L E G A L penn appétit celebrates 21 issues
BEER BREAD SPEAKEASIES & MORE penn appétit
What We’re Reading 7 In Philly Spotlight: Rebel Ventures 8 Meet the high schoolers behind the healthy breakfast cake taking Philly public schools by storm Tips from a Pro: Deglazing 9 Make clean-up easier and any dish tastier.
Make it at Home: Kombucha 10 Your roommates will think you’re conducting a science experiment on the kitchen counter, but it’s worth it!
Tempeh, the Overlooked Indonesian Staple 11 Tempting tempeh! Chinese Bakeries 101 12 From egg tarts to pineapple buns, you’ll never go hungry for dessert in Chinatown again!
Ravioli Dolci 14 Pasta… but for dessert?
Marigold Kitchen 16 Molecular gastronomy in West Philly!?!
Buenos Aires 20 An American and an Argentinian go head to head on food culture.
A Kimchi Crisis 22 Your gut and your mood may be more connected than you think!
Shaking Off the Sugar 24 Sugar free for a week? Easier said than done.
Unpacking the G-Word 27 As University City creeps closer and closer to West Philly, how does the restaurant world respond? A Taste of Two Cultures 28 When cultures fuse, so do the foods. The results are delicious. Spirulina 30 This tasty green powder will stain your hands and your heart.
36 French Macarons Macarons with Earl Grey Buttercream and Lemon Curd-- what more do we need to say? 38 On a Roll Around the world in 6 breads! 41 West Africa in West Philly Meet Chef Saigay Sheriff and learn how growing up as a Liberian American in West Philly has impacted her culinary career.
LEGAL 44 Brewed in Bandra: Father-Son Bonding through Cultural Mixology A son discovers his father through the drinks of his youth 54 A Drinker’s Guide to the Galaxy From Harry Potter to Star Trek, we can find traces of our world in any sci-fi world so long as we remember to look in the liquor cabinet. 57 From Paddy to the Bottle: Sake Production You’d never know from how smoothly it goes down, but it takes a lot to make those sake bombs you down at sushi buffets! 58 Rum Cake This cake won’t leave you in search of Gatorade and aspirin in the morning, but eating the whole thing in one sitting might give you a bit of a sugar hangover. 60 Still or Sparkling Pop a different kind of bubbly at your next dinner party. 62 The Blind Pigs of Philadelphia Good luck getting into these speakeasies! 64 Switching Rum for Rooh Afza Figuring out the perfect mixology of cultural heritage and being a young adult in America. 66 The Morning After Beer Bread Not for the gluten-intolerant.
Argentine on Pine 32 The flavors of Argentina all wrapped up in a perfect empanada.
penn appetit EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Parker Brown MANAGING EDITOR Kathleen Norton EDITORIAL STAFF Copy Editor: Blaze Bernstein Alice Goulding, Dillon Bergin, Isami McCowan, Janie Kim, Sophia Yang, Tiffany Wang, Victoria Mai, Zoe Schwingel-Sauer CREATIVE DIRECTOR Leah Sprague DESIGN STAFF Anna Tang, Edward Kim, Lauren Lokre, Lizzy Machielse, Michelle Terng, Selina Nie, Tiffany Wang, Valencia Fu, Veronica Podolny PHOTO DIRECTOR Isabel Zapata PHOTO STAFF Alana Shukovsky, Angel Fan, Carolina Salazar-Paranhos, Eda Ozuner, Ethan Wu, Jessica Moh, Justine de Jesus, Leah Sprague, Leina Betzer DIGITAL CONTENT DIRECTOR Jennifer Higa BLOG TEAM Carolyn Barr, Catherine Kwon, Eliana Waxman, Josie Shapiro, Justine de Jesus, Kathy Wang, Leah Sprague, Marianne Xiong, Marina Gialanella, Michelle Lu, Molly Gross, Nicole Seah, Ria Chhabra, Xander Gottfried CULINARY DIRECTOR Rachel Prokupek Allie Shapiro, Ben Weimer, Blaze CULINARY TEAM Bernstein, Deniz Enfiyeci, Deniz Yilmaz, Eva Killenberg, Jennifer Higa Juliana Sandford, Monhish Sabhani, Natalie Weil, Noel Zheng, Sam Akhavan, Xander Gottfried TREASURER Chris Muracca BUSINESS MANAGER Brittany Bing BUSINESS STAFF Chloe (Minjoo) Kim, Christopher Fu, Jacob Kind, Jason Wang, Raquel (Kelly) Sterman, Sanika Puranik, Sara Michaels PUBLICITY & OUTREACH CHAIR Phillip Huffman PUBLICITY & OUTREACH STAFF Daniel Jacobs, Jessica Li, Liv Teter, Rachel Zhou, Tammy Tan SOCIAL MEDIA DIRECTOR Sally Shin SOCIAL MEDIA TEAM Monique Magyar, Pearl Banjurtrungkajorn, Stefanie Lee WEBMASTER Edward Kim COOKING CLUB CHAIR Michelle Lyu VIDEO EDITOR Carolina Salazar-Paranhos INTERNAL SOCIAL CHAIR Janie Kim SOCIAL IMPACT CHAIR Kate Kassin SOCIAL IMPACT STAFF Annabel Berney, Juan Carlos Ortega, Katie Simms, Melissa Marketos, Monica Aber, Sarah Kim, Sinan Onukar EVENTS CHAIRS Ben Blanco and Noel Zheng
letter from the editor “Hold this while I pour,” my friend said as she handed me her water bottle and grabbed a couple of bottles from her parents liquor cabinet. I watched as careful streams of red and clear liquids filled the Nalgene a third of the way. “That’s good,” she said, and filled it the rest of the way with red juice. Then we buried our contraband under piles of scarves and notebooks at the bottom of her backpack and made our way to the creek where we drank ourselves only a little bit silly, drunk off of perceived adulthood more so than the alcohol content. I don’t remember what these first sips of alcohol tasted like, or even exactly what juice we used as a mixer. What I
do remember is the feeling of friendship and bonding that marked this moment. The flavor of whatever horrible mixture of liquor we concocted really wasn’t anything more than a symbolic vehicle for me and my friend to go on an adventure with. After we drained our bottle, we climbed over a fence and discovered a breathtaking man-made lake hidden by a forest of trees, one of which we later climbed and sat in, talking about whatever was important to our sixteen year-old selves. This is the power that food has-- it brings people together, it allows for cultural experiences, for stories to be told and created. This issue is our twenty-first, and it
seems only natural that we would celebrate this twenty-one issues of food and storytelling by popping a bottle or two. But you’ll find more than cocktail recipes in these pages. We live in a society where the very act of togetherness can be revolutionary, and in this issue, we celebrate food and drink’s ability to cultivate spaces of togetherness and merriment. So drink up, just make sure you’ll be able to remember the memories you make in the morning. Cheers! Kathleen Norton penn appétit
See 'Brewed in Bandra' on page 44
back to the basics what we’re reading
Garlic and Sapphires by Akhil Vaidya
Being a food critic is the perfect job-getting paid to eat free food, travel, and get the royal treatment at restaurant? Sign me up. In her memoir, fomer New York Times food critic Ruth Reichl recounts her time as the most powerful woman in the New York restaurant industry and her unique approach to reviewing restaurants. She tells a captivating story of whimsical disguises, personal struggles, and food adventures as she navigated New York City for six years. I really enjoyed this book and think it has a lot to offer to anyone interested in food journalism and the restaurant industry.
Brad Leone's ‘It’s Alive’ by Janie Kim
Most definitely not your typical cooking show, It’s Alive with Bon Appétit test kitchen manager Brad Leone takes viewers on an amusing and quirky
exploration of fermented and “live” foods. Brad and his cameraman Vinny (who you will also get to know very quickly) show how to make everything from cultured butter to corned beef to tepache, a Mexican-fermented pineapple brew, in this video series that doesn’t take itself too seriously. The episodes feature silly graphics and sound effects highlighting Brad’s eccentric personality and make me wish I were there having fun with them in the kitchen every time.
Creme de la Crumb by Maria Murad
Diversity is Creme de la Crumb’s strength. The inventive, unique recipes cater to a variety of cuisines, dietary restrictions, and personal preferences. All the recipes simplify the roadmap to gourmet meals using only a few accessible ingredients. While I love all the veggie centric options, my personal favorite is the dessert section where Chef Tiffany mashes up a couple of popular deserts into one! This became my dig-
ital food bible when I became vegetarian and had to throw out all of my old meaty recipes. I’ve been following it ever since!
by Alice Goulding When Alison Roman left Bon Appétit in 2015 to work on her own creative projects, the culinary world held their breath. Now, with the publication of Dining In, her first cookbook, everyone can breathe a sigh of relief-- and start cooking some of her simple and elegant, flavor-driven recipes. A former sous chef at Momofuku Milk Bar, Roman hopes to show home cooks that meals at home can -- and should be -just as delicious as a restaurant dinner. With stunning photos, step-by-step technique guides for anything from browning butter to roasting citrus, and witty commentary woven throughout, Roman will have even the most beginner cook wanting to stay in to try out another dish. penn appétit
in philly spotlight rebel ventures BY JANIE KIM PHOTOS BY ANGEL FAN With Rebel Ventures, a group of Philadelphia high school students are rebelling against the lack of healthy food available in their schools and local communities. "We are a youth-run business, run by high school students, and we work to create healthy deliciousness with kids in schools throughout Philadelphia,” says Zaire White, one of six Rebel Ventures crew members. Supported by Penn’s Netter Center for Community Partnerships, the crew creates healthy and tasty snacks from start to finish that are 100% for, with, and by students. This emphasis on empowering young people to take control of their own decisions and showing their peers that they can do the same, is key to the program and is one of several core values on which they base all of their decisions. "We are closer to the younger kids than adults, we have a better understanding about where they come from,” says Tre’Cia Gibson, another crew member. This nonprofit social enterprise grew out of a project in 2010 started by Penn grad Jarrett Stein, who is currently the volunteer executive director of Rebel Ventures and the Director of Academic Partnerships for the Agatston Urban Nutrition Initiative (AUNI) at the Netter Center. “There is a real important aspect to this which is demonstrating the inherent value and power of young people in Philadelphia specifically. With space and tools and support … kids in Philly can create real impact and change that’s positive for that community,” said Stein. All aspects of the business are entirely hands-on, with each of the students taking charge of different projects from product design, to testing, to marketing their products to meet nutritional guidelines while also maximizing deliciousness and creating snacks they know their peers will want to eat. The new Rebel Crumble, a soft crumble cake packed with whole grains, apples, and cranberries, is now being served as part of breakfast to 8
over 50,000 students at Philly public and Archdiocesan schools every week. These, and other products like granola bars, are also available in a few local grocery stores, Gourmet Grocer and Williams Cafe. Rebel Ventures’ partnership with the Netter Center is especially strong, and every semester Penn students serve as mentors to the high school crew through academically-based community service (ABCS) courses, the Wharton Social Impact Initiative, and other groups. “There’s something unique
about this Penn partnership, with Penn resources being mobilized to support public education and public health in a really impactful way. And nowhere else in the country has anything like this ever happened, and I think it’s really important that we celebrate what [the students] have accomplished,” emphasized Stein. “There’s a really potent opportunity now for Penn students who are interested in food to get involved in something that has a direct impact on their community.”
tips from a pro deglazing
BY RACHEL PROKUPEK PHOTO BY LEINA BETZER
Deglazing a pan is the deceptively easy way to elevate a dish’s depth of flavor. It’s the process of adding cold liquid to a hot pan in order to get all of the flavorful brown bits at the bottom of the pan, called fond (French for “bottom”). It helps incorporate those deep, caramelized flavors back into the dish. Often, the liquid is alcohol or stock, but some dishes benefit from an acidic punch from vinegar or sweetness from fruit juice. The most common use for deglazing is to make a pan sauce. Simply sear a piece of meat or fish on high heat in a pan (don’t use non-stick, you want that fond!). Once the meat is cooked through, remove from the pan and
drain any excess fat. Add minced onions and garlic and cook until there is a bit of color. Deglaze the pan with a splash of white wine, using your spatula to scrape the fond from the bottom of the pan. Bring the sauce to a simmer, and finish with thyme and a knob of butter, and you’re golden. My favorite way to use this technique is with roast turkey and gravy. After hours of slow roasting in the oven, there will be plenty of flavorful caramelized bits at the bottom of the pan. Remove the turkey, put the pan over high heat, and deglaze with wine or stock. Let simmer for a few minutes, and the resulting liquid can be the base of an amazing gravy. The possibilities
are endless and your friends will be impressed. Here are a few important tips for deglazing your pan: 1) Make sure that nothing is burnt on the bottom of the pan before you deglaze. You want deep color, nothing black. You don’t want to infuse any burnt flavor into the dish. 2) Pour out most of the fat in the pan before you deglaze, to prevent your final sauce from being overly fatty and split. 3) Make sure your liquid is cold – quickly coming to a boil once it touches the hot pan is what releases all of the brown bits at the bottom.
