Georgia Kral

Articles by

Georgia Kral

Georgia Kral is an editor, writer and reporter and a professor of journalism at Saint Peter's University in Jersey City. She covers food for Brooklyn Based and has been published in amNewYork, WNET's MetroFocus, WNYC and The New York Times. A Brooklyn resident for 10 years; she currently lives in Crown Heights with her husband, 1-year-old daughter and cat. Follow her on social media @georgiakral.

01/02/17 10:34am
Photo: Gentl & Hyers

Brooklyn will be home to even more exceptional pie in 2017. Photo: Gentl & Hyers

There’s plenty to be excited for in 2017, dear BB readers, at least as far as your tastebuds are concerned.

Here are some highlights, from the second official location of the best pie shop in the entire city to the reopening of a beloved–and formerly tiny–Vietnamese restaurant, to a new permutation of the fried chicken craze that has had its hold on New York for the past year or so.

Four & Twenty Blackbirds

The Elsen sisters are opening their official second location (not including pop-ups and the small sandwich and pie window at the Brooklyn Public Library) in February. Located on Dean Street between Vanderbilt and Carlton, in addition to pie the Prospect Heights 4&20 will also pair beer, wine and cider with its famous salty honey and salted caramel apple slices for diners. It will be open all day, serving coffee in the morning and harder drinks into the afternoon and evening.


(more…)

Brooklyn Based delivers free daily emails about the borough's best food, events, attractions and innovators. Get Brooklyn Based in your inbox--sign up here.

12/18/16 9:25pm

The time has come to reflect on 2016. Luckily, I write about food and not politics–this has been a great year for food in Brooklyn. We’ve been graced with openings from renowned chefs, quiet sleeper hits and pizza, pizza, pizza.

I started thinking about this in terms of a “best of” list and quickly realized I wouldn’t get anywhere just thinking about what was “best.” That is both a limiting and tired way of looking at any subject. So here I’ve broken it down into some of my own personal favorite categories (including pizza, burgers and wine) to highlight the real standouts from the past 12 months.


Photo: Olmsted

Photo: Olmsted

Best vibes: Olmsted

Olmsted has been getting so much love from the city’s foodies, critics and well, everyone, that it’s almost like, what do I have to add?

The food is refreshingly clever and yet still accessible. The dishes are pretty to look at and delicious to taste. (Nobody likes carrots that much and yet the carrot crepe is one of the best items on the menu.)

But what Olmsted is really owning is its reputation as a homey, down-to-earth Prospect Heights restaurant. Its well-known and loved edible backyard is now a winter sanctuary complete with heat lamps and Pendleton blankets. To turn the crown jewel of the restaurant into a year-round destination is pretty genius. Who can think of a better way to spend the early days of Trump, which will coincide with the deep days of winter, than in a joy-filled Brooklyn garden, mugs of booze in hand?

659 Vanderbilt Ave., Prospect Heights  (more…)

Brooklyn Based delivers free daily emails about the borough's best food, events, attractions and innovators. Get Brooklyn Based in your inbox--sign up here.

12/04/16 10:14am
Cardiff Giant serves New York State-made beer, wine and liquor. Photo:

Cardiff Giant serves New York State-made beer, wine and liquor. Photo:

There’s a fernet that is distilled in Brooklyn, and you can drink it at Cardiff Giant in Clinton Hill. The bitter, minty, Italian-style digestif, just two months old, launched at this unassuming bar on Myrtle Avenue in a partnership with Industry City Distillery in Sunset Park.

This close relationship between a small business and a craft producer exemplifies the mission at Cardiff Giant. The bar opened last year with an intensely local premise: all the alcohol they stock–from beer to cider to wine to liquor–is made in New York state. And since the majority of craft producers only make small batches, the bar’s inventory is constantly changing giving products like Arcane Fernet a distinct home.

Owner Steven Baird, who is also a managing partner at Owl Farm in Park Slope, said that he saw the growth of New York-produced alcohol and beer as a big opportunity, an expansion that has made Cardiff Giant a viable business.

“This would not have been possible five years ago,” said Baird. (more…)

Brooklyn Based delivers free daily emails about the borough's best food, events, attractions and innovators. Get Brooklyn Based in your inbox--sign up here.

11/28/16 12:04pm
Dim sum at dinnertime, anyone? Photo: Levi Miller

Dim sum at dinnertime, anyone? Photo: Levi Miller

Craft cocktails and dim sum don’t usually go together. Yet there I was, drinking an Imperial Mai Tai while enjoying delicate steamed soup dumplings on a recent evening in Williamsburg.

Yes, I was eating dim sum at night. And drinking alcohol. At the same time.

Kings County Imperial opened in 2015 in a compact space just around the corner from Union Pool. Blink, and you’ll miss it. But that would be a real shame for anyone with a passion for Chinese food. The restaurant serves classic Chinese dishes made from high quality ingredients. King’s County Imperial is to most Chinese delivery places as the burger at Diner is to a greasy spoon cheeseburger–the same dishes, but made distinctive by care and quality. The owners, who also operate the neighborhood restaurant Stone Park Cafe in Park Slope, opened Kings County with press-ready selling points like the soy sauce on tap, as well as many cocktails, including that Mai Tai, and Chinese vegetables and herbs grown in the backyard for use in the kitchen. (more…)

Brooklyn Based delivers free daily emails about the borough's best food, events, attractions and innovators. Get Brooklyn Based in your inbox--sign up here.

