from Season 5, Jerry marvels at the
wonderful juxtaposition of vanilla and
chocolate, offering up the cookie as a
model for racial harmony.
“If people would only look to the
cookie, all our problems would be
solved,” he tells Elaine.
Black and whites can be found on the
counter of many a corner bodega and
bagel shop. If they’re
wrapped in plastic
and look as if they’ve
been sitting there for
a while, you might
want to pass. But a
quality black and
white is something
“What makes it great is that it’s like a
cupcake on the go. And it’s sweet, but not
too sweet,” says Judy Adler, co-owner of
William Greenberg Jr. Desserts on the
Upper East Side. The bakery has been
in business since 1946, and its black and
whites, like many traditional versions,
are more cakelike than cookie.
The standard is oversized and fairly
thick, with a vanilla cake batter base
topped with chocolate and vanilla fondant. In addition to the classic, Nussbaum & Wu near Columbia University
on the Upper West Side sells tasty all-black and all-white versions, as well as
combos with mocha.
What about the New York origins?
Joshua Auerbach, president of The
Black & White Cookie Co., has done
It’s easy to see why the black and
white has stuck around—it fits perfectly
with city life.
“New Yorkers are known for walking
down the street with a cup of coffee,”
Adler says, “and it’s a great complement
his research. He believes the original
source came through Ellis Island in
the hands of German bakers. It was
an all-white cookie then (probably an
Amerikaner), and when they got to
New York, the story goes, someone
decided to add chocolate. Auerbach’s
lemony version is based on an 80-year-
old recipe and is denser than many of
the cakey varieties.
Philadelphia Tomato Pie
Everyone’s heard of the Philly
cheese steak, but there’s one
delicacy the City of Brotherly
Love has kept to itself: the tomato pie. It might be tempting to describe tomato pie as
pizza without cheese, but that
wouldn’t do it justice. Baked in
a cookie sheet–shaped rectangle,
the foccacia base is slathered with a
sweet, chunky and intensely tomatoy
sauce (or “gravy”). No mozzarella
here—the pie is topped with just a
light dusting of grated Parmesan or
Romano cheese. Most Philly natives
devour it at room temperature, though
they’re not shy about digging in
when it’s steaming hot and just out
of the oven.
Frank Marchiano and his wife,
Kathy, began selling goods baked
by his immigrant Italian mother,
Nunziata, out of her basement.
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