Tip from an Actual Pro Isaac Gautam, a graduate from Le Cordon Bleu, has trained at both Frenchie and Le Grand Restaurant, which holds two Michelin stars, in Paris. He deglazes his pan up to five times with water, before adding any alcohol. He
says that the water allows his stock to re-caramelize each time without over-flavoring with alcohols, vinegars, or other liquids. He doesn’t use anythingwith a lot of tannins and prefers white wines and cognac. penn appétit
make it at home kombucha The fermented tea drink kombucha can be made at home with a few simple ingredients and a whole lot of patience. Some people drink it for its potential health benefits as a probiotic beverage; others like it because of its unique flavor and fizz. To start brewing your first batch you’ll need: Makes 1 Gallon of Kombucha 8 teabags of Green, Black, or other caffeinated tea 1 cup of sugar 3 ½ quarts of filtered water A mother culture or SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast; buy one online or grow your own using raw kombucha) 2 cups of raw, unflavored kombucha 1 gallon glass jar A sheet of paper towel and a rubber band Boil water. Add sugar and stir to dissolve. Add teabags. Let the mixture sit out until it cools to room temperature. Protip: Boil 1 quart of water, and add then add the rest to speed the cooling process. Once the mixture has cooled, add it to the gallon jar along with the SCOBY and kombucha. Protip: the raw kombucha prevents the growth of harmful bacteria or mold by maintaining a certain minimum pH. Cover with a sheet of paper towel or another tightly woven cloth and secure it in place with a rubber band. Let the mixture sit in a dark, relatively warm area with adequate airflow for 7-10 days until the desired flavor has been achieved. When you are satisfied with the level of fermentation, remove the SCOBY and refrigerate the kombucha to halt the fermentation process. (Protip: Make sure to reserve 2 cups of tea from this batch for your next batch.) Optional: a second fermentation can be performed to infuse flavors and extra bubbliness into your kombucha by adding sugar or fruit/juice to the kombucha and letting it sit for 1-3 days. 10
BY BLAZE BERNSTEIN PHOTO BY CAROLINA SALAZAR-PARANHOS Some notes: Be aware that Penn Appétit is not responsible for any illness or other health issues that may arise from brewing your own kombucha. People sensitive to alcohol, such as pregnant women and children, may choose to avoid home brewed kombucha as there is some alcohol (likely less than 1% by volume) created in the brewing process. Additionally, if you see or otherwise sense anything out of the ordinary (such as harmful mold on the culture), it is better to discard the whole batch including the SCOBY than to take any risks.
Tempeh, the Overlooked Indonesian Staple BY NATASIA NABILA PHOTO BY ANGELA FAN Tempeh is a staple in Indonesian kitchens, and a great source of plant-based protein. Usually wrapped in banana leaves, tempeh is made of cultured and fermented soybeans. While soy is traditional, specialty tempeh can also be made with flour, beans, and other types of grains. Tempeh is extremely nutritious--boasting high protein content, low fat content, and tons of fiber. It is also perfect for anyone with digestive difficulties, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). The soy carbohydrates in tempeh are easy on the gut and aid in digestion. Tempeh is ubiquitous in Indonesian culture and is eaten at almost every meal. Sometimes tempeh is used as
a substitute for white rice as a healthier carbohydrate-alternative. It can be grilled, sauteed, boiled, or steamed. However, most prefer to fry tempeh Indonesian sweet soy sauce known as kecap manis. Kecap manis is made using palm sugar, sweet anise, and fermented soy. Some other popular sauce pairings are sesame oil, chilli oil, peanut butter, lime juice, and tamari. While tempeh is underappreciated, it is gaining more attention as a healthy meatless protein option throughout the world. Tempeh carries an earthy and slightly nutty taste that is sure to be addicting. What are you waiting for? Delight your palate and experiment with tempeh!
Indonesian-Inspired Tempeh 2 tbs. olive oil ½ medium onion, finely diced 1 (300g) block of tempeh, cut into ½-inch cubes ¼ cup kecap manis or soy sauce 3 tbs. palm or brown sugar ¼ cup of water 1 tbs. fresh lime juice ½ tbs. sambal oelek (or to taste) Salt and pepper Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Pan fry the tempeh until golden and slightly fragrant. Remove the tempeh from the stove. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Sautee the onion until golden brown. Add the panfried tempeh, kecap manis, palm sugar, and water to the pan. Mix the tempeh around to ensure it is fully coated. Let cook over medium-high heat for two minutes. Then, remove from heat and add the lime juice and sambal oelek, salt, and pepper to taste.
Chinese Bakeries 101 A Guide from a Pro BY TIFFANY WANG PHOTOS BY LEINA BETZER I discovered Chinese bakeries when I was six. There was one next to my grandmother’s apartment in Taipei, and I would walk there every morning to buy breakfast. I would immediately see at least twenty different types of bread – neatly stacked, some so fresh steam fogged against the glass shelves. There were so many varieties, from sesame buns to raisin twists, that I didn’t know where to begin. Naturally, I ignored the healthier options and ran straight for the cake, flat-out refusing to leave until my parents bought me a slice. As a Taiwanese-American, I’ve grown up around Chinese bakeries.
Each bakery is different, but there’s usually one common thread that binds them together: clear flaps or long rows of glass shelves stacked high with different varieties of sweet and savory treats. The endless varieties of buns, pastries, and cookies showcase all that these Chinese bakeries have to offer, and highlight the diversity of Chinese cuisine. To sweeten the deal, the prices are also unbeatable, with everything in the store costing less than a dollar. There is an endless supply of bakeries in Chinatown, but the one I go to most often is Bread Top House. As soon as I enter, the fresh smell of
bread surrounds me. There are happy customers everywhere, munching on pastries and lining up to place their orders. Within a few minutes, I’m back on the street again, loaded down with different buns and cakes. Yes, it’s only 8 AM. Yes, I am eating cake anyways. For Chinese bakery beginners, I’ve compiled a brief flavor guide of my favorite treats. You can find these in almost any bakery, so keep them in mind next time you’re wandering through Chinatown. There are also a few ordering tips for maximizing your bakery trip, so you too can become a bakery regular.
My Favorites Egg Tarts A staple in any Chinese bakery, egg tarts were first created in Guangzhou, a city in China, where the bakers drew inspiration from fruit tarts. The flaky crust is a perfect contrast against the sweet, firm egg custard in the middle. Butter Cream Buns These pastries originated in Hong Kong, and are characterized by a split down the middle, which is usually overflowing with butter or whipped cream. There are also coconut shavings sprinkled on top. Egg Tarts
Roast Pork Buns Let’s say you’re in the mood for something savory: the roast pork bun is for you! On the outside, the bread is nicely toasted, which contrasts with the soft filling. The pork inside is chopped into smaller pieces and doused in a thick, rich sauce.
