News from WNYC New York Public Radio Listen to short and long New York City stories from WNYC, New York Public Radio.
News from WNYC New York Public Radio

News from WNYC New York Public Radio

From NJPR

Listen to short and long New York City stories from WNYC, New York Public Radio.

Most Recent Episodes

Security firms are turning NYC's street trees into surveillance posts for guards

In recent months, security contractors have quietly drilled electronic "tokens" into the trunks of city street trees. Guards scan the trackers with their phones, providing real-time data on the status of their patrols. But tree lovers and surveillance skeptics are raising concerns. WNYC's Jake Offenhartz reports.

Security firms are turning NYC's street trees into surveillance posts for guards

Bail was posted, but people weren't immediately released, so now NYC must pay as much as $...

New York City is on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars in payments to former detainees at jails on Rikers Island and other city lockups who were held for hours, and sometimes longer than a day, after bail was posted for their release. For more on this story, go to Gothamist.com.

Bail was posted, but people weren't immediately released, so now NYC must pay as much as $...

Manhattan DA says he won't prosecute a woman arrested in the death of her abusive husband.

The Manhattan District Attorney says his office will no longer prosecute a woman arrested two years ago in the death of her abusive estranged husband. Alvin Bragg says he is no longer convinced that Tracy McCarter should be prosecuted in the stabbing death of James Murray. Journalist and advocate Victoria Law wrote about McCarter's case for the Nation. She spoke with WNYC Morning Edition host Michael Hill.

Manhattan DA says he won't prosecute a woman arrested in the death of her abusive husband.

Korean grandmother's recipe brings back fond and vivid memories

Food brings people together — whether on a holiday, like Thanksgiving, or a regular family supper. We set out to hear from people across New York City about the memories that come with certain family recipes. Lisa Gross of Kensington, Brooklyn shared a recipe from her Korean grandmother that she says, as a kid, was both "terrifying" and "amazing" to watch prepared. Gross said her grandmother was the inspiration for her business, the League of Kitchens. It's a cooking school where participants learn recipes from immigrant home cooks. You can find a recipe for ganjang-gejang, similar to Gross's grandmother's, here.

Filipino food gains visibility in NYC, but restaurateurs point to a complicated reality

Renee Dizon didn't set out to build a way of life for Filipinos in Queens. But three decades after she and her husband established a modest restaurant in Woodside, that is what it has become. . Before Jeepney and Maharlika, before Lumpia Shack and Instagram-famous ube pastries, there was Renee's Kitchenette and Grill. What Dizon and her family have built for the local Filipino community is something of a rarely celebrated success story amid fits and starts for the cuisine, as restaurateurs try to deepen its notches within the most brutal and unforgiving culinary landscape in the United States: New York City. Filipino dining in the five boroughs has become more visible since food writers provided the earliest whiffs of recognition in the 1980s. Breakthroughs in more recent years have included a thriving pop-up scene and the increased prominence of traditional practices. But the cuisine's biggest gains have formed a counterpoint with the closures of coveted former success stories in Manhattan, as well as fresher fusion ventures that failed to attract stable business.

Filipino food gains visibility in NYC, but restaurateurs point to a complicated reality

FEMA gave 296 NY & NJ Ida victims extended rental assistance. Advocates say that's unacceptable.

When the remnants of Hurricane Ida struck in September 2021, FEMA distributed short-term housing aid to 19,500 displaced residents in New Jersey and New York — enough to pay up to two months of rent. Gothamist found fewer than 300 — about 1.5% — of those New Jersey and New York residents received the additional rental assistance FEMA offered, meant to help disaster victims for as much as 18 months after the storm. The agency says it doesn't know how many people applied for continued aid, but advocates say most homeowners they heard from were never told the extra assistance was available in the first place. Some residents say they were forced to take on debt or stay in uninhabitable homes more than a year after the storm. Lawmakers and victim advocates in New Jersey say it's unacceptable that such a small proportion of residents received extended rental help, and are calling on FEMA to explain why.

FEMA gave 296 NY & NJ Ida victims extended rental assistance. Advocates say that's unacceptable.

