April 4, 2016 |
After six months in Lima, the oddities of the Peruvian capital no longer fazed me: the cacophony of the car horns and alarms, the colorful micros teetering maddeningly along the congested streets, the persistence of the gray skies and misty mornings. I invited my parents to visit because I wanted them to experience firsthand the Lima I had come to love and hoped they would approve of my decision to live there. They came in late March, at the end of summer, when Lima is bathed in generous hours of sunshine.
February 8, 2013 |
Different tastes in movies? Good couples learn to disagree. Can't stand each other's music? That's what headphones are for. But if you two can't come together around common flavors at the dinner table - especially for a special meal - there's gonna be trouble in Romanceville. The pressure of Valentine's Day doesn't help, and I normally shy away from crowded restaurants in favor of something more intimate at home. But lately, a rising trend in "dishes for two" at local eateries has caught my eye as potential relationship-building material, not just on Feb. 14 but at any time of year.
August 30, 2012
Excerpts from Craig LaBan's online chat. Craig LaBan: Good afternoon, my hungry friends, and welcome to the summer's-just-about-done Philly food chat! Summer's done for me, now that I'm back from a great season of travels, the final leg being a loop through New England. We had great meals almost everywhere we went. In Providence, R.I., we had grilled corn pizza and wood-roasted eggplant parmesan at the classic Al Forno, and amazing mac 'n' cheese alongside house-made charcuterie (kimchi sausage)
September 2, 2010
With a nod to the Korean taco craze, Haru Sushi (241-243 Chestnut St., 215-861-8990) has come up with its Trio of Fish Tacos for $12. Do tuna, salmon and fluke sashimi with avocado and a cherry tomato and shallot salsa, drizzled with a yuzu apple ceviche sauce. The Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and Philly Fringe, tomorrow through Sept. 18, feed the mind and soul with new-edge performance art. Help the annual event feed its coffers at Feastival, a culinary benefit to be held from 6-9 p.m. Sept.
July 25, 2010 |
When the economy came crashing down in 2009, it brought Kim and Edgar Alvarez's crab cakes with them - at least for a moment. Those cakes were among the signature items at the couple's former prepared foods store, the Delaware Market House in Gladwyne. But once the recession prompted enough Main Liners to start cooking more for themselves, the Alvarez' business, which thrived on small pleasures like fresh chicken salad and sirloin broil, suddenly went "completely off the deep end," says Kim. It was a sorry moment for Gladwyne take-out addicts, perhaps, but has turned into a boon for Mount Airy, where the resilient Alvarezes have resurfaced with Avenida, a Latin-inspired neighborhood restaurant well-cast for a neighborhood that can use all the good flavors it can muster.
May 13, 2010 |
Complete with a fireplace mantel perfect for some kind of trophy, the Moorestown house of Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb has hit the market. The former Eagle is asking $2.5 million for the four-bedroom, four-bath with 4,730 square feet of living space on a nearly 11-acre lot featuring lakes and waterfalls. The indoor pool was recently renovated, according to the listing. McNabb's trust paid $1.75 million for it in 2001, according to Burlington County records. The family's main residence is in Arizona.
April 22, 2010
If you want to know why the Peruvian roast chicken called "pollo a la brasa" is so renowned, it's worth a trip to Northeast Philly where the no-frills El Balconcito I at E. Godfrey and Tabor offers a convincing rendition. Owner Rayda Zianderas (who recently opened a second location at 7326 E. Castor) marinates her birds overnight in a garlicky brew of vinegar and Cusqueña beer seasoned with oregano and rosemary. After two hours on the rotisserie, it becomes deeply browned, intensely flavored, and sublimely tender.
April 16, 2009 |
THE LATEST thing in Latino cooking is a little less Latino. The growing political and cultural clout of American Hispanics has infused the collective American dinner plate with the flavors of the Latino kitchen. And it turns out that culinary cultural exchange goes in both directions. As Hispanic communities have grown and increasingly rubbed elbows with neighbors, the American Latino kitchen has changed, too, adopting more of the flavors and ingredients of other cuisines, according to Daisy Martinez, of Food Network's "Viva Daisy!"
March 1, 2009 |
If you are craving predictability on the restaurant row (Eastern Division) that is the 700 block of Chestnut Street, you might want to walk right on past Chifa, the newest Jose Garces contender: The prime steaks are next door at the vaulted-ceilinged Union Trust; the comfort food is at Jones across the street, where "Thanksgiving Dinner," should you have missed it (or have an off-season hankering for it), is on the menu every night. At the Peruvian-Chinese hybrid called Chifa you will find, instead, bowls of chaufa rice, a stir-fry dotted with chorizo and topped with sweetly tender soy-glazed scallops, and diminutive ceviches far more complex (and the flavors far more balanced)
July 4, 2004 |
When I was a young journalist covering Guatemala's civil war in the 1990s, I never imagined I would discover delight amid despair - nor that it would come from a roadside fish stand serving up a local delicacy: ceviche. Every Saturday morning, a local man set up the stand near my house. He set off for the coast in the predawn hours, collected the best fish of the day's catch, and plunged diced pieces into a bucket of fresh lime juice, chopped onion, tomatoes, jalapeno peppers and cilantro.