How to Navigate Chinatown like a Pro Carry cash Many Chinatown bakeries either don’t accept card or have a credit and debit card minimum. Trust me – all you need here is a ten-dollar bill and some change, and you have breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the next two days. Sesame Balls
Always branch out There are several Chinese bakeries in Chinatown, so I would highly recommend jumping from place to place until you find the one you like the best. While the staples are all the same, there will be some variations in taste and flavor! Some of the local die-hard favorites include Mayflower Bakery, Hong Kong Bakery Shop, and KC’s Pastries. Don’t be afraid to try something new It can be easy to stick to older, more familiar favorites (I’m guilty of this – I literally get a butter cream bun at every Chinese bakery I step into.) Still, branch out! Be adventurous! Try the coconut cream buns, the almond cookies, and the roast pork buns. In fact, try one of everything! It’s been a long week. You deserve it. penn appétit
Memories of a Homeland Past BY TY CIATTO PHOTO BY LEINA BETZER
Working in the railroads was an inevitable part of life for Italian immigrants in the early 20th century. This was the reality for my own family in the 1920s who, fleeing the oppression of Mussolini, traded in the shores of southern Italy for the Reading Railroad. They left behind much of what they owned, but couldn’t bear abandoning their culture—especially their food. There’s one dessert in particular that stands out in the memories of my grandfather: ravioli dolci or ravioli cookies. Named for their visual similarities to traditional raviolis, ravioli dolci are filled with ricotta and other sweet ingredients. Ravioli Dolci Makes 3 dozen cookies Dough 3 ⅓ cups flour ⅓ cup sugar 1 tablespoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 stick butter 1 egg ⅓ cup milk ½ teaspoon vanilla extract Filling 2 cups ricotta 1 egg 2 tablespoons cinnamon 1½ teaspoon vanilla extract ⅓ cup confectioner’s sugar ⅓ cup sugar Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles cornmeal. Whisk the egg and vanilla extract, and add it into the flour mixture. Knead well for five minutes, adding milk gradually until the dough reaches a firm consistency. Roll the dough out to a ¼ of an inch in thickness. Cut the dough into 3 inch circles. Combine all ingredients for the filling in a separate bowl. Put one rounded tablespoon of filling on each piece of dough. Fold each cookie in half, moistening the edges with water so the two sides stick. Crimp down the edges with a fork. Place a small slit across the top of each cookie with a knife. Bake for 18 to 25 minutes, or until the cookies turn lightly-brown. Remove from the oven, and set on a rack to cool. penn appétit
An Interview with Marigold Kitchen Owner
Chef Andrew Kochan BY SOPHIA YANG PHOTOS BY LEAH SPRAGUE
Caprese Basil Seltzer, Reduced Balsamic French Onion Ravioli Gruyere, Brioche Foie Gras Lettuce & Tomato Mache, Sourdough, Roasted Tomato Eggs Benedict Quail Egg, Hot Sauce Bubbles, Scallion Scallop Crudo Yuzu Jus, Sake, Cilantro Ice Habenero Gnocchi Grilled Pineapple, Pico de Gallo, Guava
West Philly is becoming known as a culinary hotspot for up-and-coming cuisine via mom and pop style restaurants, and Marigold Kitchen serves as a perfect example. Its outside appearance of a traditional Victorian home on a quiet residential street may give the impression that there’s nothing to see, but looks can be deceiving. Stepping through to the elegant dining room, you’re put at ease in an atmosphere perfect for the experimental tasting menu to come. We headed to Marigold to meet with Chef Andrew Kochan and find out more about who they are, what they do, and how they make the magic happen. Can you talk about Marigold’s history, and how you became involved? Marigold has been around making food for a long time. Somewhere around 16 years ago or so, is when Steven Cook took it over. Mike Solomonov worked underneath him, and was a sous chef for a year or two...Steven Cook sold it to Rob Halpern, who was actually my boss. Rob owned it for, I want to say 8 years? I was around for the last year or
so...I started here, and I went to school with Tim, my partner who’s the sous chef. We got promoted up, and he became the chef du cuisine, I became the sous chef and-- we were able to buy the place. That was 3 years ago. When you guys took over, what changes did you make? Rob had worked at a restaurant called Alinea. It’s very modernist. They do weird stuff, like sugar balloons that are filled with helium. We didn’t want to push those same boundaries, because-frankly, I don’t think this city was ready for a place that was going to do like 24 courses, just pure craziness. We do anywhere between 12 to 14 courses, and stepped back a little bit from being modernist. What people would call molecular gastronomy, it’s involved here, but it’s not mission critical. Where did you work before this, was it in the food industry? No, I worked for JP Morgan — and I hated it. I sat down with my dad and was like “Look, I hate everything about what I’m doing, you’re going to kill me
Duck Maki Black Garlic, Maitake, Dashi Curry Tofu Fennel, Leek, Mango Lemon Sorbet Pink Peppercorn, Black Peppercorn Striped Bass White Bean, Arugula, Nicoise, Cured Yolk, Pepper Squab Wild Mushroom, Corn, Golden Beet, Concord Grape Cheese Manchego, Ricotta, Kirsch, Honey, Walnut, Cubeb Rice Pudding Cinnamon, Brandy, Raisin, Wild Rice, Orange Present Sweet Corn, Chipotle, Dark Chocolate penn appétit
if I change directions?” And he was like, “No, but what are you going to do?” And I said, “Well everything in my life has been about food, in terms of how I make memories. Stuff with family, stuff with friends, it’s always centered around food. I either want to work in the restaurant business somehow, or, I want to go and work for a conservancy group saving manta rays in the Maldives.” And he said, “Well, you’re not going to get paid diving with manta rays in the Maldives.” (Laughs) What is it that you enjoy about what you do here, as not a “typical sit down meal”? I can’t imagine being pigeon-holed, into one specific thing. Like, if all we did was pasta, I’d get bored. I’d get bored fast. (Laughs) But, the fact that we’re pushed to create. We’ve never done a cheese plate where we actually just put cheese, and nuts, and fruit and whatever onto the board, but we’ve done 15, 16 iterations now. Right now, it’s a push pop-goat cheese with orange blossom and cinnamon and walnut. Because we don’t have a regular menu, it allows for us to be a little more creative in whatever direction we want. We’ve had a thousand ideas, and we get 18
to just test out ideas, skills, and things we’ve never tried. Are there any dishes that come back, because you enjoyed them so much? No. When we first took over, we said from the very beginning, we’re not going to repeat things. It’s a blessing and a curse, because it’s awesome that we’ve never repeated anything, but it’s also a nightmare. Why do you always want to be making new courses? If you’re not pushing forward, then you’re going to fall back onto something that’s easy. And then as soon as we start saying, well we’re never going to get rid of the scallops dish, it’s too easy and everybody likes it, we’ll just make parm broth all the time now. Then, whoever makes the parmesan broth is going to start getting sloppier and lazier, not as good. Can you give us an example of a dish that’s unique to what Marigold does? I wanted to do a pumpkin pie dessert, but it turned into our float finisher. So, it’s a maple soda with pumpkin ice cream and a gingersnap cookie. It’s
pumpkin pie, but it’s not in the form of pumpkin pie at all. We try to take things out of their element. Okay, last question. You do a bunch of crazy things to food, what’s been the weirdest? So, I’d say it’s caramel gel that we’re doing right now. It was the most ass-backwards thing I’ve ever done. There’s all these rules that you follow for caramel. You start the heat, let it caramelize, liquify. Your job is to dab anything on the sides so that it doesn’t burn and cause a chain reaction, where one crystal will cause others to form, and then ruin the whole batch. So for this gel, you make a nice perfect caramel, but overcook it so that it hardens to a rock. Then, you let it cool, add a bunch of water, and boil it back down to nothing. So, essentially you make something difficult, then destroy it immediately. Then, you set it with agar-agar, which is from red algae, cool it, take it out, cut it into small pieces. At that point, it’s like weird caramel gummies, and then blend that with heavy cream. It comes out like an amazing ganache. It’s really good.
How SUPER are
SUPERFOODS? BY ALICE GOULDING PHOTOS BY ALANA SHUKOVSKY The first time I visited a one hundred percent vegan restaurant was fall of my sophomore year of high school. I had recently transitioned to a totally vegan diet. During a weekend trip to Chicago, I scoured Yelp for places to eat and finally found a vegan cafe. The chalkboard-lined walls were filled with phrases like “Cruelty Free!,” “Save the Planet--Eat Vegan,” and “Ethical Eating.” The menu was fully accessible to me, with no need to limit myself to the side dishes. But then, I started reading some of the description of the dishes, and I felt more lost than ever. Agave syrup and acai berries, hemp hearts and maca powder, half a dozen “ancient grains.” These were not the kinds of ingredients found on the shelves of the supermarket in my Indiana hometown. A quick Google search later, I found that most of these foods were trending “superfoods,” trendy foods believed to lead to a clean and healthy lifestyle. I left brunch that day satisfied with my meal, but full of questions about what I’d just eaten. Who decided that these foods were superfoods? Where were these ingredients really coming from? Could I really be saving the planet if most of the food I ate took an airplane to get to the restaurant? Were they even all that ethical? I wish I could say there was a sim-
ple answer to these questions, but even after years of research, I still haven’t found satisfaction. What I have learned is that there are some real risks to eating these foods. Agave syrup, a popular and reportedly healthier alternative to cane sugar, is primarily produced in Mexico and other Latin American countries, making it an international import for the United States. Agave syrup takes six years to make and the plant is killed in the process. Demand for it has bankrupted farmers who cannot grow new plants fast enough. It destroys soil beds too, meaning that this type of farming is not sustainable. Water use is also an issue with these “superfoods.” Take, for example, the avocado, which has gone from being an “exotic” food to a fixture in America’s refrigerators. Avocados require roughly 75 gallons of water to grow per pound, a concerningly high number, seeing as lettuce, another clean food, only needs 5.5 gallons per pound. The popularization of avocados has depleted water supplies and increased the rate of deforestation in many developing countries, with Mexico taking the hardest hit as it tries to keep up with American supermarkets’ rising demand for the fruit. Avocados have also been at the center of numerous violent altercations between Mexican gangs who have invested in the superfood. The unsustainable harvesting of seemingly healthy foods isn’t exclusive to avocados. One almond requires over a gallon of water to grow; the acai berry in your smoothie bowl was most likely grown in a field in South America that used to be covered by lush rainforest. The demand for maca powder has become so high that farmers cannot harvest it fast enough, leading to a depletion in nutrient-dense soil and a monopoly on what was once a small market by large international corporations. These
foods travel on several airplanes and go through multiple factories before they make it to your supermarket aisles. That’s not to say eating these health foods is entirely bad. Between 2006 and 2013, the price of quinoa tripled internationally as it became a staple in the healthy eating movement. As the price of quinoa went up, so did the welfare of Peruvians, whose country is the main producer of the grain. From an economic standpoint, our consumption of quinoa greatly benefited these people. If you’re changing your diet because of concerns about the treatment of livestock, eating vegan superfoods also seems to make sense. No animals need to die in order for you to get your smoothie fix. Some reports estimate that it takes 1800 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef; you could be swimming in lettuce with that amount of water. I’ve often thought about that Chicago cafe and the dozens like it that I’ve visited during my three and a half years of veganism. Clearly, there is merit in supporting these establishments, and I will rarely turn down avocado toast and a kale smoothie. Eating a cruelty-free diet should be more than just a conversation starter, and treating it like a trend or an aesthetically driven decision is dangerous and can undermine the goals of eco-conscious eating. We need to start thinking about sustainability in the broadest of terms. Obviously, no one diet is ever going to save the world on its own, but it is important that it be healthy not just for the body, but also for the planet. penn appétit
BUENOS AIRES & BACK AGAIN Two takes on Argentine versus US food culture PHOTOS BY ANGEL FAN BY GRACE LEAHY I’m from Wilkes-Barre, a small northeastern Pennsylvania town with an even smaller Latin community. For a long time, my only exposure to Latin-American culture came from international students that went to my high school. Needless to say, it was a huge culture shock when I left United States for the first time and stayed in Buenos Aires, Argentina during the summer of 2016. Argentinian food and food culture felt polar opposite to that of the United States at first, but I learned to 20
appreciate those differences during my time there. In Argentina, dinner wasn’t just the last meal of the day; it was a time for family bonding. Every night, the entire family had to be present before we began eating, and once a week, extended family members would drive from thirty minutes away to get together for a meal. Dinner didn’t happen until nine at night, and I was always offered coffee or tea after without fail. I learned formal Argentinian table manners and attempted to use them via my clumsy Spanglish. The first time we went out
to eat, I underestimated the inflation of the peso, and panicked at the sight of so many digits on the receipt. Turns out, seventeen Argentine Pesos is equal to one U.S. Dollar. Ever since my visit, I have dreamt of Argentine cuisine: locro, a stew with corn, beans, and traditional meats, tarta de choclo, which literally translates to “corn pie,” and dulce de leche. Dulce de leche is a caramel spread made of sweetened milk, and, though it wasn’t the healthiest thing I ate, it will always be a highlight of my experience in Buenos Aires.
Some healthier staples of my time there include traditional asado, the elaborate cousin of U.S. barbecue. In asado, meat is grilled over a wood fire or parrilla and no part of the cow is spared. Thanks to asado I’ve tried every part of the cow, from tender lomo (beef tenderloin) to slightly-chewier mollejas (sweetbreads). Another staple food while there was savory empanadas. These turnovers were filled with any combination of ham, beef, chicken, cheese, corn, or vegetables. Overall, my experience made me realize that Argentinian food, while dense, has been perfected with time, and is different than anything we have in the U.S. Food is much more cultural for Argentines, and it is used to reinforce familial values by bringing together the family to share meals and catch up on life. All that being said, I can neither confirm nor deny the fate of the several jars of dulce de leche that were held hostage in
my dorm room at the start of this year... BY MER FAGLIANO I was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina where my knowledge of and exposure to “American culture” was limited to McDonald’s and Burger King. In fact, until coming to Penn, I had little exposure to any non-Argentine cuisine or food culture of any kind. The aspect of American culture that surprised me the most was how little cultural value Americans hold in preparing and eating meals. In Argentina, it is normal for families to treat meals as group activities, cooking and eating together on a daily basis. In the United States, families rarely eat all together, and even when they do, there is still very much an “individual” component to it. Often, one person sets everything up and the others are just called to eat.
