Tag Archives: Cheese

Dime Piece

Real estate is all about location, location, location.  This is especially true for restaurants in New York.  I mean, midtown isn’t exactly known as the hub of great restaurants for New York City.  Probably because it’s made up of mediocre steakhouses and overpriced salads.   Looking for a great restaurant in midtown is as useless as finding meaning in a Pauly Shore movie.  Well not really, but you get my drift.  The great ones are few and far between, which is why I was surprised to find myself dining at a great midtown restaurant.  Tenpenny, located in the Gotham Hotel, was a refreshing breeze on a hot summer’s day, despite the fact that it is winter and the restaurant isn’t breezy at all.  But it was indeed a pleasant surprise.

Tenpenny is totally unassuming but has this innate charm that draws you in the way a loveable nerd can grab hold of your heart.  Except, there is really nothing uncool about this place.  The bright red wall in sea of distressed brick is pretty awesome.  But, you know this Foodie is obviously more concerned with the interior of menu then the décor.  So, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty.

We started with a plate of artisanal cheeses which were served with a generous dollop of fig jam and cranberry walnut bread.  I love cheese, so much so, that I am no longer lactose intolerant.  True Story.  And a plate full of cheese is as good as gold to me.  Forget flowers on Valentine’s Day, just get me cheese.  The cheeses varied in texture and flavor, but they all played wonderfully off the sweet fig jam.

When House Cured Bacon is listed as an appetizer, you order it.  Like if Landry Fields called me and asked me to hang out, I’d say yes.  You don’t question good things; you just go with them, which is exactly what I did.   This bacon was outrageous.  The savory bacon was intensified with the addition of soy, scallions and cinnamon.  It was served with nutmeg custard and toasted bread.  Did that just blow your mind? Imagine how your taste buds would feel.   That’s alright, you can take a minute to regain your composure before you continue…

In true winter food fashion, I also ordered the crostini with sweet potato and marshmallow.  Totally reminiscent of Thanksgiving.  But sometimes the classics are classics for a reason.  Let’s just say, you won’t find this dish on my Thanksgiving menu next year.

I know I’ve told you before, and I don’t want to get all senile on you, like weird Uncle Jack.  But I could eat a cheeseburger for the rest of my life and be a happy girl.  With that said, I’m a tough burger critic; don’t let the blonde hair and big smile fool you.  Although the Double Cheeseburger wasn’t the Burger at the Dutch, it was kind of great.  Not one, but two blended patties sit comfortably on a toasted potato bun, topped with tomato, provolone and homemade mayo.  I know, I didn’t think this meal could get better after the bacon either.  But it did.  The burgers were grilled perfectly and the sweet potato bun absorbed all of the drippy burger juices.  As if that wasn’t enough, it also came with homemade bbq chips.  Now, that’s what I’m talking about midtown.  Way to step up your game.

I sampled a good amount of the menu, and it just left me wanting more.  Although, I don’t know how much more I could have eaten.  There’s ways next time.  Til then, Tenpenny.

Tenpenny
16 East 46th Street
New York, NY
212.490.8300

Know of another stellar midtown restaurant? Comment below!

Fry-Day

I told you once about my Friday guilty pleasures, and how they usually involved some kind of fried hangover cure.  Well, today is no different.  I mean today is Friday, isn’t it? I am making a Bite-Sized declaration: Friday will now, and forever, be known as Fry-day.

I’m really a sucker for anything fried, but grilled cheese has a special place in my heart, obviously.  So, when I got an email that the Gorilla Cheese Truck was downstairs, I immediately made a mad dash for the door.  If that’s not a sign from the food gods, I don’t know what is.

At first, the name baffled me.  Why Gorilla? And then, it hit me…if you say Gorilla Cheese quickly it starts to sound like “Grilla Cheese” and that my friend is deliciously clever.  Oh the joys of being a blonde and not getting jokes right away.

