The Charlottesville 29

If there were just 29 restaurants in Charlottesville, what would be the ideal 29?

Tag: Bodo’s

Five Finds on Friday: Ashley Malcolm

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Ashley Malcolm of Malcolms Market Garden, the Staunton farm she and her husband operate, whose CSA Farm Share resumes this spring. What’s a CSA Farm Share? Short for “Community Supported Agriculture,” it involves members buying all of a farm’s produce for the growing season early in the year, well before the harvest. Once harvesting begins, each week members receive bags stuffed full of the farm’s current best fresh-picked produce. Drop-off locations for Malcolms Market Garden farm share include Charlottesville, Crozet, Waynesboro, Fishersville, and Staunton.  Visit the website for info and registration.  Malcolms’ picks:

1) Fried Chicken at Wayside. “Skip all of the mediocre fried chicken out there and just go for this great chicken. Perfectly crispy and tender. When I’m on this side of town, it’s an easy choice for picking up dinner.”

2) Chicken Salad on an Everything Bagel at Bodo’s. “Everyone has ‘their sandwich’ that they usually order from here, and this is mine and has been for decades. Add some sprouts for more texture and freshness.”

3) Chocolate Praline Crunch Dome from Albemarle Baking Company. “Everything crafted by ABC is authentic and delicious and made with love and precision, but this is the type of dessert that will have you dreaming about it for years. The magic of the textures and layers beneath the ganache dome make for the most decadent individual portion.”

4) Two Eggs, Bacon, Home Fries, and a Biscuit at Bluegrass Grill & Bakery. “I’ve waited hours of my life to eat here, as all should, because it is just that good. This is great diner food at its best. The biscuits are a dream.”

5) Shishito Peppers at Citizen Burger Bar. “Obviously the burgers and fries are spot-on here, mainly because of their emphasis on local fresh ingredients. The shishito peppers are a real treat because they showcase the beauty and simplicity of the vegetable. With hardly any (spicy) heat, perfectly charred, completely dip-able and addictive, they are a favorite.”

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Introducing the Deli-Egg Roll

When it comes to food, some people are just different. You think about your next meal during your current one. You perseverate for hours about lunch. In your day job as a pharmacist, you daydream of opening your own restaurant. Food is on your mind, always.

One recent Sunday night, when I should have been sleeping, I instead was thinking about food. I sent an email to Justin Vesser, the UVa pharmacist behind The Tennessean Steakhouse, the passion project he operates a few times a year for charity. I wrote: “I’ve never tried doing it, but you could be just the man for the job. Deli-Egg Rolls. The ingredients for a Bodo’s Deli-Egg (without the egg) inside an egg roll.” He replied the next morning: “Well if that’s not a ‘eureka moment,’ I don’t know what is. I’ll take it to the test kitchen.”

Fast forward two weeks, and voila.

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Deli-Egg Rolls
by Justin Vesser

  • Approximately 1 lb. Bodo’s Deli Meats (Pastrami, Corned Beef, Ham, Salami, Capicola)
  • 4 slices each: Muenster, Aged Swiss, Provolone
  • 1 Tbsp Everything Bagel Spice
  • 1 Package Egg Roll Wrappers
  • 1 Egg, beaten
  • Peanut oil

Go to Bodo’s and order one plain bagel with pastrami, corned beef, ham, salami and capicola. It’s all going to get chopped up at home, so save one stroke and ask for it to be cut in half. Prepare to have the cashier give you the hairy eyeball, and to be judged by the person ordering next to you.

Finely mince all of the meat and cheese slices, and thoroughly mix with bagel spice in a large bowl.

Beat egg in a small bowl and use a brush or your fingers to wet the edges of an egg roll wrapper. Plop a generous amount of the deli mixture in the middle and fold one corner up over the mix. Fold each side in, pinching to make sure there is a good seal and finish by rolling over the remaining corner.

Heat oil in a dutch oven or deep pot  to 350 degrees.

Gently drop egg rolls into oil in small batches, turning frequently until golden brown and bubbly, approximately 2 minutes.

Drain on paper towels and serve immediately.

A deli-egg needs egginess and creaminess, so I served it with a fresh hollandaise sauce for dipping.

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Five Finds on Friday: Ashley Williams

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Today’s Five Finds on Friday come from Ashley Williams, new owner of Tavern & Grocery. Williams’ picks:

1) Charred Carrots at Oakhart Social. “I can’t get enough of these. Something about them just hits all the right chords. They are still crispy, and charred, and richly seasoned, all at the same time. Bold, balanced, perfect.”

2) Skillet Roasted Mussels at Tavola. “Whenever I go to Tavola, I have to order the mussels. Skillet roasted with just some garlic, they are indulgent and just plain FAB. Throw in a good crisp Italian white wine, and I’m good.”

3) Santa Fe Enchiladas at Continental Divide. “I can’t even think about going to Continental Divide without ordering the Santa Fe Enchiladas. I mean, as many times as I try to order something else, I just can’t do it. And with the pumpkin muffins on there, just doesn’t get better. (Not to date myself, but I’ve been ordering this for close to 20 years, and they are perfect every time.)”

4) Turkey on an Everything Bagel at Bodo’s. “A simple turkey sandwich on an everything bagel at Bodo’s is beyond a must. Lettuce, tomato, onion, light mayo, and you’ve done it. I lived in NYC for ten years and there was that deli that always just got it ‘right.’ Bodo’s gets this right, on another level. And how it’s less than $5 and you get it in less than 5 minutes . . it’s a simple miracle and gets me through a tough morning every time.”

5) Tuna Tartare at Now & Zen. “I don’t know how Toshi puts out food as good as he does in such a tiny spot, but he does. Now & Zen delivers with the tuna tartare. Fresh, seasoned perfectly, and beautiful. Any time I think of sushi, this is the dish I want.”