Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Brief, Torrid Love Affair with a Cheese Babka

It was only a few weeks ago when I was sitting with my friends James and Jeremy eating a Polish lunch at Lomzynianka on Manhattan Avenue in Greenpoint. Typically, I find Polish food to be among the most sensual of Eastern European cuisines, a point I tried to convey to my friends, but I was distracted by our gorgeous Polish waitress. I did clear my mind of evil thoughts for long enough to eat my rich, white borscht, flecked with bits of smokey kielbasa.

Even when our sampler platters arrived, an assortment of pierogies, kielbasa, mashed potatoes, bigos and stuffed derma, I could hardly focus on the food as I watched another beautiful woman changing in front of her open apartment window across the street. I should probably start looking for apartments in Greenpoint.

Cheese pierogi was the best bite on the plate-- a prelude of what was to come.

Lots of delicious slaws.

No longer content with foreplay, I moved on to braised tongue, sensually relaxing in horseradish cream sauce with more mashed potatoes. The tongue was achingly tender and could have been confused for brisket.

Full, yet still clearly missing something, I needed to get my head on straight. Jeremy and James agreed, so we went for vodka shots and beers at a place called Gypsy Bar, which incidentally had a great beer selection and a friendly, knowledgeable bartender (they also offer the insanely good deal on Yelp of 1 free appetizer for birthday parties of 20 people or more-- how generous).

After our drinks, we roamed the meat markets, but among the masses of smoked and unsmoked sausages, nothing excited me. Finally, we reached Rzeszowska Bakery, where a naughty looking cheese babka caught my eye. For the suspiciously cheap price of $4.50, I took a babka home with me, along with a poppyseed danish and a mushroom danish.

I stashed the babka in my bedroom where my roommate wouldn't find it. Finally we were alone. I caressed its bumpy golden crust with embedded bits of browned cheese, pulling it open to reveal a yellowish, challah-like interior. Most of all I loved the cheese; the bits stuck to the aluminum pan, the floating chunks of crumbly cheese in the heart of the babka. So secret was our love that I didn't even take a picture before ravishing it.

The weekend was spent, a bite here, a bite there, pulling a little something off. As quickly as the babka was there, it was gone, leaving me alone with only the faintest taste of cheese in my mouth and an empty pan.

A few weeks later I was back, winking suggestively at another beautiful babka in the window...

646 Manhattan Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11222
Lomzynianka on Urbanspoon

Rzeszowska Bakery
948 Manhattan Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11222


  1. Polish food is sensual because kielbasa look like cock and the rest of the food looks like mashed-up sex meat.

  2. Hahaha, if I ever start a band I'm calling it "Sex Meat."