I have been working on my hummus game for years and it has taken me quite some time to perfect my recipe. I’m ready to share it with you. My personal hummus recipe is a hybrid derived from traditional middle eastern recipes blended with my own flavor preferences. It can be categorized as smooth and nutty with a tangy kick.
If you’re shopping for your produce locally you likely have seen ramps. If you have a great ramp recipe – please share in the comments below!
If you’re like WTF is a ramp and what do I do with it? – we can help.
Ramps (Allium tricoccum) look like grassy greens and are in the wild onion family. Interestingly, they grow native in the east of North America (SUPER LOCAL!) but have a short growing season, which makes them special. Flavor-wise they have a subtle onion garlicky flavor.
Ramps and butter are where it’s at. A quick recipe is to sautée ramps in butter and serve on bruschetta (which is fancy for sliced and toasted Italian bread or baguette.)
Here is another quick and easy recipe for Ramps With Polenta and Mushrooms:
Bring 3.5 C broth (veggie or chicken) to a boil. In the meantime sautée a handful of ramps in butter or olive oil and salt and pepper. Whisk into the boiling water a cup of polenta and the sautéed ramps. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 15min and stir often. Meanwhile, sautée shiitake or crimini mushrooms with fresh or dried sage in butter. Serve the polenta in a bowl topped with the mushrooms. Add more salt pepper and olive oil or butter to taste.
Single People: I know, recipes are biased towards family-sized portions and cooking just doesn’t always make financial sense for one person, but take-out is expensive, too and will eventually make you broke and overweight. So here’s one solution. Buy one of those family-sized packages of chicken breasts and make this package of meat your bitch for the next three or four meals, all for about $20. First we’ll BBQ, then we’ll make a sandwich, then we’ll make salad and finally a simple soup.
First, wash your chicken. Run it under the faucet for 15 seconds and wet the entire surface and dry with paper towels. It makes for safer and better tasting chicken. Rub a little olive oil and a lot of salt & pepper on both sides and under the skin. Grill (or fry on a nonstick pan) on medium to high heat for about 6-8 minutes per side. Brush on BBQ sauce on top of one of the chicken breasts right towards the end of the grilling. Flip it a third time just for a minute, brush the sauce on the other side. Remove from grill and eat one of them with rice and some steamed veggies. Continue reading →
Every weekend many of us hit the farmers market circuit, navigating between Union Square Park, Union St, and Russell St in an effort to avoid the wilted offerings found at the Super A. However, there’s a simpler way: a plethora of local CSAs (community supported agriculture) – essentially a prepaid share of a farm’s produce that offer us the chance to avoid the vagaries of choice and opt instead to support a small farm that in turn supports us.
Below are several of the CSAs from which we Greenpointers can choose. Is your CSA listed? Is it missing? Love your CSA? Have any recipes? Canning secrets? Let us know in the comments.
Vegetable CSAs Note that prices are listed for full, weekly shares. Other options may be available.
Rachel Mae’s CSA: picks up at Cafe Grumpy (193 Meserole Ave), $600/24-week season. Greenpoint-Williamsburg CSA: Picks up at McCarren or McGolrick Park. Weekly shares are $595/275/155/66 for veggies/fruit/flowers/eggs and $200 for a bi-weekly cheese share. Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative: Picks up at Eastern District (1053 Manhattan Ave), so be sure to budget extra for irresistible cheese. $725 for a 25-week season. Southside CSA: Picks up at The Woods (48 S 4th St). Dizzying array of share options, so best to check their website for information. Donates to the Greenpoint Soup Kitchen! Lineage Farm CSA: Picks up at the Greenpoint Reformed Church (136 Milton St.) Partners Trace: Picks up at TBD (224 Franklin St) & Huckleberry Bar (588 Grand St) 20 weeks / egg shares / flower shares / berry shares / orchard shares / canned good shares
I’m particularly excited by the fish CSAs available, as they provide a good, sustainable source of fresh fish, something Greenpoint lacks outside of smoked offerings or the farmer’s market stalls. I’ve heard great things about both of these.
