Raw giant clams, hunting on the Long Island Expressway, and looking for love in all the wrong places
Our guest today on Food with Mark Bittman is just okay.
I’m kidding. Kate and I loved him. He’s Dan Ahdoot, and he’s a standup comedian, actor (currently on Netflix’s Cobra Kai), from all appearances an excellent cook, and author of a smart and poignant (and yes very funny) new essay collection — but really, a memoir — called Undercooked: How I Let Food Become My Life Navigator and How Maybe That’s a Dumb Way to Live.
“I grew up pretty kosher, and I still remember my first foray into treif — non-kosher food — and it was the worst thing that someone who grew up kosher could have. My dumb friend Dan and his family took me to some restaurant in Chinatown and we had a raw giant clam. OOF. For a beginner, it should be calamari, fried shrimp, something easy. I still have a hard time with raw clams. But this thing was — it was like the size of a football.” — Dan Ahdoot
IS it a dumb way to live, though? We asked him that, and the results are decidedly mixed. I’ll tell you this, though — Dan loves food, maybe more than anyone I’ve met in a long time, and he’s really fun to talk to about it — and about everything else.
So: I know I say this a lot, but, seriously, friends, I can’t imagine that you won’t be charmed by Dan, too.
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