The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Kashkaval, Kyotofu, chocolate croissants and a sammich

beer cup
not my beer cup

I recognize the funky odor that comes from the belly of the Bowery Ballroom as "concert stench", but for some reason it never occured to me that "concert stench" was borne from many open, wafting cups of beer. My short attention span plowed through while the first opener was performing; my thoughts were concentrated not on the musical prowess of what was going on in front of me but that the smell of fermented barley water reminded me of a bakery, which in turn reminded me of bread, which in turn reminded me that I wanted to eat bread. Right there. At that moment.

I guess my appetite is back. AWESOME. I am one step closer to obesity.

vegetarian friendly!

I ate out for dinner just once this week, which I realized is probably average (or above average), but that means I don't have much reason to update my blog more than once or twice a week unless you want to see every unexciting piece of store-bought food, piece of fruit, cookie or candy bar that goes into my mouth. Which you do not. I think.


On Thursday night I met up with Lisa, whose business card probably doesn't say "Jacques Torres Cookie Bitch" even though I think that's a fine job title, in front of Kyotofu. But first we needed real food, which is how we ended up in the back room at Kashkaval. The front of the shop looks like a deli, but turns into a wine bar mid-way to the cozy, warm, wood-accented back room where you better not mind sitting with strangers's crowded and you will. But it's not crowded in the sense that its too noisy or that moving an inch puts you at risk for accidentally dipping your hand in someone else's food. It's just...cozy. Like I said.

sampler + bread
tapas sampler

We started with a small sample platter of their cold mediterranean tapas (four choices for $9):

Back: Eggplant Tapende (eggplants, garlic, tomatoes)
Left: Spicy Walnut Pepper Spread (fire roasted peppers, walnuts, oil, garlic, parsley)
Right: Red Pepper Spread (roasted red peppers, olive oil, garlic)
Front: Beet Skordalia (baked beets, garlic, herbs, and spices)

Everything was pretty much...awesome. Especially smooshed on top of warm, fluffy slices of pita bread. Our four choices happened to encompass a good variety of flavors (and colors). Eggplant was the least flavorful, walnut was crunchy and spicy, red pepper was smooshy and not so spicy, and beet was lightly sweet. Annnnd that's as good as my descriptions are going to get, even though I'm sure there are a gazillion better words to use. "VERY TASTY, WOULD EAT AGAIN, A++!" They also offer a large sampler of four flavors for $15, but I can't imagine how large that is after being totally stuffed with the small sampler (we couldn't finish everything, even though we wanted to).

Spinach and feta borek Spinach and feta borek

On top of the pita and many spreads, we shared a spinach and feta borek (spinach and feta cheese wrapped in phyllo dough). The dough was heavier than I thought it would be, but not in a bad way. Just an "Oh, my stomach isn't really big enough to eat all of this" kind of way, which you don't realize until you've eaten everything and realize that your stomach has turned into an anvil. (A few hundred calories too late, I mean.)

I would see myself going to Kashkaval more often if I lived closer to it. Lots of people were having fondue. I want fondue! Kind of!

end of the meat, but...whatever

We waddled down to Kyotofu for dessert action. Although we each probably could've downed an order of the prix fixe, we shared one. You know that thing called "moderation"? It pops up every now and then. I SWEAR.

original sweet tofu

The prix fixe started with the "original tofu" with black sugar sauce and dried apricot. It tasted like desserty tofu. Like that Chinese stuff. But denser. And in a non-disposable cup. I know that's a crappy description, but I'm tired and hey, you should have low standards when reading my blog. I aim for sub-mediocrity.

