Speak Up

Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat!

I dressed up for my students today and they seemed to enjoy. Although, they did call me Ratatouille, which is a food so I think we need to work on comprehension next week.
And you know, I like wearing this coat...I feel sort of superior and prestigious. No wonder the chefs act the way they do, it's all in the whites. What are your plans tonight? I'll be passing out candy in full costume. It's been a long week and as nice as it is outside, I'm happy to be dishing out the good to the little ones.
Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Chef and Wife

I loved my dress. I hate my bangs! I loved my old blunt bangs, but my hairdresser/friend said they made me look like a kid so she swept them over and now I kind of hate it. I look like a nerd-girl.

PS. My computer is fixed!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sure, I'll Eat Anything!

Erik and I celebrated our 3 year wedding anniversary this past weekend. We drove upstate to Tarrytown to eat at Blue Hill at Stone Barns. It was fantastic! They brought us some of the produce, still dirty from being pulled right out of the Earth, to show us the before and after. The presentation was fun and interactive, too. The food came out on large flat stones, the same kind that the barns are built of. Also, there were wood blocks with nails sticking out that held the freshly seasons vegetables. And the craziest part was when the server brought us a small plate with an egg over something unidentifiable. He hinted that we should eat before he told us what is was. Keep in mind that Blue Hill has no menu, they serve what they serve. Well, I looked at this kid and with an air of coolness I leaned back and said, "I've eaten pretty much everything there is to eat. Come on, what is it?"

Lamb's testicles. 

My jaw dropped, but I ate it and it tasted like sweetbreads. Not great, but I'm so proud of myself for even trying it. 

So the big question is, would you eat lamb's testicles??

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Hydroponics: Lettuce Update

How fast did this lettuce grow? I cannot believe it! And this picture was taken today after I picked a bowlful for my salad. I highly recommend growing lettuce if you've got a hydroponic set up because it's much easier than any other plant and it grows so fast. 


Friday, October 24, 2008

ChefMumbles: Spanish Edition

Dios Mio! Mi esposo molestame en la noche. 

The other morning I was creeping by Erik to day good-bye when he mumbled:

"Tiempo! I need the timer. Tiempo!"

I know most of you enjoy reading this segment of the blog, however I'm taking this personally now. I mean why can't he just turn on at least 5% of his [English speaking] brain to mumble the words I want to hear? ....I love you...good-bye...have a good day....you look so sophisticated in that sweater....something!

After all, I get up during my sleeping time to: fix a late night meal, watch tv, chat, clean up the late night meal, and even talk in bed. But on the other hand, I suppose he can't control his midnight mumbles. Unless he worked less than 72 hundred hours a week. 

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Healthlife Part 2

I just got back from the doctor and the news I heard wasn't something I wanted to hear. The good news comes in two parts. First, I don't have to wear the heart monitor anymore. Second, my blood work came back excellent. The thyroid is good, cholesterol is good, the liver is good...good, good, good. BUT, I have to wait another week to get the results of the EKG. And there is a chance it could be an arrhythmia. I didn't like the way my doctor said that was a "problem" either. So, until then, I'll just keep talking about this because that will help me to relax. 


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Computer Nightmare

Since I have the rights to www.desperatechefswives.com it's my responsibility to keep the website going. Well, let me tell you about my Sunday evening nightmare. I've been getting email reminders that I need to renew my domain registration. BUT I DID! And I have the receipt for it too. So I thought nothing of it until my website was shut down and it was taken over by some scamming search engine with my blog name! I was fuming! So I tried about a million ways to get the website back and nothing was working. I was in such a rage that I threw my laptop on the floor (trying to prove I was mad, not trying to actually do any damage) and now it won't turn on!! I am freaking out! Meanwhile, the website is back on, I guess google finally got it together. I am so grateful that Erik bought the Mac I'm typing on now. I'm bringing my laptop to the school's IT guy tomorrow and hopefully it will be ready by the weekend. If I had no computer...I'd probably suffer miserably. Luckily, I've got my iPhone, just in case. 


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hydroponics: Lettuce

Erik's sous chef Omar has got us going on bibb lettuce now that our basil has ended its life cycle. Hydroponics is so easy! I mean, after Omar does all the hard work of getting the seedlings going, really all you have to do is watch them grow! We've got a timer on the lights and the motor that supplies the bubbles/oxygen to the water runs all day and night. Once in a while the water has to be changed, but overall-this is so easy!

Check out these babies.



Friday, October 17, 2008

Apple Pickins

Last Monday while laying in bed enjoying my Columbus Day off, Erik and I decided at the last minute to go apple picking. We went to the same orchard that we went to last year, Barton Orchards in Dutchess County New York.
Check out Erik juggling some apples! We had such a great time picking apples, and although against orchard rules, we climbed trees like two little kids. The Hudson Valley is such a beautiful place and a perfect escape from the city.

