Posts made in February 2021

Chef Sharyn’s 10th Hamantashen for Purim Anniversary With Mr. Smoooooth!

Let me begin by including the very first Hamantaschen Bake-off from March, 2011…yes, 2011!

Hamantashen Time @ Sharyn & Joel’s


Purim 2021, February 25th and it was time for our annual Hamantaschen Bake-off @ Sharyn & Joel’s home. We had all gotten our vaccines and felt confident enough in these times of Covid to get together. PS…the kitchen door was open for a little extra air 🙂

Say hello again to Chef Sharyn & Joel…The host & hostess with the most and mostess!

So the way it happens is Chef Sharyn bakes for her family prior to my arrival. When I arrive and walk into the kitchen, it’s then that I start the baking process by using her recipe to bake for our family and walk out with 50 or 60 Hamantaschen. I get a refresher course each year since she’s the head baker and I’m simply following her recipe.

For this year there was a surprise. Sharyn had decided to add one more filling that turned out to be טָעִים מְאוֹד…ie…wonderful! It was Nutella!

Believe it or not, I had never eaten Nutella. My perception was that if it was flavored with hazelnuts I wouldn’t like it. Never liked flavored coffee…ie…hazelnut coffee…and that was my mindset when it came to Nutella. Boy…was I surprised at how much I enjoyed these.

Now…A bit about the recipe…

Chef Sharyn has been using this hamantaschen recipe since 1992 from Temple Israel in Lawrence, L.I. New York. The recipe has evolved just a bit over the years because her sons Andrew & Garrett (of Andrew & Garrett fame) and Mr. Smoooooth liked extra filling and cutting 2″ rounds just didn’t cut it. 🙂 Today they are closer to 3″ rounds and filled with close to 2 teaspoons of all the wonderful flavors.

Now after reading what I wrote in 2011, I remember filling these with preserves. Hmmmmm…gonna get permission from Chef Sharyn to see if I could work my fave Bon Maman preserves into the next Hamantaschen Bake-off. I think after reading about the Bon Maman family, it might be a bit easier to gain her approval to work these into her recipe. Whaddayathink?

Parfaitement douce Bonne Maman French Preserves…My Favorite!

Sooooo…to Chef Sharyn I say sincerely…

Thank YOU for another wonderful baking experience and Sandy & I hope you & Joel had a Happy Purim!

purim background with masks, rattles and hamantaschen - hamantaschen stock illustrations

Say hellooooo to Mr. Smoooooth 🙂

As always…comments are appreciated either here in the box below…or on Facebook or Instagram

Mangia bene’

Chef Bert


Marinated Grilled Artichokes, Fresh Mozzarella, Campari Tomatoes On Romaine Leaves With A Raspberry Balsamic Dijon Vinaigrette

It snowed pretty hard the other night…so Sandy & I decided to eat at home. It was easy enough. Who doesn’t like fresh mozzarella with tomatoes?

Question was…served with what? Sandy decided on a couple of BetsaPasta Famous 🙂  meat-a-balls from the freezer…and after perusing the options in the fridge, I decided on marinated artichokes. Done!

It came out nice enough to post…so here’s the dressing recipe…short and sweet!

1/4 cup EVOO

2 tsp. Manodori Balsamic …or any other (must be) fabulous balsamic

2 tsp. white raspberry infused balsamic glaze

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

Pinch Kosher salt and 2-3 turns from a fresh pepper mill

Mix vinegar’s, mustard salt & pepper in a bowl…then add oil.

Stir until dressing is totally emulsified and thickened

Drizzle over the below ingredients:

-3-4 Romaine leaves laid out on your plate

-3-4 thin slices fresh mozzarella

-3-4 tomatoes (depending on size and how much you love your Campari tomatoes:-)

-Artichoke hearts and-or stems (sometimes hard to chew outer leaves tossed)


Please note: It’s winter time and my go to winter time tomato is Campari, They are readily available in your local supermarket! Trust me 🙂

Tomatoes, Campari

Mangia bene’

Chef Bert

Comments always welcome …directly below…

Meet Sweet Scarlett & Alethea @ Pindar Vineyards on the NOFO!

Just for the sake of sharing…I simply can’t help but write about the constant and consistent finds on what I call the ever evolving north fork of Long Island. Actually, I’ve been writing about my/our experiences & finds on the NOFO for the last ten years and a casual stop this afternoon to say hello to the folks at Pindar Vineyards yielded another discovery…actually two discoveries! We discovered Sweet Scarlett wine (one taste was all it took. Sold!) and cordial (no pun intended) Alethea, Pindar’s sister, whom I had never met before.