This was a very strange adjustment for me, since there is a very different food culture in Argentina. Another aspect of American cuisine that I have yet to get on board with is the concept of spice. Argentine food tends to be on the milder side (read: bland), so as a person used to less spicy food, I need to be very careful about what I’m putting on my plate. I unknowingly had Buffalo sauce once; steam came out of my ears. I had to down several glasses of milk, and even then, my mouth was still on fire. The biggest difference between American food culture and Argentinian food culture has to be that aren’t many signature American foods or a signature American style of food. What best characterizes American cuisine is how it fuses different styles of food together. Everywhere you go you find food from different places around the world. I love how diverse cuisine is in America, but, sometimes, I need my asado. penn appétit
BY ANERI KINARIWALLA PHOTO BY ALANA SHUKOVSKY
It was a veritable crisis in 2010 when the price of cabbage skyrocketed in South Korea. The president swore off cabbage until prices dropped, the government suspended tariffs on cabbage imports, and dozens were arrested for cabbage rustling in rural areas. An editor of a major newspaper dubbed it a “national tragedy.” South Koreans were desperate, willing to wait in line for hours to pay 14 dollars for one head of long-leafed Napa cabbage. All this because of one super-spicy condiment: kimchi. Koreans’ kimchi craze is nothing new. A study funded by the World Institute of Kimchi -- yes, that exists, as does the Kimchi Research Institute at Pusan University -- traces its origins back 4,000 years. Back then, kimchi consisted of radishes salted in brine and was buried in clay pots to ferment underground. Now, there are officially over 187 different evolutions of kimchi, and several kimchi related appliances, including a specialized refrigerator that is designed to keep it at optimal temperatures and humidities during various stages of fermentation. Though the ingredients and methods may have transformed over time, the Koreans’ zeal has not. You could almost say that kimchi is to Koreans what cheese is to Americans; Koreans exclaim “kimchiiiiiii” when they’re smiling for a picture. They take their dependency to the next level though, with the average Korean eating 40 pounds of kimchi a year. The Belgians have their chocolate, the English have their tea, and South Koreans, they have their Kimchi. Long story short, fermented foods, happy bacteria. Happy bacteria, happy intestine. Happy intestine, happy you. 22
Kimchi is rich in probiotics that support good gut health and filled with antioxidants that can slow down the aging process of cells. In other words, kimchi will help your skin look younger for longer!
South Korea’s first female astronaut Yi So-yeon brought kimchi with her to eat in space.
Kimchi wasn’t only eaten in space, but studied too! Scientists wanted to know how the bacteria would react to space radiation. This research allowed scientists to figure out how to slow down the fermentation process and, consequently, how to ship kimchi all over the world. The spice in kimchi comes from gochujang, Korean spicy, fermented red chili paste.
Kimchi usually isn’t vegan! It is often made with salted fish, which adds a lot of cravable umami flavor, but that also means that vegans won’t be able to benefit from all those probiotics.
SHAKING OFF THE BY TIFFANY WANG PHOTOS BY ETHAN WU
Allow me to introduce myself: My name is Tiffany Wang. I’m nineteen, and a sophomore in the College of Arts and Science. And I’m a straight-up sugar addict. I know what you’re thinking – that’s what every college student says. Still, trust me on this: when I say sugar addict, I mean that to the extreme. When I was a kid, one of my favorite treats was scooping sugar out of the jar and eating it with a spoon. As I got older, my habits didn’t get much better. I once lived on sweets for three days straight; cake, ice cream, and cookies were my main food groups. I would sell my soul for a brick of Ghirardelli milk chocolate. This year, though, my perspective on food radically shifted. You could say my wild ride began after I had broccoli for the first time in four months (I wish I was kidding). It was like a shock to my system. I suddenly felt like my body was a temple; I was the poster child for health. And what better way to demonstrate my health than to go refined sugar-free? The more I thought about it, the more excited I got. This was the beginning of a fresh start – new year, new me! Sure, it was already August. Sure, 2017 was basically over. Did it matter? No. I was going to start with a sugar-free week, before escalating to a sugar-free month – maybe even a sugar-free year! I could do this.
And thus began the hardest week of my life. Here’s the first thing I noticed: I eat so much candy. Before my refined sugar-free week, I used to bored-eat constantly. Yet after I convinced my friend to temporarily store my snacks (he’s a nursing major, so he’d long been horrified by my eating habits), I suddenly became very conscious of how much chocolate I stuffed into my body.
During that week, I spent a lot of time staring at foods that were full of processed sugar. When my friend made chocolate-chip cookies, I almost punched him out. When my roommates cheerfully ate French fries piled with ketchup, I gnawed on a pear viciously. I sadly replaced all my Frosted flakes with a plain bowl of oatmeal; I poured my bottles of Arizona Tea down the drain and used the Brita filter for the first time since moving in. In my most radical move yet, I bought a package of broccoli rice from Trader Joe’s – or, as I nicknamed it, brice – and stowed away my macaroni and cheese. Cutting out refined sugars cold turkey was hard as hell, and I began to wonder if I had the resolve to make it a full seven days. Now, to be fair, I did try. I made a conscious effort to skirt around the free dessert receptions that now seemed to pop up everywhere. I kept an apple on me at all times to stave off hunger cravings, but nothing seemed to be working. All of
the articles I’d read and inspirational videos I’d watched hadn’t prepared me for this agonizingly long week. My breaking point came on Saturday, when my friend invited my suite over for breakfast. I loaded my plate with scrambled eggs, before I was passed a plate full of waffles. The next thing I knew, I had scarfed through three-fourths of the waffle before my friend tapped me on the shoulder. "I thought you were on the no sugar thing.” "I am. It’s going great, thanks.” "You know there’s powdered sugar on top of the waffle, right?” I blinked. Now that I stopped to think (and breathe), the waffle had been sweet. My sugar-depraved mind just hadn’t slowed down enough to process this. "Tiffany,” my friend said back to me, as I looked down at the offending waffle sadly. “What did you think that white
powder on top was?” "Um,” I said back. “Baking soda?” And this is how my processed sugar-free week came to an end: in a Harnwell living room, as I held an almost-finished waffle that was covered in powdered sugar. At the time, I was a little disappointed that I hadn’t reached my goal – I’d only lasted five days. On the other hand, I was more than relieved. These past few days had taught me that I wasn’t cut out for this lifestyle. I was beyond ready to ditch the fruits and inhale a few (dozen) cookies. So, in short, am I the new advocate for a refined sugar-free life? No, I’m definitely not. But am I working towards finding a healthy balance? Yes. And do I think there’s anything wrong with diving into a large Hershey’s chocolate bar when you’re having a bad day? No, I don’t. Go ahead. Treat yourself – I promise you it’ll taste far better than the apple in your backpack.
Unpacking the G-Word
BY ALICE GOULDING PHOTO BY ETHAN WU University City boasts an extensive range of national dining chains that cater to the Penn community. Whether you’re wanting an overpriced salad, fast casual Mexican food, or the latest fall-inspired latte drink, the options lining Walnut St. will not disappoint. However with each Sweetgreen and Chipotle opening, the neighborhood surrounding Penn shifts, becoming more commercial and “accessible” for students-- but at what cost? As University City expands its retail options westward, it begins to encroach on West Philadelphia neighborhoods, affecting both the economy -- real-estate prices tend to skyrocket in neighborhoods where national chains open -- and the culture of these residential areas, attracting higher-income residents. This phenomenon, commonly referred to as gentrification, is rampant throughout most US cities, and certainly is on display in the West Philadelphia area. New businesses replace old ones; the racial or ethnic makeup of an area changes, as waves of white residents move into homes previously occupied by large minority populations. Manakeesh, a Lebanese bakery and restaurant, finds itself in the middle of these two colliding worlds, literally. Nestled in between an Islamic day
school and a Chinese cultural center on the corner of Walnut and 45th street, the cafe is situated on the outskirts of University City and Walnut Hill, a neighborhood of West Philadelphia. I sat down with with Abd Ghazzawi, the general manager of Manakeesh, over some delicious pistachio halva, to discuss the bakery’s seven-year history, their customers, and “the G-word,” as Ghazzawi put it. Growing up, Ghazzawi visited the Walnut Hill neighborhood weekly -- his father was one of the founding imams of the mosque down the street from Manakeesh. When the cafe opened in January 2011, the surrounding area looked quite different. “I think us opening kind of was a turning point for this neighborhood,” Ghazzawi said. Walking from Penn to Manakeesh, I passed parents out with their kids in strollers and young couples walking their dogs; Ghazzawi noted that these are the new locals, and that they comprise a substantial portion of Manakeesh’s regular customers. In University City, new chain restaurants and cafes open every year. Honeygrow, a popular salad and stir fry joint opened its doors in 2015; Starbucks added a fifth store within walking distance of campus last year. Additions to the local food economy like these can be detrimental to local spots, as a place
like Starbucks has the resources and support system of a national corporation. However, Ghazzawi tries not to let these changes to the community get to him. “I don’t think any of that dictates what we do,” he said, stating that Manakeesh thrives, because it doesn’t try to compete with national chains, opting instead to appeal to its faithful consumer base. As so often in neighborhoods like West Philadelphia, the changing demographics and the desire of new residents to find authentic food from another culture has contributed to the restaurant's success, even if the other effects of gentrification have made the neighborhood less friendly to its original inhabitants. Perhaps what is so appealing about Manakeesh is its inclusivity; even as people move out, the restaurants they leave behind thrive, because people’s connection with and appreciation of food is universal. Ghazzawi is excited for the future of Manakeesh, believing that it brings people together from both University City and West Philadelphia in a way that other organizations probably couldn’t. “Manakeesh is really indicative of West Philly,” said Ghazzawi. “It’s just a mosaic or patch blanket of all different types of people and cultures and I think they all find something here that they can relate to.”
A tale of
Two Cultures BY ISAMI MCCOWAN ILLUSTRATIONS BY VALENCIA FU PHOTO BY EDA ÖZÜNER
KAKI NO TARE
Tachikawa, Japan wafted through the air with whispers of my mom’s upbringing. On the petal-dusted streets of the small 1970’s town in Japan, kids had more freedom to roam. This explains her endless stories of spending childhood days with my aunt and uncle, curiously searching for the most delicious Japanese treats they could find. Dorayaki were the red bean paste filled snacks that she snuck from the pantry of her childhood home, kaki no tane were the spicy rice crackers that she shared with friends, and dried anchovies were her personal favorites. These were the flavors she grew up with. Thankfully, her side of the family made sure I did too. My mom’s adventures were never complete without a meal from my grandmother, my Obaachan. When my Obaachan came to visit my brother and I a generation later, neither were ours. Japanese culture is simultaneously powerful and delicate. My brother had an affinity for the careful craftsmanship of origami, and I had a talent for preparing our favorite dish Inarizushi. Named in honor of Shinto god Inari, it is a pouch of fried tofu filled to the brim with sushi rice. Like origami, the intricate preparation was almost as satisfying as the first bite of the finished product. Our kitchen, infused with the flavors of Japan, was my first apprenticeship. Worlds away in Lawton, Oklahoma, my dad was raised in the heart of southern comfort food. The soul food
that got him through adolescence became our father-daughter tradition: Sundays were for live Jazz shows, macaroni and cheese, collard greens, and immaculately seasoned fried chicken. As my Nana does--whose boldness rivals the flavors of the dishes she taught me to cook, this food finds its roots in community. Throughout her life, she has always surrounded her dinner table with family, friends, and from time to time, a person she’d met earlier that day in line at the store and, not surprisingly, charmed the pants off of. For me, soul food is not the same without company to enjoy it with. For a long time, the seemingly dichotomous cuisines that composed my culinary identity remained separate. Black-eyed peas and skillet cornbread on lazy Sunday afternoons while the sun dripped onto the kitchen table, sashimi on Monday evenings as the perfect fuel to take on the week. But over time, the ingredients in our divided pantry got crowded, and I got creative. Inspiration wasn’t hard to find— my mom has amassed a collection of over a hundred cookbooks, collected since the early ‘90s. It was simply a matter of figuring out how to apply it. As with most creative experiments, there were failures. Many of them (i.e. sushi with collard greens tastes worse than you think it would). I persisted in hopes of enlightenment, because I no longer wanted a fragmented identity. Being mixed race often feels categorical, right down to the ethnicity boxes on standardized tests. In my kitchen,
Chicken Katsu Makes 4 servings MACARONI AND CHEESE
4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless ½ cup flour 1 egg, beaten Okinawan sea salt 1 cup Panko (Japanese bread crumbs) 1 cup vegetable oil Pinch of lemon juice For serving: Tonkatsu sauce Lemon wedges Parmesan cheese
I came to realize that I wasn’t looking for a melting pot, but instead a mosaic. I wanted to highlight distinctions of my Japanese and Black identities but to also appreciate how they intertwine. Watering down my ethnic identities into a muted mush was no more appealing than a blended macaroni-teriyaki sauce-okra disaster. Japanese craftsmanship from abroad and my Black community at home guided me through my creative iterations in the kitchen. With the artistry of my brother’s origami creations and my Obaachan’s dishes in mind, I began to understand how salty, sweet, and spicy can complement one another to appeal to the senses. My Nana’s aptitude for creating community by
sharing stories with nearly everyone she meets led me to leave the kitchen for ideas. I got tips from great aunts I’d never met at family reunions, and from friends who were self-described culinary geniuses. The slew of finished products became reflections of my family and I. As we shared my take on chicken katsu, chili-glazed tofu, and miso brown butter sauce, our dinner table became a microcosm of my identity. I grew up in a country home past cattle farms and rolling hills, but I am also a city-dweller. I am my mom and I am my dad, craftsmanship and community, Japanese and Black. I am grateful to have come of age with fusion food because it taught me how to coexist within myself.
