Tag Archives: Cooking

Puerto Rico’s Finest at La Casa

We filed into the dim, narrow space full of expectation. I didn’t even know what Puerto Rican food was — but I was about to find out.


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La Casa in Hoboken offers Puerto Rican classics in a cozy atmosphere. Each dish is deeply flavorful and cooked just right.

For starters, we ordered a papa relleno. It’s essentially mashed potatoes stuffed with meat and deep fried.

Just what the doctor ordered! And as delicious as it sounds.

Next, I ordered the camarones al ajillo — garlic shrimp — with yellow rice and black beans. I’ve had gambas al ajillo in Spain, but Puerto Rico’s take is richer and more mild.

Spain’s heavily fragrant, oily sauce is replaced by a creamy one with a more subtle flavor. Even after I finished the shrimp, I lapped up the sauce like a hungry dog!

Unlike many restaurants, the shrimp are properly cooked. No tough little stones at La Casa!

The fluffy rice perfectly complemented the black beans with their deep cumin flavor.

I normally don’t like chicken breast — too dry. But my friend John urged me to try his, and it was moist and juicy.

Overcooked food is a common problem at restaurants. But at La Casa, they do things right.

On our way out, I swung by the kitchen to thank the cooks. They smiled broadly and one gave me a fist-bump.

When people take pride in what they do like the cooks at La Casa, the results are worth writing home about.

La Casa is open every day and in addition to the fine dinner we had, I’m told they serve a delicious breakfast!

There can be a wait on weekend nights. Given the small number of tables, they don’t take reservations.

On weekends, your best shot at getting a table right away is to arrive at 8:30pm or later.

What’s your favorite Latin dish? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know!

More on food:

Korean Noodle Heaven at Food Gallery 32

The Best Mexican Food Is In…New Jersey?

NJ’s Best Apple Cider Donut

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Misfits Market

I’ve used Misfits for years, and it never disappoints! Every fruit and vegetable is organic, super fresh, and packed with flavor!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $15 on your first order. 

Whole Fish and Banku, Ghanaian Style

They say it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. As I dug into the whole tilapia’s succulent flesh, I couldn’t have agreed more.


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Delicious as it is, Ghanaian food is little known in the United States. Even in the New York City area, a Google search reveals just a couple of options.

“Ghanaian food is a whole process.”

Anonymous pal

Fortunately, I had a connection. A Ghanaian friend of mine buys homecooked meals from a woman who runs a restaurant out of her house.

Turns out Travis Kalanick didn’t invent ghost kitchens!

We popped open the warm clamshell containers to reveal a massive, whole fish. The tilapia was marinated and served with two spicy sauces.

The flesh was moist and succulent. I always thought I hated tilapia, but cooked whole like this, it’s wonderful!

Alongside our plates: a massive and scrumptious-looking dumpling. These are called banku.

Banku are a staple of Ghanaian food. They’re made of fermented corn.

Banku’s mild flavor is a perfect match for spicy sauces. It’s kind of like chips and salsa.

The only downside: they’re sticky! My friend dug in with her hand, but I soon switched to a fork.

I guess I can only become so Ghanaian in one day. 🙂

Cooking fish whole as they do in Ghana yields a more tender and flavorful flesh. And never forget to eat the meat from the head — it’s the best part!

I saved the fish bones for a stock I’ll be making soon. Never let anything go to waste!

If you haven’t tried Ghanaian food, I strongly recommend it! It’s flavorful and relatively healthy — mostly protein and vegetables with a modest amount of starch.

What were your most interesting meals this year? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know!

More on food:

Korean Noodle Heaven at Food Gallery 32

The Best Mexican Food Is In…New Jersey?

NYC’s King of Sugar: Posh Pop Bakeshop

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 with great returns.

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Misfits Market

I’ve used Misfits for years, and it never disappoints! Every fruit and vegetable is organic, super fresh, and packed with flavor!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $15 on your first order. 

Korean Noodle Heaven at Food Gallery 32

I stepped off the ice cold street into a place I’d never been. This was going to be an amazing meal.


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Food Gallery 32 sits in the heart of Manhattan’s Koreatown. As you wind through the stalls serving everything from taiyaki to bulgogi, you’d swear you were in a market in Asia.

My friend and I were pulled toward a noodle stand in the back as if by gravity. The plastic model of a spicy seafood noodle stew looked so good I almost took a bite.

We both ordered it, and I took a black hockey puck that promised to light up when our noodles were ready. I looked at it expectantly, willing it to erupt in vibration and flashing lights.

Food Gallery seems small, but seating is actually plentiful if you head upstairs. We found a cozy spot on the second floor and settled in, tense with anticipation.

Buzz…buzz! The noodles were ready!

I slowly navigated the stairs with our trays, careful not to spill our noodles. Friendships have ended over less.

As I began to slurp down the steaming noodles, a grin spread across my face. The piping hot, spicy broth warmed me from the inside.

I picked shrimp, mussels, and octopus from the bowl as if it were a treasure hunt. The shellfish was fresh, supple, delicious.

No matter how much I ate, there always seemed to be more! And all for just $13 plus tax.

Take that, inflation!

Stuffed, we sat for hours in Food Gallery’s toasty cocoon, chatting and laughing. You can’t help but be merry in a place like this.

Food Gallery has something for everyone, from pork buns to bubble tea, even karaoke! Stop in for a taste of what’s best about New York.

