NYC: A Six-Course Tea Dinner

I was cleaning through my photo archives this afternoon, trying to figure out how to best organize everything (by date, location?) when I found photos from dinner at In Pursuit of Tea. The six-course tea dinner was one-time event cooked by the French Culinary Institute’s chef-instructor, Melanie Franks. It took place in Feburary and I mentioned purchasing the dinner tickets in this post. Guess I never got around to posting the photos!

A bit delayed but better late than never :)

The dinner was a eye-opener that introduced us to different ways of using tea to cook. Each course featured tea as a key ingredient. And it wasn’t just your normal tea eggs or tea-infused sweets, but crazy awesome things like fried fresh tea leaves, tea tapioca, tea pastas and puff pastries, butter tea broth and so much more. I just received my copy of Culinary Tea in the mail, so between dinner photos and that cookbook, I have a feeling there’s will be lots of cooking with tea posts coming soon.

Tea Leaf Tempura – Honey Tempura Batter and Fresh Hawaiian Tea Leaves

Tea-Cured Trout with Tea-Smoked Yogurt, Oranges, Olives, and Garlic Chips

Almond Soup with Jasmine Pearls Tapioca, Sauteed Pears, Salsify, Fresh Pansy Flowers and Basil Oil

Goat Cheese and Matcha Puff Pastry, Arugula and Sunflower Sprouts, Kumquats, and Sencha Dressing

Small tea tasting between some of the courses – pictured above is Sencha

Hojicha Pasta with Egg and Butter-Tea Broth – Parmigiano, Mascarpone, Heirloom Carrots, Potatoes, and Cippolini Onions

Baochong Oolong Sorbet with Lime and Lemon Zest

Lemon Tart with Candied Keemun Tea Leaves and Clotted Cream Ice Cream

NYC: Breakfast and Lunch, No Brunch

Never one to skip a meal, I love breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But not brunch.

When we eat out on the weekends at “brunch time,” I’ll do anything to steer us towards non-brunchy restaurants, away from crowds of people and crazy wait times. High and reliable on my non-brunchy (is that even a word? ;) list are places like Pylos and L’Artusi. Rarely a wait. In fact, they’re often empty at brunch because not many people know they’re open.

The brunch menu at Pylos is the same as the weekday lunch menu, and L’Artusi offers a selection of the dinner pastas, like a garganelli mushroom ragu as well as this hanger steak at brunch. That’s the sort of stuff I love. You also can’t go wrong with the “L’Artusi breakfast.” Two eggs, roasted mushrooms, crispy potatoes, sausage, pancetta, roasted tomato, and toast. Get the eggs sunny side up, salt and pepper, pop the yolk with the toast and soak it clean. Happy Sunday :)

228 West 10th Street
New York, NY 10014
(212) 255-5757

Sugar Rush’ed…

…for the week at Serious Eats

Sugar Rush: Ice Cream at Je & Jo

A Sandwich a Day: Meatball Melt at Murray’s Cheese

Best Spots for Fresh Watermelon Juice in NYC

Sugar Rush: Oatmeal Pancakes at L’Artusi

Sweet Finds: Chubby Wubby by Chocolate Gourmet

NYC’s Top 10 Ice Cream Sandwiches

Sugar Rush: Strawberry Roule at François Payard Bakery

Cool Drinks, NY: Green Lemonade at Lafayette Espresso Bar

Sweet Finds: Euforia’s Thousand-Layer Cakes

Sugar Rush: Sheep Station’s Sticky Toffee Pudding

Sugar Rush: Acai Cup at O Cafe

Le Palais des Thés: Bruit de Palais

The most enjoyable part of packing for vacation (for me at least ;), is planning what reading material to bring for the flight and down time on the trip itself. For our visit to China in June I had Danny Meyer’s Setting the Table and Guy Kawasaki’s Enchantment tucked in the suitcase. Both proved to be great learning tools.

But for Paris and Alsace next week I have a few issues of Bruit de Palais, a in-house magazine from Le Palais des Thés. Once you purchase €80 of their teas in a calender year, you become part of the loyalty program. The program involves discounts on future purchase, gifts, and some pretty neat exclusive offers. But the coolest part…

…are these monthly magazines. It’s the type of magazine I would eagerly buy off the newsstands if only they were sold there. Each issue has a theme, focusing just as much on teaware as tea itself.

Think stories on Japanese cast-iron tea pots or linking tea and Chinese ceramics. Think tea recipes – ideas on how to incorporate tea into everyday cooking, and degustation and brewing notes on selection teas, both pure and blends.

Equal parts history, eye-candy, and research, I keep all the magazines on my bookshelf. The thick matte pages are too gorgeous to throw out! Understandably, there’s a bit of product promotion, but done so in a way that makes it not pushy but informative.

As a bonus, they’re super light, so that just means I can pack more reading material into my suitcase ;)