What do you crave?
I originally published this in the Albany Times Union back in February of 2017 before the Superbowl, but with the holidays coming, I think it's time to republish it here in time for friend and family gatherings. I know many of us won't be "home" and if you're like me, you crave Jrecks! (I should let you know now the Jreck Subs in Schenectady closed down after less than a year, so don't try to go get you some.)
My inner dialogue on a Saturday morning, if I've imbibed a bit too much on Friday, goes something like this:
Hungry me: "Ugh. I'm so hungover. What am I going to eat?"
Me: "I think there's some soup or broth in the cupboard, that'll be best for the tummy."
Hungry me: "Soup? I'm not in the mood for soup. It's liquid so it's too close to beer.”
Me: "Take some Advil.”
Hungry me: "Oh my god. I would kill for Jrecks!"
Me: "There's no way I'm putting on clothes and driving to Schenectady right now.”
Hungry me: "You suck."
So yes, there is a Jreck Subs in Schenectady. I have been twice but it doesn't have what I crave the most - breaded cauliflower and a big fountain soda. Some folks simply don't see the big deal about Jrecks. It's not a large sub, there's nothing truly 'special' about it. However - when you no longer have daily access to it, you can sometimes feel the need to have it and it hits you to the very core.
That is, unfortunately, no exaggeration. Some say it's the rolls, others say that since they switched roll vendors it's just not the same. Well now you can use whatever type of roll or bread you want. Today, at least ten times, I was sent a link by various Northern NY friends that simply made my mouth water. It's a recipe for a Jreck Sub Dip. Brilliant! All of you transplanted Northern New Yorkers are going to want to make this yourself.
As much as I would love to take credit for this ingenious invention, I can't. The woman who created it is The Mother Octopus. I know, I can hear you saying "Who? What?" But trust me, this former Northern New Yorker (Watertown) now in Long Island, has us all covered. I reached out to her for her permission to share her blog and recipe and she was happy to allow me to do so. Thank you!
Make it for the Superbowl and share with your Albany friends. Make it for your hometown friends who visit and have the same internal dialogue I do after a night out in Albany.
Head to The Mother Octopus's blog where she talks about her journey to making the dip and her recipe. Like any other recipe you can adjust to your taste, but try hers first. Necessity is the Mother of invention.
Follow her on Twitter @MotherOctopusKJ or on Facebook @TheMotherOctopus. Good luck, and let both of us know how it goes!