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(103,856 posts)
Fri Dec 28, 2012, 09:23 AM Dec 2012

Like cookbooks? Want to help hurricane victims?


Struggling Red Hook Businesses Feed a Cookbook

In used bookstores and flea markets, I can never resist flipping through community cookbooks put together by churches, ladies’ clubs and such. You’ve seen them — they’re typically typewritten, with hand-drawn paper covers, and they’re bound with a wire spiral or a curled plastic comb.

“All Hands on Deck” has no binder — it is being published on Friday as an e-book — but apart from that it has a lot in common with those books. Its editors, Catherine and Zac Overman, approached people around Red Hook, Brooklyn, asking them to give up their best recipes. As in most community cookbooks, there’s a story behind each dish.

In this case, though, the story is often the same, because many of the contributors own small businesses in Red Hook that were hurt by Hurricane Sandy. Dry Dock, a wine and spirits shop that lost $50,000 worth of liquid refreshment to the flood waters, shares its manhattan recipe. The Good Fork restaurant, a neighborhood pioneer, gives up the recipe for the pork-and-chive dumplings that everybody ordered there from the day the place opened until it was shut by the storm. (It has not reopened yet.)

There is also the recipe for the finest Irish coffee in the known universe, served at Fort Defiance, and a chicken pupusa covered with pickled cabbage and jalapeños from El Olomega, the Salvadoran food truck that has fueled countless soccer matches at the Red Hook Ball Fields. The editors, the Overmans, were married in Red Hook in October in what Ms. Overman called “a real neighborhood affair.” They hosted their rehearsal dinner at Fort Defiance, where Mr. Overman tends bar. The ceremony was held on Valentino Pier with music by the Red Hook Ramblers. The band then led the couple and their guests through the streets in a New Orleans-style second-line parade to Sunny’s Bar for the reception. The meal was catered by a neighbor of the Overmans’, and the desserts were made by a local bakery, Baked.


.All proceeds from sales of “All Hands on Deck” will be donated to Restore Red Hook, which provides financial aid to small businesses in the neighborhood recovering from the hurricane. The book is available for download for $15 from http://allhandsondeckredhook.org/
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