Dredge the chicken breasts in the flour. Dip each chicken breast into the egg, followed by the Panko. Repeat the egg and Panko steps if necessary to ensure the breasts are properly coated. Salt the breasts liberally. Heat the oil to 350 degrees Fahrenheit in a large pan. Cook chicken breasts for four minutes on each side, or until they turn golden-brown. Remove and place on paper towel to soak up excess oil. Serve with lemon wedges, grated parmesan cheese, and Tonkatsu sauce.
S P I R U L I N A
BY MARIA MURAD PHOTO BY JESS MOH
the cyanobacteria that’s taking over BY MARIA MURAD PHOTO BY JESS MOH
Place all ingredients, except ice, in blender and pulse. Add ice and pulse for an additional 30 second or until the desired consistency has been reached. Spirulina-Roasted Carrot Hummus
This little cyanobacteria that floats in both salt and freshwater is making it big in popular food culture. As the most nutrient dense food on Earth, modern health nuts are entranced by this magical, green powder. However, spirulina finds its roots in Mesoamerican and Sub-Saharan cultures. The Aztecs harvested what they called “tecuitlati” from Lake Texcoco until the 16th century. Natives of Chad harvested “dihé” from Lake Chad and dried it into a powder to use as a cultural staple and a key ingredient in broths. Spirulina undergoes a process of flash-drying to ensure its availability for human consumption in powder form. After this three to seven second process, it finds its way to sit on a shelf in our local grocery store in powdered or tablet form. Today, spirulina finds its traction in the vegan and vegetarian communities for all the wonderful nutrients it has to offer, but specifically for its protein content. One tablespoon contains four grams of protein, nearly as much as the six found in an egg. People can get lost in how to utilize this fish-scented, green powder. On its own or mixed with water it can have a fishy taste, but added into hummus, blended into a smoothie, or sprinkled on popcorn, it's earthy taste is much more manageable. These little cyanobacteria are our friends and our food. Next time you pass the green bottle of fishy powder in the grocery store, pick it up and experiment with all the ways you can turn basic dishes into nutrient-rich super foods with just a sprinkle of spirulina.
1 cup chickpeas ½ cup tahini 3-4 peeled garlic cloves 1/3 cup lemon juice ¼ teaspoon cumin ½ cup ice water 3-4 medium carrots, chopped into ½ inch pieces 2 teaspoons garlic powder 2 teaspoons cayenne 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons spirulina Salt and pepper to taste
Protein Packed Spirulina Smoothie
Add popcorn kernels, sesame seeds, and oil to a 6 quart pot. Cover the top with tin foil, and poke 5-10 slits in the foil using a knife. Place the pot on the stove over medium heat. Continuously shake the pot using an oven mitt until the popcorn stops popping, approximately 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat, and let cool for a minute. Remove the tinfoil, and add the melted butter, stirring constantly. Immediately, stir in the remaining ingredients.
1 cup greek yogurt ½ cup almond milk 6 strawberries (chopped) 1 banana 1 cup spinach 1 cup ice 1 tablespoon agave syrup or honey 1 tablespoon hemp seeds 1 tablespoon chia seeds 1 tablespoon spirulina
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss carrots with olive oil, cayenne, garlic powder, and a dash of salt and pepper. Spread out onto a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 20 minutes or until tender. While the carrots are roasting, cook the chickpeas on the stove until they are falling apart and mushy-- this is the key to smooth hummus! Blend garlic, lemon juice, and cumin in a food processor or blender until combined. Then, add in tahini and ice water with the motor running. Blend until very smooth. Add in the rest of the ingredients, and blend until you reach the desired consistency. Umami-Seasoned Popcorn
½ cup of popcorn kernels 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds ¼ cup of neutral-flavored oil, such as peanut 3 tablespoons butter, melted ½ tablespoon spirulina ¼ cup diced, roasted nori ½ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon pepper ½ teaspoon garlic powder
Argentine on Pine:
BY GRACE LEAHY PHOTOS BY LEAH SPRAGUE penn appétit
As we round the corner onto Pine Street, I swear I can smell the empanadas already. Situated at the end of a row of townhouses just barely into South Philly territory is a modest, painted-yellow-brick corner cafe. Small, round tables hug the walls, all overflowing with locals sipping from matching ceramic coffee cups and families telling their children that no, they cannot have another alfajor. In the window hangs a hand-painted sign, “Hoy será un buen día!” or “Today will be a good day!” This is Jezabel’s Cafe. Inside, a wooden bar stretches across the room, decorated with a glass case of Argentinian delicacies: golden-crusted empanadas and fresh frittatas, scones and pies. Faint latin music overlaps with the hum of conversation. Behind the counter, past the coffees and teas, a young man (who we later learned to be Jezabel’s brother Isra Careaga), sandwiches together sets of soft maicena (cornstarch) cookies using dulce de leche, a caramel spread instrumental to any Argentinian diet. To his side is Jezabel herself. With flour on her hands, she slips the next tray of dough into the oven.
We sit at a table beside the counter, and when our food comes out, we can’t conceal our excitement. My boyfriend, who calls Buenos Aires his home, grins upon biting into the first empanada: “Just like home.” During our visit, we became friendly with Jezabel’s brother Isra. Afterwards, he offered to put me in touch with his sister, who was kind enough to provide me with some history and insight into Jezabel’s humble roots. Can you give me a brief history of Jezabel’s? I opened Jezabel’s in June 2010. Actually, I moved to Philadelphia in the summer of 2009 to start the project of opening the cafe in Fitler Square. The Pine Street location sat vacant for 20 years, and when I came along, it was just perfect timing to open an Argentine cafe. Back in 2010, there were not [any] other Argentine cafes or restaurants in Philadelphia. Originally, I started serving coffee shops’ regular offerings such as croissants and bagels, but soon after I opened the cafe, I introduced empanadas and later alfajores. Little by little, they became known in the city, and that is how today we only serve empanadas
and Argentine traditional desserts. It was a very organic evolution, and I’m happy to see where we are and where we are going next. What makes Jezabel’s different from other local spots? We offer a well-designed and comfortable setting just like any confitería in Argentina. We are the only cafe that offers Argentine empanadas, medialunas and alfajores in Philadelphia, and we are well-known in the city for it. What items do you recommend? And do you have anything seasonal now? Well, what I recommend is [to] come into the cafe and ask: What did just come out of the oven? We bake around the clock, and even though we make sure our food is fresh and up to standards, when you bite [into] a beef empanada or a blueberry scone that is just out-of-the-oven, nothing can beat that! Feel free to visit Jezabel and Isra at their primary location at Pine St. or their studio at 45th and Walnut. penn appétit
MACAR ON S
Macarons are my blank canvas, and the fillings are my paint. The beauty of the French macaron is that there is a standard recipe for the shell for all flavors - a precise blend of almond flour, sugar, and egg whites - but the filling and flavor combinations provide endless possibilities for creativity. Make a smooth chocolate ganache, a coffee buttercream, a fruit jam, or just mix it up with a curd combined with other textures — in the end, it’s your choice. BY RACHEL PROKUPEK PHOTO BY ISABEL ZAPATA
Macarons 300 g powdered sugar 180 g finely ground almonds 70 g sugar ½ g cream of tartar Preheat the oven to 330. In a medium-sized bowl, measure 300 g powdered sugar. Sift 180 g ground almonds through a mesh sieve, whisk the ground almonds and powdered sugar together. In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites. Gradually add sugar and cream of tartar until stiff peaks form. Pour in half of the dry mixture, and with a pastry scraper, fold mixture together until just combined. Add the rest of the dry ingredients. Use the pastry scraper to smear mixture around the edges and up the sides of the bowl, then scrape back down into the middle. Repeat this process until the mixture is combined, and the edges start to curve in as it spreads out at the bottom of the bowl. This is a critical point in the macaron-making process. You must not over-mix or under-mix the mixture. With a 10mm round pastry tip, fill a pastry bag with the macaron mixture. Pipe out small circles on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Let sit for 15 minutes until a thin film forms over the cookies. Bake 12-14 minutes total, rotating the pan halfway through. Once out of the oven, immediately remove the parchment paper from the hot pan to let the cookies cool. Lemon Curd 1 tbsp lemon zest ¾ cup lemon juice (from 4 lemons) ½ cup sugar ¼ tsp salt 3 eggs 4 egg yolks 4 tbsp butter, chopped In a small saucepan, stir together lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, and salt. Cook gently over medium heat until the sugar and salt have dissolved. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl whisk together eggs and egg yolks. Once the liquid is ready, slowly pour some of it into the bowl of eggs while whisking fast to temper the eggs. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and continue to cook over medium heat, whisking
constantly. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the saucepan to prevent the eggs from curdling. Cook the curd until thick. When you drag the whisk through, it should leave marks. If there are curdled eggs, pour through a mesh strainer into a bowl. Stir in chopped butter until completely melted. Place plastic wrap directly on top of the lemon curd and refrigerate. Earl Grey Buttercream 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature ¼ cup loose Earl Grey tea ½ cup + 2 tbsp egg whites 1 ¼ cup sugar 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract 1-2 tbsp honey Melt 1 stick of butter in a saucepan with loose tea. Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from heat and let the tea steep for 5 minutes. Strain through a mesh sieve so there are no tea leaves and refrigerate until the consistency of softened butter. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together egg whites and sugar. Meanwhile, fill a medium saucepan with an inch or two of water to make a bain marie (double boiler). Place the bowl on top and whisk until the mixture reaches 160F on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat and fit bowl onto the stand mixer. With the whisk attachment, beat egg mixture on high until stiff peaks form. The bowl should be back to room temperature at this point. Swap the whisk attachment for the paddle, and on low speed, add vanilla, honey, tea-infused butter, and the remaining 1 cup of butter. Add the butter in small amounts. Once everything is incorporated, mix on medium-high speed and beat until silky smooth, about 3-5 minutes. Presentation Find pairs of macaron shells that are the same shape. Fill a piping bag with a small tip with the buttercream, and fill another piping bag with a smaller tip with the cold lemon curd. Pipe a ring of buttercream around the edge of one macaron shell, and fill the center with lemon curd. Top with another shell and enjoy! They are best after a day in the fridge. penn appétit
a n R O ol
A tour of b rea
What started out 30,000 years ago as a simple mixture of water and grain has spawned hundreds of variations across cultures. From the confusingly named pineapple bun to the underrated pĂŁo de queijo, here are some of the worldâ€™s weirdest, coolest, tastiest takes on bread and where you can find them around Philly.
oss c ultures
BY VICTORIA MAI PHOTO BY JUSTINE DE JESUS
Colombia and Venezuela Popular in Colombia and Venezuela, cornmeal-based arepas are baked, griddled, or fried to crispy perfection. These round flatbreads offer nearly limitless possibilities for customization. Stuffed with meat, they make for a satisfying meal; they’re also divine smeared with guacamole or topped with fresh cheese. Different versions of arepas can be found across Colombia, from a sweet cake with anise to mini fried bread loaves. Check out Puyero or Sazon Restaurant and Cafe for arepas served with shredded beef and Spanish herbs.
