Ed. Note: Our new neighborhood is so riddled with crazy inexpensive lunches that we've decided to try out as many as we can. Our lunch today could be your lunch tomorrow.
While Kenji's been investigating duck and roast pork in the blocks around our office, I've been a little lazier at lunchtime—just walking the ten paces across the street to Di Palo Selects, one of the city's older and finer Italian markets. (I'm sure I'll move on eventually, but I haven't gotten sick of prosciutto yet!) Every day's a different adventure. Today, I picked up half a pound of prosciutto cotto, a half-pound of ricotta (which Di Palo makes daily) and a sizable length of focaccia. This bread was from Il Forno in the Bronx, but on other days they have Parisi Bakery loaves, and on others, Sullivan Street Bakery.
This was quite a haul for ten bucks—definitely enough for two lunches, if not more. (Pictured is less than a quarter of what we bought.) The prosciutto cotto was tender and herb-coated and delicate on the tongue, with thin ribbons of fat that simply dissolve; the ricotta, milky and soft and incredibly fresh-tasting. These are my favorite sorts of lunches, really. Little bites of delicious things. In retrospect, a basket of figs would have made this a truly memorable lunch.