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Chef’s Choice

Top cooks’ favorite cheap eats.

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Illustrations by Lyndon Hayes  

Scott Conant, Chef and Owner, Scarpetta
Panelle Sandwich at Ferdinando’s Focacceria
151 Union St., Carroll Gardens; 718-855-1545
“It’s a sandwich that’s like a chickpea fritter with ricotta on top of it. And they have another sandwich with stewed spleen. They’re both so good, and each one is only $5.”


David Chang, Chef and Owner, Momofuku
Soy Sauce Chow Mein at Congee Village
100 Allen St.; 212-941-1818
“I love this dish. I think it’s very similar to the street noodles you get in Hong Kong.”


Paul Liebrandt, Chef and Co-owner, Corton (opening this fall)
Vietnamese Crêpe at Doyers Vietnamese
11 Doyers St.; 212-513-1527
“This is a hole-in-the-wall place on Doyers Street near Pell in Chinatown, and it’s really authentic. They cook the pork, shrimp, and mung bean all together in the crêpe, and it’s fabulous.”


Neil Ferguson, Executive Chef, Allen & Delancey
Dumplings at Fried Dumpling
99 Allen St.; 212-941-9975
“It’s five pieces for a dollar. I mean, God knows what’s in there. There’s some pork and chives—they’re just very, very tasty. We’ll go and buy, like, $10 worth for the guys in the kitchen and get out of there with 50 dumplings.”


Anne Burrell, Executive Chef, Centro Vinoteca
Bánh Mì at Nicky’s Vietnamese Sandwiches
150 E. 2nd St.; 212-388-1088
“There are only, like, three seats in that place, and you go in, and there’s someone making these delicious sandwiches at the counter. I could eat, like, ten of them at $5 apiece. I mean, I actually can’t, but I want to.”


Craig Koketsu, Executive Chef, Quality Meats
Rice Doughnuts at Koryodang
31 W. 32nd St.; 212-967-9661
“The rice doughnuts are very similar to a regular glazed doughnut but are made with rice flour, so they’re lighter and chewier. I love them, and you can get three for $4.50.”


April Bloomfield, Chef, the Spotted Pig
Shepherd’s Pie at Tuck Shop
68 E. 1st St.; 212-979-5200
“The best pie to get at this little East Village place is the shepherd’s pie with lamb. You have to get it with a pea floater and a nice cold bottle-fermented Coopers ale. It’s only available on Tuesdays.”


Mike Anthony, Executive Chef, Gramercy Tavern
Mujaddara at Kalustyan’s
123 Lexington Ave.; 212-685-3451
“This is my favorite sandwich in the city, period. It’s a pretty simple concoction of braised lentils, crispy shallots, homemade pickles, and secret Indian spices. They won’t tell anybody what they actually put in it. They put it all in a pita, and it’s very hearty.”


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