"It's not much but it's ours"

Monday, September 18, 2006


Despite my finger wagging lecture about the New Yorker’s use of hyperbole, there are truly some things about this city that I love to bits.

Running is one of them. I can think of few cities where I enjoy my run quite as much as I do when I am jogging at my own serene pace through NY. Yesterday, trying to get some miles under my belt, all the way from my hotel, down to The Hudson and then all the way down to Pier A before turning around and wearily retracing my steps all the while cursing that 5oz martini I glugged down the night before.

It took quite a bit out of me and so, after a bit of shoppage I slunk back to the hotel to have a kip. Unfortunately, the 20,000 Mexicans standing directly below my window and cheering on the Mexico Day parade felt differently and I got scant rest. I do, however, know all the words to La Cucaracha

Fortunately, my supper was in the company of some of my dearest chums who would, I know, understand if I was less than my scintillating, fabulous self.

Cathy is one of my very best chums, one of the “special ones” When my beloved mum was dying, I was stuck in Washington Airport and miles from my family. Cathy, by virtue of the internet swaddled me in, to quote, her “Jewish grandmotherly vibe” It is not overstating the fact to say she helped me make it home and I shall never forget that.

I make a point of seeing her at least once on every visit and we have had some memorable days cooking and evenings enjoying the fruits of our labours in the company of some very agreeable people.

I was doubly blessed last night as two of the most agreeable, Sandy & Alan, were also in attendance.

Last night though, Cathy was in charge and was trying to prove to me that the US can produce good lamb. It is a strange thing in such a huge country but lamb and its preparation seems to be something that is almost totally alien to our American chums and the few times I have tried it ( usually dreadful stuff from Colorado ) it has been about as tasteful as red fitted carpets.

Well, I am delighted to say that, last night, Cathy proved that you can get excellent lamb here ( from Three Corner Field Farm, I believe ) and the rolled leg she prepared in her Big Green Egg smoker thingy was worth the traipse to the Upper West Side. Perfectly prepared and pink inside it sat well alongside a worringly healthy bean salad, some microscopic roasted onions and potatoes and a staggeringly good Romesco sauce.

Before supper, we had chilled out in Cathy’s outside space and drank Cava laced with a sublime guinolet (sp?) which Sandy had made by some process that sounded tougher than making gold out of lead. Well worth all her effort though and we downed quite a lot of it too.

So, shock horror. The US can produce good lamb. Unfortunately, it still seems to be beyond the scope of 90% of the restaurants in the country and, even when it is on menus it should come with a warning that reads “ beware, may taste like crap”

If you want good lamb, I suggest you head round to Cathy’s. She must have have been British in a former life.
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Monday, September 18, 2006 8:36:00 pm  
Blogger Unknown said...

Nectarine "guignolet"

Simmer 1 1/2 pounds of sliced nectarines (or peaches) and 1 1/2 cups of sugar in a bottle of Alsatian riesling, for five minutes. After it cools a bit, add 1/2 of dark rum. Transfer to a covered jar for two days. Keep it in a cool, dark spot. Strain the liquid into a bottle that can be closed tightly and store in the refrigerator. The fruit can be eaten on its own or as an accompaniment to ice cream or other dessert.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006 2:44:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Simon, you are a lucky man indeed. Having spent time with all of your dining companions this summer, I know youe were in great company.

Sounds like a super fun evening.


Tuesday, September 19, 2006 9:08:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hermano 2 knows he's one of my favorite dinner guests, and not just because he brings good wine!

Here's to many more such evenings, my friend.

Thursday, September 21, 2006 4:20:00 pm  

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