Stud Muffin? Well, Now That Passover’s Past …

Now playing left flanken for the Philadelphia Eaters …

No, don't expect to see Dave Lieberman on the playing field at the Linc anytime soon — unless it's decked out with a linen tablecloth and upright chairs — if not uprights.

Spike the ball? Maybe the punch, but, please, only with a good Pinot.

Philly native son Lieberman is the equivalent of that old-time icon "football hero" — only these days, they're known as "food and ball heroes," players who can do an end-roast run and pass the salt at catered affairs and balls with the agility of a seasoned veteran.

Did someone say seasoning?


This is the off-season for football players, but keepers like Lieberman are always in demand as dictates someone who would feel more at home in the Eagles kitchen than its back line.

But here's the food line on Lieberman these days: He's bringing his talents and a pinch of pepperish humor to the Gershman Y this Sunday morning, served up as part of the Joseph P. Sobo Sunday Brunch Series.

Stud muffin? The Philly foodie recently was named one of People's top 50 Bachelors, his hot looks going along with his hot cuisine. But the very much single sensation isn't into single servings; he prepares a meal for as many as a table can handle in his latest book, Dave's Dinners.

The host of the Food Network's "Eat This" and "Good Deal" prepares to deal his Sunday morning Y crowd into what's good to eat. But first, an hors d'oeuvres of history: Lieberman fell in love early not with the mother tongue — mamaloshen — but grandma's tongue.

Tied to his mother's apron strings? No — his father's: Even outflanking Lieberman's own flanken is the one dished out by his dad, Dale, a one-time attorney whose idea of a good beef has gone from courtroom to space in the oven. No one beats his father's flanken, says the Food Network nabob of kabobs.

With his focus on food since his days as a poli-sci major at Yale University — where Dave's catering to fellow dorm students' dinner demands led to a business that soon became his bread and butter — Lieberman landed a cable public-access show.

Take a taste test of his offerings on TV or in his books, and see that while the former Solomon Schechter Day School student knows from schmaltz — in a culinary way, of course — he doesn't spread it thick when advising audiences.

"As a matter of fact," concedes the 27-year-old seasoned veteran, "I'm branching out, getting involved to help bring an understanding of what goes behind our food supply."

In other words, he's talking about the need to keep it a safe and not sorrowful experience for unsuspecting customers, such as those who ate tainted spinach recently, or who felt sandwiched between nausea and stomach cramps when consuming some bad peanut butter as reported.

Not that the eco-epicurean is forsaking what got him famous in the first place. It's just that "I want to take advantage of the youth and energy I have now" to spread the word that some spreads are better than others.

A perusal of his book's table of contents shows that he still puts out a table worth applauding. And he still trades on some traditions. In fact, "I incorporate a lot of my grandmother's recipes into my work," he says.

No carping with what works, after all. And for his idea of a great seder for the Passover which just passed? Let my people … eat: "My grandmother's tongue dish alongside my father's charoses."

What would Moses say? Probably, "Waiter — there's a fleigel in my soup — and it's cooked just right." 



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