NYC Eats: The Meatball Shop

How do you like your balls?

Chances are, if you tried to order “naked balls” in any other dining establishment, the management would swiftly and (maybe) politely ask you to vacate the premises.  Don’t even try your luck with “the family jewels.”

But at The Meatball Shop, a self-professed “fuss free kinda joint” with locations in Brooklyn and Manhattan, cheeky orders like this are only the beginning of the fun.

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NYC Eats: Dinner at Queens Kickshaw

Now that I finally feel settled into my new neighborhood, I figured it was time to start sampling the local cuisines! A friend of mine read about a place that specialized in “fancy grilled cheeses” in the Gothamist–you don’t have to do much arm-twisting to convince me that grilled cheese is a fabulous dinner. Throw in a bangin’ list of hard ciders? I’m all over it.

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Lunch Break: Chocolate & Crepes in Alphabet City

I work in Midtown Manhattan. Now, normally this provides for some pretty interesting sights. Free movies in Bryant Park, more food trucks of every conceivable ethnic variety than one could possibly choose from, and a whole lotta tourists (okay, so sometimes that part is exasperating).

But at other times? At other times the constant hustle and bustle and GOGOGO of Manhattan just gets to me. And so last week, thanks to an about-to-expire Groupon, I decided to take a field trip waaaay downtown to St. Marks Place during my lunch break. People, it’s a whole different world south of 14th Street.

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Lunch break! Noshing in Philadelphia

There are certain days that are absolutely made for open-air dining. You know the ones–blue skies, zero humidity, light breeze–when those friendly little street-side cafes just seem to call out, “Come! Stay awhile! We have wine!”

Okay, well maybe not always that last part. In any event, my boyfriend and I found ourselves in Philadelphia on just such a Saturday not long ago. We contemplated our dining options: Reading Terminal Market? Always a hit–no matter what you or your dining partner are in the mood for, you both can let the spirit move you until you find the cuisine you fancy. Margaret Kuo’s? One of our favorites during undergrad, but alas, neither of us were having that very particular craving for Asian at the moment. The choice, it seemed, was clear:

Creperie Beau Monde.

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Snickerdoodles: Sugar-Coated Nostalgia

This past weekend, I hopped a train and chugged down the Northeast Corridor to the City of Brotherly Love–Philadelphia, home of such illustrious denizens as the Liberty Bell and the cheesesteak. I was invited to a party given by a friend of mine who’d just graduated from college the week before, and as I welcome any excuse to return to Philly, I was more than happy to attend.

Cookies for a Cause! — Share Our Strength Bake Sale

This weekend, I had the privilege of helping out at the Great American Bake Sale‘s New York City location. The event was organized by the nonprofit group Share Our Strength, which works to educate people about childhood hunger and, by increasing awareness, take steps to supply children with healthy, affordable food. I found out about the bake sale as I was perusing one of the other baking blogs I frequent, and I thought it sounded like a fantastic opportunity to give back (after volunteering became second nature to me during my undergrad years, it seems odd to me that it’s so hard to get involved now).

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If you give a Tara a cookie…

Well, clearly she’ll want some milk to go with it, but the cookie is the only real non-negotiable part. On this, a gorgeous Mother’s Day weekend, Middle Chip and a took a mid-morning jaunt to a lovely little mecca called Milk & Cookies. We oohed. We aahed. We got there 20 minutes after opening.

Cookie porn after the jump.

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