I guess I was so fixated on Summer Blush that I totally missed seeing Sweet Scarlett, Pindar’s mildly sweet red blend.

You know what they say about happy people…yes?

Meet Alethea…sister of Pindar,,,the host with the most with a couple of their favorite wine choices! Sincerely, there’s always something to be said for a fine and most cordial reception at Pindar with Pindar.

Although we have always…like most of you…bought our wine in bottles. in the last couple/few years we have noticed the growing trend of wine in cans and only last summer did we try wine in a can at Pindar Vineyards. “Summer Blush” was a wine we first discovered in bottles at Duckwalk Vinyards (the sister vineyard to Pindar) on the South fork almost 25 years ago. Now Sandy and I share a 12 oz. can without having to concern ourselves with drinking more than the occasion warrants since it’s not a whole bottle we’ve opened. Actually…quite convenient 🙂

A quick little aside about canned wines:

The popularity of canned wine started at The Francis Ford Coppola Winery in California with the debut of the Sofia Blanc de Blanc (Sofia is Coppola’s daughter.)…but the major spike in new entrants is more recent. The number of winemakers canning wine grew 180 percent (from 125 to 350) between June 2018 and June 2019, according to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-based wine-in-a-can research firm WICresearch,  a leading researcher in the wine-in-a-can market. From what I’ve learned, the best canned wines are typically made to be fresh and fruity in a style with little to no oak contact, and most should be consumed within 12-18 months. An extra added attraction: the cans are recyclable!

Another queeek little aside:

I actually never put this pic in any of my blog entry’s, however since Coppola is relevant to this entry, here’s a pic of a gift from Director Coppola to me back in 2007 through my longtime friend…Chief Pilot Bob Barry who, for years, flew Francis around the world. Cool, huh?

Next up…Greenport for a quick take out for some Lucharitos Mexican by the pier

We then, after walking through the town, traveled out to Orient for a walk and a beautiful view of Orient beach where we also picked some surprisingly beautiful shells.

On the way back we stopped off at The Candy Man in Orient for dessert 🙂

Another lovely day trip on the NOFO ended with our usual stop for coffee at The Hampton Coffee Company in Aquebogue. A nice Autumn shot!

The winemakers note: Sweet Scarlet is a red wine that is “user friendly”. Serve it chilled (we prefer it this way) or at room temperature. The color is scarlet, the taste is slightly sweet, and the nose is “HEAVEN”. Serve it with barbecue foods, hamburgers, Italian foods, especially red sauces and hot spicy foods.

Sounds to me like this wine would also make a wonderful Sangria! Don’t want to get off on a tangent, however here is a simple base ingredients recipe for Sangria according to Cooks Illustrated:

-2 large juice oranges, washed; one orange sliced; remaining orange juiced

-1 large lemon, washed and sliced
 cup granulated sugar
 cup Triple Sec (Using Brandy or a combination of Brandy & Triple Sec may work for you)
-1 bottle (doesn’t have to be expensive) fruity, medium-bodied red wine (750 milliliters) like Sweet Scarlett, chilled
There are sooo many recipes for Sangria that you may want to defer to the computer to pick a recipe that sounds good to you with more specific preparation instructions.

Wanna know more about other wines we enjoy at Pindar…especially their Pythagoras Red Blend? Click here and scroll about 3/4 of the way down:

A Day In the Life Of Sandy & Bert And Those Who Wanted To Join Us On The North Fork Of Long Island, N.Y.!


See you again soon…and as always, please feel free to comment below.

Mangia Bene’

Chef Bert




CHARLES CHIPS Classic Potato Chips Are Back @ ABOUT FOOD in Southold, L.I., New York!

Charles Chips – A U.S.-based manufacturer of chips which had been around since 1942 and somehow disappeared in the early 1990’s…is back!

Yes…these same classic Charles Chips and the flavor YOU remember from the 1950s and ’60s are once again available for your snacking satisfaction right here at ABOUT FOOD on the NOFO…and for a price less than anywhere else!

Wanna know more? Click this link and scroll half way down to ABOUT FOOD! 

A Day In the Life Of Sandy & Bert And Those Who Wanted To Join Us On The North Fork Of Long Island, N.Y.!