Pineapple Bun Hong Kong
“Pineapple” is misleading—there’s no fruit to be found in Hong Kong’s favorite bun. This sugar-gilded treat is named for its crunchy baked topping, scored to resemble a pineapple’s diamond-patterned skin. The cloud of bread underneath is the real standout, soft enough to sleep on and stuffed with decadent custard cream. Sample Philly’s best pineapple buns—alongside other Hong Kong staples like coconut bread and BBQ pork rolls—at Mayflower Bakery or K C’s Pastries.
There’s nothing quite as satisfying as sinking your teeth into an oven-warm ciabatta loaf. “Ciabatta” is Italian for “slipper,” a nod to this bread’s broad, flattish shape. Originally developed by an Italian baker to rival the French baguette, ciabatta is no ordinary yeast bread. Its crisp crust shields a moist, subtly sour interior with a crumb denser than the baguette’s. Ciabatta begins with an Italian starter called biga, which ferments and rises over the course of almost two days. Fortunately, it’s well worth the wait. Taste for yourself at Gran Caffe L’Aquila or Philly Bread.
Pão de queijo Brazil
Pão de queijo, addictive bite-sized balls penn appétit
of bread freckled with burnt cheese, are ubiquitous in Brazilian steakhouses. The dough begins with tapioca flour—an uncommon secret ingredient that imparts pão de queijo with their distinctive chewy texture. Literally known as “bread of cheese,” these gooey morsels are the stuff of dreams. Pull them apart to marvel at their perfectly soft, peculiarly crumbless interiors. You’re more likely to eat them whole, though...five, ten, twenty at a time. Look for classic pão de queijo at Fogo de Chão or O Rei Da Picanha Steakhouse.
South Asia and Caribbean Roti is naan’s unleavened cousin. Originally from India, it was introduced to the Caribbean by indentured workers in the 1800s. Like Ethiopian injera, it’s as much an efa ating utensil as something to eat. Fold it snugly around meat stew; use it to grip chunks of golden curry; dip it into rich soups glazed with shimmering grease. From sada roti, made with white flour, to puri roti, eaten with halwa to celebrate a birth, roti has embedded itself into cultures on opposite sides of the world. Here in Philly, you can try traditional roti at Sitar India, or savor its Caribbean counterpart at Brown Sugar Bakery.
Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia Injera is a crepe-like sourdough flatbread speckled with tiny holes, ideal for scooping up chunky vegetable and meat stews. Ethiopian households use it as a plate and a tablecloth, a vehicle for food and a delicious food itself. It’s also rich in iron and legitimately nutritious, thanks to its main ingredient: teff. Teff, a fine gluten-free grain packed with protein and minerals, thrives in the grasslands of Ethiopia. For fresh injera, mix teff flour with water, let ferment up to five days, and pour into a clay mitad set over a fire. Or save yourself the trouble and find Philly’s favorite injera at Mubarak Shawarma on 45th street.
West Africa in
West Philly with Chef Saigay Sheriff BY DILLON BERGIN PHOTOS BY JUSTINE DE JESUS penn appÃ©tit
“I THINK I GOT THIS QUESTION FROM MY MOM,” Chef
Saigay Sheriff tells me, then she laughs and continues, “now whenever I have friends over, I always say it. Do you want to eat? Do you want to eat? Because in Liberian culture it’s rude not to ask.” In April, Saigay Sheriff graduated from the Culinary Institute of America, but unlike many fresh CIA graduates, she didn’t stay and join the sexy culinary scene of New York City. She came back home to Philly. Saigay grew up in a neighborhood of Southwest Philadelphia that Liberians affectionately call Little Monrovia. Behind their house, her mom kept a garden of vegetables and West African staples like potato greens and chili peppers. As a kid, Saigay used to go to her aunt’s house on weekends, sit in the kitchen, and watch while her aunt cooked big, fresh Liberian meals. The ingredients that weren’t from their garden came from a grocery store down the street, one with brands from Liberia and the Ivory Coast, and patrons talking in the loud, friendly vowels of West African
English. Everything was made exactly as it was made back home – palm oil, cassava leaves, plantains, fresh fish, and humongous bowls of rice. Just beyond the garden behind Saigay’s house, thousands of other Liberian families were also planting roots in unfamiliar soil. Years of horrific civil wars forced Liberians to flee their homes, and an estimated fifteen thousand settled in Philadelphia. The process of rebuilding community wove itself into Saigay’s childhood. Saigay’s mom, Kormassa Bobo, is a renowned Liberian folk dancer and the presiding matriarch of Liberian culture and community in Philadelphia. When family and friends arrived in the United States alone and uprooted, Kormassa took them in. “She helped them find a job and everything. She would say ‘you can stay here until, you know, you can financially take care of yourself’,” Saigay says and then pauses.“She did that a lot… for a lot of people. Growing up and seeing that made me realize, when you know someone needs help, you help them. No matter what your situation might be.”
Saigay soon grew out of her aunt’s kitchen and went to a technical high school where they offered a culinary program. After graduating, she moved to New York to study at the CIA, where she did rotations focusing on French and Italian cuisine. Yet, Saigay realized it was still her aunt’s kitchen that she wanted to know more about. The rotations had skipped a whole continent of delicious history. She began gathering other African students and friends from the Black Culinary Society to share recipes on weekends, in the warmth of small apartment kitchens, where they knocked hips and shoulders to fit around the table. She spent a semester in California researching wine, and returned eager to learn more about Liberian palm wine, made from the sweet and creamy sap of palm trees. If you have ever eaten fufu and soup, then you will understand Saigay’s quest back to the heart of Liberian cuisine. Fufu has many different names and variations in countries from West Africa to the Caribbean. These doughy cassava dumplings
have a rich sense of individuality and innovation, yet they arenâ€™t meant to be eaten alone. Fufu is always paired with tradition and history, the hearty (and very spicy) pork, chicken, or shellfish soups vital to West African cuisines across time. When I met with her, Saigay Sheriff walked into Philadelphia Assembled Kitchen in a bright, floral dress, still smiling from the conversation she had with someone on the way into the restaurant. I was nibbling on the last of the pumpkin bread she had made, sitting at a round five-person table alone. There are no tables for less than five people at this restaurant. She told me the purpose of these tables, like the purpose of the whole Philadelphia Assembled project, is to scooch the community a little closer to each other. At that big table, Saigay glowed as she told me stories of her mom and her childhood, of community, and of her dream to start a cultural center in Philadelphia to teach future generations about African culture. Of course she came back.
Bandra BY AKHIL VAIDYA PHOTOS BY ISABEL ZAPATA
Father-Son Bonding through Cultural Mixology
I used to be under the impression that my father’s life began when I was born. His dedication to my family made any idea of a life before us seem ludicrous. At first, I was content with this limited knowledge. I trusted that his identity was entirely grounded in being my father and that anything else was, and had always been, irrelevant. But as I got older, I began to question his static existence. Like everyone does eventually, I realized that my parents are not superheroes - they are humans that love, hurt, enjoy, and grieve. Since this revelation, I have been trying to piece together who my father was before me. This process has been akin to drinking blue raspberry vodka: difficult. He isn’t exactly an open book. For example, I always knew my father loved cricket, but it wasn’t until my mom let it slip one night that he awas drafted for the Indian national cricket team as a bowler that I realized how deep that love went-- or how different his life could have been if he’d pursued it. Another evening, my late grandmother once told me that she caught my father smoking a cigarette in the bathroom when he was in high school, betraying a rowdy youth that I never knew existed. Surprisingly, I have learned much about him through observing his drinking habits. My father has always had very distinct tastes in his drinks, implying a storied history that I have no real access to. I’ve always noticed how carefully he chose his drinks, how adamantly he makes recommendations, and how meticulously he crafted beverages. For continued on page 52 penn appétit
our family, drinking has always been a social accessory to many small gatherings and an interesting point of discussion for the people that visit our house. My father revels in explaining the origins of the new beer he has found or cocktail he has created. Some of our greatest memories come from him teaching me how he makes his signature cocktails like kala khattas, chili basil gin and tonics, and mint cumintinis. These moments have been my biggest insight into his past life thus far, and his mixing of drinks has shaken the way I see him. In the same way, these cocktail recipes are a collaboration between my father and I, drawing on traditional drinks and injecting them with new life.
Kala Khatta My father was born and raised in a city called Bandra just outside of India’s capital city of Mumbai. Although it was a small town, it had a population that pulsed with energy and became one of my father’s steadiest pillars of support. When my father first started drinking, it was mostly one brand of beer called Pilsner that was abundantly available in India. Most of my father’s friends would buy scotch or rum like Old Monk because it could serve more people than one bottle of beer for around the same price. Still, my father insisted on drinking Pilsner because he didn’t like the harder drinks. 1 ounce of vodka 1 ounce of tequila ½ ounce of lime juice 1 ½ ounces of kala khatta Sprig of mint Mix the vodka, tequila, and lime juice with ice in a shaker. Garnish with mint leaves.
Mint Cumintini There was a bar in Bandra called “Casdah,” which was supposed to signify something along the seashore. This was a common meeting place for my father and his various friends from school, cricket, and the general neighborhood. Groups of guys and girls would congregate around this area before they rode into town on motorcycles. 1 cup cilantro leaves 1 cup mint leaves 1 dhani (bird chili) pepper Juice of 2 whole limes 1 teaspoon finely-ground, toasted cumin seeds, plus extra for rimming glass 52
1 pinch black salt, plus extra for rimming glass 2 cups water 4 teaspoons sugar ¼ cup of mint leaves, plus additional for garnish 1 cup pomegranate vodka 1/2 cup lime cordial Dip 4 glasses in water and rim them with an equal parts cumin-salt mixture. Blend the cilantro, mint, green chili, cumin powder, salt and lime juice until it forms a smooth liquid. Add water to maintain the texture. Strain and chill. Muddle mint leaves with sugar in the bottom of a shaker. Add the pomegranate vodka and lime cordial. Add ice and shake. Strain into glasses. Top each with ¼ of the chilled liquid. Garnish with mint leaves, and serve.
