Thoughts, ramblings, and #BTS by the L&T Editorial Staff.

Off the Menu: Issue Two

Editor’s Note: Each week, Life & Thyme contributors are trotting the globe, taking in the sights and turning over all kinds of culinary stones for future stories. In our new weekly Off the Menu series, we ask for their favorite food-related finds from all over––and share them here.

Deepi Ahluwalia, Photographer/Writer (LA); Deepi on Instagram

New on the menu this week at Gracias Madre: Pumpkin Flan. A melt-in-your-mouth moment to linger over, this dessert hits all the right notes for the season with its cool touch and warm flavors. Candied squash, burnt sugar caramel and pecans are composed in Executive Chef Chandra Gilbert’s creamy vegan creation, bringing some serious winter cheer to the palate.

Gracias Madre
8905 Melrose Avenue
West Hollywood, CA 90069

Carly DeFilippo,Writer (NYC); Carly on Instagram

We’ve all tried a Grilled Romaine Caesar and maybe even a Kale Caesar…but a Fire-Roasted Cabbage Caesar salad? At Leuca in The William Vale Hotel, Chef Anthony Ricco elevates the humble cabbage by roasting it over an open flame. Tossed with crunchy breadcrumbs and a bright, lemony Caesar dressing—and adorned with fresh anchovies—this overlooked cruciferous veg finally escapes from its sauerkraut status. An absolute must-try if you’re ever swinging through Williamsburg, Brooklyn! (Photo Credit: Noah Fecks)

The William Vale Hotel
111 N 12th St, Brooklyn, NY 11249

jim sullivan, Photographer (SD); Jim on Instagram

Drift Magazine: Fresh off the printers––the Mexico City issue. Drift is a print magazine that focuses on the coffee culture in different cities around the globe. The current issue is special to my heart as I have spent alot of time in the CDMX and come to love that city.

Hector Pacheco, L&T Biz Dev (LA); Hector on Instagram

Architect turned pastry chef, 3-D printing for the win. More.

Katrina Frederick, Photographer (LA); Katrina on Instagram

After an endless parade of pastry, Mokonuts makes for a welcome change of pace in Paris. With no breakfast menu, the owner makes whatever she has on hand. For us that meant a spice-heavy Lebanese “pizza” with lebneh and a bowl of incredible granola with creative fruits and fresh thyme. The owner herself is inspiring — Japan-born, lived many years in France and San Francisco, studied law, and came back to Paris to open up this flavor Eden. After it all, there are still sweets to wash it all down: the best cookies in town. Good luck choosing between tahini and classic chocolate chip!

5 Rue Saint-Bernard
75011 Paris, France

Ashley Ragovin, Writer (LA); Ashley on Instagram

Cafe Stella Wine Bar in Silverlake might just have the best list in the city right now for drinking great wine. It’s a thoughtful selection of great winemakers around the world, wines made honestly and with integrity. The bottle list has many hidden gems, but the glass pour offerings are just as enticing, and the space feels so good. Jesse, Ross, and Zach are  true hospitalitarians, let them steer!

Cafe Stella
3923 West Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90029

Elena Valeriote,Writer (Cali); Elena on Instagram

This Molasses Triple Chocolate Cookie recipe by Averie Cooks. I’ve been baking these cookies for years because I love the way they fill the kitchen with the rich, warm aroma of molasses, ginger and chocolate––and they hold up well when I get heavy-handed with the portion of dark chocolate chunks.

Stef Ferrari, Sr. Editor; Stef on Instagram

The first time I tasted this babka, it was a bit of a scene. It was a stormy autumn afternoon, and I stopped in just to say hello to my friend and L&T writer, Jessica Quinn. Of course, I couldn’t leave without tasting something––so I took a slice of chocolate babka to go. As I stepped out, I thought I’d take just one quick bite before beginning my wet walk home, but within a few minutes, I found myself flattening against a building for cover––but still getting soaked––all so I could continue eating this magical thing.

Some bites are custardy and flakey, others crisp and caramelized and crunching with dark sugar. There’s a hurricane of quality chocolate and butter in every inch; this babka is so good I hesitate to tell people about it, especially given its limited availability––Poppy’s is only open to the public Saturdays and Sunday.

But then I realize, the world needs to know. Rain or shine.

Poppy’s Catering
243 Degraw St.
Brooklyn, NY 11231

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