We asked five food-world luminaries to share their memories of food and love with us. Whether it was a plate of oysters in Paris or a tender cheek swiping of Philly cheesesteak grease, a lot of moments have been shared around the dinner table by these people. Here they are. And happy Valentine’s Day.
Illustration by Gant Powell
Sarah Carey is the charismatic editor of Everyday Food, and a food obsessive. (When this writer worked with her at Martha Stewart Living, she mostly wanted to discuss Korean black goat soup or far-flung pupusa vendors.) Strange, then, that she and wife Maryann Vanderventer, director of photography for Yahoo Studios, got to know each other over chain restaurant takeout in a Connecticut cabin, 13 years ago.
We worked together in Connecticut on “Martha Stewart Living,” the TV show. We had a long drive [from Brooklyn], and the hours were so long, we used to share this little, tiny, tiny cabin in Stamford so we could not drive home every night. You basically would walk in and there was this room big enough to hold a queen-size lamp, and this table with a television on it. There was a kitchen you couldn’t cook in and this tiny bathroom. It was 150 square feet.
We ate terrible takeout food. Literally once a week we would go to Boston Market and get a rotisserie chicken and corn and mashed potatoes. We would get a piece of chocolate layer cake from a diner right next door. We would sit on that bed and we would watch TV, and there was no antenna. We would watch fuzzy, bad TV and eat Boston Market.
And it was a really special night. We would sit there and watch, like, fuzzy “Scrubs” or fuzzy some other show. We still say “Fuzzy Scrubs” to each other. Anyone who can do that week-in and week-out, you know that’s the person for you.
She moved in with me before we actually even had a date. We were falling in love from the minute we moved in together.
I literally haven’t eaten Boston Market since then. It was so mediocre and salty and terrible. It’s like, “What’s in that chicken is terrifying!” I’ve never eaten it again.