WHITE STAR WARREN STREET, JERSEY CITY
Some of the many burger options available at this neighborhood bar/restaurant are named after areas in Jersey City, such as Hamilton Park, Paulus Hook, Van Vorst and Journal Square. Although I was tempted to order The Greenville (pepperjack, avocado, chipotle mayo, lettuce, tomato and onion), which is where I grew up, the White Star burger with bacon caught my eye. Made with an 8-ounce Pat La Frieda blend this mouthful of meat was juicy, flavorful and visibly appealing.
Lowell opted for crunchy fish and chips, a comfort food that we both enjoyed. Also shared was a large black kale salad with a vibrant Caesar dressing and shavings of Grana Padano. Four items were on the dessert menu; a cheesecake, brownie sundae, molten chocolate cake, and an adult root-beer float. We opted for the pumpkin cheesecake which was bland and without flavor. Other menu items include sandwiches and entrees. Vegetarians are not overlooked with offerings of spaghetti squash with wild mushrooms, arugula, tomato, aleppo pepper and grana padano as well as pizza, a vegetable burger and some salads.
Service was attentive, food served hot and silverware replaced. White cloth napkins and a small vase of fresh flowers were on the wood tables.
Open daily from 11 AM to 2 AM Sunday through Thursday and 3 AM Friday and Saturday. Be advised that the Warren Street location takes reservations. Reservations are not accepted at the Brunswick Street location.
White Star, 179 Warren Street, Jersey City 201-653-9234. whitestarbar.com/179-warren-st-dinner
ROSIE’S SHOUT OUTS
Salute was recently just as busy as it was when we dined there shortly after their opening in October of 2010. Tasty food, reasonable prices, large portions, specials written out with their prices and attentive service keep this place packed.
Do try any of the pizzettes. Our colorful Margherita with tomato pulp, creamy mozzarella and basil leaves was munched on while reading the menu. If you prefer pizzette for dessert there is one offered with melted chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and biscotti-caramel-swirl gelato. Formaggi, crostini or salumi also make good starters followed by pasta, salads and entrees. A guitar-string black squid-ink spaghetti was paired with charred octopus and spicy crushed pomdorini; we loved it. Lowell ordered a pork chop stuffed with prosciutto and fontina cheese; a hearty entrée. Sides were extra and we opted for broccoli rabe. Vegetarians can choose crostini with different cheeses and/or vegetables, salads, sides, meat free pastas and pizzettes.
Colorful baskets filled with seasonal vegetables and fruits, farm implements and blackboards over the kitchen listing the day’s specials all add to the farmhouse ambiance. Just be forewarned that the restaurant is large and can get noisy.
Salute, 173 Glenridge Avenue, Montclair, BYO; 973-746-2380, salutebistro.com.
MODERN JEWISH BAKER; CHALLAH, BABKA, BAGELS & MORE
BY SHANNON SARNA
Chocolate Chip Hamantaschen, Tomato-Basil Challah, Everything-Bagel Rugelach and S’mores Babka! Sound delicious? How about Onion Jam and Goat Cheese Hamantaschen, Pita Breads along with recipes for dips to serve with them and Sweet Cinnamon Matzah? These are but a few of the tempting and innovative recipes in this new cookbook that has Lowell mesmerized. Now that he has read it, I told him it was time to start baking! Easy to follow directions, along with stunning photographs make this a perfect gift for yourself and others.
Shannon Sarna, a South Orange resident, is also the editor of The Nosher, a Jewish food blog at https://www.myjewishlearning.com/the-nosher and has written for New Jersey Monthly.
Here is a recipe to try:
Spicy Pizza Rugelach
The first thing that will strike you about this spicy pizza rugelach is the beautiful color. And then when you set your teeth into them, it’s like taking that first bite of a great New York slice topped with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.
Yields 2 ½ dozen pastries
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 ounces full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups + 3 tablespoons unbleached all–purpose flour
½ -3/4 cup marinara or pizza sauce
½ cup shredded mozzarella
1 egg, beaten (for glaze)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add the sugar, salt, and tomato paste and beat until combined. You can also do this by hand.
Add the flour and mix just until dough comes together. Divide the dough into four pieces. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 1 to 2 hours or up to 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Roll each piece of dough into a large circle. Using an 8-9- inch round, cut dough into a perfect circle. I recommend using a pizza cutter for this task. See pages 164-165 for shaping. Spread each circle of dough with 2 to 3 tablespoons of marinara sauce in a thin layer, leaving ¼-inch border all around. Sprinkle each circle with 2 tablespoons of shredded mozzarella and press gently into sauce.
Using the pizza cutter, cut the dough into 8 even triangles. Starting at the longer end, roll up each triangle.
Place the point side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.
Brush each rugelach with beaten egg and sprinkle with dried basil, dried oregano, and red pepper flakes.
Bake for 16 to 18 minutes, until golden. Allow to cool on wire rack.
© 2017 by Shannon Sarna