Chili Basil Gin and Tonic During college, it was very difficult for my father to get his hands on any high quality hard liquor. So, like many college students, this meant he had to be resourceful. Whenever one of his friends went to Goa, they always brought back 10 bottles of Feni, which is a strong fermented drink made from cashew or coconut. There was also a military base near my father’s home where he had a few friends that were enlisted. They were able to get some good drinks for him from the military canteen. 2 dhani (bird chili) peppers, thinly sliced 2 sprigs of fresh basil 1/2 persian cucumber 2 ounces gin 3 ounces of tonic Muddle 1 chili, basil, cucumber in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add ice and gin, and shake. Pour into a glass with ice. Add the tonic to the top. Garnish with remaining chili, one cucumber slice, and the basil sprigs before serving. Watch out: the drink will become spicer over time.
Corn and P o m e g r a n at e Chaat ½ cup boiled corn, removed from cob 1 orange, segmented and then the segments cut into thirds Seeds of ½ pomegranate 1 dhani (bird chili) pepper, halved 3 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
3 teaspoons hot mustard 1 teaspoon chaat masala ½ teaspoon cumin powder Juice of ½ lime Chopped mint and cilantro to garnish In a large bowl, combine the corn, orange segments, pomegranate seeds, and dhani pepper. In a smaller bowl, mix the tamarind concentrate, mustard sauce, chaat masala, cumin powder, and lime juice. Dress the ingredients in the larger bowl with the tamarind sauce, and toss. Garnish with chopped mint and cilantro leaves.
Paneer Chaat with Jwala (Hot Finger Chili) Chutney For Jwala Chutney: 3 tablespoons roasted, ground sesame seeds, black or brown 3 tablespoons grated jaggery 5 ounces by mass tamarind pulp 1 teaspoon kashmir or kandela (red chili) powder ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder 2 teaspoons salt 3 tablespoons sesame oil, divided 1 teaspoon mustard seeds 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds 1 cup of Jwala Chilies (or any similar American “green Indian Chili”) For Paneer Chaat: 4 cups of paneer, cut in ½ inch cubes ¼ cup neutral oil or ghee 2 tablespoons lemon juice 2 teaspoons dried mint ¼ teaspoon ground cumin 2 pinches salt 2 teaspoons of chaat masala 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro Combine the sesame powder, jaggery, tamarind pulp, chili powder, turmeric, and salt. Place in a small saucepan over medium heat, and allow it to reduce slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove from the stovetop, and let cool. Heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil in a small pan, and sautée the mustard and fenugreek seeds until fragrant and toasted, around 30 seconds. Add the seeds directly into the tamarind mixture. Remove the top from each chili. Then, slice each chili on one side so they remain intact but the seeds can be seen. Heat a 2 tablespoons of sesame oil in a small pan over medium-high heat. Cook the chiles until they wilt and have some black spots. Mix the whole cooked chilis
in to the rest of the mixture. Allow the mixture to cool in the refrigerator before serving. Heat the oil or ghee in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add the cubed paneer, pan-fry until golden brown. Remove from heat, and allow to cool slightly. Combine remaining ingredients in a separate bowl. Pour mixture over paneer, and toss. Serve with chutney.
(Indian clarified butter) Produces 4-6 tablespoons of ghee (higher quality butter will produce more finished product) 1 stick of butter (or more if you wish to make more ghee) Heat the butter in a pan over medium-low heat. As the butter melts and heats through, it will begin to simmer and split into three distinctive layers. The milk solids at the top of the pan should be skimmed as they form to reveal the clear, yellow butter layer. At the bottom of the pan, some milk solids will remain. Let the butter simmer until the milk solids turn golden brown. Letting these brown will add a slight nuttiness to the finished ghee. Once the milk solids have reached the desired color, place the mixture into a french press to strain out any remaining solids. Pour the remaining butter into a dish and let cool in the refrigerator. The remaining solids contain little to no dairy and can be kept at room temperature.
Makes 12 Naan 1 cup whole milk, warmed to 110 degrees fahrenheit 2 teaspoons of sugar 1 packet of active dry yeast 4 cups all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons plus one teaspoon canola oil, divided 4 tablespoons whole-milk yogurt 2 teaspoons of kosher salt 1 level teaspoon baking powder Approximately ½ cup melted ghee Add the sugar and yeast to the heated whole milk. Stir, and wait 10 minutes for bubbles to confirm the yeast is alive and active. Place the flour in a large mixing bowl, and create a well in the center. Add the milk mixture to the well, and mix. Add two tablespoons of canola oil and
the whole-milk yogurt, salt, and baking powder to the flour mixture. Mix well. The final dough should be fairly sticky. Remove to a well floured surface, and knead for 5 minutes. Let rise in a warm, drafty area for 60-90 minutes until doubled in size. Divide the dough up into 12 equal portions. Roll one portion into a 5” by 8” rectangle or oval. Heat a pan over medium heat on the stove. Brush one side of the rolled portion with ghee, and place that side on the stove. Let it cook for 3040 seconds. Brush the other side with ghee and flip it. Let that side cook for 10-15 seconds. Flip the naan back over, and let it finish cooking so that it gets a golden brown splotchy pattern. Remove from heat, and keep covered in tinfoil or in a slightly warmed oven until ready to serve. Repeat with the remaining portions of dough. penn appétit
A Drinker’s Guide to the Galaxy
BY ISAMI MCCOWAN PHOTOS BY JESSICA MOH
Firewhiskey Lemonade 1/2 oz blue curacao 1 oz vodka 151 rum Combine the vodka, blue curacao and lemonade in a goblet and stir. Float a shallow layer of 151-proof rum on top, then set alight using a long match or lighter. Sprinkle cinnamon over the flames to generate sparks. Blow out the flames or let them die down, then drink.
To find traces of our world in science fiction, you don’t need to venture further than the liquor cabinet. Though the realms of aliens, witches, wizards, and Vulcans are tumultuous, alcohol has remained their constant for generations because it illustrates humanity. In sci-fi, it is the vice shared among galaxies that reveals the non-negotiables of our existence. In the Harry Potter series, Firewhiskey is a popular drink among witches and wizards known for its burning heat that fills the body with courage. Harry and his friends raised glasses of it to toast to the memory of recently deceased Professor Alastor Moody. Firewhiskey illustrates the presence of human nature in a fantasy world: it is consumed when solidarity and escapism are needed. The act of toasting a glass of whiskey in someone’s honor, in all it’s simplicity, illuminates the community element of the Harry Potter series that allows readers to see themselves and their friends in the characters. Star Trek’s characteristically
blue, highly intoxicating Romulan Ale stirs up memories of the Prohibition era. It was illegal in Star Trek’s Federation from roughly 2280 to 2370, but beloved Captain James Kirk was still able to sneak some for his crew at a formal dinner. When told it was illegal, Kirk shrugged it off as “one of the advantages of being a thousand light years from Federation headquarters.” Like Prohibition-era drinkers, the attractiveness of alcohol was only heightened by the ban in the eyes of Kirk and his team. Though Kirk himself is human, much of his society is not. He reasons that he’s in a position of power over the Federation because the distance is too great for them to arrest him. Not many things could tie our psyche with that of aliens and futuristic Starfleet officers. But as shown through Kirk’s surreptitious Romulan Ale, the nature of human desire for power and control over vices is universal. The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy introduced us to the most legendary fictional cocktail of all time: the Pan-Galactic gargle blaster. The
FIREWHISKEY penn appétit
drink’s effects are said to resemble “having your brains smashed in by a slice of lemon wrapped round a large gold brick.” Though protagonist Ford Prefect is a hitchhiking space alien, his use of alcohol as an agent of mystical transport, not unlike how college students use it, brings him down to Earth. It’s surprisingly easy to compare the weight of saving galaxies to that of learning a semester’s worth of material during finals week—Ford’s intergalactic drinking reflects the escapism from stress via alcohol that many of us know too well. The idea that a fictional alien displays human-like drinking patterns offers an exploration of the meaning of consciousness, showing that the intellect of science fiction creatures overlaps with ours--the power of the mindfulness is our common thread. Alcohol is a defining aspect of human society, but has also established itself as one in other worlds. It is this commonality that lets us see ourselves in science fiction’s most beloved characters, whether through the familiarity of community, escapism, or the intrigue of a vice. Science fiction offers us the rare opportunity to see alcohol as a unifier rather than an agent of divisiveness.
Pan-Galactic Drink Blaster Coarse sugar, optional 1/4 cup cranberry juice cocktail 1 oz vodka 1 oz blue curacao 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice Lemon wedge Add cranberry juice, vodka, curacao and lemon juice; cover and shake. Strain into martini glass and serve with a lemon wedge.
PAN-GALACTIC DRINK BLASTER 56
From Paddy to the Bottle Sake Production
Saké, also known as Japanese rice wine, is served in special ceremonies and in daily life. Learn how it goes from little grains of rice to your sakazuki. BY NATASIA NABILA • ILLUSTRATIONS BY EDWARD KIM
Rice for brewing saké called saka mai is grown specifically for making saké. This rice is too high in starch content to be eaten as traditional rice.
Saka mai must be run through a polisher to remove excess bran. The polished rice is then allowed to rest before going on to the next step.
The rice is cooked in an intensely supervised and very specific process to prepare for fermentation.
Cooked sake mai is added to a yeast culture and water and allowed to ferment
Finally, saké is extracted from the solid mixtures and distilled in a filtration process
Dad’s Rum Cake BY ZOE SCHWINGEL-SAUER PHOTO BY EDA OZUNER This rum cake is a firm family favorite. We always serve this during Thanksgiving, and my sister requests it every year without fail. It’s decadent, but not too dense. The addition of instant pudding the cake mix adds a moistness and density that is otherwise unparalleled. Although on the simpler side in terms of ingredients, the cake itself is full of deep flavor, and the combination of rum and pecans adds a richness and depth to what would otherwise be a normal bundt cake. Makes 1 cake Batter: 18 oz package of yellow cake mix 3-3/4 oz package instant vanilla pudding mix 4 eggs ½ cup cold water ½ cup vegetable oil ½ cup dark rum 1 cup chopped pecans Glaze: 1 stick of butter ¼ cup water 1 cup granulated sugar ½ cup dark rum Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a bundt cake pan. Mix all cake ingredients together. Bake for 1 hour. Remove from the oven, and allow it to cool completely. While the cake is cooling, heat the glaze ingredients on the stovetop in a 2 quart saucepan over medium heat. Allow the mixture to come to a boil. Invert the cake onto a cooling rack over a sheet pan. Drizzle the glaze over the cake evenly. Allow the cake to sit for at least 15 minutes to absorb the glaze. Transfer the cake to a serving platter, and enjoy. penn appétit
Still or Sparkling Wine Pairing's Bubbly Friend BY BLAZE BERNSTEIN PHOTO BY CAROLINA SALAZAR-PARANHOS ILLUSTRATIONS BY EDWARD KIM The love story of food and wine is a tale as old as time. Residents of the culinary world often attempt to do away with wine pairing for trendier concepts using craft cocktails and beers, but such pairings have long been futile, lacking the special romance food and wine share. That is, until now. Since the start of the decade, sparkling 60
seltzer water has undergone a remarkable renaissance. The boring, plain seltzer of yore has been updated to feature distinct flavors and unique levels of fizziness. No longer is seltzer restricted to vodka soda; it has a place at the dinner table as well, right where your wine glass used to be. As a connoisseur of seltzer (having tasted over 70 varieties), I am very familiar with the rights and wrongs of picking out sparkling
water, and my carefully refined palette has been trained to match individual seltzers with specific foods and flavors. Here, you can find a not-so-definitive pairing guide to choosing the perfect sparkling water for every course of your meal. So, the next time you’re out grocery shopping for your fancy dinner party, don’t forget to grab a few extra bottles of “bubbly” for the guests.
