102 minutes | Jun 19, 2020
Bonus Episode: Black Lives Matter ft. Courtney Kornegay
Today's bonus episode is all about the Black Lives Matter and the many topics + challenges surrounding the movement. To have such an important discussion, I brought on my good friend AND one of the producers of Babushka Podcast, Courtney Kornegay! Courtney is Black, queer, and truly one of my favorite people. I'm thrilled we get to learn from him. Courtney hopped in front of the mic today to talk with me about performative activism, "showing receipts," doing the work on yourself, when it's okay to cancel people/brands and when they deserve a second chance, cultural appropriation across industries, and more. About Courtney: Courtney is the co-founder of Stereotype, the podcast studio that produces Babushka. He's also the host of The Privy: a podcast about LGBTQ topics. We met while working together at Chinese Tuxedo where he's the maitre'd.
65 minutes | May 27, 2020
Ewa + Jeromy Ko and their A Ma and MaMa's Red Braised Pork + Oxtail Soup
Welcome to the Season 1 finale of Babushka Podcast! Today's a first for our humble show: we have a COUPLE interview featuring Instagram's favorite duo and fellow Ohioans Ewa + Jeromy Ko of @nom_life ! Both Ewa and Jeromy are first generation Americans: Ewa’s family hails from Taiwan, Jeromy’s from Hong Kong. Their Instagram account is dedicated to sharing and teaching about their cultures via delicious family recipes like Taiwanese beef noodle soup, Jeromy’s Aunt June’s famous chili oil, and so. Many. Dumplings. Today we chat about growing up with two cultures, the origin of @nom_life, cultural appropriation in food, influencer reaction to COVID-19, and more. We also reminisce on the origin of our friendship (spoiler alert: lots of sushi, KBBQ, and soju are involved). Ewa + Jeromy tell me about their grandmothers (called A Ma and MaMa respectively) and the many memories and love shared with their older relatives around the dining table. Ewa shares her A Ma's recipe for Red Braised Pork and Jeromy shares his MaMa's Oxtail soup - blog post coming soon. Thank you all for an amazing season❤️ *** Find Ewa + Jeromy via: Instagram: @nom_life Their blog: lifeofnoms.com YouTube: Nom Life TikTok: @nom_life
63 minutes | May 20, 2020
Dave Krugman and his Mom Maryanne's Chicken & Dumplings
Dave Krugman is a prolific photographer and creative powerhouse. Chances are you've seen his moody photos of rainy city-scapes and unsuspecting humans in any number of publications or via his own impressive Instagram, @dave.krugman. Dave and I delve into his recently unveiled cooking talent, compare Instagram to a casino, discuss intra-industry competition and our oyster preferences. Dave also figures out that my podcast is really an excuse to have Zoom companions during quarantine and surprises me with his answer to one of my favorite rapid fire questions. We also talk about Dave's mom, Maryanne, who is a chef. Dave credits his mom with teaching him the importance of cooking for others via dishes like her chicken & dumplings - recipe coming soon. (PS: bear with the rustic Zoom audio! It gets better 10 minutes in ) You can find Dave: On Instagram: @dave.krugman On twitter: @dave_krugman At davekrugman.com And via his newest creative venture: Allships.co
67 minutes | May 13, 2020
Jenn Harris and her Grandma Tina's Sweet Rice
Joining us today is LA’s very own fried chicken queen: Jenn Harris! Her official title is senior writer for the LA Times Food section. Both sound equally cool to me. We talk about Jenn's childhood eating congee and mapo tofu in the San Gabriel Valley, her journey from maritime news to LA Times Food, and delve deep into the obsession that leads her to eat fried chicken every single day. Jenn also shocks me with her blasé attitude towards potatoes and later on we debate the merits of tacos vs. burritos. Jenn's "person" is her Grandma Tina from the Chinese side of her family (her other side is British/Russian/Jewish). And Grandma Tina’s signature dish is her sweet rice: a fried sticky rice with Chinese sausage. It makes appearances at every holiday dinner table and is one of Jenn’s favorite things to eat - find the recipe here. Jenn says her grandma taught her the importance of trying new things and to this day, credits her adventurous palate to her Grandma Tina. *** Check Jenn out on instagram: @jenn_harris_ Read her work for the LA Times here And watch Jenn's show, The Bucket List, here!
