Fathers Day

michaelfrank.jpg If lonely J. Alfred Prufrock measured out his life in coffee spoons, for me, the measure has been in roasting, sautéing, and grilling, making meals for my family. As a parent, what your kids really think about you, is pretty much a mystery.

On my most recent birthday my sons, Frank (23) and Michael (17), decided I didn't need another pot or a kitchen gadget, because I pretty much have every kitchen tool imaginable. They decided instead to write me a memory about my cooking.

From Michael:
Every Thursday night when I was younger, doing homework, I would wait in my room for my dad to come home. He would bring home a whole chicken that he would marinate with rosemary and olive oil. My brother and I could tell when he put the chicken into the oven, because it made the whole house smell amazing.

Read more ...

alex.jpg Everyone knows that the first thing a father teaches his son is how to roast a goose for Christmas.  Especially in a secular Jewish family.  But on Father’s Day, there’s nothing more American than Dad, stir-fried duck and Boggle. 

I don't have a middle name, and at the age of 24, it seemed time to get one.  We decided on "Danger," and went out and bought a propane fryer.  We gave thanks for deep-fried turkey, and for our remaining digits. 

But even though turkey bubbling in 350°F oil is exciting, nothing beats checking Sunday night's roast chicken for the 18th time.  Mom taught me that a watched pot never boils, but Dad taught me that a whole chicken, regardless of preparation, size or start time, cannot be finished before 9PM.

Read more ...

shermanfamily.jpg We never really celebrated Father’s Day, perhaps, because, as the saying goes, every day was something akin to Father’s Day.  My Dad was both a simple and extraordinary man who enjoyed a good meal, a great ball game, and being with his family.  He was happiest when we were all home in our small upper west side apartment, doing whatever together.

There wasn’t a Sunday morning that passed when I didn’t wake up to the warm fresh smells of H&H bagels and fresh Zabar’s stacked up on the kitchen table. Although it was barely 9 am, my dad had already been to the City Athletic Club for a workout, a steam, and then back uptown to purchase the raw materials for breakfast.

Read more ...

porkbelly.jpgSo what to cook for Father’s Day? Pork belly sliders have been all the rage for the last few years. Made über popular by food dude David Chang of Momofuko fame, this dish has popped up on menus throughout the US. And we know the French and the Germans also love their various preparations of this cherished cut of swine. However, truth be told, this deliciously rich delectable treat has been cooked in China for eons.

But certain restaurants exploit the average human being’s addiction to fatty pork – you know which ones I’m talking about – these joints know their patrons can’t get enough of that heavenly mix of tangy sweet fatty meat all sauced up in basically a fancy hamburger roll, so they price these little ditties as if they were serving Kobe beef (even though belly is rarely more than 3 bucks a pound, if that.)

Read more ...

ribs1Sure it's a cliche, but one you can hang your hat on: most guys like meat.

On any other Sunday, you'd probably find dad in front of the grill, doing damage to burgers, dogs, shrimp and steak. With red hot mesquite or briquets supplying the fuel, dad happily flips his victims until he's got caramelization underway and char marks in all the right places.

But not this Sunday. Oh, no.  This is Father's Day when everyone else should be rolling up their sleeves and doing due diligence in pursuit of dad's favorite food.

What's special about this day is that dad can rest. Drinks and food will be laid on the table without any effort on his part.

As a dad, myself, I enjoy this day. My sons, Michael and Franklin, are very good cooks. They grill and saute with the best of them and, like their dad, they fill the table with lots of choices.

Read more ...