Quick Pairings for Hors D’oeuvres Soft Cheeses LaCroix “Mango” (Light bodied; soft floral notes) Hard Cheeses Trader Joe’s “Raspberry Lime” (Medium to full bodied; tart with citrusy finish) Blue Veined Cheeses Aquafina “Raspberry” (Full bodied; tart, intense flavor) Raw Veggies Aquafina “Black Cherry Dragonfruit” (sweet and floral) or “Lemon-Lime” (light citrus) Cured Meats LaCroix “Cerise Limon” (Very intense, sweet cherry flavor and tangy lime finish)
Le Plat de Résistance
More Detailed Pairings to Match Your Main Red Meat Best paired with full bodied, tart flavors to match the intense savor of red meat. Vintage Seltzer “Pomegranate” Less sweet, but still packs a full-bodied flavor. Robust notes of pomegranate and a light zingy finish complement the richness of red meat.
Trader Joe’s “Cranberry Clementine” Medium to full bodied with slightly tangy notes. Intense flavor and tartness for bold red meats. Poultry Pair with medium bodied seltzers that pack enough tang to enhance the flavors of poultry. Choose more intense tangy waters for dark meat and seltzers on the lighter side for white meat. LaCroix “Tangerine” Medium bodied seltzer with a delightful zingy punch. The far superior relative of many orange seltzers because it packs a bonus tart flavor. Polar Seltzer “Raspberry Lime” Sweet, tangy, zingy. Raspberry with a punch of lime at the end. On the sweeter side, but still good for poultry because of that zing. Fish and other seafood Pair with medium bodied seltzers with tangy or citrus notes to enhance the flavors of the fish and other seafood. Make sure not to overpower your protein with beverages that are too fizzy or powerfully flavored. Aquafina “Raspberry” Medium bodied seltzer with a strong and slightly sweet raspberry flavor. Deer Park “Lemon” Fizzy with a clean lemon taste. Often, citrus seltzers taste like floor cleaner;
this one has enough restraint to maintain a fizz without a soapy finish. Roasted Veggies Pair with seltzers with sweeter, tangy tones to play off the rich, earthy notes of roasted vegetables. Vintage Seltzer “Seedless Watermelon” Sweet and light bodied, but still packs an intense watermelon flavor. Crisp, delicate notes are strong enough to play up roasted veggies without being hidden. Trader Joe’s “Pink Grapefruit” Stronger, sweeter cousin of LaCroix’s infamous pamplemousse. Full-bodied beverage with a sweet grapefruit finish and subtle earthy tones to enhance the flavor of roasted vegetables.
Et Le Digestif
A Glass to Go with Your Dessert Spread Choose savory seltzers with lighter tastes and floral notes to cut through the sweetness of dessert courses. Polar “Blueberry Lemonade” Sweet, fizzy, and totally unique. Light lemon notes on a medium bodied blueberry seltzer. LaCroix “Múre Pepino” Cúrate Savory notes of cucumber and blackberry function as a mignardise to the meal. Delicate floral aroma to match desserts in beautiful sweet-savory harmony. penn appétit
n P e o d r d i k? H WHERE? The Blind Pigs of Philadelphia BY AKHIL VAIDYA AND JANIE KIM PHOTOS BY ETHAN WU The days of flappers and the Prohibition may be well behind us, but speakeasies remain an alluring part of today’s bar scene. Also known as blind pigs, speakeasies were originally established during the Roaring ‘20s as illicit establishments where people could evade the national ban on alcohol. These secret bars are no longer hiding from the law, but channel the alluring mystery of the Jazz Age with hidden entrances, passwords, and innovative cocktails. Philly is home to more than a few of these modern speakeasies, each with their own rules and vibes. Venture out to find these back alley entrances that will lead you to great drinks and maybe towards Gatsby’s green light.
The Ranstead Room Name: The Ranstead Room Location: 2013 Ranstead Street Password: From 20th Street, turn onto Ranstead, pass two large trees, and look for a dark door with the letter “R” on it forwards and backwards. There is also a way to get in through the kitchen of El Rey
Vibes: Red leather and carefully-placed, dim lighting. Chandeliers dot the ceiling, and snakeskin stools line the bar. A twisted version of your neighborhood bar. Drinks: A daunting list of classic cocktails and signature twists. If you don’t know what you would like, ask for “the Bartender’s Choice.” They’ll guide you through safely.
The Rundown The Franklin Mortgage & Inveestment Co. Name: The Franklin Mortgage & Investment Co. (a.k.a. The Franklin Bar) Location: 112 South 18th Street Password: An unmarked entrance to the right of Byblos, a mediterranean restaurant, will lead you down to the bar. Vibes: Originally created as a front for an alcohol running ring during the Prohibition, the bar stays true to its classic, early American roots. It is wise to expect a long line for seats in the
THE FRANKLIN BAR 62
original downstairs bar, but you will be met with a very intimate, subterranean atmosphere that recalls the golden age of cocktails. If you find this a little too stuffy, don’t worry. Just head upstairs to the newer casual tiki bar. Drinks: There is a very consistent and impressive array of classic cocktail offerings that will encourage you to step a little bit outside your comfort zone. Don’t be intimidated by the clever names. Ask the server for advice, as intricately flavored cocktails take center stage at this bar.
SPEAKEASIES of Philadelphia
Location: 229 S 45th Street Password: Walk up the stairs that read “restaurant entrance” towards the right of the Ethiopian restaurant Abyssinia. Keep walking past bathrooms and a yellow door to get to the bar. Vibes: This bar is quite small and cozy but is home to many regulars and interesting people from the University City area. Live bands often shake the entire room but are usually worth the close quarters. Drinks: The bartenders enjoy talking about the extensive list of craft beers, but can make an excellent cocktail as well. Make sure to bring cash.
Hop Sing Laundromat
Name: Hop Sing Laundromat Location: 1029 Race Street
Password: Find the door with the black gate next to the restaurant Ocean Harbor and ring the buzzer. Vibes: With a strict no phone rule and a list of over 1700 names of people banned from the bar, this elegant, candlelit spot is known for its exclusivity and high quality craft cocktails. If you make it past the
notoriously brusque bouncer, you’ll have to agree to the rules of the bar before being seated at a cozy table with white tablecloth and flickering candles.
Drinks: With a selection of over 1,000 rare and obscure bottles comprising their liquor library, Hop Sing is known for pairing unexpected ingredients and spirits into innovative cocktails that will keep you coming back for more. Cash only!
Location: 223 South Sydenham Street
Password: Once inside the public restaurant and bar, you’ll need to acquire a password from a bartender and pick up the rotary phone next to the bookcase to gain access to the secret bar downstairs. Vibes: Previously a private dining
club, Vesper reopened in 2015 as a swanky Old World “supper club” with nightly live music and dancing. The underground bar has a much darker and sultry feel, and cell phones are also banned from this cocktail-heavy speakeasy.
Drinks: Vesper offers a standard selection of beers and wines, in addition to a few classic and “Vesper original” cocktails.
for Rooh Afsa
Navigating Alcohol as a Second-Generation Pakistani BY MARIA MURAD PHOTOS BY CAROLINA SALAZARPARANHOS Growing up in a household peppered with Islamic teachings, many typical “American” traditions were absent from our lives: Sunday night pork roasts, Christmas Eve dinners, and most apparently, alcohol. My mom wouldn’t even let us drink root beer because it had the word “beer” in it. This was the norm both at home and in the local Pakistani community. As soon as I began venturing into the preteen world of sleepovers with “school friends” (my mom’s euphemism for all non-Pakistani friends), I noticed a different norm in their households. Not only did they stock their fridges full of root beer, but they also had wine in every glass on the dinner table and six-packs of beer sat on their kitchen counter. Sometimes, even the kids drank. I never saw my parents deglazing while cooking bhindi or nihari1, nor saw alcohol in any of our cupboards. Our Pakistani household was one where the bright-green acidity of Pakola2 cleansed our palettes; one where Rooh Afza3 collided with milk to accompany kiri cheese platters; a home that woke up every Sun-
day morning to the blender blitzing away at a fresh batch of lassi, and one where the only liquid that accompanied batters was whole milk yogurt mixed with water. Our dinner table was coated with the distinct flavors of Pakistan each night, and alcohol was just never a part of it. Now, as a college student, when I go home, I still never see alcohol in the house, but this dry zone juxtaposes the American culture I was born into. Not only is alcohol omnipresent in America, it’s celebrated. In Pakistan, the only bars are in fivestar hotels where tourists stay, and only the very rich or the very poor indulge in drinking. I used to think all brown people didn’t drink, and that gave me a sense of comfort knowing that there was some sort of faction or society that had the same upbringing as I did. However, as I grew older, I saw my Indian friends’ parents drinking. I saw some Pakistanis drinking. I even saw other members of the Islamic community drinking. My perceptions of “right” and “wrong” were completely blurred. In fact, I discovered there is clear no right and wrong. But even now, I still see my upbringing’s effect on the way I view alcohol and
1 cup plain yogurt ½ cup whole milk 4 tbsp sugar ½-1 cup ice
A traditional yogurt-based drink
For more flavor, add rooh afza or top with sliced almonds and cardemom.
Place yogurt, milk, and sugar into blender and pulse for 15 seconds. Add ice and blend for an additional 30 seconds. Enjoy!
the people who drink it. I was raised to think of it as something “bad,” and I have to remind myself that the way I grew up is not necessarily the “right” way. It’s hard to keep yourself in check when you were raised in a specific belief system, but it becomes necessary when interacting with and respecting people in a completely different system. In my experience, this tends to be the struggle for many second-generation immigrants. It’s a daily task to try and marry the culture we were raised in with the culture we live in, in a happy equilibrium. You don’t want to disappoint your parents or erase parts of your heritage, but you want to embrace the parts of the society that you were born into. Personally, I find beauty in the devotion that comes with Pakistani culture, but freedom in the laxness of a new generation. Though I still have trouble marrying my two cultures together, it’s a challenge I continue to embrace. It’s in the space between “Pakistani” and “American” that I find my identity. Questioning and navigating my thoughts surrounding alcohol is just one more way I try to find my place in this happy equilibrium.
Fried okra and beef stew Pakistani soda 3 Rose syrup 1 2
r e e b BREAD STEIN BY BLAZE BERN INE DE JESUS ST PHOTOS BY JU
It’s 1 PM. You just woke up and pulled yourself off the couch. Your head is pounding, and you can still hear Chance’s “No Problems” ringing in your ears. What even happened last night? The kitchen is a nightmare, the counter is covered in a yellow, sticky mess, and smashed cans litter the floor. But then, you see it: there’s one can left of Pabst peeking out of the ficus planter. You pick up the buried treasure and dust off the potting soil. Looks like we’re making beer bread.
F TE R MORNING A BEER BREAD Makes 1 Loaf Basic Ingredients: 3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted 3 teaspoons baking soda ¾ teaspoon salt 12 oz beer (1 can) ½ cup melted butter Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl (this step is very important or else your loaf will not bake correctly). Add the rest of the ingredients, and stir until just combined. Pour the slightly lumpy batter into a greased loaf tin. Pour melted butter on top. Bake for 1 hour or until just golden (begin checking for doneness at 45 minutes). Variations Almond substitute 1 cup of flour for ½ cup almond flour and ½ cup almond meal add ¼ cup brown sugar add 1 teaspoon almond extract Orange-Anise-Rye substitute 1 cup flour for 1 cup rye flour add 1 teaspoon orange extract add 1 teaspoon orange zest add 1 tablespoon ground anise add ¼ cup brown sugar Garlic-Mustard add 4 cloves minced, raw garlic add 4 tablespoons mustard of your choice optional: sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese halfway through baking
Published on Nov 28, 2017