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Updates!

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Just a few updates because life is moving forward and Dirt Candy is moving with it!

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We’ve got an instagram account! I’m snapping pictures of stuff in the kitchen, dishes I’m working on, and the new space getting (hopefully) built. So if you want to see it all as it happens (or as it doesn’t happen) then that’s the best place to go.

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On April 15 (Tax Day!) Zagat closes the voting for last year’s restaurants, and then it uses the votes to assign overall ratings for their guide. Believe it or not, this kind of thing really helps Dirt Candy and it’s one of the ways that folks find out about my restaurant. So if you have a minute, I’d love it if you could head over there and rate Dirt Candy (good or bad – I’ve got a thick skin) and let Zagat know how your meal here was?

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Finally, Eater asked me to write a column for them, and the first one just went up. It’s called Dispatches from Dirt Candy and it’s my take on some of the current trends in restaurants and what’s going on in this industry. So if you’re interested in hearing me shoot my mouth off about stuff (alternate title we didn’t use for the column: “Someone, Please Make Amanda Cohen Shut Up!”) then it’ll be right up your alley.

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Future

The Future, here we come!

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The New Wine List!

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The wine list has finally been updated!

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That is all.

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The Potato Salad

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An unholy combination of three different dishes from three different countries, the Dirt Candy Potato Salad is the lightest, crunchiest, most delicate potato salad you’ve ever had in your life.

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The Original Moosewood

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One of the coolest things that happened to me while I was touring with the cookbook last summer, was going to Omnivore Books in San Francisco. The store itself was amazing and the event was packed which was great, but the best thing was finding a first edition copy of the Moosewood Cookbook on their shelves.

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If you’re a vegetarian, you have a copy of the Moosewood Cookbook. If you don’t, that just means you lost it. Moosewood is the training wheels to being a vegetarian home cook, the book that launched a thousand plates of brown rice and tofu. The New York Times claims it’s one of the ten best-selling cookbooks of all time. Just holding this spiral-bound, stained, faded, typewritten and hand-lettered cookbook felt like reaching back into the misty past of vegetarianism. But then, something crazy happened.

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The Moosewood Collective in all their world-changing glory.

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One of the people attending the event was Phyllis Boudreau, one of the original members of the Moosewood collective. Moosewood was a vegetarian restaurant operated under collective ownership in upstate New York. Earnest and committed to political change, this cookbook was going to be their big foray into the world. However one of their members, Mollie Katzen, took their name and style and recipes and started publishing her own Moosewood cookbooks without the collective. There was a falling out and the whole thing ended with Katzen getting rich and a lot of hurt feelings and bad blood.

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It was kind of awesome to get to experience some of this history first-hand because this was a major moment for vegetarian food in America, and it reminded me of how many stories in the food world there are outside the sphere of celebrity chefs and French cuisine, and how many of them haven’t been told yet. I wish more of them were getting written down before they’re forgotten.

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Meet Our Wine Zoo: Shooting Star Blue Franc Blaufränkisch

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Dirt Candy doesn’t have much room to store cases of wine, so rather than offering people the same old list of Syrahs, Cabernets, Chardonnays, Pinot Grigios and all the rest of the usual suspects I thought I’d make up a wine list of the strangest and most unusual wines I could find, sort of like a wine zoo for exotic animals.

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Blaufrankisch

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Blaufränkisch is a winemaker’s wine, a grape that folks in the know love and are willing to do anything to grow. If you ever want to impress a sommelier, order a Blaufränkisch if you see one on his or her list. They’re rarely ordered and that’s too bad, because they are red wine’s best kept secret.

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Meet Our Wine Zoo: Montenidoli Vinbrusco Toscana

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Dirt Candy doesn’t have much room to store cases of wine, so rather than offering people the same old list of Syrahs, Cabernets, Chardonnays, Pinot Grigios and the rest of the usual suspects I thought I’d make up a wine list of the strangest and most unusual wines I could find, sort of like a wine zoo for exotic animals.

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Dirt Candy has a tradition of serving forgotten and neglected wines, but it would be hard to find a wine more obscure than vinbrusco. My Oxford Companion to Wine doesn’t even have an entry for it, and yet it’s one of the richest, spiciest white wines I’ve ever tried.

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Vinbrusco

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Rabbit Pie

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One of my goals at Dirt Candy is to base every dessert around a vegetable. That’s sort of a trendy thing to do right now, but I’ve been working on it for about five years, and while it sounds like a terrible idea, I’m constantly surprised at how well it works out. Case in point: Carrot Meringue Pie with Sour Cream Ice Cream and Candied Carrots.

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Happy Purim!

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Purim starts tomorrow, and I just wanted everyone to know that I was into Purim before it was cool.

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Me, rocking Purim, on the front page of the Ottawa Citizen
with my mouth full of food.

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Smoking or Non-Smoking?

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Smoking is one of those techniques that home cooks stay away from because it seems intimidating and complicated when, in reality, it’s really easy. Smoking food steps up your game, and it’s something I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of, so in the spirit of giving away my few secrets, here’s Dirt Candy’s Rough Guide to Smoking. Get ready to impress people!

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Impressed, yet?

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Setting Traps for Popeye

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I wanted to make Spanakopita. That’s all. I was just a nice girl who wanted to make a savory Greek pastry full of spinachy goodness, the kind of thing you’d use to bait a trap for Popeye. And then I told my sous chef, Danielle, and she told me that she would pull off my head and beat me to death with my spinal column if I asked her to make the phyllo dough my Spanakopita required. I don’t need you, Danielle. I can make phyllo dough all on my own. Then I tried to make phyllo dough but all I made was sadness and tears.

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So I gave up on my Spanakopita, and I made Spinachkopita instead.

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Read the rest of this entry »



menu


Menu

Snack

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Jalapeno Hush Puppies $6
served with maple butter
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Appetizers

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Mushroom $13
portobello mousse, truffled toast
pear & fennel compote

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Cucumber $12
roasted cucumber hot and sour soup,
black sesame, garlic chili oil, wood ear
mushroom, cucumber jelly

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Tomato $13
tomato cake with smoked feta,
yellow tomato leather, herb puree

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Potato $12
warm potato salad, crispy Japanese
yams, grilled sweet potato, olives,
bitter greens, apples

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Entrees

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Beets $20
salt-roasted beets, thai green curry,
beet gnocchi, whipped coconut galangal cream

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Pepper $18
fennel & pepper tofu,
parsley spaetzle, grilled
yellow pepper broth,
mustard crumbs

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Broccoli $21
smoked broccoli dogs,
broccoli kraut, salt &
vinegar broccoli rabe

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Corn $19
stone ground grits, corn cream,
pickled shiitakes, huitlacoche,
tempura poached egg

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- everything on the menu can be made vegan on request.

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Dessert

Rosemary Eggplant Tiramisu $12
grilled eggplant, rosemary cotton
candy, mascarpone

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Ice Cream Nanaimo Bar$11
sweet pea, mint, chocolate

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Popcorn Pudding$11
salted caramel corn

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Celery Cheesecake Roll$10
celeriac ice cream, peanut filling,

& candied grapes

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- vegan dessert selection changes regularly, please ask your server.

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Our wine list (and other beverages)

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Gift Certificates

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