This dish includes fresh apples, apple butter, and apple cider. Rozanne suggests that the best varieties of apples to use are Cameo or Winesap.
Ursula von Rydingsvard was on the Leonard Lopate Show to talk about her sculpture, "Ona," which is permanently installed in the plaza at the Barclays Center. She also told us what she's been reading and listening to recently. (We do like her taste in radio stations...)
Director Greg "Freddy" Camalier was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about his documentary, "Muscle Shoals," about FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama where a host of musical greats have recorded. And we were joined by FAME owner Rick Hall. Camalier also told us what his rather specific comfort food is.
FAME studios founder Rick Hall was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about his career, recording Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin, Little Richard and many, more musical greats in his studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. He's the subject of a documentary called Muscle Shoals. He also told what he's been listening to recently.
Graham Nash was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about his life in music, starting Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young and his memoir, Wild Tales. He also told us he's been listening to the music of Bulgaria. Find out what else Graham Nash likes in his Guest Picks!
Barnard College President Debora Spar was on the Leonard Lopate Show to talk about why the choices that women in the US face today are more complex than ever. She also told us what she's been reading and watching. Find out what she's a fan of in her Guest Picks.
Sine qua non of socialist celebrations, this salady Soviet icon actually has a fancy, bourgeois past. The name? Derived from one Lucien Olivier, a French chef who wowed 1860s Moscow with his swank L’Hermitage
restaurant. The Gaul’s original creation, of course, had almost nothing in common with our Soviet classic. His was an extravagant still life of grouse, tongue, and crayﬁsh tails encircling a mound of potatoes and cornichons, all doused with le chef ’s secret Provençal sauce. To Olivier’s horror, Russian clients vulgarized his precious arrangement by mixing up all the ingredients on their plates. And so he retooled his dish as a salad. Then came 1917. L’Hermitage was shuttered, its recipes scorned. All Soviet children knew Mayakovsky’s jingle: “Eat your pineapples, gobble your grouse / Your last day is coming, you bourgeois louse!”
The salad gained a second life in the mid-1930s when Olivier’s old apprentice, a chef known as Comrade Ivanov, revived it at the Stalin-era Moskva Hotel. Revived it in Soviet form. Chicken replaced the class-enemy grouse, proletarian carrots stood in for the original pink of the crayﬁsh, and potatoes and canned peas took center stage—the whole drenched in our own tangy, mass-produced Provansal mayo.
Meanwhile, variations of the salad traveled the world with White Russian émigrés. To this day, I’m amazed to encounter it under its generic name, “Russian salad,” at steakhouses in Buenos Aires, railway stations in Istanbul, or as part of Korean or Spanish or Iranian appetizer spreads. Amazed and just a little bit proud.
At our own table, Mom gives this Soviet staple an arty, nonconformist twist by adding fresh cucumbers and apple, and substituting crabmeat for chicken (feel free to stay with the latter). The ultimate key to success, though, she insists: chopping everything into a very ﬁne dice. She also obsessively doctors Hellmann’s mayo with various zesty additions. I think Lucien Olivier would approve.
Kotleti for lunch, kotleti for dinner, kotleti of beef, of pork, of ﬁsh, of chicken—even kotleti of minced carrots or beets. The entire USSR pretty much lived on these cheap, delicious fried patties, and when
comrades didn’t make them from scratch, they bought them at stores. Back in Moscow, Mom and I harbored a secret passion for the proletarian, six-kopek variety produced by the meat-processing plant named after Stalin’s food supply commissar, Anastas Mikoyan. Inspired by his 1936 trip to America, Mikoyan wanted to copy Yankee burgers in Russia, but somehow the bun got lost in the shufﬂe and the country got hooked on mass-produced kotleti instead. Deliciously greasy, petite, and with a heavy industrial breading that fried up to a wicked crunch, Mikoyan factory patties could be scarfed down by the dozen. Wild with nostalgia, Mom and I tried a million times to recreate them at home, but no luck: some manufactured treats just can’t be duplicated. So we always reverted back to Mom’s (far more noble) homemade version.
Every ex-Soviet cook has a special trick for making juicy, savory patties. Some add crushed ice, others tuck in pats of butter or mix in a whipped egg white. My mother likes her kotleti Odessa-style (garlicky!), and adds mayo as binding instead of the usual egg, with delightful results. The same formula works with ground turkey or chicken or ﬁsh. Buckwheat kasha makes a nostalgic Russian accompaniment. Ditto thin potato batons slowly pan-fried with onions in lots of butter or oil. I love cold kotleti for lunch the next day, with some dense dark bread, hot mustard, and a good crunchy dill pickle.
Try making pickles at home with these recipes for sour dill pickles and bread and butter pickles.
Try this recipe for pickled watermelon rind! They're ready in just 10 days and make use of something we normally throw away.
Linda Ronstadt was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about her remarkable career, collaborating with everyone from Aaron Neville to Dolly Parton, and losing her voice a few years ago to what was later diagnosed as Parkinson's Disease. Find out what Linda Ronstadt's reading and listening to these days!
Writer Margaret Atwood was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about MaddAddam, the final installment her dystopian trilogy. She also told us what she's been reading recently -- and it's a long reading list. Find out what's on it in her Guest Picks!
MSNBC.com editor Richard Wolffe was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about what happened behind the scenes of Pres. Obama's 2012 re-election campaign. He also told us about his love of cooking. Find out what else Richard Wolffe's a fan of!
This week we're kicking off Food Fridays series, and to whet your appetite, we're sharing a conversation from last spring. In May, hundreds of WNYC listeners joined Leonard Lopate in the Great Hall of Cooper Union for a conversation with three great French chefs. Jacques Pepin, Daniel Boulud and Eric Ripert talked about falling in love with cooking in France and then finding their way to fame and fortune in America’s kitchens.
Hear Daniel Boulud describe his love of baby eels (a delicacy that’s gotten very expensive). Eric Ripert shares that his nickname when he was an apprentice was “Blue Shoulders.” And don’t miss Jacques Pepin’s fantastic Julia Child impression!