11/21/16 9:45am

Whether you’re looking for a killer side to bring to dinner, a cocktail to serve before the meal, or something to do with all those leftovers, we’ve got you covered with these Thanksgiving recipes from Brooklyn chefs and bartenders.


How about combining your turkey with some zippy Italian flavors this year? Photo: Zahra Tangorra Thanksgiving lasagna

Main dish or leftover solution

 

This recipe from High Five Girl works as an alternative main course on Thursday, or a clever use for leftovers on Friday.

 

 

RECIPE ➣ ➣

 


olmstedevansung Delicata squash vases

Side dish (or veggie main, with a few tweaks)

 

This savory, salad-y side from Greg Baxtrom, the chef and owner of Olmsted, is a real Thanksgiving Hall of Fame contender.

RECIPE ➣ ➣

(more…)

Brooklyn Based delivers free daily emails about the borough's best food, events, attractions and innovators. Get Brooklyn Based in your inbox--sign up here.

11/21/16 9:43am
The Thanksgiving Club from Hail Mary is quite possibly the best Thanksgiving sandwich of all time. Photo: Hail Mary

The Thanksgiving Club from Hail Mary is quite possibly the best classic Thanksgiving sandwich of all time. Photo: Hail Mary

This sandwich is on the menu at Hail Mary until Christmas, and Ham and Sohla El-Waylly, owners and chefs at the Greenpoint restaurant shared the recipe with us so you can make it at home, from scratch or using your own leftovers. 

MORE RECIPES ➣ ➣

Cranberry sauce

5 cups fresh cranberries

1/2 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup orange juice

1/2 cup calvados

1 cup sugar

Pinch salt

Zest from 3 lemons and 3 oranges

  1. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pot and simmer until cranberries are broken down and thickened to a jam consistency.
  2. Check for seasoning, adjust with sugar and salt if needed. Chill and reserve.

(more…)

11/21/16 9:22am
Replace your usual Thanksgiving sandwich with a turkey Balmy, a la Saltie. Photo: Caroline Fidanza

Replace your usual Thanksgiving sandwich with a turkey Balmy, a la Saltie. Photo: Caroline Fidanza

Caroline Fidanza, owner of Saltie, provided us with the recipe for her take on a bahn mi, the Balmy, using leftover turkey. As far as we’re concerned, this could be the main course at Thanksgiving.

MORE RECIPES ➣ ➣

Turkey “Balmy” Banh Mi

Ingredients

2 soft baguette-style breads

Leftover turkey, sliced

Sliced ham (optional)

2 cups sliced pickled carrots (recipe follows)

1 bunch red globe radishes, thinly sliced

1 small bunch cilantro, picked

1 small bunch mint, picked

4 pickled jalapeños, seeded, cut in half lengthwise, and sliced into thin strips

¼ cup toasted sesame seeds

Sea salt

Extra virgin olive oil

1 cup chicken liver mousse, buy it or use the following recipe

1 cup mayonnaise, preferably home-made

Sriracha (more…)

11/20/16 5:29pm

cauliflower

Try this creamy side from Mark Poiarkoff, executive chef at Vinegar Hill House, for an updated alternative to green bean casserole. Poiarkoff provided the recipe in gram measurements, so time to get out that kitchen scale if you’ve got one. We’ve translated it into cups and tablespoons, but grams will be far more precise. 

MORE RECIPES ➣ ➣


For cheese sauce

85g (6 Tbs) butter

75g (1/3 cup) flour

350g (1 1/2 cups) cream

350g (1 1/2 cups) milk

20 strokes nutmeg

1 pinch black pepper

14g (1 Tbs) salt

25g (2 Tbs) sherry vinegar

275g (10 oz) fresh chevre, crumbled (Capriole recommended) (more…)

11/20/16 4:28pm
How about combining your turkey with some zippy Italian flavors this year? Photo: Zahra Tangorra

How about combining your turkey with some zippy Italian flavors this year? Photo: Zahra Tangorra

High Five Girl, the restaurant consulting group and soon to launch feminist food blog, from Brucie alums Zahra Tangorra, Jennie Lupo and Nicole Bailey, shared their recipe for turkey lasagna with us. Mix it up this year and serve it on Thursday, or make it with leftover turkey on Friday.

“If you are looking for something wacky, but not too wacky to do with your turkey this year we have some real zippy Italian-American vibes to throw your way,” the High Fivers wrote.

You’ll need to prepare three separate recipes, then assemble the lasagna from those, plus a few more things (detailed below) including lasagna noodles or pasta sheets and Fontina cheese.

MORE RECIPES ➣ ➣

(more…)

11/20/16 2:31pm
Win Thanksgiving with these delicata squash vases. Photo: Evan Sung

Win Thanksgiving with these delicata squash vases. Photo: Evan Sung

These delicata squash vases are one of chef Greg Baxtrom’s favorite seasonal dishes.  They’re currently on the menu at his Prospect Heights restaurant, Olmsted. Multiply this recipe by however many servings you’d like (you won’t use a whole pear for each one). You could substitute thin curls of a hard cheese like parmesan or aged gouda for the speck to make this a vegetarian main course, too. 

MORE RECIPES ➣ ➣

Ingredients

1 delicata squash

.125 pounds sliced prosciutto or speck

1 bunch sage

3 tablespoons ricotta

1 green pear

1 bunch mustard greens

1 head lettuce

Salt

Pepper

Olive Oil

Sherry vinegar

Method (more…)