83 minutes | May 6, 2020
Sasha Shor and her Mom Marina's Sweet & Sour Meatballs
Today's guest, Sasha Shor, moonlights as Russian-Jewish culinary ambassador when she's not working at her day job as a celebrity entertainment marketing maven. We met a couple months ago to have some ramen and talk about our shared history and after 2 hours of messily slurping, laughing, and bonding over smoked fish, our fate as friends was sealed. Sasha has hosted slews of Russian-focused dinners at places like the James Beard House + Jewish Food Society and via Lavka: a supper club she founded where things like Mexican Borsch and chorizo pelmeni are on the menu. She’s also written some beautiful pieces about her childhood in the Soviet Union and as a recent immigrant in Nashville, Tennessee. Today we chat about what it was like growing up in one of the very few Russian families in Nashville, her obsession with all things pickled, why chicken-fried steak is a perfect food, Russian feasting in epic proportions, and her mom Marina's Sweet & Sour Meatballs. It's a beautiful trip down memory lane with many laughs and a couple cries. Get the recipe for Marina's Sweet & Sour Meatballs here! Stalk Sasha on Instagram: @sashashor212
69 minutes | Apr 29, 2020
Dara Pollak and her Safta Dina's Hungarian "Cheeseballs"
You probably know today's guest, Dara Pollak, as @skinnypignyc - one of New York's OG food bloggers who specializes in bacon, sandwiches and sass. In the episode we chat about the horrible accident that propelled Dara into the world of food, conceited relatives, my dentistry history with Dara's dad, our obsession with dairy, the food influencer world and more. Dara also shares her Safta Dina's recipe for Hungarian cheeseballs - recipe here. You can find Dara: Via her blog: theskinnypignyc.com On instagram: @skinnypignyc And for more info on Dara's horrific accident, click here or here.
61 minutes | Apr 15, 2020
Sarah Raffetto and her Nonna Romana's Pink Rice
If the name "Raffetto" sounds familiar to you, it's because today's guest, Sarah Raffetto, is part of a pasta conglomerate spanning 4 generations! Her family business, Raffetto's Fresh Pasta, has been a Greenwich Village staple since 1906. In addition to being pasta royalty (literally, Sarah's instagram handle is @pastaheiress) - she is also my @petitepastajoint business partner. Sarah had the most special bond with her Nonna Romana - they were even roommates for a decade. In today's episode we talk about Sarah's childhood as an extremely picky eater, Italian guilt laid on thick, Sarah's secret acting aspirations and more. Sarah also tells us about her Nonna's pink rice: a simple dish that will always remind her of Nonna Romana. You can find Sarah: On instagram: @pastaheiress At her family business slinging pasta on the daily: @raffettos_pasta / raffettospasta.com (PS: they ship internationally via Goldbely and locally via Mercato so get you some ravioli) And of course, at @petitepastajoint - our pasta pop-up and private events company!
