Saturday, October 13, 2012

room for all


staying north for the winter

Here’s the trouble with roasting a duck. When the breast is roasted pale and perfect, the legs are still rubbery raw. When the legs are moist and perfectly done, the breast has cooked to leather.

Fortunately the WesternBEEF offers a very good duck at only $2.99 a pound and Julia Child has figured the cooking out. Usually these recipe’s are mine. This one is hers. It works better than anything I’ve tried.

Put a rack or support in the bottom of a tightly lidded casserole.

Defrost your duck, empty and wash it, pat it dry and put it breast up in the casserole pot and rub the whole bird with lemon.

Salt and pepper the interior and add a bunch of fresh thyme and an inch or so of clean, cold water. 

Cover it, fire it up and bubble it for 30 minutes.

While it’s bubbling, chop up some carrot, celery and onion, saving all the peels. And open a bottle of red.

After half an hour, lift out and drain the duck, preserving that precious liquid. Strain the liquid and set it aside and preheat your oven to 325.

Now the duck goes back in this time breast side down and covered with the vegetables.

Pour in the wine, replace the lid and put it in the preheated oven to braise.

Let it braise for another 30 minutes in the oven.

Now it gets easy. 

Turn the oven up to 375, lift out and drain the duck again, strain the wine and add it to the stock you strained earlier, and put the liquids in the fridge. Place the duck breast-side up on a rack and brown it crispy and insanely good in the oven, about another half hour, maybe 40 minutes.

Oh wow, it’s perfect, can you smell that?

Eat it, saving every bone! At some point boil the bones and all the duck scraps and gizzards and stuff, the carrot peelings and the onion and celery cut-offs you saved in the wine-stock for 30 minutes or so, then strain that one last time and refrigerate that luscious liquid. It will look something like this.

When it congeals, take the fat layer off and freeze the stock. We’ll use it later this winter when these guys are out of town.

Don't even think about it. ;-)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012

DJ style

Be part of history as The Clock Bar presents the first installment of our Live Music Series featuring local performing artists.  This Friday come kick off the weekend with The Clock Bar!  

Join us for Teacher Appreciation Happy Hour with great drink specials, including the "Yo Miss Mind Bender," $4 Coronas and Spatens, $6 Well Drinks, $8 Double Berry Martinis.

Then stick around for an 80s freestyle and house dance party hosted by The Clock Bar with the DJ style of DJ Cindy!  Great drink and food specials all night long!

We look forward to seeing you here!

112 Lincoln Ave.
Bronx, NY 10454
(718) 684-2338


The Clash

There’s a rail yard not far from here called OakPoint.

As the south Bronx gentrifies to residential use, this heavy industrial sets up a clash of coexistence. 

I wanted to see these trains working up close.

The sign at the top of the driveway threatens legal action for trespass, but that’s never stopped me before.

OakPoint handles the traffic for the HuntsPoint Market.

It also directs the traffic that crosses the Hellsgate Bridge to Long Island.

And it sends those mournful trains we hear at night along the Harlem River. 

I look forward to those sounds at 2am, but my visit to this railyard was not rewarded.

It was quiet except for the hum of the Bruckner Expressway.

Ranked number 298 on Rolling Stone’s list of the Five Hundred Greatest songs of all time.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

with a catchy beat

After visiting America in the 1830’s, French political philosopher Alexis De Tocqueville wrote a book he called “Democracy in America.” 

In it he made note of our obsessive self-interest and in money, and how that leads to a disinterest in future generations.

Most enduring is his warning: 
“In democracy we get the government we deserve.”

Eclectic Method, a Brooklyn-based mashup team summed up the first Presidential debate and Tocqueville’s observation in just two minutes. 

We deserve this because we accept it. ugh.

Change we can believe in.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

for peat sake

My favorite bottle of scotch is called Lagavulin 16.

I've shopped it here and in other American cities and in two different scotch rooms in London.

It’s usually about eighty bucks, sometimes a little more.

The pro tasters say things like:
 “Peat so thick you could stand a spoon in it.”

I think it tastes like bacon that's been stored in a wet, alcoholic fireplace.

It’s delicious, and expensive in Japan.

But so worth it.