One of the questions we get asked the most is "Can I add home cooked foods to Foodspotting?"
While we're all for tasty meals whipped up in our own kitchens, we think Foodspotting makes the most sense when pointing others to amazing dishes that they can order, too. But, because we love eating in as much as we love dining out, we thought it'd be fun to interview our home-cooking role model, author, and friend Cathy Erway who took a two-year hiatus from restaurant dining and blogged about her experience on Not Eating Out in New York. Her blog became a book called The Art of Eating In, which just came out in paperback. Check out Cathy's thoughts on our favorite pastime: finding meals beyond our own abodes and documenting the best so that others can try them time and time again. AC
Which restaurant dish did you miss the most during your two year commitment to not eating out in New York?
Any place with dim sum. There was just no way I was going to spend the time making about forty different elaborate dumplings, buns, rolls, chicken feet, turnip cake and all my favorites to have by myself. This was definitely one top reason FOR eating out.
What was the first restaurant dish you had after the two years was up? Was dining out better or worse than you remembered?
When I decided I was going to start eating out again, I thought I'd do a fun experiment called "Opposite Week," where literally everything I ate had to come from a restaurant. It started off with a modest brunch in Park Slope, and during that week I ate Szechuan food in Flushing, Caribbean food in my Crown Heights neighborhood, pizza, hamburgers, Momofuku ramen and, finally, dim sum. It was definitely a trip. I can't say any one way is better or worse: eating in or dining out, in general, but doing each to the extreme in back-to-back weeks definitely made me realize how much I'd prefer eating in for the rest of my life rather than out if I had to choose.
Now that you're dining out again which dishes do you go for and why?
I like to try foods that I've never had before, cuisines that I'm less familiar with, that sort of thing. And I always appreciate something made by a master through much hard work and experience, because you just can't become one for everything.
Last but not least, name five of your favorite restaurant dishes.
Meyer Lemon Spaghetti from Franny's in Brooklyn
Spicy Tofu & Seafood Casserole from Cho Dang Gol in Koreatown
All the cold, chili oil-covered appetizers at Spicy & Tasty in Flushing, Queens
Fish taco at Chavella's in Brooklyn
Malfatti at Al Di La in Brooklyn