What’s your favorite spot for Korean food? Leave a comment at the bottom and let me know!

More on food:

The Best Mexican Food Is In…New Jersey?

New Jersey’s Jelly Donut Heaven

Move Over, Cake Boss: There’s a New Sheriff in Town

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 with great returns.

More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get $100 in free bonus shares!

Misfits Market

I’ve used Misfits for years, and it never disappoints! Every fruit and vegetable is organic, super fresh, and packed with flavor!

I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $15 on your first order. 

The Best Bakery in NYC (It’s Not Levain)

One evening, my wife came home and presented a bunch of small, colorful bags. Inside: some of the most delicious baked goods I’ve ever had.

Their outstanding chocolate chip cookie. Don’t worry, I was gentle.

Eclair Bakery, founded by French pastry chef Stephane Pourrez, is on a side street near the United Nations. Despite eight years in the city, it’s fairly obscure, especially compared to famous spots like Levain. But I’ve never had a Levain cookie as delicious as those from Eclair. They’re moist, chewy, and deeply suffused with brown sugar and butter.

Their namesake eclairs are also the best I’ve ever had. A caramel version I tried had a light, airy pastry filled with rich, smooth caramel cream. It was beautiful to look at and even better to eat!

If you’re in New York City, I strongly suggest giving this under-the-radar spot a try!

More on the NYC area:

THE BEST NYC COMEDIANS YOU HAVEN’T SEEN (UNTIL NOW)

WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE ON LAW & ORDER: SVU

I ATE THE BEST BURGER OF MY LIFE OUTSIDE IN THE DEAD OF WINTER

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Fundrise

This platform lets me diversify my real estate investments so I’m not too exposed to any one market. I’ve invested since 2018 and returns have been good so far. More on Fundrise in this post.

If you decide to invest in Fundrise, you can use this link to get your management fees waived for 90 days. With their 1% management fee, this could save you $250 on a $100,000 account. I will also get a fee waiver for 90-365 days, depending on what type of account you open.

iHerb

The only place I buy vitamins and supplements. I recently placed an order and received it in less than 48 hours with free shipping! I compared the prices and they were lower than Amazon. I also love how they test a lot of the vitamins so that you know you’re getting what the label says. This isn’t always the case with supplements.

Use this link to save 5%! I’ll also get 5% of however much you spend, at no cost to you.

Misfits Market

My wife and I have gotten organic produce shipped to our house by Misfits for over a year. It’s never once disappointed me. Every fruit and vegetable is super fresh and packed with flavor. I thought radishes were cold, tasteless little lumps at salad bars until I tried theirs! They’re peppery, colorful and crunchy! I wrote a detailed review of Misfits here.

Use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. I’ll also get $10.

How I Eat Delicious Organic Produce for Next to Nothing: Introducing Misfits Market

Last Saturday, my wife went to a farmer’s market with her friend. As her friend loaded up on yummy veggies, my wife noticed something: she was paying $40 for a small bag of vegetables while we pay $26 for twice as much. And ours is 100% organic, whereas the farmer’s market haul was only about half.

Do we have special connections down on the farm? Sort of…

For over a year, my wife and I have gotten almost all our produce from Misfits Market, a subscription service that sends a big box of delicious, all-organic fruits and vegetables to your door every week. The quality is absolutely exceptional. I thought radishes were cold, tasteless chunks under harsh lights on salad bars until I tried theirs! Colorful, peppery, crispy, delicious!

Misfits is a great way to introduce yourself to new kinds of produce. I’ve tried golden beets, turnips, rutabagas, chard, collard greens, and countless other delicious things I never would’ve thought to buy otherwise. Getting the surprise veg each week is like Christmas! But if you prefer to choose your produce, they offer that as well.

We pay $26.25 a week for more than enough veggies for both of us. In fact, we often have to delay our next shipment (easy to do), so our real cost is probably barely over $20/week.

Before we got Misfits, I would buy a smaller assortment of veggies at Aldi for about $20. To get as much produce as Misfits, Aldi would run at least $30, even for non-organic! And Aldi is about the cheapest grocery store there is.

So let’s review:

1) Cheaper than any grocery store
2) Incredible taste
3) All-organic
4) Shipped to your door

What’s not to like? Well, nothing, which is why my wife and I have been loyal Misfits customers for so long! If you want to join us, use this link to sign up and you’ll save $10 on your first order. I’ll also get $10.

They have plans for households of 2-3 and a larger box for bigger households. FYI: Single-person households won’t be able to eat all this.

Enjoy in good health!

For more posts about health and nutrition, check out some of these:

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The Incredible New Blender I’m Loving

With cold weather and ample time at home, I’m getting a lot of use out of a wonderful Christmas gift I received: an Instant Ace Plus blender. It’s so powerful I jumped away in fear the first time I turned it on! Since then, I’ve made friends with it, and it’s rewarded me with silky soups and delicious smoothies.

I particularly like putting some broth and vegetables into it, pressing a button, and having a delicious hot soup in a few minutes. I can take a shower while it’s running and eat whenever, since it keeps the soup warm for two hours. I also use it to make a smoothie every morning with milk, frozen fruit and greens which ensures I get protein, vitamins and fiber right when I wake up.

I did a lot of research on blenders from Vitamix, BlendTec, and others, and this one seems like the best combination of features and cost. For some reason, the Instant Pot slow cooker is enormously popular but this blender seems all but forgotten. Give it a shot!