Category Archives: Videos


VIDEO: Making Chinese Egg Rolls

Today is my mother’s birthday, so this post is for her.  Among her many cooking specialties are egg rolls, which she makes every Christmas and on other special occasions.

In college, she would sometimes send me back to school with a few egg rolls after a visit home.  I’m not proud to admit, I never shared a single one with my roommate or friends. Couldn’t do it. I was hungry all the time in college (not much has changed) and those things were like gold.  Whatever magnanimous spirit I may have possessed did not extend to mom’s egg rolls.

I was up in Boston last weekend visiting the family, and my mom and I shot this video of her making her awesome egg rolls.  You’ll see that they’re quite different from the heavy, cabbage-filler egg rolls often served at Chinese restaurants with goopy duck sauce. My mom has her own preference of filling, but you can put whatever you like inside.  They’re best eaten with a vinegar-soy dipping sauce or with hot sauce.

Hope you like the video!  Let me know what you think.

And happy birthday, Mom!

Video: Going Local at Hemlock Hill Farm

I enjoy writing and putting together all of the posts for this blog, but this video on Hemlock Hill Farm ranks as one of my favorites. One of the oldest and last-standing livestock farms in Westchester County, Hemlock Hill is owned and operated by the De Maria family.  I spent some time with Laura De Maria, and she couldn’t have been nicer as she showed me around.  Not only did I have a blast traipsing through the fields (while managing not to get trampled by large, Black Angus steers), but I found it especially rewarding just to be able to visit a local farm — something I’ve wanted to do for a while now. It’s a great experience to see the animals up close and learn more about where your food comes from.

Hemlock Hill is an important part of the community, with connections to Captain Lawrence Brewing Company and the highly praised Birdsall House in Peeksill.  In fact, Hemlock Hill supplies Birdsall House with all of its beef.  Can’t get much more local than that.

I hope you’ll take a visit to the farm.  Chat with Laura, her dad and the farmers. Stop in at their market, open seven days a week.  You can even pick your own vegetables from their fields throughout the summer.

Thanks for watching the video; as usual, if you’ve got a fast broadband connection try watching it in 720p HD — it looks so much better that way.

Please share the video with others, and let’s keep supporting our local farms.

Hemlock Hill Farm
500 Croton Ave.
Cortlandt Manor, NY

Video: Indian Cooking with Rinku

Rinku Bhattacharya teaches Indian cooking classes, writes the blog Cooking in Westchester and is the author of the upcoming cookbook, The Contemporary Indian Table. We teamed up to put this cooking video together for one of her recipes: Salmon with Tamarind Chutney and Tangerine Glaze.

I can tell you firsthand that the recipe’s a keeper.  See that nice piece of fish?  I ate the whole thing after we finished shooting.

Enjoy the video, share it with others, and keep an eye out for Rinku’s cookbook in late summer/early fall.

Oh, and here’s the recipe:

1 lb salmon or tuna steaks
1 tsp salt
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp red chili powder
Oil for searing
1/2 tsp carom seeds
1 tangerine or orange
4 tbsp tamarind chutney
2 -3 green chilies, sliced lengthwise
10-15 fresh oregano leaves

Method of Preparation:

1) Cut the fish into individual serving portions.
2) Rub the fish with the salt, turmeric and red chili powder and set aside for 5-10 minutes.
3) Heat the oil and place the fish in the pan in a single layer, cook for about 7 minutes (less if using tuna) and turn and cook for another 5 more minutes.
4) Remove fish and immediately pour on 1-2 tsp of the tamarind chutney.
5) Squeeze fresh tangerine or orange juice over fish.
6) Add oregano leaves and sliced green chilies.
7) Garnish with tangerine slices and serve.

Video: Hot Dogs and Ice Cream Outing

This video came about somewhat haphazardly. I planned to meet up with Katherine Curry, a freelance food writer for The Journal News, to check out a few hot dog and ice cream spots in Westchester. I asked Katherine if she minded me shooting video of her, mostly for testing and to work some technical things out. She was kind enough to say yes and let me stick a camera in her face. So I grabbed a bunch of shots, and later when I reviewed the footage decided, what the heck, maybe I can eke a piece out of this.

We had intended to hit three hot dog spots, but ran out of time and only made it two. We were also lucky enough to be joined at the first two stops by The Journal News’s Liz Johnson, and Liz’s intern, Colin.

One more thing: I stupidly forgot to bring my spare camera battery. Ran out of juice while we were at So Dam Hot, so I had to stop shooting; you’ll notice there’s no natural ending to the piece. Lesson learned. That won’t happen again.

Anyway, hope you like it!

Tavern Restaurant: The Video

Some people eat to live; others live to eat.  You can probably guess which camp I fall firmly into.  The purpose of this blog has never really been to review restaurants or pretend I’m some sort of critic, but rather to share my enthusiasm for food and cooking of all kinds, and show you the breadth of what’s out there in Westchester and the Hudson Valley.

So it’s with great pleasure that I present this video on Tavern Restaurant in Garrison, NY.  As you’ll see, Tavern’s a special place, and I hope that comes through in the piece.  A big thank you to everyone at the restaurant, especially Eric Gabrynowicz, for being so hospitable and patient with us during the shoot.

If you have a fast internet connection and a good computer, I recommend watching the video in HD, 720p, full screen. Otherwise, 360p or 480p works fine, even though the quality’s not quite as good.

I hope you enjoy watching the video as much as I loved making it. Please feel free to share the link with other people! And your feedback is very important to me, so let me know what you think!

Tavern Restaurant
955 Route 9D
Garrison, NY