Chefs at Home: The Sussman Brothers Slideshow

Jessica Chou

Max (left) and Eli Sussman in their Brooklyn kitchen, where they sometimes cook together and presumably worked on their cookbook. Since the brothers work opposite hours (Max works brunch at Roberta's, while Eli works dinner service on the weekends), the two rarely clash. "We hang out sometimes on our days off all day and eat at places, but for the most part we aren't really in each other's space," Max said.

Jessica Chou

Max (left) and Eli Sussman in their Brooklyn kitchen, where they sometimes cook together and presumably worked on their cookbook. Since the brothers work opposite hours (Max works brunch at Roberta's, while Eli works dinner service on the weekends), the two rarely clash. "We hang out sometimes on our days off all day and eat at places, but for the most part we aren't really in each other's space," Max said.

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The brothers' amazing dining table (with the chess set on it) is actually a picnic table, built by a guy in Long Island they found on Craigslist. "It's a great work place where Max and I can sit together and write menus or do ordering or write a food column and not be all over each other while still being able to bounce around ideas," Eli said.

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The dining table in the background can easily seat 10 people, perfect for a dinner party. "We were lucky enough to find an apartment with a good open space room so it was crucial we had a really big table that would work for us to have friends over to just hang out or for dinners," Eli said.

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Max brought Murphy, a four-year-old mutt, back after working at a fishing resort in Chilean Patagonia. "He was a little puppy following me back from the village that had Internet access. So it would be a long walk and I started feeding him and he basically became my dog hanging around the resort," Max said.

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The Sussman brothers have more than 60 cookbooks, with standard ones from Eleven Madison Park, Ad Hoc, and more, all of which the brothers pick up for inspiration. "I just bought Whole Beast Butchery by Ryan Farr the other day so I've been really into that one recently," Eli said. "Max just bought a really cool one that's about state fairs. Really old-school cookbook with no pictures. It's more of a history book to see what people were cooking at all these famous state and county fairs."

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The first of a bunch of family memorabilia in the apartment: a family photo from when they were kids. "We call that our Godfather wedding photo. It's at our aunt's wedding and we are standing on our grandparents lawn," Eli said, "and we are just mafia'ed out in these awesome dark suits with loud ties."

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The brothers' kitchen is small, but open, with pots and pans in the cupboards next to the oven and a wide counter to prep and eat at.

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"We keep tongs hanging on the oven door handle and then we've got some bain-maries holding all the other tools — spatulas, whisks," Max said. "And then we've got this awesome new Wüsthof knife block that holds all our home kitchen knives."

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The brothers' cousin, Eitan, made these unique cutting boards for the two as a thank you gift for catering his wedding. "He would describe himself as an amateur woodworker but honestly, he has a pretty intense operation out of his garage in downtown Detroit," Max wrote. "He's made other things than boards, like the bed for him and his wife (and we're trying to convince him to make us a coffee table, too). It's just a laborious old-school process."

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On top of their cupboards, the brothers display an All-Rap Spectacular poster from 1986. "We love Run DMC and the Beastie Boys and they are a huge part of our childhood," Eli wrote. "We grew up at this camp where Beasties and DMC were always blasting. So it's up as a sort of nostalgic reminder but also it's just badass. I mean that concert must have been insane. LL COOL J has third billing... that's absurd."

The Velvet peanut butter from Detroit, however, was a gift from their mother, who sends little care packages to the brothers. "My mom loves to send little packages like we are at summer camp filled with Detroit stuff and she'll usually make a print for us (she's an artist) which we'll put up on the fridge," Eli wrote.

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Normally, the brothers' couch is placed against the wall to open up the living space. When they decide to watch some TV, however, they move the couch against the dining table to watch a projection on the opposite wall.

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Eli has recently taken to collecting photos, so the first photo on the left (taken by Mark Menjivar) is from 20x200, a website specializing in affordable art prints. "The photo just really grabbed me and I had to have it," Eli wrote. "The two smaller ones were birthday gifts from my dad." The latter two are signed J Brooks.

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Another Detroit photo from the Sussmans' father is on display atop an Ulysses book. "You're probably sensing a trend here... I have started to collect photographs so it's been sort of a birthday gift trend as of late," Eli wrote.

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The brothers worked on their second cookbook (now available online and in stores) for about a year, testing every recipe in-between their normal jobs. "It's amazing to have another person who cooks professionally who is your brother," Eli wrote, "so you know you can trust to tell them anything and it's going to stay in the room if need be."