Uttam Rawat, Swadist
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top Garden State toques came from India to head kitchens for the Moghul group of restaurants. In 2019, he struck out on his own with a modest storefront in Jersey City’s India Square in which he serves bold, personalized dishes and dazzling renditions of classics that mesmerize his selector, Rakesh Ramola of Indeblue.
In a quick blitz, it’s a dip, a spread, a sauce you can use to brighten these waning days of the leanest season. Consider the generous herb the green that gives birth to spring.
Haring Family Farm
Elise and Lucas Haring not only are stewards of farmland that pioneered the Garden State’s preservation program, they’re forward-thinkers creating legacies of their own.
Dehydrated Mustard Greens
When dried, this leafy powerhouse can be used much like a dried herb – with purposeful abandon, in all manner of savory fare.
Cinnamon Stick Tea
… and other flu-soaked sob stories from the leanest time of the year for a diehard Jersey-grown freshest-food addict.
“Pantry Season” inspires Ella to create a cookie that’s special enough for a celebration and yet mindful of her desire not to waste ingredients already on hand.
Don’t leave the purchase of wine to chance. Armed with practical guidance and insider tips of the trade, you can drink the picks of the lists at a restaurant or take home the tops in the stacks of a wine shop.
A House Divided
Liquor license reform must start with the hospitality industry putting its core mission above all else and standing united in the cause of long-term success.
Lots of Love: 03.13.23
Funny date today, isn’t it? Zero-three, one-three, two-three. The kind of date that doesn’t happen very often. Just like some dishes don’t happen as you wish very often. But when they do, you know they’re foods you’ll remember always. With lots of love.
A Salad Supreme
What could make a luxurious lobster salad even more luxurious? Stuffing it into avocados and serving it accompanied by oranges ratcheted up with a caring touch – that’s what.
Chefs, be they masters of pit barbecue or maestros in fancy restaurant kitchens, are giving pork increasing respect these days. However, the care and feeding of hogs raised at industrial warehouses versus hogs raised family-style in woodlands and pastures can be canyons apart. LOTF columnist Abigail Sickler offers a boots-on-the-ground perspective.
Allen Perchonok, Umai
He doesn’t look like your average suburban sushi chef and he doesn’t act like one, either. He’s a former haute couture furrier whose passion for high-style omakase prompted a 180 and shaped the most individualistic and exciting new Japanese restaurant in the Garden State. TPW’s Mike Peters spent a day with Allen Perchonok and made images of how it all happens.
At Rabble Rise in Montclair, there’s a doughnut that stands above the others in an increasingly crowded field.
High on Home-Grown Hogs
What makes this chunky pulled pork fly high? A flavor that only can come from being raised in all the right ways.
Erica Leahy, Three Daughters Bakery
In the latest installment of TPW’s monthly column featuring Martha Rabello talking shop with a fellow practitioner of the pastry and baking arts, she visits with Erica Leahy, whose just-opened bakery in South Orange is the showcase her extraordinary talents deserve.
Rakesh Ramola: Indeblue
The newest inductee into TPW’s elite chef-picks-chef club of top Garden State toques juggles tradition with innovation masterfully at the modern Indian restaurant he first opened in Collingswood, then reincarnated last year in Cherry Hill, according to his selector and admirer Elias Bitar. It’s what happens when a well-traveled explorer unleashes a worldly command of spices.
Winter Wind Down: 2.27.23
It’s a most wonderful time of year, a time to appreciate foods that somehow taste better than they might at any other time of year. Take advantage of them, these favorites of the two weeks just past, before the sundial shifts.
Double Chocolate Pleasure
Ever-intrepid Ella finds inspiration from a trio of her farmers’ market favorites and bakes a simplified chocolate-on-chocolate Bundt cake that leaves her with energy aplenty to decorate – and savor at the table.
A Restaurant ‘Game-Changer’ Goes Front-Burner
Loosening the lock on liquor licenses in the Garden State would generate billions in economic activity and provide opportunities culinary pros currently lack. At a roundtable in Clinton, chefs and elected officials make it clear that legislation proposed by Gov. Murphy needs to be enacted now.
Allergen-free baking is creating a community around a small shop in Egg Harbor Township. It is there that folks who otherwise couldn’t enjoy a conventional cookie, muffin or slice of bread indulge and appreciate the efforts of an irrepressible woman who is its architect.
It's much more than mere sweet talk: A USDA-funded project emanating out of Stockton University seeks to document the economic and environmental sustainability of maple-sugaring in the South Jersey environs. Not at all coincidentally, a community is forming.
Pine Barrens homesteader and LOTF columnist Lauren Vitagliano is a pioneer whose spirit extends deep into the winter. That’s when she and Rob Williams, the other half of the Pine Barrens Post, tap into local trees to harvest sap, then boil that “maple water” into the syrup that becomes much more than a topper for pancakes.
It’s ubiquitous, the fish that’s perennially in the Top 3 of most popular and consumed fishes in America. Chances are you’re going to have a chunk of it leftover at some time or another. TPW’s food upcycling wiz knows you can turn that chunk into salmon cakes or tacos – or a dish fit for a celebration.
Let the maple-sugaring now happening in the Garden State inspire a stew that hits on all taste buds in the most expressive ways.
Long Beach Island and Manahawkin
Spring yourself from any and all routines and take a day to explore environs almost smack in the center of our Shore. Yes, much is closed. But what is open offers fare fun and fine, not to mention the chance to walk waterside without fear of collision.
Give ’em a Hand
No forks needed to make the most of this quintet of favorites for the two weeks just past. Each is best negotiated without so much as a single instrument of flatware. Easy eats at their best, every which way.
The Market Picks Are In
When it’s crunch time, go to your favorite winter market to stock up for all you’ll need, be it for the big game, weeknight quick-eats or a one-two punch of put-together ingredients. Let Ella’s market edits for the Morris Winter Market be your handy guide.
Queen of Cacao
Carol Freedman is a purist devout in her use of only single-origin chocolate, a magician who brandishes a well-honed knowledge of her subject in formidable fashion, a technician whose artistry needs no flash to prove its stature. A wonk? So much, much more. A visit to her shop in Somerville is the golden ticket to chocolate paradise.
At Taqueria 2 Potrillos in Bridgeton, you can learn from a baggie of warm chips how to serve a snack that sparkles for a crowd – such as the one that might be gathering in front of your TV this Sunday to watch the year’s most talked-about sporting event.
Joe’s Bake Shop
In Tuckerton, a borough popping with possibilities as a food hub for Southern Ocean County, a new bakery seeks to take root. Will it hit a sweet spot?
The Case of the Annual Bowl Food
Sometimes, if you don’t think too hard, plan too much and worry it all to death, you come to a most satisfying conclusion – be it readable or edible.
Luisania Moronta, Pastry Lu
In the latest installment of TPW’s monthly column featuring Martha Rabello talking shop with a fellow practitioner of the pastry and baking arts, she visits with Lu Moronta … who now never fails to mash the bananas when making banana bread at her much-loved Pastry Lu in Metuchen.