Oh, we liked the tofu. NEXT UP.

selection of...things
many things

Whoa, four things on one plate, what the shizz! Have no fear—these are not full-sized desserts. No stomach death occured. Here are some excessive descriptions:

Back: ginger infused japanese rice oyaku (sour cherry, kuromitsu whipped cream, ginger candy)
Left: sansho-pepper tofu cheese cake (shiro-an vanilla cream, shochu ginger, fruit carpaccio)
Right: chocolate cake...thing!
Front: fig yokan

My favorites were the rice pudding and the cheesecake. The cheesecake was very light, like...well, not so much like regular cheesecake. Mousse, perhaps? The chocolate cake smelled strongly of cocoa, but I don't think the taste was as strong. The fig yokan tasted like fig in jelly form. Which is what it's supposed to taste like. The jelly tasted crisp and clean, if that makes sense sense. Like if a fresh dewdrop were actually a solid blob of fig flavored jelly.

...Wow, that didn't make much sense. I'm just gonna move on now.


The final course was a green tea chocolate dipped cookie and a black sesame white chocolate kinako cookie. I liked the black sesame one more, but overall I wasn't very into either. Maybe I'm too particular about my cookies. They need to either be laden with butter or laden with sugar. Preferably both. Anything that the food pyramid wants you to eat sparingly is what I want in my cookie. A cookie of death, apparently.

The main dining room at Kyotofu was disarmingly noisy, either because the room amplified everyone's conversation or because people were just talking really loudly. Not that there's anything wrong with that—I'm just warning you. Although Lisa and I weren't interested in ordering drinks, we noticed much interesting beverage action on other people's tables. Oops. So perhaps you should take a look at their drinks menu besides the dessert menu. Kyotofu's desserts are well made, artfully presented and have interesting flavors, but for casual dessert-ing I'd rather eat a cupcake or some ice cream. Hell, for non-casual desserting I'd rather eat a cupcake or some ice cream. Fun to have the occassional new treat every so often, of course.


random stuff

I impulsively bought a City Bakery chocolate croissant while shopping at Whole Foods. I think grocery shopping is bad for my health.

outtards innards
mm, dough

There she is. She is tasty, but she is also more doughy and heavy than most chocolate croissants I've had. Those are the fattest croissant layers I've ever seen, squeezing the life out of the chocolate that hides within because it cannot escape the wrath of the Dough Blankets of Death. This croissant needs to go on a diet...just like you after you eat it. You can be gym buddies! Or not! I'm not saying this chocolate croissant isn't worth eating, as it is perfectly tasty, but if you're expecting one of those light, airy layered things, this ain't it.

chocolate croissant innards
another croissant!

I also tried a chocolate croissant from Cafe Zaiya, which you can see has more delicate, less doughy layers than the CB croissant. It wasn't as flavorful as CB's version, but at least it wasn't disarmingly filling. I should probably stop looking for chocolate croissants and just wait until I go back to Paris (32 DAYS, OH MY GAWD).

half of a sandwich

Last Monday I went to Bite near Union Square for sandwich action. The Sabih sandwich made of sauteed eggplant, hard boiled egg, middle eastern chopped salad, and creamy hummus smooshed inside a chewy baguette-esque roll refueled my burning love for sandwiches.

...Whoa, that sounded weird. Fuel. Burning. That's too intense. How about, it stick a bright yellow post-it in my brain that said, "REMINDER: YOU LOVE SAMMICHES!"

....Damn, that sounds dumb.


I like sammiches. Especially those from Bite. "FAST, CHEAP, TASTY, FILLING, WOULD EAT AGAIN A++!"

Sorry, this wasn't a very good entry. I'm a little distracted Trust me, I can't wait until I can concentrate more on my blog and not fill it with crap.

other stuff

Heeeey everyone in NYC, check out Blogsoop, a site that lists restaurant reviews from blogs. Craploads of blogs. SOMEONE'S GOTTA DO IT. So glad it wasn't me.

Another thing: menuism's food fight is to find the BEST PANCAKE. EVER. Or at least in Chicago, Seattle, New York and San Francisco. I haven't eaten enough pancakes to decide where to get the best ones in NYC, but someone out there probably does. I do know that the ones at Clinton Street Baking Co are hella tasty, especially doused with maple butter, nectar of the pancake gods.