66 minutes | Mar 25, 2020
Ethan Frisch and his Grandpa Stanleigh's Hungarian Chicken Fricassee
Today’s guest on Babushka Podcast is Ethan Frisch, co-founder of Burlap & Barrel Spices: an ethically-sourced, singe-origin spice company beloved by all your favorite restaurants and food writers. Ethan knows more about spices than anyone I've ever met - one might even call him a spice guru. But before we get into the details of today's show... Ethan and I recorded this episode a couple weeks ago, before the COVID-19 pandemic had reached its current levels and life was, relatively speaking, normal. Not only does Ethan’s life revolves around visiting countries like Afghanistan and India to source spices + set up supply chains for spice farmers - but a huge chunk of Burlap & Barrel's business is comprised of supplying spices to restaurants. Which means that the forced restaurant closures in light of COVID-19 have caused Burlap & Barrel to lose a major chunk of their business. However, their e-commerce is still up and running so if you can, please support Burlap & Barrel by ordering spices online! I'm a huge fan of the Wild Mountain Cumin, Black Urfa Chili, and Smoked Pimentón Paprika, to name a few. In today's episode, we chat about Ethan’s unlikely and abrupt foray into line-cooking after a brief stint in the political space, his feelings about calamari, and a previous entrepreneurial venture involving activism and…ice cream?? Lastly, Ethan tells us about his Grandpa Stanleigh's entrepreneurial spirit as well as his recipe for Hungarian Chicken Fricassee. Find Burlap & Barrel: On Instagram: @burlapandbarrel Online: burlapandbarrel.com You can find Ethan: Via email: ethan@burlapandbarrelspices Or through his Heritage Radio podcast: Why Food
45 minutes | Mar 11, 2020
Susan Ho and her mom Paulina's Daikon Pork Bone Soup
Today I'm chatting with Susan Ho: founder and CEO of bespoke travel concierge app Journy, Forbes 30 Under 30 alum, and champion eater/drinker. We talk about Susan's bonafide "American Dream" upbringing, how and why she created Journy, her favorite food cities in the world and the best/worst advice she's ever received. Susan also shares her recipe for Daikon Pork Bone Soup, which she learned from her mom, Paulina Yang. Find the recipe for Paulina's daikon pork bone soup here! About Journy: Journy is a personal concierge service app that pairs guests with trip designers to manifest the trips of their dreams. Check them out at gojourny.com and on instagram: @gojourny Find Susan on Instagram: @susan_ho
77 minutes | Feb 26, 2020
Eric Sze and his Mom Wenchi's Pork Belly & Cuttlefish Stew
Today I'm chatting with Eric Sze: owner of Taiwanese restaurant 886 and fellow noodle evangelist. We cover everything from his childhood growing up eating (and drinking!!) in Taiwan to his strong opinions about LA and cultural appropriation in food. We also talk about his mom, Wenchi Chien, and her signature dish: pork belly & cuttlefish stew. Get the recipe for Wenchi's pork belly & cuttlefish stew here! Find Eric: On Instagram: @esze.e At his restaurant: @eighteightsix
48 minutes | Feb 12, 2020
Jeremy Jacobowitz and his Grandma Marilyn's Brisket
Today on Babushka Podcast we have world-wide brunch sensation Jeremy Jacobowitz, aka @brunchboys! Jeremy and I chat about everything from his childhood memories of eating ziti pizza in Westchester to his obsession with Japan and undying love for airport tuna wraps. But most importantly, Jeremy tells us about his Grandma Marilyn’s famous beef brisket. Get the recipe for Grandma Marilyn's beef brisket here! Follow Jeremy via: Instagram: @brunchboys TikTok: @brunchboys Youtube: Brunch Boys His podcasts: Brunch With, Monday Night Pod
64 minutes | Jan 16, 2020
Natalia Fedner and her Dedushka Fima's Dill Pickles
In the inaugural episode of Babushka Podcast, I interviews a very special guest: my sister and celebrity fashion designer Natalia Fedner! We discuss Natalia’s immigration from the Soviet Union to Ohio and how our grandpa, Yefim Fishman (who we lovingly referred to as just Ded - short for Dedushka) shaped Natalia’s love for food through his signature dill pickles. Things get heated in a rapid fire question round where we argue about important topics like the ideal texture for a French fry and later on, Natalia reveals her surprising pick for my favorite closing question: what is your death bed meal? Find Natalia on Instagram: @nataliafedner, or visit her website: nataliafedner.com. You can ogle her gorgeous designs at select boutiques in New York in LA and on any runway worth a damn. Find the recipe for Dedushka Fima's dill pickles here