Top 10 ES Posts of 2010

Endless thanks to everyone who spent part of their year simmering with us. Before you pop the bubbly, relive 2010 with our top 10 most read posts of the year.

10. The Cutest Eater in the World Contest

cute kids eating

You would not believe how many times parents will return to a snarky food blog just to tell the world how much cuter their kid is than every other kid.

9. NYC Tour De Poutine

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We recommend every eater completes this tour once, and only once.

8. Mudslide Cupcakes

Mudslide-Cupcake

You ESers are a sucker for anything with “chocolate” and “cocktail” in the same sentence.

7. 100 Ways to Cook a Sweet Potato

sweet potatoes

They’re not just for Thanksgiving anymore.

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Gridiron Grub: In the Pocket

Rendell

Well the holidays are over and the east coast is in the process of clearing out from the first significant snowstorm of the year. Because of this snowmageddon/snowpocalypse, or whatever else weatherman say to get us to stay tuned in, my beloved Eagles moved their game from Sunday to Tuesday night.

It is a move that did not go over well. Even Gov. Ed Rendell came out and called America a nation of wusses. To be fair this is the same man who years ago admitted that when he was a Philadelphia-based district attorney he offered cash to anyone who could reach the field with a snowball. Despite the snow being cleared, the Iggles must not have been told that they were supposed to play Tuesday night because they barely showed up. Their lackluster effort ensured that the high point of the night would be the pierogi we had thawed out for dinner.

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Leftovers Week: Laundry Room Turkey Coconut Curry Soup

laundry room turkey coconut curry soup

Luckily for my family there was a culinary student chef in the room when it came time to carve the Christmas turkey. And there I was, carving a turkey with tongs in my great aunt’s laundry room amid detergent and dryer sheets. The turkey, which had been cooking for what looked like days, sat in a roaster placed on top of the washing machine. The turkey cooked for so long in fact, that the meat just fell off of the carcass. Yes, this happened. Bless my great aunt who does all of this on her own and refuses anyone’s help. Even a chef’s. Ah, the stubborn Czech.

After the Christmas turkey had been “carved,” green bean casserole consumed, and stomachs bulged over belts, the leftovers were put in doggie bags for us to take home.  What to do with this uber-cooked turkey? Well, soup of course.

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Ruth Bourdain is Your Eater of the Year

ruth bourdain

Despite a late surge to second place by the Michelin Man, Ruth Bourdain is your overwhelming choice for 2010 Eater of the Year, locking up the title with a full 50.12% of reader votes.

Congrats to RuBo — we look forward to eating more with you in 2011.

What to Drink on New Year's Eve? Make it Rare

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We”re not usually huge wine snobs here at ES, but New Year”s Eve is that one night when you can”t show up to the party with a jug of Carlo Rossi and expect everyone to cheer. And sometimes even Champagne in a can isn”t enough to impress. So we”ve asked a genuine vino expert to share some tips on how to kick your NYE wine selection up just a little bit.

I recently stumbled across MCF Rare Wine, Ltd., a bespoke wine shop in Manhattan”s West Village offering a carefully chosen collection of wines and an unapologetic attitude that emphasizes old-fashioned customer service and honesty. You won’t find a bottle of Sutter Home or Yellow Tail here, nor the obligatory hard liquor mini-bottles for your next flight. What you will witness is owner Matt Franco researching the next great find, unpacking a delivery, printing shelf labels, sweeping the front stoop—and if you’re really lucky—offering his soft-spoken but decidedly opinionated take on any of the eighty or so wines that adorn the tiny shop. Matt offers ES-ers an inside track for that perfect New Year’s bottle that will ensure 2011 is a year to remember:

ES: Last year everyone recognized my cheap bottle of Prosecco, in spite of the foil bag and curly ribbon. Their reaction—“Oh, I’ve had that before (sigh).” Thoughts for a special bubbly that won’t break the bank?
MCF: Domaine Taille aux Loups Montlouis Petillant “Triple Zero” NV $25
Winemaker Jacky Blot does some amazing stuff in the Loire Valley in France and this is one of his most interesting creations. Made from fully ripe Chenin Blanc grapes, the “Triple Zero” refers to the fact that there is no sugar added at any of the three traditional times during production. Crisp, aromatic and expressive, this is more interesting than Prosecco and more wallet-friendly than Champagne.

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Leftovers Week: Roast Chicken Pot Pie

HerbedRoastedChicken

As regular readers of ES might know I have difficulty pleasing my BF — in the kitchen. One of the food items that doesn’t sit well with MrsBritannia is dark meat, and I have to be honest it doesn’t sit well with me either, especially on the bone, unless it comes in a basket sitting on a bar with a beer.

The day after Christmas, at least in the U.K. and many parts of the Commonwealth, is known as Boxing Day, a Victorian-era tradition when the wealthy would provide gifts and leftovers to their servants, so they could enjoy a day off for the holidays themselves.  I was brunching across town on Christmas, so I didn’t have any leftovers the next day (fortunately I didn’t have any hired help to disappoint, either). So for Boxing Day dinner we decided to make a roasted chicken and vegetables. As most of our friends were recovering from Christmas themselves it was just the two of us, which made for plenty of post-Boxing Day leftovers, including dark meat. I put out a call for what to do with the meat and I was given a couple of good suggestions, including chicken croquettes and a pastel de choclo. But I played it safe and went with chicken pot pie.

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Burns My Bacon: Cold Lettuce on Warm Sandwiches

fried egg hoagie

Exhibit A: Fried egg and provolone cheese hoagie with tomato, onions and…iceberg lettuce from Atlantic City’s White House Sub Shop.

Hot sandwiches should contain only ingredients that can taste good while hot or when turning limp from the warmth. I think spinach, arugula or a mesclun mix works well in warm sandwiches because they maintain their dignity when wilted. Iceberg lettuce, however, just turns soggy and gross. Iceberg lettuce is used for crunch and crunch alone.

There’s no real flavor living in those leaves, so when you put iceberg lettuce in a warm sandwich that dissolves its crunch, it leaves the lettuce totally useless. Iceberg then only takes up space which could otherwise be filled with warm sandwich-friendly ingredients, such as roasted red peppers, mushrooms and pickles.

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