Every week Tell Simmer grills a different blogger, and this week, it’s Rachel Rappaport. What’s smearcase? Ask Rachel – she’s a lifelong Baltimore resident as well as a food writer, recipe creator and owner of the award-winning blog Coconut & Lime, which Style magazine named “one of the top 20 food blogs in the nation.” Rachel’s blog features all-original recipes and her photos of everything from eggplant marinara to pink peppermint popcorn bars. So, we know she can cook…but how about that breakfast in bed?
How often do you think about eating?
I think about making food more than I think about eating it. I spend most of my day creating new recipes and cooking. I enjoy eating, eat everything I made and only make foods I like but I tend to concentrate more on the making than the eating.
I don’t really drink coffee. I rarely drink beverages except at meal time, and don’t enjoy hot drinks with food, so I just not a regular coffee drinker.
Favorite hometown food?
Well, I live in my hometown of Baltimore so that’s easy! I have a few: smearcase, steamed crabs, soft crabs, crabcakes.
Ever been served breakfast in bed?
I don’t think so. I’m not too dextrous and with three dogs, it is a perilous proposition.
Your absolutely reliable, go-to dish for entertaining is:
That’s hard to say. I am always trying something new so we rarely have the same thing twice, guests or no. I’d have to say that I like to make a recipe where at least one component can be made ahead of time and which can be quickly cooked while the guests are arriving. A recent favorite was a homemade chow fun.
Food that makes you gag?
There are only a few foods I can not abide. Just the smell of ketchup, pumpkin pie or cantaloupe makes me gag. I am also not too fond of (but have a less violent reaction to) raisins, walnuts (especially in baked goods, they remind me of baby teeth) and sweet foods served as side dishes or main courses (sweet potatoes, I am looking at you!).
Worst kitchen disaster:
It is rare that I have an actual food related disaster beyond burning the occasional pot of rice or tuna melt. My kitchen disasters are more in the burning my hand or breaking the last of the matching drinking glasses right before a dinner party type vein.
Three things in your refrigerator right now:
Hansen’s Dragonfruit soda, rapini, fermented black bean paste
Your idea of a romantic meal is:
Sushi! It is the one food that we don’t make often at home. I love trying different rolls and while we have made maki with raw fish at home, it isn’t feasible to buy and make the wide variety we could get at a restaurant so getting it out is always a treat. We generally celebrate our anniversary (and my birthday) with sushi. It always seems festive.
Secret snack of shame?
Hmm. Hot dogs?
editor’s note: there is nothing shameful about hot dogs, provided they’re from here and do not include ketchup.
Dessert at your last meal would be:
I think I’d liked to be surprised for this one. I’m not planning to end up on death row, so I hope to avoid this decision!
Best restaurant if you’re not paying:
One of the dozens of high end sushi restaurants I love in NYC where I can order yummy omakase. Or better yet, sushi in Japan!
Extra credit: Where is the world’s best pizza?
My husband is a New Yorker, so he is obsessed with the perfect thin crust but I like Baltimore’s own Matthew’s where they have great toppings and an unusual crust.