Follow by Email:
Like us on facebook


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Last Best Egg Cream in New Jersey



From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...He was an old man. He survived two wars, one left him with a gimpy leg, the other with a numeric tattoo. He rarely spoke of either. He came, without family, to the United States in the late 40's. He opened a small shop, called Jack's, where he sold convenience items and made breakfast and lunch for the neighborhood. The store was positioned on a street that served as an artificial barrier between neighbors in Montclair. While it was one of the first integrated communities in the country, there were areas of the town that seemed to be separated by color. In truth, the barriers were economic, rather than racial. Flanked by palaces on his right and bungalows and apartments on his left, Jack served coffee to all and was incredibly good with the neighborhood children. No child within his reach went to school hungry and it was not unusual to see a child spinning on a stool next to a Senator or ball player who was trying to read the morning paper. The shop was also a mecca for editors and writers who commuted to their jobs at The New York Times. There were so many of them that locals, had if fact, named a stretch of the town the Times Ghetto. Jack rarely smiled but there came a Monday when he beamed for most of the day. The Sunday New York Times Magazine had, in an article, named his egg cream the best in New Jersey. I learned today that Jack had passed. I will, of course, say my prayers for the dead, but he was not a religious man and would smile at my foolishness. I wanted to mark his passing in a way that would please him. I remembered the article and his smile that day. Now, my egg cream will never be a match for his, but wherever he is, he'll know I'm thinking of him. L'chaim, Jack. Shalom.

The Last Best Egg Cream in New Jersey...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

Ingredients:

Fox U-Bet or Hershey's chocolate syrup
Whole milk
Seltzer or club soda

Directions:
1) Pour 1 inch of U-Bet syrup into a soda or cola glass.
2) Gently pour 1-1/2 inches of milk on top of syrup.
3) Fill glass with seltzer or club soda and leave some room at top so it doesn't overflow.
4) Stir vigorously to get most of the chocolate from the bottom and sides of glass. Egg cream should have 1 to 2 inches of foam at top. Serve immediately.

You might also enjoy this:
New York Egg Cream - How to Make an Egg Cream - What's Cooking America
Egg Cream - Wikipedia
Can the Egg Cream Make a Comeback - New York Times
Foodie Pregnancy: The Mighty Egg Cream - Saint Tiger Lily
Egg Creams and Candy Stores - Hub Pages
The Egg Cream Lives - Jeremiah's Vanishing New York

49 comments :

Susi said...

Mary, what a lovely tribute to Jack. He must be somewhere smiling :o)

Nancy's Notes said...

Mary, what a beautiful and special tribute to Jack, truly wonderful.

3 hungry tummies said...

Oh that is a very touching story. At least he smile before he died :)

Martha said...

What a great tribute --

Thanks for sharing!

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

Mary this is a wonderful tribute to Jack! And I didn't know that making an egg cream was so easy! Yummy! I have all the ingredients right here, so I'm trying this in honor of Jack... and your!
Yvonne

Elin said...

Mary..thanks for dropping by my blog and leaving me those encouraging words truly inspired me to write better and give you more good recipes :))

A lovely tribute to Jack ! And thanks for sharing such a touching story.

Pierce said...

Nice story for Jack. I like that.

Dishesdone said...

Lovely tribute, great story! There is nothing like a good egg cream, especially with Fox's u-bet!

Danielle said...

Every neighborhood needs a Jack! What a great way to honor him.

Pondside said...

I guess Egg Cream is to eggs as Pork Pies are to pork............ :)

sweetlife said...

Jack would love your tribute, I have heard about his egg creams, so glad you featured this..

sweetlife

Kait said...

You are a truly wonderful person. I know Jack would be smiling if he read this.

RamblingTart said...

Beautiful story, Mary. :-) I love this. I've only read of egg creams. Never had one in my life. Now I simply must make this, and smile and think of Jack, and you. :-)

Mary at Deep South Dish said...

What a nice tribute Mary! I loved the story. And I have heard of this egg cream thing - can you believe I have never had one? Well us southerners, we'd of probably tried to put an egg in ours ya know! ;)

Sara Tea said...

I just got back from vacation and was so pleased to find such kind words from you on my blog. I genuinely appreciate you taking the time to stop by, and I'm so grateful that it lead me to your blog. Your blog is beautiful, and I cannot wait to read more. Have a wonderful day.

®osadimaggio63 said...

Hi Mary,
grazie della visita e degli auguri di compleanno !!
:-)
Buona giornata.

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

I have never heard of Jack before but what a great story and tribute. Diane

MaryMoh said...