Mermaid’s Garden CSF: Picks up at Urban Rustic. $33/week for a 2-2.25 lb delivery, $16.50 for a 1.25 lb delivery. Possible add-ons/substitutions for shellfish.
Gabe the Fish Babe: Details online are scarce but she was enthusiastically recommended. The fish club is apparently full at the moment, but join the mailing list on the website for updates.
Did you know that the The Philippines has three main regions, Luzon, Visaya and Mindanao, and that each region has different traditional dishes?
At the upcoming Tatsulok, which means three corners, dinner series on March 24, 6-11pm at 248 McKibben St Lofts, not only will you feast on homemade Filipino dishes, but you will get schooled on geography and Filipino culture.
Hosted by our very own Yana Guilbuena, the purpose of these events is “to represent the diversity in the country’s culinary palette as well as the influences of its neighbors and history.” Knowing Yana, it’s also meant to be a tasty and for sure crazy fun time.
Don’t be fooled by the scary vegan word, because food is food and we all love eating. Especially at a restaurant when someone else is doing the cooking. Being a health-conscious vegan eater with a boyfriend who will eat anything, going out and grubbing out is something we DO. I’ve gathered together the best vegan meals in Greenpoint; even though there are definitely more than just five.
1. Paulie Gee’s (60 Greenpoint Ave)
With a separate vegan menu, and one cozy dining space, you are sure to enjoy one of the most delicious pizza joints in all of New York City. Five white pies and a red pie with tons of toppings start at $10 and go up to $18. They even have homemade vegan sausage! I have to say the “Vegan Greenpointer” with the lemon juice is my personal favorite. Lemon on everything!
2. Spritzenhaus (33.33 Nassau Ave)
You can’t miss this giant beer garden featuring tons of beers on tap and a list of German bratwursts. The most unsuspecting thing on the menu is a vegan brat! A specialty locally sourced vegan brat with apple wood sage and a balsamic reduction on a pretzel bun topped with a heavy helping of peppers and onions, this brat will blow your mind, for only $11. In fact, my meat guru boyfriend prefers this vegan brat to some of the more game-y ones. Don’t forget to get a side of the Belgian fries and try the surplus of mustards they offer.
3. Greenpoint Heights (278 Nassau Ave)
The most talked about new hangout in “this side” of Greenpoint, you all know how awesome Greenpoint Heights is. The chill, unpretentious vibes, matched with the incredible food and drinks, this spot is my jam. Elizabeth is one amazing chef, concocting some serious tacos. The vegan options include a sweet plantain taco and a black bean taco. Mango salsa, guacamole, and fried shallots are a few of the yummy toppings. Other favorites include the banging chips & guac as well as the kale salad (without the cheese of course.) Tacos are $4 each but $3 on Thursdays!
4. Café Royal (195 Nassau Ave)
A coffee shop by day, and a gourmet kitchen by night! One vegan special this café features for dinner is the quinoa plate. Quinoa with sautéed tofu, kale, corn, and roasted tomatoes and pine nuts, topped with some pesto. This healthy dish is a hearty helping that includes a side salad and toast for only 11 bucks. It is one of those dishes that is so good (and easy) that when you try to do it yourself, you can’t even come close. Chef Juan is the master of this bad boy.
5. No Name Bar (597 Manhattan Ave)
No name, no website, no press. But, I couldn’t refuse. This hidden spot in the middle of everything is also featuring a secret Thai kitchen with a badass woman chef. The sprawling backyard is where the kitchen is tucked away and it features a couple vegan options. One is the homemade veggie dumpling noodle soup with bok choi for $9. Spruce that baby up with some chili paste, and this big serving of hot soup with scrumptious dumplings is the perfect soup for a cold day.
Unless you reserved your local sustainable organic heritage turkey months ago, you are most likely going to roast the same old turkey. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good succulent bird drowning in brown gravy, but I am secretly a sides whore and easing up on factory turkey meat ain’t a bad thing, right? So let’s get weird and adjust our focus. Here are some fun, easy and healthy dishes that will make you say “What turkey?”
