My pal Sean Feeney opened what’s now become my — and many others’ — favorite restaurant: Lilia (567 Union Avenue, Brooklyn; +1 718 576 3095) in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. For so long it was super casual, communal table-and-edison bulb schemes in Brooklyn, and Lilia feels elevated and glamorous and nevermind absolutely delicious! All the pasta is handmade in-house daily — heavenly! I always order the pink peppercorn malfadini and finish off each meal with homemade soft-serve vanilla ice cream. If you’re lucky they might shave some black truffle on it for the ooh la la sensation. It’s every single thing I love in one restaurant.
When it comes to my own kitchen, I’m a die-hard KitchenAid mixer disciple. In fact I have two at home in Brooklyn — one commercial grade for doughs and big-batch recipes like holiday cookies, and a smaller standard size for fresh whipped cream and more ad hoc baking moments. I grew up in a household with only hand-mixers so I still feel like a stand mixer is a huge luxury but infinitely practical!
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I have a few hens at my country house out on Long Island, so I am always on the lookout for new interesting ways to use as many eggs as possible. Lately I’ve been playing around with versions of “Eggs in Purgatory” as a one-pot breakfast go-to. It’s a version of this amazing baked eggs dish I used to order all the time at Café Gitane in Nolita (242 Mott Street, New York;+1 212 334 9552) where you create a tomato sauce, add some greens, and then drop in fresh eggs and bake them in the oven. It looks super impressive when you bring it to the table and shave fresh pecorino cheese over the top.
The best kitchen hack and one that everyone really needs to learn is how to soften butter at a moments notice. Basically you stand a stick of butter in its wrapper, put a glass over the top of it, and run hot water over the glass for a minute or so. The heat from the glass will soften the butter lickety-split!
If I’m out and about I could really live off the egg protein boxes from Starbucks in perpetuity, so that’s always my go-to, along with a venti iced Americano. If I’m hitting the town, I always opt for a Tito’s martini up, with a twist and cup of ice on the side. Easy breezy beautiful.