with a soft syrupy centre)...... Screw you Cronut, I didnt want you anyway!!
Sitting at the end of side road, with seating for no more than 10 people is 'El Rey'. If 'Kofra' in Norwich hadn't recommended this place, there is no way we would've found it but I'm so glad we did. The kitchen is minuscule consisting of a small oven, a convection stove and a bowl of avocados. No food served until 11am so we had a couple of coffees which were deliciously dark and rich.
The first bite of my breakfast ( poached beets, yoghurt, granola, coconut and honey) was so frickin good that I was in shock and Steve thought the look on my face meant the food was a no go...no way! The truth is, it's just one of the best things I've ever eaten, the beets had been cooked in a bay and orange syrup so were lightly sweetened which went well with the thick, creamy unsweetened yoghurt, the granola was light and made mostly with seeds and the toasted flaked coconut topped off the dish, Steve enjoyed it just as much and we've vowed to make it as soon as we get the chance, on the side we also shared some homemade za'tar bread, served warm from the oven with a vibrant, herb oil dip.
Everything on the menu sounded deliciously intriguing and really well priced for New York, I'm sure any choice would've been a good one, but that beets dish rocked my world.
Prune was a recommendation from Darsham Nurseries in Suffolk. Thank you!! Dinner date done right. Set back from all the crowds of the city and with room for no more than 15-20 people, Gabrielle Hamilton and the rest of the team cook us up one hell of a good meal.
The menu reads real simple with dishes like 'Chicken leg with Chimichurri' & 'Charred Beef rib with anchovy butter'. But that's what this place is all about, they get the best from the small amount of ingredients they are using & nothing is over complicated. By doing this, the food produced is pretty hard to top. It's pricey but hey this is New York and this place is worth it.
Now being a fan of slow cooked meat, I chose the 'Beef short rib', the saltiness of the anchovy butter along with the rich, sweet meat was a hell of a match.
Georgia opted for the 'Halibut with spiced tomato broth', sweet from the ripened tomatoes and a little backround chilli heat work soo well and was a needed perk up (2:30am dinner in UK time)
We both had the cocoa cake with mint chocolate chip ice cream for dessert, the ice cream was only slightly sweetened so the mint really packed a punch, beautifully refreshing after the high temperatures in the city today, the cocoa cake was rich and dark and was polished off in record time, I will definitely be making this combination when we get home and it's making my mouth water thinking about it now as I sit on this train for 19 hours making our way slowly to Chicago for the next stop. Sadly our train food options were less well thought out as Georgia decided a bag of plums and red pepper from the glorious 'green farmers market' would be sufficient.......( stomach rumble).
See ya in Chicago, G & S xxx