Dinner in the Tower of David

January 30, 2019

Chef Ido Zarmi cooked this gorgeous meal to welcome us to Jerusalem. The meal, which included seven different kinds of olive oil,  showcased local products. It began with this sabich of eggplant…

went on to a tartar of blue-stripe jack with creme fraiche tzatziki

fish and chips….

that salad up above, and then this “shish-brack” of striped bass with yogurt and za’atar

olive oil poached Spanish mackerel

goats milk panna cotta,

and finished with a selection of Ika’s chocolates which are, bar none, the finest chocolates I’ve ever tasted.



As Requested

January 20, 2019

Somebody reached out to me on Instagram to ask where he might find a copy of the wonderful article David Halberstam wrote for us at Gourmet in 2006.

So I thought I would post it here.



A Delicious Little Morsel

January 7, 2019

It’s an R month.  Which to me, at least, means lots of oysters.

Ordered a hundred over Christmas (they live a good ten days in the refrigerator, covered with a damp towel).  At the end, when we’d had our fill of oysters on the half shell, I fried the last of them.

So good!

Fried Oysters

Shopping list: 1 pint oysters, 1 pint buttermilk, 2 cups cornmeal

Staples: flour, salt, oil.

Carefully drain the oysters, and put them in 2 cups of buttermilk for about 10 minutes.

Line a baking sheet with waxed paper or a silpat pad. Mix 2 cups of cornmeal with 2 cups of flour and a teaspoon of salt.  Pick up each oyster, shake it a bit, allowing the buttermilk to drip off before plunking it into the cornmeal mixture; toss it about so it’s coated on all sides and place it on the lined baking sheet. Do it with the next oyster, and the next….

In a deep pot heat at least 2 inches of oil until it registers 375 on a thermometer. Pick up an oyster, shake it to remove excess breading and plunk it into the oil. Fry for about a minute and a half until just golden, then remove with a slotted spoon and set on paper towels to drain. You should be able to fry 6 to 8 oysters at a time.  Bring oil back to 375 before adding a new batch. 

Sprinkle with salt and serve with plenty of fresh lemons.  Some people like tartar sauce or remoulade with their oysters, but I think that masks the delicate flavor. 

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