Tag Archives: D’Bronx

I Just Love Bakery Cookies

16 Dec

Recently a friend of mine asked me to come to speak to a group of 4-6th grade children and their parents/grandparents who were taking a baking class. The children learn a new recipe and also listened to a short talk about the recipe’s place of origin.

I was asked to speak about living in New York City and, black and white cookies.  This was an easy task for me. I have a thing for black and white cookies.  Also, I grew up basically in a bakery.  My grandparents owned a kosher bakery in New Jersey until I was 14.  Meaning I spent many hours helping and visiting and eating in the bakery.

I easily spent 15 minutes talking about living above a bakery; apartment houses; fire escapes; and other New York differences for these children who live in the suburbs of Kansas. Apartment dwelling in tall buildings is not a common occurrence in Kansas!

The talk was over quickly, but it started me thinking about the cookies.  Perhaps the holiday season helped to think of cookies —  not that this is a difficult topic to think about.  But I did start thinking about my favorite bakery cookies!

I love black and white cookies. These large round cookies are covered by both chocolate and vanilla icing divided down the middle of the cookie.

And I am telling you now, when you cut a black and white cookie in half, you must always give each person half the white and half the black.  The only time I made an exception to this rule was for my son….he never ate the chocolate side.  But for everyone else, the rule remains!

There is only one place in Kansas City that I have found black and white cookies that are decent.  The D’Bronx Deli near my house is where I go for this comfort food.  A typical lunch for me is a bowl of chicken noodle soup with a Matzah ball, iced tea and a black and white cookie. I do share it, as described above.  But if my companion does not want to share, I am always content to take it home to devour later.

I have tried other black and white cookies available in Kansas, but none have matched the cookies at D’Bronx.

My cookie desires follow me.  Whenever I go to New Jersey, my sister knows that a visit to Miller’s Bakery in Tenafly is a must stop for some black and white cookies.  Last time I was home, the bakery was OUT of my favorites.  We had to order some for the next day.  But the day was not a wasted, the bakery did have New York Chinese chocolate chip cookies.  These are also quite excellent.  A large chocolate chip cookie with a giant dab of melted chocolate on the top marks a Chinese Cookie in an East Coast Deli.

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There does not seem to be any real information on where these cookies originated, except they might come from Chinese almond cookies, as they do have an almond taste.  I haven’t seen them anywhere but in New York and New Jersey, but I assume wherever there is a Jewish bakery or deli, there might be these delicious cookies.

In any case, when I could not get my black and white cookies, I went to second choice…Chinese Chocolate Chip Cookies.  It was equally yummy, in a slightly different way!

Honestly, my sister and I find it good exercise to walk the mile to Millers for a cookie and coffee. Sometimes one of our friends meets us there. Then we walk back. No guilt cookie eating!

In an effort to be fair to all bakery cookies, I will admit that there is one more that touches my taste memory as well.  The raspberry linden cookie, also known as a Linzer Torte.  My grandfather always called them linden cookies.  These are two-layer cookies.  The bottom is round with scalloped edges. The top matches the size of the bottom and the scallops, but the center has a hole where the raspberry jelly can ooze through.  These are quite excellent if you are in a gooey, sugary mood.

Actually I have no problem eating any of these three cookies.  Growing up in a bakery, however, impacted my taste buds.  Whatever cookie I eat always is in competition by the taste memories I have from my grandfather’s bakery.  To be honest no cookie ever meets the challenge. But I have fun searching, because I just love bakery cookies.

Perhaps We Really Do Deserve The Senior Citizen Discount

26 May

I admit that I am now over 60, but I cannot understand why restaurants and theaters are giving me the senior citizen discount without me even asking for it!

It started innocently enough. My husband and I went to our local movie theater. It is our theater of choice and we go there almost exclusively to see movies. About a year ago I went up to pay the ticket and I noticed the discount.   I was surprised.

“You gave me the senior citizen discount,” I said. “I am not 65.”

“Oh our discounts start at 55,” she answered sweetly.

“Well that is okay then,” I responded. And happily walked off with an extra dollar.

But that was then. Now it is different.

The last two times when I went to my favorite bagel store, part of a big chain, I was stunned when I looked at my bill. The first time was in mid April. I took my children to lunch and was surprised to see ten percent removed from the bill. I showed it to my daughter.

“Look, he gave me the senior citizen discount. Do you think I should tell him I am not a senior?” I asked my daughter.

She looked down at me (she is 4 ½ inches taller). “Mom, you are a senior,” she responded. Really. I do not think so.

A few days later I went back with my sister in law. Once again I was given the senior discount. This time I felt better. My sister in law is two years older than me. It was much more legitimate. But I was still shocked that it was just given to me without even asking.

Okay I do have very grey hair. Some might even say that the hair that frames my face is white. But honestly, in the back it is quite black. And I really have no wrinkles.

I guess I do not see myself as getting older. But it is obvious that some younger people see me in a different way.

However, this week, I realized my husband and I get the senior citizen discount for a good reason.

My husband and I love the chicken noodle soup at a local deli, D’Bronx. It has the all time best ever chicken noodle soup with a matzah ball.   I love it. I have encouraged many people to become addicted to this soup. For months my husband and I ate there almost every Monday night after our ballroom dancing class. But a few months ago, our instructor left, and we stopped our lessons. So we stopped going out for soup every Monday.

This past weekend we were bemoaning the fact that we missed our soup. So I announced that we would go out for dinner on Monday and have D’Bronx soup. It was planned!

This is where the senior citizen part comes in.

Monday evening came, and my husband arrived home from work. “What’s for dinner?” He asked. There was obviously nothing planned.

“We are going out for soup,” I announced.

Then we talked for a while about where we wanted to go. And ended up at a restaurant close to our house with a wonderful salad bar, but horrible chicken noodle soup.

When I paid the bill, you go through a buffet and pay at the end, the young man gave me the senior citizen discount. Once again I bemoaned this discount to my husband.   But I accepted my $2.34 discount.

While we were eating dinner, I mentioned how much I did not like the soup. In fact I stopped eating it and threw my paper napkin into the bowl. It was that bland and yucky.

D'Bronx Chicken Noodle Matzah Ball Soup

D’Bronx Chicken Noodle Matzah Ball Soup

My husband said, “We should have gone to D’Bronx. We love their soup.”

We both stopped.

“Oh my G-d!” I laughed. “Now I know why we get the senior citizen discount. We cannot even remember where we wanted to go eat. That was the purpose of going out tonight; to go to get chicken noodle soup at D’Bronx. And we both forgot!!!”

We had a wonderful laugh.

I will never bemoan the senior citizen discount again.

 

 

(To be honest on Tuesday, I went over to D’Bronx by myself and had a bowl of soup for lunch.)