The New York Times takes a lookie at the NYC food blogosphere. Like whoa! It's weird to see so much food blogging-ness distilled into one not very long article. And am I the last food blogger in NYC to have not eaten at Momofuku Ssam Bar? Perhaps.

Andrew Bird influences foodie nyc to cook...chicken! I wish Andrew Bird could dig out the chef in me, but there isn't really one. [sigh] However, Andrew Bird does make me VERY VERY HAPPY by filling my head with wonderful things. Listen to his newest songs. They're better than sandwiches.

This is more for me than for you, but I was reminded by a commenter on flickr to check out this random hot dog and fries place deep in the East Village. Deep is anything that goes into the lettered avenues. Yup, I don't get out much. Anyone want to join me?


856 9th Avenue

705 9th Ave

City Bakery
3 W 18th St

Cafe Zaiya
69 Cooper Sq

211 E 14th St


Adalmin / February 4, 2007 6:26 PM

All I want is a chocolate croissant that has a huge glob of melted chocolate in it, not those little lumps. It's like they don't know what the world wants. The world wants more chocolate, less half-assing, dammit.

Zoe / February 4, 2007 6:51 PM

That's so true. They should really have chocolate on the outside and some melted pastry on the inside. The pastry bit is just foreplay until you get to the real goodness.

Edyta / February 4, 2007 7:45 PM

You're counting the days for Paris visit :)
I definitely wouldn't mind reading about your store-bought food!

Tina / February 4, 2007 7:55 PM

Oh, you're not the last food blogger in NYC who hasn't eaten at Momofuku Ssam. I still haven't eaten there yet. I still want to but I don't know if I'm motivated to go down there to eat just because it's too darn cold this week! It's going to feel below 0!

redrhino / February 4, 2007 8:46 PM


point's finger invasion of the body snatcher style @ Robyn and yell's ---> EBAYER!

ah ha ha ha


p.s. if your not famillar with "ebays feedback" then I've just amused myself....again. XD

maria~ / February 4, 2007 11:03 PM

how cool! is kyotofu just a dessert place that has tofu as one of the main ingredients?

i tried making "tofutti" ice cream at home with silken tofu and froezen strawberries. result? eh, not so good, maybe because of the lack of sugar or my ineptitude at really really puree-ing all of the stuff. hmmm... gotta try it again.

roboppy / February 4, 2007 11:30 PM

Adalmin: I don't know if I've ever found a chocolate croissant with a HUGE GLOB inside. Booo. Maybe too much chocolate is dangerous to the internal structure of the croissant. Or maybe people are too wussy with the chocolate.

Zoe: Chocolate covered croissant? Chocolate covered chocolate croissant? Hehe...hehehehee. Um, someone should try that. Maybe.


Damn, I already forgot about my store bought food since I didn't take photos of it and write it down. [scratches head]

redrhino: I'm familiar with ebay feedback (I've given some) but not with Invasion of the Body Snatcher style finger pointing! :O

Maria: Yup, I think tofu is the focus. Soybean are alright with me, but I LOVE ME SOME WHEAT.

Oh, I also love sugar. Sorry your tofutti experiment didnt work! Mushed frozen mango is pretty good. Kind of like sorbet, but only made of one ingredient. :D (Which has nothing to do with tofutti, but it's frozen and ...yummy.)

Lee / February 5, 2007 6:29 AM

This is completely unrelated to food, but:

I read on their website that The Bravery (I would kill puppies to see them live, I would :)) are set to perform at the Bowery Ballroom sometime in March. I didn't bother about finding out specifically where it was, because, hey, I live on a different continent. But now, by coincidence, I know! And damn, are you lucky to live in such close vicintiy to it! Who was playing the night you got your appetite back?

I should say something food-related. Uh, I really like your blog! I love your food photography, and on the rarer occasions that you put up your band or music photography, I really enjoy that too. Awesome all round.