City brings open streets to midtown for holidays

For three Sundays in December the city is closing 11 blocks in midtown on Fifth Avenue to traffic. WNYC's Stephen Nessen reports it's an Open Streets holiday edition. Just like the Open Streets over the summer, the city is closing the streets from 48th to 57th Streets on Fifth Avenue to vehicles. The area around Rockefeller Center and Radio City Music Hall will have extra space for pedestrians as well, as the city will remove a lane of traffic to make room for the high number of expected visitors. These are some of the busiest times of year in midtown, driving in is not recommended. But catching a bus during Open Streets may be tricky. All crosstown buses will be rerouted and on Fifth Avenue buses will skip stops between 48th and 52nd Streets. The Open Streets will run from noon to 6 p.m. until December 18th.

Calling out bullies and car horns: What's top of mind in Jackson Heights

We all have stories to tell. Stories about people or places that inspire us — stories of frustration and loss — stories of people making a difference in our neighborhoods. WNYC is collaborating with the nonprofit, Street Lab, to highlight stories from our diverse communities. Here's some of what we heard in Jackson Heights, Queens.

Calling out bullies and car horns: What's top of mind in Jackson Heights

Afghan dumplings bring family together

For many of us, food is at the center off it all. It's what brings family and friends together, especially during the holiday season. We asked a few New Yorkers to dig through their recipes and share something special. Nawida Saidhosin of Rego Park, Queens shared a recipe for Afghan Mantu. Saidhosin is a cooking instructor with the League of Kitchens. You'll find her recipe for Mantu with Tomato-Chana Dal Sauce below: MANTU WITH TOMATO-CHANA DAL SAUCE (Dumplings Filled with Meat and Onions) Recipe courtesy Nawida Saidhosin and the League of Kitchens Often served as an appetizer, these traditional Uzbek dumplings are filled with seasoned ground beef and onions, topped with a chunky lentil-tomato sauce, and drizzled with yogurt. Store-bought wonton wrappers can be used in place of the homemade dough. Serve with a refreshing assortment of whole raw scallions, tomato wedges, radishes, lemon slices, and sliced Persian cucumbers on a bed of lettuce and sprinkled with cilantro. Dough: 1 pound (4 cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling (spooned into cup and leveled) 1/2 teaspoon fine salt 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1 tablespoon corn oil 1 large egg About 3/4 cup water Filling: A generous 1/3 cup corn oil 1 pound very lean ground beef 1 tablespoon freshly ground coriander 1 1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder 1/2 teaspoon turmeric 3 cloves garlic, pressed 1 3/4 pounds medium yellow onions, cut into large dice (about 5 cups) 1 1/2 teaspoons fine salt Tomato-Chana Dal Sauce: 1/2 cup yellow split peas (chana dal), rinsed, soaked for 30 minutes 3 cloves garlic 2 medium vine-ripe tomatoes 3/4 cup corn oil 1 teaspoon freshly ground coriander 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder, plus more for sprinkling 1/2 teaspoon turmeric Heaping 1/2 teaspoon fine salt 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper Yogurt Sauce: 1/2 cup whole milk yogurt (not Greek) 1 to 2 cloves garlic, pressed 1/8 teaspoon fine salt 1 1/2 tablespoons water, plus more as needed Dried mint, for sprinkling 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish Special Equipment: pasta roller, single or double steamer basket For the dough: Add the flour, salt, baking soda, oil, and egg to a large mixing bowl. Mix with your hands, and then slowly add the water in stages, while mixing, until the dough comes together and picks up all the flour in the bowl. If the dough feels a little too sticky, sprinkle in a little more flour, or if it feels too dry, sprinkle in a little more water. Knead the dough in the bowl, using the top of your knuckles and flattening the dough into the bowl, and flipping and turning the dough, until it becomes uniformly smooth and soft and is no longer sticky. This could take 20 minutes. When the dough is smooth, break into about 4-ounce pieces, roll into a ball, and then flatten into an oblong shape. Lay the shapes along the side of the bowl, cover with plastic, and let rest for 30 to 40 minutes. For the filling: Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the beef and quickly stir with a flat metal spatula to break up the pieces, flattening the meat into the pan and turning it over on itself. Cook, stirring and turning frequently, until all the liquid is gone and the meat