What is the best pizza in New Jersey? This post ends my New Jersey pizza tour, where I tried eight popular New Jersey pizzerias. I tried Trenton-style tomato pies, bar-style pizza, coal-fired pizza and classic-style pizza. My friend thinks that Star Tavern in Orange was the best, delicious and unique. I agree, but I also think it’s a tie with Brooklyn’s Coal-Burning Brick-Oven Pizza in Hackensack. But you can’t go wrong at any of these pizzerias. Most are family-owned businesses, many started by Italian immigrants. Kudos to them for keeping these businesses open in the ever-increasing corporate culture we have going on in America now. There are pizzerias in Italy that date back a couple of hundred years, so should there be here in America. Long live apizz’, long live the Jersey bar pizza, long live the Trenton tomato pie, long live coal-fired pizza, and long live the classic American slice.
Tie: Star Tavern in Orange, NJ, and Brooklyn’s Coal-Burning Brick-Oven Pizza in Hackensack, NJ.
I just want to add one thing since I posted this. There was only one pizzeria that I visited that had an excellent-tasting, traditional, old-world dough. That is Papa’s Tomato Pies in Robbinsville, NJ. They know how to make pizza dough. For my taste, it was thinner than I like it, but it was a great example of how pizza dough should taste. In my book, dough is the hardest component of pizza to master. Papa’s masters it.
Stay tuned: The next two weeks, I look for the best ice cream in New Jersey.
Posted in America, Ice Cream, Italian, Pizza, Restaurant
Tagged best ice cream in New Jersey, best ice cream in NJ, best pizza in New Jersey, best pizza in NJ, ice cream, New Jersey, New Jersey pizza, NJ, NJ pizza, pizza
Haagen-Dazs is giving away a free cone on Free Cone Day May 13 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Click here to check for participating shops.
For Thanksgiving dessert, we always have the usual suspect pies–pecan, pumpkin, apple and sweet potato. This year, I wanted something different, so I made ice cream. I made a pumpkin pie ice cream following this Cuisinart pumpkin pie ice cream recipe. In addition, I was going to make a sweet potato pie with my North Carolina sweet potatoes but opted to make sweet potato ice cream. Now, this recipe made a more liquidy ice cream, so for the sweet potato ice cream, I put less whole milk. Also, the sweet potato had a thicker consistency than the pumpkin puree, so it also helped to thicken the ice cream. This ice cream has a starchy mouthfeel similar to taro ice cream, so if you like that, you will like this. I did!
Sweet Potato Ice Cream
2 large sweet potatoes, mashed
1 cup whole milk
2 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
Wash and peel potatoes. Prick potatoes with a fork and microwave for 20 minutes. In the bowl of a mixer, mash potatoes. Then add milk, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and cream. Mix well and add to ice cream freezer. Follow ice cream freezer directions. It took about 30 minutes of churning.
Posted in Holiday, Ice Cream, North Carolina
Tagged Cuisinart, ice cream, North Carolina, pumpkin, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin pie ice cream, sweet potato, sweet potato ice cream, Thanksgiving
New Yorkers are known for their takeout. Seamless makes it seamless, and I’m a big fan. On a given night, I have over 400 restaurants to choose from in my neighborhood. At this point, I’ve memorized my choices, and I’ve read the ratings. I have favorites that I order from repeatedly. This is how spoiled I am with takeout: I’d like to move to a new neighborhood just to have some new restaurants to choose from.
So my top 5 cuisines on Seamless are: Japanese/sushi, healthy, ice cream/desserts, Italian and Turkish. This isn’t surprising because in New York, takeout is something you eat more regularly, and I eat healthy on a regular basis. So I order sushi and health foods. I have a favorite sushi place to order from: Ageha Sushi. I also have favorite rolls at Kodama and Ocha. Kodama has this roll called red-eye with salmon, red pepper and cream cheese that is great. Ocha has the winter roll that’s all yummy veggies like snow peas and baby corn. I like the clean food from Fuel, and I often get grilled chicken and a sweet potato. My favorite place to order dessert is Crepe Cafe Joli. I don’t know what the frozen treat is made of but it’s low-fat and low carb and it’s delish. I’m into the pumpkin right now, but I also like marshmallow. When I’m in the mood for a turkey burger with sweet potato fries (and sometimes a milkshake), I order from Lucky’s.