Rose / February 5, 2007 7:45 AM

I ate at Momofuko (spelling??) when it first opened, before all the "mania" it now has. don't worry, there's plenty more out in the nyc eating scene so you can skip the huge arse line it has.

went to kashkaval 2 years ago. had a quiche. was not very good. that's my only experience. seems you did better (or they got better).

Kyotofu opened after I left...will have to be one of those that i check when I return stateside (in august, september, who knows...haven't fact, i told my dad the other day i was thinking of just staying here and he told me i had to come back at some point in the summer, sooooooooooo...i'll return, with an empty stomach :-)

Natalia / February 5, 2007 11:39 AM

That cookie of death sounds like my kind of cookie. The more butter and sugar and fattening bad for your general health stuff it has the better! Those two cookies just look too light to satisfy the cookie of death craving.

roboppy / February 5, 2007 10:16 PM

Lee: The Bowery Ballroom is one of my favorite venues. And I used to live closer to it! Many nights were spent walking home after concerts...really late...back to my dorm. Uh. That was probably a bad idea.

Anyhoo, Peter Bjorn and John were playing the night I felt bread-hungry again. :) Now I know that someone likes the concert photography, I'll put it up in the future! If I ever go to a concert again! Ehe!

Rose: I tried Momofuku once and thought it was...alright. I will give the new place a try. :D

Ah, the spreads at Kashkaval are really good! Go there if you want...stuff with pita bread.

It might be nice to come back in the summer. It's a bit less hot here. :D

la: Haha, that's sweet...but I'm not at that level of food blogging yet. I probably need a few thousand more visitors. ;)

Natalia: Cookie of Death. That's the name of my future bakery. Or yours!

The Wine Makers Wife: OH MY GOD I WANT TO GO TO SPAIN! FOR FOODS! ...SOMEDAY! [jealous]

lutkie / February 6, 2007 1:30 AM

That spinachy thing looks soooo good. It's hot chocolate month at City Bakery already....crazy, are you going? I saw an article in the NY times about food bloggers on sunday with nosher and the amateur gourmet. Do you ever eat with those people. Cheers :)

Mickjagger / February 6, 2007 8:00 AM

A place called "Bite" would make everybody laugh in Paris... :)
("bite" means "dick" in rude french, but we pronounce it "beet")
OK I shouldn't remind you such horrible words :p

lashes457 / February 6, 2007 3:13 PM

holy god that sandwich looks delicious! everytime I see that place, I want to eat there, but I've usually a) just eaten or b) am with someone, meaning we're looking for somewhere to sit down. Laaaame!

I find thats a common problem with chocolate croissants, though that one from Cafe Zaiya looked pretty mind-blowing. I love them, and I always get them over regular ones, and I'm usually dissapointed by the amount of chocolate they have. Grrr. Though I suppose if there was too much, the whole balance "mouth-feel" thing would be off. Whatever, I like chocs. =D

bazu / February 8, 2007 1:37 PM

Ok, this might seem really inappropriate, but... will you marry me? Puh-leeeeeese? How else could I come along with you on all your mind-blowing food excursions?
Just tell me you'll think about it! ;-)

Must try Kyotofu. THose leeetle desserts look beyond cute.

roboppy / February 10, 2007 9:31 PM

bazu: Wellll you are the first person to ask to marry I will keep that in consideration. Which means you'd be first to want to get a divorce from me as well! Haha!

piccola: I think I've only had an empanada...once in my life. HORROR! Is that really bad? .___.

Mubby / February 12, 2007 7:34 AM

You are offcially my favourite food blogger... all those cooking blogs make me depressed about my own pathetic cooking skills. Whereas your photos are absolutely scrumptious... I think I could actually maintain my diet and sustain my cravings by looking at all your food photos... although it's giving me a urge to run to the bakery and eat a choc crossiant... >_

Keep up the good work with the good old high-carb and high-butter desserts. Although I must say, I really love Chinese desserts, here in Melbourne, our egg tarts aren't even flavoured... The tofu cheesecake looks and sounds really interesting too!

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