One thing that never escapes this Bite-Sized Blonde is good food, and that’s exactly what I got at from the Gorilla Cheese Truck.  So many options.  I wanted them all, but my eyes really are bigger than my stomach.  And since I want to keep it that way, I kept my ordering to a minimum.  There was a bevy of sandwiches, and other fried specialities, to chose from, just like any other grilled cheese shop.  But what really caught my eye were the unique sauces and toppings to chose from.  So, I created my own sandwich.  Gruyere, Munster and Carmelized onions.  This little creation of mine was inspiried by french onion soup.  And it was seriously awesome.  So awesome in fact, that I think Gorilla Cheese Truck should put it on their menu full time.  I also think it should be called the Bite-Sized Banter.  Just sayin.

I couldn’t resist the Mac N Cheese bites.  These little triangular nibbles are nothing short indulgent.  I wonder how the mac n’ cheese stays creamy, while the outside is crispy? I guess I’ll just have to do a little more research on those.

So if you are in the need for something fried, because your brain is fried, then I suggest you also make a mad dash for the Gorilla Cheese Truck.  And if you order my signature sandwich, don’t forget to mention how you think it should be named for me.

Gorilla Cheese Truck
Moving Target

Feast Week – Day 2

As feast week continues, I bet you’re wondering what Bite-Sized recipes are headed your way today.   You know I love to keep you on your toes, so I’m switching up the order of things.  Watch out now!  Yesterday we did dessert, today we are starting back at the beginning.

The beginning for me is when my guests first arrive.  And since the football starts before the feast, I can’t expect my guests to be anything but early.  Good thing for this Bite-Sized Blonde, and my family, that basketball isn’t normally on Thanksgiving day.  Otherwise, we would all be eating Chinese takeout, lockout aside.

So, the eating starts early on Thursday and you betta believe I have something up my sleeve for an appetizer,  something that’s not lackluster like crudités, or too filling like devils on horseback.  While delicious, these little guys pack a deadly, and by deadly I mean filling punch from the combination of a little protein and fiber.  So, what’s left to serve?  Baked brie and crackers.  This sweet, salty and savory treat will leave my guests satisfied but not full, which is a very important, and thin line to be aware of on Thanksgiving.

Baked Brie is another one of those dishes that is impossibly easy.  There’s just so much to do on T-day, so much cooking, so much baking, so much eating, why make any more work for yourself than you already have?  I know I make a good point, which is why I make a good Baked Brie.

Ingredients
1 wheel of Brie (2 lbs)
1 cup of peach apricot preserves

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the cheese on the parchment paper and cover with the preserves.   Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes, or until the cheese looks like it’s softening.   Remove from the heat and let cool.  Once cool enough to handle, place the cheese on a plate and serve with crackers, veggies or nuts!

How easy was that? I know, totally awesomely easy.  Now, onto the next step, salad.   I know you are probably not expecting fireworks here.  Wait, who am I kidding?  I know you are expecting fireworks here, and here you have them.  This Autumnal Salad is a recipe inspired by a recipe by Chef April Bloomfield for New York Magazine.  One look at this salad, and I knew this is what I had to serve at Thanksgiving.  The colors scream fall and the flavors and textures will have your feathers flustered.

Autumnal Salad
Ingredients
2 packages of organic baby lettuce mix
20 ounces of butternut squash, peeled and chopped
1 cup of pomegranate seeds
1 cup of shaved parmesan cheese
1/2 cup of pine nuts
2 garlic cloves
1 lemon
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and Pepper

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Smash 2 garlic cloves with the flat side of your knife, then chop the garlic until it is very fine. Combine with olive oil and salt.  Place the butternut squash in the bowl and coat with the oil mixture. Put the butternut squash in a baking dish, drizzling any leftover oil over the squash and pop in the oven. Roast the squash until it is tender and slightly brown, about 30 minutes.  Allow to cool.

Lightly drizzle with 1 tbs. of olive oil and a splash of lemon, and place on platter. Put market greens in large bowl, and gently toss with salt, 2 tbs. of olive oil, and a squeeze of lemon. Sprinkle the greens in and around the butternut squash, and finish with a drizzle of balsamic, a hearty handful of pomegranate seeds, Parmesan shavings, and pine nuts.

This recipe was interpreted from a recipe by Chef April Bloomfield  which you can see by clicking HERE.

Also, there will be more recipes to relish at tomorrow, so come back and see me soon!