Since we were so close so our old 'hood we drove by the "garden" apartment we used to live in. Wow, we've come a long way. Our new condo isn't drafty, potheads don't live all around us...at least that we know of, and we have wood floors instead of industrial carpet. But our old town of Wappingers Falls isn't all a mess like the apartments we lived in. We made a pit stop at Planet Wings for two #1s with hot sauce and Dr. Pepper...and 30 more wings to last us for a couple days. Then we headed over to Gymnastics City where I coached gymnastics and cheerleading before moving to Jersey City. It was so nice to see everyone I used to work with and even some of the kids I taught. If I had time and less residual back pain I'd love to get back into coaching. Maybe after I retire.



Thursday, October 16, 2008

ChefWife HealthLife

I just got back from the doctor and due to some odd heart palpitations I've been strapped with this heart monitor for four weeks. I have two pads on my chest and when I feel an irregularity I push the red button. It records what is going on with my heart. Then after thirty seconds I call this 888 number and playback the sounds the monitor makes over the phone and it faxes the info over to my doctor. I just went to the doctor thinking he would tell me to write down when the palpitations happen, but after only 45 minutes I had blood work done and I was strapped with this machine. Although I'm a little nervous about people noticing the Blackberry sized monitor clipped on my hip I'm so impressed with the speed and concern of my new doctor. 

Pray and think good thoughts about my little heart. 


Korean ChefMumbles

This one requires a bit of a backstory.

My chefhusband is a second generation half Korean. His mother (who designed my awesome logo) moved to the US when she was very young. Erik's grandmother, God rest her soul, taught him some Korean, but not enough to live on. I've always wanted to learn more Korean so I've been doing a little Rosetta Stone and I love it! But last night Erik busts out some of the first phrases he ever learned.

(Click to HEAR the Korean version)

How are you?

I'm fine, thank you?

So now he mumbling in Korean. AHHH!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Foodbuzz Publisher Community Launches

San Francisco – October 13, 2008: Foodbuzz, Inc., officially inaugurates its food blogger community with more than 1,000 blog partners, a global food blogging event and an online platform that captures the real-people, real-time power of food publishing in every corner of the world. At launch, the Foodbuzz community ranks as one of the top-10 Internet destinations for food and dining (Quantcast), with bloggers based in 45 countries and 863 cities serving up daily food content.
“Food bloggers are at the forefront of reality publishing and the dramatic growth of new media has redefined how food enthusiasts access tasty content,” said Doug Collister, Executive Vice President of Foodbuzz, Inc. “Food bloggers are the new breed of local food experts and at any minute of the day, Foodbuzz is there to help capture the immediacy of their hands-on experiences, be it a memorable restaurant meal, a trip to the farmers market, or a special home-cooked meal.”
Foodbuzz is the only online community with content created exclusively by food bloggers and rated by foodies. The site offers more than 20,000 pieces of new food and dining content weekly, including recipes, photos, blog posts, videos and restaurant reviews. Members decide the “tastiness” of each piece of content by voting and “buzz” the most popular posts to the top of the daily menu of submissions. Foodbuzz currently logs over 13 million monthly page views and over three million monthly unique visitors.
“Our goal is to be the number-one online source of quality food and dining content by promoting the talent, enthusiasm and knowledge of food bloggers around the globe,” said Ben Dehan, founder and CEO of Foodbuzz, Inc.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Chef Vs. Family Man

Can a chef also be a family man? A few months ago I couldn't get Erik to acknowledge the fact that I'm a woman and thus capable of even getting pregnant. Finally now, we're able to at least begin to think about starting a family. BUT now that we're talking I'm getting nervous about life with children and a chef/father. Erik already asked me, "Who's going to take the kids to school?" and "Will they have to go to an urban school?" Uh, yeah. I mean he wants to live in NYC/Jersey City then the kids have to go to school here. Luckily I work at the best school in Jersey City and they'll be able to go there. But really I'm scared about being a "single" mother. Erik won't get up early enough to help in the morning and he'll be gone before the kids get home from school/daycare. And by the time Erik gets home the kids and I will be fast asleep. By then, the days of me sleeping on the couch and waking up to be with Erik at midnight will be LONG GONE.

Not only does my chef work typical chef hours (and then some) but he has no siblings, no aunts or uncles, and no cousins. He pretty much has no idea how families work. And I can't blame him either, how else would he know that when a baby is born you visit the family or at the very least send a card. Can I really raise a family with minimal chefhusband support while training my chefhusband how to be a family man??

