Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Pickle Day on the LES

This sounds like so much fun! My friend Leslie told me about it a few weeks ago and then Anne at Saxelby told me they were participating and today I get the Saxelby newsletter with all the details. Sounds like a hoot!

Pickle day is held in a a parking lot around the corner from our place so I will be there bright and early - cheese tortillas sound like a perfect brunch!

Here's Anne's newsletter verbatim:

After traipsing around Europe for the past week and a half, it's good to come home to a local yokel gastronomic fĂȘte. The Italians may celebrate the truffle and the snail, but New Yorkers revere the grand cornichon. That's right folks, Pickle Day is right around the corner, and you better all be there this Sunday to munch on all of the fermented concoctions lining the streets of the Lower East Side! Saxelby Cheesemongers, Hot Bread Kitchen, and Rick's Picks are teaming up to give you a one-two-three punch of cheese, tortillas, and of course, pickles.

Pickle Day was started nine years ago by Nancy Ralph, director of the diminutive but fascinating New York Food Museum. Back in the day, the Lower East Side could have been paved with pickles (what a squishy, vinegary affair that would've been!) Ms. Ralph, being the resident culinary historian that she is, wanted to create a festival to pay homage to one of the city's favorite snacks. Each year, Pickle Day grows and grows, and this year has bubbled and fermented to take over the entirety of the parking lot just below Delancey Street between Ludlow and Essex. We'll be taking the early shift this Sunday, cooking up some love at the Rick's Picks tent from 11:00 to 1:30, so come on by and get some grub!

Rick Fields, proprietor and head goof ball behind Rick's Picks put it to us this year to come up with a tasty, savory something or other to show off his latest pickle, Handy Corn. And just what is Handy Corn, you may ask... Nothing more and nothing less than a delicious pickled corn relish: sweet, vinegary, and laden with that magic combo of aromatic spices that set all of Rick's Picks a head above your average gherkin.

For this year's Pickle Day, we decided that we'd pit corn against curds, smush it all between a coupla Hot Bread Kitchen Tortillas and make a quesadilla like none other. In a bout of recipe testing last night, the thumbs were all pointing skyward for this cheesy, toasty, pickley treat. Just in case you can't join us for the most mouth puckering celebration of the year, here is the key to making the perfect Handy Corn Cheese Quesadilla... Happy munching and hope to see you Sunday!

Saxelby Cheesemongers' Handy Corn Quesadillas

You will need:

1 8 oz container of cheese curds
1 package Hot Bread Kitchen corn tortillas
1 jar of Rick's Picks Handy Corn
a bit of butter

Toast tortillas in a dry, medium-hot skillet. Toast tortilla for 30 seconds, then flip and toast the other side. Put toasted tortillas on a plate and cover with a towel to keep them warm.

When all tortillas are toasted, butter your skillet, lay one tortilla down, cover with a modest (or not so modest depending on how cheesy you feel!) handful of cheese curds.

Spoon one generous spoonful of Handy Corn atop the curds and cover with second tortilla.

Toast quesadilla over low-medium heat (covering the skillet if you want meltier cheese quicker) one one side for about 1-2 mins. Flip the quesadilla and toast the other side.

Last but not least, sprinkle with a dose of Tabasco for a little extra kick!

If only all dinners were this easy....

Till next week!

See you on the Lower East Side this Sunday for some fermented fun!

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