So here’s my top 5 Seamless delivery restaurants (in order of how often I ordered from them and a dish I like from them):
1. Ageha Sushi (sweet potato roll)
2. Fuel (grilled chicken and sweet potato and juices)
3. Crepe Café Joli (pumpkin and marshmallow frozen treat)
4. Lucky’s (turkey burger and sweet potato fries)
5. Kodama Sushi/Holey Cream (red-eye roll/midnight cookies and cream ice cream)
I recently went to Rosa Mexicano for dinner. Yes, the ice cream festival drew me in. My friend and I started with Rosa Mexicano’s freshly made guacamole of avocado, jalapeno, tomato, onion and cilantro.
My friend got the cheese enchiladas made with Chihuahua cheese in corn tortillas topped with Mexican roasted tomato sauce. She liked it very much.
I got the enchiladas suizas. The homemade corn tortillas have a grainy texture and fresh corn flavor. The creamy, slightly mustardy sauce was very good.
Our enchiladas came with rice and refried black beans, different from the traditional refried beans at most Mexican restaurants. I prefer black beans, so I liked them.
And of course, the ice cream. From left to right: plantain and peanut butter, honey-amaranth crunch and sweet cream with shaved Mexican chocolate and cajeta swirl. If you are a peanut butter lover, the plantain and peanut butter is very peanut-buttery. The sweet cream was a bit disappointing, as it sounded so flavorful with chocolate and cajeta, but it fell flat for me. My favorite was the honey-amaranth crunch, creamy and sweet with a little bit of crunch. I want to return to try the raspado and also the alegria ice cream sundae.
Today was a gorgeous day to be out and about, so I went to the Brooklyn Flea’s Ice Cream Bonanza in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. I sampled ice cream from many vendors: honey lavender from Luca & Bosco, salted caramel from Fort Grace, Thai from Odd Fellows, mole from La Newyorkina, banana whama and coconut key lime from Phin & Phebes, Old Bay corn from The Bent Spoon and sweet as honey and ooey gooey butter cake from Ample Hills. My favorite was the ooey gooey butter cake from Ample Hills. This was seriously delicious ice cream!
Posted in Brooklyn, Ice Cream, Local, New York
Tagged Ample Hills, Brooklyn, Brooklyn Flea, Fort Grace, ice cream, Ice Cream Bonanza, La Newyorkina, Luca & Bosco, Odd Fellows, ooey gooey butter cake, Phin & Phebes, The Bent Spoon
I went to Paper magazine’s Super Duper Market in Nolita today. The second annual pop-up shop features food vendors from New York and across the country. My favorite yummy ice cream Humphry Slocombe from San Francisco was there again, and of course, I got secret breakfast again. I swear this is soooo good!
There were a lot of interesting food vendors with anything from jams, salsa, ice cream, popcorn, pies and pickles to blintzes. I got a taste of a maple bacon corn bread at Jack’s Chedbred. This was out-of-this-world good, and I want to try other flavors.
Jack (on right) of Jack’s Chedbred
I also got a free Super Duper Market/American Express tote bag and a strawberry fruit strip and a box of raisins from Target. Tomorrow is the final day of the market, so be sure to check it out.
National Ice Cream Month is nearly over, so I’m featuring spumoni. I have a memory of the best spumoni at Villabate Bakery in Brooklyn (before it became Villabate Alba). Where better to try spumoni than at L&B Spumoni Gardens in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. L&B is a pizzeria that sells spumoni and ices as well. It’s still owned by the same family as the original owner. There are outdoor tables outside, and you can walk up to the window and either order pizza or spumoni/ices. On my visit, I got both. I saw a lot of people with plastic cups of the signature spumoni with its distinctive green, brown and yellow color representing pistachio, chocolate and vanilla. So I got one too while my friend got plain vanilla. While it was a smooth treat, I prefer my spumoni with pink cherry in it. Also, I prefer the lemon ice at L&B to the spumoni.
The second spumoni I sampled was at the recent Giglio Festival in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, from an Uncle Louie G’s stand. It had the same vanilla, chocolate and pistachio in yellow, brown and green. However, it was smoother than L&B and had more flavor. I really enjoyed this one.
Posted in Gelato, Ice Cream, Italian, New York
Tagged Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, cherry, chocolate, Giglio Festival, ice cream, L&B Spumoni Gardens, lemon ice, National Ice Cream Month, pistachio, spumoni, Uncle Louie G's, vanilla, Villabate, Williamsburg