is browned and dry, for 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle in the coriander, black pepper, red chili powder, turmeric, and garlic. Add the onions, and then stir continually to prevent the onions from letting off too much of their liquid. Adjust the heat as necessary to keep the pan hot but not let the meat burn to the bottom (some browned bits are ok). Continue stirring until the onions become soft and translucent and the mixture is dry, about 15 minutes. Add the salt and stir to combine. Transfer to a baking sheet or platter to cool. The filling can be made a day ahead, covered, and stored in the refrigerator. To roll the dumpling dough: One at a time, flour each piece of dough and pat or roll into a 3-inch-wide piece. Keep the dough covered with plastic as you work. Dust both sides again with flour, and then feed through a pasta machine at the thickest setting. Dust liberally again, change the setting to two thinner, and feed through again. Dust one more time, change the setting to two thinner, and feed through one last time. At this point, you should be able to see your fingers through the dough; it will be about 1/16 th of an inch. Lay the strip out, cut the rounded tip off, and then cut into squares about 4 by 4 inches. Put a heaping tablespoon of the filling in the center of each square. With a straight side toward you, bring the upper left corner and the lower right corner together and pinch lightly. Then do the same for the two remaining corners. Put the fold that is at 6 o'clock between your left thumb and finger, and the fold at 3 o'clock between your right thumb and finger. Bring your hands together to meet in the middle, and press the dough to seal. Repeat with the other side. Brush a single or double metal steamer with a little oil. (You will need to steam in batches if using a single.) Arrange the dumplings in the steamer; it's ok if they are close together. When the basket is full, cover, and steam over medium to medium-high heat until they are translucent and don't stick to the pan, about 45 minutes. For the tomato-split pea sauce: Cover the split peas with 1 inch of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Then reduce the heat to low and simmer until soft, about 30 minutes, adding more water as needed. Puree the garlic and tomatoes in a food processor. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the tomato puree; it will sizzle and bubble. Continue to simmer until all the water is gone, leaving just the tomato and oil, about 10 minutes. Add the split peas to the tomato sauce, along with the coriander, red chili powder, turmeric, salt, and black pepper. Cook another 3 minutes to combine the flavors. For the yogurt sauce: Mix the yogurt, garlic, salt, and water (adding more if necessary) to make a pourable but not runny consistency. Spread some of the yogurt sauce on a serving platter. Arrange the dumplings on top. Drizzle with more yogurt sauce. Pour the tomato-split pea sauce over top. Sprinkle with the mint in a spoke pattern, and the red chile powder in between the mint. Scatter the cilantro all over. Makes 10 to 12 servings (about 60 dumplings) Prep: 1 hour 45 minutes, plus 30 minutes soaking and 30 minutes resting times Cook: 1 hour 15 minutes

A Long Island village is prepping for months without internet. Is NYC ready, too?

As people fret over the potential demise of Twitter, the Long Island town of Lynbrook is thinking bigger. The Nassau County village laid out a contingency plan earlier this year in case the internet ever goes out for months. The 11-page document, adopted in September and first reported on by Government Technology, lists analog replacements for government operations typically conducted online, like filing building permits, running payroll and dispatching emergency responders. New Yorkers are no strangers to service interruptions at the hands of their internet service providers — caused in part by networks and cloud computing moving through fewer companies. Local governments have also been plagued by ransomware attacks that cut them off from their computers and bring vital operations to a screeching halt. A monthslong outage is much less likely than these short-term interruptions — but the Lynbrook officials who drafted the report want to be prepared, citing solar storms and terrorist attacks as possible long-term threats to connectivity. New York City, too, has a plan in place, officials said, although it's not clear how long the Big Apple could go on without the internet. Click "listen" in the player to hear the story, and visit Gothamist for more details.

A Long Island village is prepping for months without internet. Is NYC ready, too?