A long tome ago, I was at home. I had about 3 gazillion errands to run but I was also hungry (because proper meals are the first thing to go when I’m busy) and really craving a great salad (because vegetables are the first thing to get stiffed when you travel a lot) and I didn’t want to eat it out of a takeout container or on my lap or in a hurry, I wanted to sit down and eat it off a plate like a civilized person with water in a glass, not a plastic bottle, and the want for this was overwhelming and I looked up and I was right in front of the Union Square Cafe and thought, “Why not?”
I really don’t go out to eat alone. When I had the freedom to do this more often, I always felt awkward and fidgety and now that I’m old enough to not care, we only occasionally have the luxury of going out without two small people and snack cups of Cheerios, and certainly not alone, you know, sitting at a bar, reading a book like one of those grownups you always thought you’d be? But this time I did. The salad was perfect. The bread was warm. The bartender talked me into (I’m sure I was terribly hard to convince) a glass of wine and 35 minutes later I resumed my errands happy and fed and cared for and swore I’d do this more often, although I really don’t.
The Union Square Cafe’s bar nuts recipe inside is as easy to make and addictive as ever. It seems hard to imagine that such simple ingredients — a pat of butter, brown sugar, salt, cayenne and minced rosemary — could transform even the unloved Brazil nut into something you cannot stop snacking on, but that’s really what a timeless recipe does. I hope it becomes your new holiday habit, too.