A lovely post...warm and touching! Thanks for sharing.

Allie and Pattie said...

Oh Mary. You brought tears to my eyes with memories of the "Jack" I knew as a child. He ran a neighborhood candy store and his egg creams were legendary. Your Jack is in my prayers
xoxo Pattie

Salsa Verde said...

Hi Mary,
What a lovely story and such a great tribute to Jack. I love your way of writing.
The egg cream must be delicious and I never thought it could be so easy...
Hope you have a wonderful day,
Lia.

Joanne said...

What a sweet tribute. Places like this just don't really exist anymore and it's such a shame. He would have been so happy to read this I'm sure. Nothing like a good egg cream.

Julie said...

What a wonderful story! I've never had an egg cream. I never see them in the Midwest.

Joy said...

I am glad to know about this hard and good life, and great Egg Cream!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

What a beautiful story! He sounds like he will be missed and not just for his egg cream! :)

Susan said...

As always, Mary, you tell a wonderful story about people who have affected your life. Being from the Midwest, I have never had an egg cream, but the recipe sounds a lot like what we used to call a chocolate soda.

lostpastremembered said...

Love the story Mary. As a NYer for most of my adult life and a recent NJ resident (albeit right across the river from NYC) I have never had an egg cream!!! Your tribute was superb and somewhere JAck is smiling and perhaps at last I will try one of those darn things!!

Carol at Serendipity said...

Mary,

I grew up in New Jersey not far from Montclair. I never went to your Jack's but we had lots of egg creams. I haven't had one for years.

Great post.

Carol

Jacalyn @ rmebathproducts.com said...

Ah Mary you know Jack must be smiling! What a great recipe. Where does it get its' name?

Hugs,
Jacalyn

Claudia said...

Growing up in Jamaica Queens, a survivor of the Holocaust served me scrumptious egg creams for ten years. He told me he never ever slept because life was too short. hat memories were conjured here. Egg creams - the best concoction for summer.

Alessandra said...

Jack seemed like a great person! I had no idea of what egg cream was...in a way I was expecting eggs not chocolate. This one, like pink coloured peppermint are real novelties for me! I am starting to think what a hell did I eat when I was in the States not to remembers things like these! :-)

Rachana Kothari said...

That is such a touching story and a lovely tribute to Jack.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

I'm so sorry about Jack. He sounds like he made his small corner of the world a better place. And you do too. A lovely way to honor him.

San said...

It cannot be a better tribute to jack n you have been so thoughtful .It's always a pleasure commenting on your wonderful recipes .Scrumptious egg cream n nice click.

Bridgett said...

What a very thoughtful post. You have a wonderful way with words, Mary.

Ann said...

So touching and lovely tribute to Jack!

Sushma Mallya said...

what a touching story...thanks for sharing it with us mary..

Wandering Chopsticks said...

Aww, what a lovely tribute.

Joe Ambrosino said...

Great tribute, Mary. it brings me back to my youth in New York. We had a Jack too who inherited the business (a classic New York candy store) from his dad.Kadinski's was the name and they had a candy case and fountain. He would mix egg creams, lime rickeys,even cokes along with the more expensive malteds and ice cream sodas and remind us that he wasn't running a library. "If you want that comic book, but it!"

The Red Umbrella said...

Beautiful post...touching.

Jen_from_NJ said...

Very sweet post! I am sure that Jack would be so happy to see how fondly he is remembered.

I have never had an egg cream - I should definitely try one.

Chef Bee said...

Great story. Touched my heart.

http://planbeventandcatering.com/

The Blonde Duck said...

How sweet!

Cathy said...

What a nice story, Mary. I've had an egg cream when I've visited New York but have never thought to make one at home. Thanks for the recipe.

Mrs. L said...

Never had an egg cream. That needs to be rectified. And I'll give a smile for Jack today.

Crystal said...

What a special tribute!

Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving a note! So very nice of you... I'm intrigued by your recipes, I will be back.

Taste of Beirut said...

This was a moving tribute and I feel like I know the man like I was there on his bar stool ordering the egg cream!

Megan said...

What a great story and wonderfultribute. I've never had egg cream. I always thought there was egg in it. Stumbled!

Lori said...

I dont think a few prayers ever hurt anyone. At the least some positive energy floating his way. And this tribute- well, lots of positive energy going his way too. Mary, you are one neat person.

Melissa and Zack said...

What a beautiful and touching story Mom! I didn't know half of that history. It brought back a whole bunch of memories! loved it!
xoxo

AddThis

Related Posts with Thumbnails