Come along on a culinary tour of Washington Heights, the epicenter of Dominican culture in New York. Marissa Finn gives us a tour of this region of Manhattan. Malecon Restaurant, a mainstay of the neighborhood, dishes out Cuatro Goples, a hearty Dominican breakfast centered around traditional mangu. Check out her story and our video, just published on Edible Manhattan.
If your craving a little DR food, but can’t make it to Malecon, you make it yourself with the recipe below. I can’t promise it will taste exactly you’ll find at 180th Street and B’way, but it’s close.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes Ingredients
4 unripe plantains
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
4 tablespoons of olive oil
1 cup of water at room temperature
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 large onions
1 tablespoon of fruit vinegar
Salt To Prepare Mangu
1. Peel the plantains and cut into 8 pieces.
2. Remove the center where the seeds are located (optional)
3. Boil the plantains adding until they are very tender, having added the salt to the water.
4. Take the plantains out of the water and mash them with a fork until they are very smooth.
5. Add olive oil and mix.
6. Add the water and keep mashing and mixing until it is very smooth puree. To Prepare the Onions
7. Heat a tablespoon of oil in pan.
8. Add onions and cook and stir until they become transparent.
9. Add vinegar and season with salt to taste.
10. Garnish mangu with the onions and serve with sunny side-up eggs or Dominican scrambled eggs, Dominican fried cheese or fried slices of salami.
It’s been 50 years since eager-eyed fair go’ers flocked to the 1964 World’s Fair in the middle of Queens to see the “Tent of Tomorrow,” also known as the New York World’s Fair Pavilion. In the half-century since the fair closed, the structure has seen life briefly as a skating rink, but has for most of the time been left to decay. But the magic of the 1964-65 World’s Fair never left former Queens resident John Piro who has a personal connection with the event. “In 1964, I worked in the Worlds Fair and in 1965, my band played in the Pavilion. It’s a great time of your life and it always stayed with me,” he says. “I would come down to the park and see the building deteriorating and I told my wife, you know what? Maybe I could do something.”
Since then, John Piro and a growing number of volunteers have spent countless Saturdays at the site repainting the red and white stripes on the lower wall of the Pavilion. It’s all part of The New York Pavilion Paint Project, organized by John and his friend, Mitch Silverstein in 2009. All of the money for the project, about $3,500, has come from small donations and out of their own pockets. Their efforts will be shown off on April 22, which is the 50th anniversary of the start of the 1964 World’s Fair, when the doors of the Pavilion will be opened once more to the public. However, this time the public will have to wear hard-hats. There will be limited to the general public to access to view and take pictures of the site. The volunteers are hoping to raise awareness of the structure and to create more fund-raising interest. Mr. Piro feels that if people are given a chance to come in and see the beauty of the structure, they will want help with efforts to save this modern ruin. Ultimately, Piro and Silverstein would like to see a complete restoration and redesign of the building that would house restaurants, galleries and other businesses.
Their best efforts will not be enough, however, to restore the iconic building to its former glory. According to the NY Parks and Recreation Department, it would cost an estimated 72 million dollars to restore the pavilion and its attached towers. Much of that cost would be spent to make the Pavilion and its towers safe for occupancy. There are currently no plans by the Parks Department to either develop or tear down buildings.
Pizza is synonymous with the City-and why not? After all, what most of the world considers pizza was practically invented here (sorry, Italy). Nothing is more authentic than a slice from that most iconic of NYC pizzerias, Joe’s Pizza in Greenwich Village. I have to say, however, it’s my second favorite pizza place in NYC. Check out the video.