“There’s no other city quite like it… too bad you have to leave.”
My trip had to come to an end however there’s still a bit of unfinished business I have before stepping on the plane back to LA. First off, I needed to head to a place I passed by on my first day without even noticing it. Enter the DeKalb Market, on the Southern End of Flatbrush/Tillary. It’s a place where previously abandoned boxcars transformed into mini vendor/food shops for the locals in and around the area.
Here are a few examples of what the vendors did in terms of presentation:
Offering these decadent morsels of goodness:
Or you can go here,
and get a bit of this:
However one place stood out to me and this is the focus of today’s theme…family. Everyone has one, whether its blood-related or bonded by the strong chain links we call friendship. And for one business owner, his family’s support certainly influenced his ways of cooking.
Meet Ms. Dorsey’s Kitchen:
As I stood in front of the open stand, the female cashier Melissa (Ron’s partner), took my order and told me promptly that their A.B.C. sandwich is the most popular. So I ordered one and chatted up with the Chef Ron to get his thoughts as to how he started this business.
Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, he later resided in Brooklyn, NY as a Digital Advertiser by day. He then took it upon himself to take a 16 week course provided by W.I.B.O. to follow his dreams. The name of his business originated from his grandmother Mrs. Dorsey who has always supported him, whereas the concept itself he explained,
“I’ve always enjoyed a grilled cheese sandwich as a delicious meal in its compact state.” -Ron of Mrs. Dorsey’s Kitchen
During the 15 minute preparation of the order, he showed me his secret weapon to making these delicious grilled delicacies:
This murky green and aromatic puddle of herbs, is what allows the flavors to really soak into the bread as its being toasted. Which then he pulled off the grill and handed over to me and asked for feedback from the final product:
I placed the sandwich in my mouth and took the first bite it was crispy and cheesy, gnawing away at the strips of bacon, and to top it all off the caramelized apples, brought it altogether. Although I prefer my sandwiches lightly grilled it was a delicious meal no doubt about it.
For future plans with the business, I asked him of his aspirations with the franchise and he explained that he wanted to stay in DeKalb Market. Although he wasn’t opposed to being asked to cook at other places, but he was certainly satisfied becoming a permanent vendor at his current location.
A family oriented man and a small dream come true. Another testament of people going against the odds to follow one’s passion. Which brings me back to my family (or friends that I consider good family for that matter) during my stay in NY.
One of the last nights, we were altogether in our friend’s suite and we decided as a group to have our own family dinner, potluck style. Each of us prepared a dish and/or brought a bottle (or two) of wine.
Here are the prep shots:
Sadly we were all hungry after we finished cooking, that I didn’t get to take a picture of the end products but I did manage to catch this:
We had a bit more time to talk and finally said our goodbyes when each of us had to leave our friend’s apartment. NYC grew on me, reminding me of how much I missed parts of my family back in California and various places around the world. Maybe this experience isn’t just about the flavors or textures? Perhaps it’s because of those memories shaped by the loved ones of our inner circle, making any meal more enjoyable to the next. Until we meet again, maybe I’ll finally have that Chicken and Rice cart everyone talks about.