Thursday, June 16, 2016

A Spoonful of Sofrito: Besides Barbecue: NYC’s Other Smoking Traditions!

A Spoonful of Sofrito:  A Pinch of advice that will add a lot of flavor to your life.

Besides Barbeque: NYC's other smoking traditions.

Sofrito Lovers,

If you love smoked, well seasoned, and downright delicious food, then read Robert Sietsema's newest article on NYC's smoking traditions on

The never-ending diversity of culinary traditions and cooking styles in NYC is truly staggering!  The article below lists an incredible array of non-American cuisines, whose smoking traditions are truly delicious.  Not all smoked foods have to be drenched in BBQ sauce! Go out there and try them all!

After reading the article, run, don't walk, to the closest restaurant on the list and get your grub on!  Go taste for yourself!  ¡Buen Provecho!

Besides Barbecue: NYC’s Other Smoking Traditions

Critic Robert Sietsema takes a look at the city's non-barbecue smoked dishes

by Robert Sietsema, June 15, 2016

Photos by Robert Sietsema

In the days before barbecue became ubiquitous in New York City, ‘cue lovers had to content themselves with other international traditions of smoking meat, poultry, and fish. Aficionados quickly discovered that many of these culinary practices — coming from such widespread places as Jamaica, Brazil, India, Central Asia, and China — were every bit as satisfying as American barbecue. Here are some examples, with favorite places to get them:

Sichuan Tea-Smoked Duck — Tea-smoked duck is a complicated Sichuan recipe that progressively sees the waterfowl marinated in a solution that usually contains wine, camphor, garlic, ginger, and other flavors, patted dry, smoked over tea leaves and stems in a covered wok, then further steamed and fried. Though the smoking only takes 15 or so minutes, the bird tastes miraculously smoky. Grain House, 249-11 Northern Blvd, Queens, (718) 229-8788

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A Spoonful of Sofrito: 19 Things You Should NEVER Do With Chopsticks!

A Spoonful of Sofrito: A Pinch of advice that will add a lot of flavor to your life.

19 Things you should NEVER do with Chopsticks!

Sofrito Lovers,

Part of being an international foodie is learning the etiquette and eating customs of various cultures.  This is no easy feat, but when you have YouTube on your side you can do anything!

The video posted below comes from YouTube sensations Dan Chen and Mike Chen, two best friends who host a channel called Double Chen.  On their channel they talk about Asian culture, music and, of course, cuisine.  Hilarious, educational, and down right delicious, these guys are an amazing resource for all things Asian.  I highly encourage you to check out this interesting and entertaining channel; the food alone will have you hooked.

The video posted below is titled, "19 things you should NEVER do with chopsticks"; I'm proud to say that I knew a lot of theses facts.  In High school, I had a Chinese girlfriend who gave me a crash course on Chinese dining etiquette before I had dinner with her parents.  I had no idea there were so many rules and regulations when it came to dining.  I think I prepared harder for meeting her parents than I did my SATs. 

Watch the video below and learn something new!  You'll never point at anyone with chopsticks or lick them clean again!  ¡Buen Provecho!

Monday, June 13, 2016

A Spoonful of Sofrito: Puerto Rican White Bean Soup!

A Spoonful of Sofrito: A Pinch of advice that will add a lot of flavor to your life.

Puerto Rican White Bean Soup!

Sofrito Lovers,

I had a rough weekend and I'm sick as a dog.  I need some sopita (soup) to soothe the achiness, clear the congestion, and warm up my bones.  In order to ensure a speedy recovery, I decided to visit Yvonne Chinea's amazing YouTube Channel, which is chock full of amazing recipes for soups, stews, and other goodies.

I've decided to make her Sopa de Habichuelas Blancas (White Bean Soup) in hopes that it'll bring back some life to this infirmed old body.  As you can see, I get really dramatic when I'm sick.

Check out this awesome recipe and ¡Buen Provecho!