HELP! I know there are plenty of you out there making it work. I'm counting on you.


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Battes Kitchen Photo Tour

A chefwife commented on the Angus beef chart in my kitchen so I thought I'd give you a little tour of my kitchen and all of the things the chefs and I have got hanging out in there. 

I wrote about my husband's addiction to plastic wrap a while ago, but it bears repeating. This chef-and most I know- are mesmerized by plastic wrap in large quantities. Behind this 3000 square feet of boxed plastic wrap is an even large box of aluminum foil. 

This is MY most favorite part of the kitchen. My mom has had so many vintage bread boxes over the years that I've caught on to her love of bread containers. She bought me this one last year. Thanks, mom. 

Oh, the Boos Block. You know I wanted to buy a cutting board for-e-ver, but Erik only wanted a certain kind. The glass ones are "dangerous", the plastic ones are "cheap" and finally we bought this one...it was only like 40 bucks and I'm pretty sure it supposed to last about 350 years. 

We went to The Container Store in last January after my mom bought us a gift certificate last year for Christmas. Erik picked out these clever little containers that hold spices and are magnetic. The only thing is, Erik doesn't cook with dry herbs or spices! He won't buy fresh herbs because they are too much money at the grocery store but he says dried herbs are poor quality. Well then what are we doing with magnetic spice holders?! But now we keep wine corks in them, so it's all worked out. Also you'll see in this shot two leaves my sister sent me from Texas and a cigar someone gave Erik at Perry St.

This coconut man collection started back in California when a gymnast I was coaching and working with went to Florida and bought me the pirate coconut man in the middle. Then we bought one on the left in the Carribbean. THe one on the right- I have no idea where that came from, but I think it's also a piggy bank. 

This beef chart was drawn free-hand by my very own husband on this awesome HUGE, framed chalkboard from HomeGoods. He was inspired to draw the bovine based on a postcard from BLT Prime. He spent all day on it and I think it came out very...accurate. 

Below you'll see a tiny chef that I bought for Erik from a street vendor in London back in 02. He's a little rusty now, but I bought it when Erik was in culinary school so it brings me back to a much different time in our lives. 

Erik's mom gave us this wine holder and I love him! He's so sophisticated with his mustache and toque. 

Last Christmas my aunt Caralee have me this nutcracker chef. I guess when people know you're married to a chef they give you all kinds of chef related items. Oh, I forgot to take a picture of my kitchen towels that my mom bought for me. They've got an outline of a chef on them in black thread. 

This pressure cooker had made many a meal since we bought it. It's not like the kind my grandma used to use-its electric. All you do is put some beans, meat, salt and pepper in this bad boy and out comes a meal! 

I hope you enjoyed this walk through my kitchen. I had a fine time writing this; I seemed to have forgotten about most of the things in the kitchen. There are so many more things with sentimental value in here than I thought. 


Friday, October 10, 2008

Chef's Widows

I'm thrilled so many of you have made your way over to the new forum for chefs wives at: Chef's Widows. I am having such a good time chatting and sharing ideas with other wives. You can also share pictures, blogs, and even videos. Props and snaps and all that jazz to the Widow, Miss Amelia herself for setting up and maintaining the website. (Plus all the other family, chef, restaurant, and various other website stuff she does.) 

If you haven't made your way over there, get to it!

On another note I have Monday off, like most of you and my chef also has Monday off so what to do! We planned on going away to Chicago, but WOW that city is just as expensive as New York. Then we just forgot about this long weekend. I've been wanting to go to the Bronx Zoo for a while, or even the Turtle Back zoo. (I love zoos)Hmm...I'll let you know what we end up going. The only thing we WON'T be doing is eating out. We have been spending entirely too much money on dining and I want to SAVESAVESAVE for a new house/condo here in Jersey City. 


Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Seaweed butter-my new BFF

With it's rich history and new modern design, the opening of Corton was something Erik couldn't miss. We made our way over there on Monday night-without any traffic and parking spot right up front-perfect so far. Corton was great, all the food was very thoughtful and put together. My favorite was the lamb and the side that came with the amadai - gnocchi with bok choy and ham-so delish! I don't think the dining room was complete because I heard there was going to be gold leaf on the walls to embellish the embossed flowers, but I didn't see anything. It was nice to see Mr. Nieporent greeting guests and even seating them.

For more on Corton...


Saturday, October 4, 2008

Cauliflower Madness

Last week Erik made this amazing buttery Parmesan cheese covered cauliflower. But the most amazing thing was the size of this massive veg. With farmers in my family I've seen some large tomayters and potayters, but I've never seen a cauliflower this big. Luckily A & P had a sale and it wasn't per pound. I only paid three bucks for this basketball sized plant.