Author Archives

Seth Fera-Schanes

Publisher, Full Access NYC

3 Squash Soup: Calabaza, Amber Cup and Kabocha

There are so many varieties of squash in season right now.  I am most familiar with a handful such as Butternut, Acorn and Delicata.  However, there are many other’s I always look at but then walk right past.  I decided to make a squash soup using different squash I don’t normally buy and the end result was great.

These three squash; Kabocha, Calabaza and Amber cup work really well together. There is a natural mild sweetness in this soup which I really enjoyed.

Advertisements

Beer Battered Delicata Squash Chips

Fall squash are some of my favorite ingredients to work with.  Spanning from soups to stew, roasted to mashed, there is no shortage of preparations.  So one afternoon, I was looking at a few delicata squash on my counter and asked a very simple question.  Why not fried?

My general philosophy (one of many) in life is: fried = good and beer battered + fried = better.

Brioche Doughnuts at Mah Ze Dahr in the West Village

Sunday morning and I am lazily scrolling through facebook from my bed.  I come across a soaring review of Mah Ze Dahr in Gothamist and immediately jump up.  15 minutes later, I am dressed and on the A train heading downtown.

New to the village, Mah Ze Dahr should very quickly be placed on your bakery radar.  With a variety of both sweet and savory pastries, I opted to try one from each side of the spectrum.

That’s a Wrap: Closing Down the Garden

If I had to rate my garden this season it would be a solid 10 out of 10.  What can I say, I have a green thumb….  Or more likely the case, my neighbors helped guide me on what to plant, how to plant it, watering when I failed and generally making sure I had a great season.

And I think that’s the point.  My little garden in central Harlem is a real community affair.  Neighbors talk with each other.  They ask how each other’s days were.  Wait, wait.  Talking? Asking?  Genuine interest in your neighbor?  In New York?  No Way!

3 Days in Porto

Three hours, 30 euros and a direct train ride from Lisbon to Porto makes me a happy traveler.  Sipping Port wine along the Rio Duoro as I watch the sunset over the Atlantic and the lights of this tiered city come up means I will be going to Porto again (and again.)

Overnight Stay in Coimbra

Do you like Harry Potter and Jesus?  If so, put Coimbra on your travel itinerary.

Very much a college town, the city has the University of Coimbra (with early ties to the Jesuits.)  Founded in 1290, it’s a UNESCO world heritage site and has the Joanina Library with a collection of books dating back to the 1500s.

When you visit the campus, you’ll notice many of the students wearing their uniforms; including capes.  It really does feel like you’re in a Harry Potter movie.

Travels in Lisbon

Lisbon is made up of distinct neighborhoods.  I stayed in Alfama which is the oldest and located by a number of historic places such as the Sao Jorge Castle.  The area is hilly and requires a special mention.

Imagine a place where you walk up a hill to get to your destination.  You would think the reverse direction on the way back down would be easy, right?  Wrong.  Lisbon is seemingly uphill both ways.  Not sure how this is possible but get ready for some strong calf muscles when you leave.

Escape from New York: Portugal

I tend to be a semi planner.  I thought Lisbon in the south, Coimbra in the middle of the country and Porto in the north would provide a nice cross section of the country.  There are also multiple trains running each day between all these cities so I wouldn’t have to worry about when to leave or travel wait times.

An Exercise in Making Apartment Sourdough Pretzels

So what if you wanted to move your pretzel experience to the comfort of your own home?  It’s actually quite easy with one annoying exception.  The recipe called for 1/4 cup of powdered milk.  Did you know you can only buy powdered milk in increments of 5 pounds?  I do now.  So $13 later and with the newest addition to the back of my cupboard, I was ready to bake.