My family always serves a huge bowl of pasta before the Thanksgiving meal. Every year it’s Nonna’s last lasagna, because she thinks she will be dead by the next year. (Last year, she almost killed my boyfriend with her lasagna!) If you must be so Italian and serve pasta, why not make this orzo with sweet squash and sage instead of heavy red sauce? Who am I kidding? It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without a heap of lasagna as the appetizer. Traditions!
Mashed potatoes can never be boring. Whipped buttery carbs? But why not get colorful and use those gorgeous blue potatoes you see at the local market this year! Mash in some roasted garlic and herbs like rosemary or sage.
Most collard greens recipes call for a ham hock, but these flavorful greens are delicious without all the dead meat. This recipe will get the sweet and sour going with apple cider and apple cider vinegar, which can help with diabetes and obesity, two conditions many of us dangerously flirt with on Thanksgiving day.
Stuffing can be very simple or can be taken to the next level by using some fancy bread like brioche or even cornbread. Lots of people add sausage to stuffing, which is outrageously delicious, but if your son’s girlfriend is a veggie, use mushrooms instead. They have such a meaty texture and a deep flavor, you won’t miss the meat.
A lot of people forget about the subtle and rich flavor of the parsnip, an undiscovered vegetable star. Often overlooked, it is one of those most dynamically sweet root vegetables. Instead of roasting, fry these suckers up and put them out on the buffet. They will get gobbled down in no time.
Brussel Sprouts are in season locally during Thanksgiving time so stock up. Impress your friends with a gigantic stalk as part of your cornucopia centerpiece. But don’t just decorate with these tiny vegetable pleasures, enjoy their sweet and subtle flavor, and reap the anti-carcinogenic health benefits they pack in each juicy bite.
My Dad Rocco was an Italian immigrant who grew up in Bushwick in the 50s. Other Italian immigrants settled in South Brooklyn, like Bensonhurst or Bayridge. Both areas regarded eachother as “The Other Brooklyn.”
It was just a matter of where you live, like it is here in Greenpoint, where it depends on which side of McGuinness Blvd you live on. This side, where we use McGolrick Park as a reference point, is beginning to sprout some new and unexpected restaurants.
Open for a few weeks now, if you walk by Selamat Pagi (152 Driggs Ave), the new Balinese restaurant over here, you will notice it’s always hopping from morning until evening.
Aside from introducing far out flavors from the other side of the world to Greenpoint, Selamat Pagi, which means Good-Morning in Balinese, is certainly filling a void for all of us who live near McGolrick Park, who complain about limited food options and sometimes don’t want to venture to the other side.
We had dinner on a Friday night, the second night after the Grand Opening. My friends joked, “So we are going to wait three hours.” We didn’t wait long, but there were a few hiccups that were to be expected, but the friendly service, the new flavors and the short walk home certainly made up for it. I am sure by now they have all the kinks worked out.
Don’t be afraid to order appetizers as the portions for the main courses are not huge, which being a member of the clean plate club is much appreciated.
The waitress recommended we start with the prawn crackers that come with three sambals, or sauces in order to introduce our palates to all the flavors of Balinese cuisine. The Sambal Matah is raw with lemongrass, the Sambal Tomat is made with spicy tomato and last is the Ginger Sambal. Don’t try to pick a favorite, they are all delicious and save some to dip your entrees in.
For a drink I enjoyed a not too sweet Shirley Temple!
We also ordered the tasty Balinese Deviled Eggs, which are sweet with pickled vegetables on top. There are three halves, so it will be hard to be that person who urges your dining partner to take the last one.
My main was the Palm Caramelized Blue Fish with black pepper, turmeric, coriander, sambal tomat, sambal mateh and roti, which is like an Indian soft taco. The fish was sweet and tender and loved to share a plate with the sambals. The roti was on the drier side, but made good dipping in the sambals, too.
We enjoyed not one, not two, not three, but four desserts! Coconut Creme Brulee, a trio of Van Leeuwen Ice Cream, Spicy Bali Chocolate Pot De Creme and a Traditional Balinese Thousand Layer Cake. All perfect.
It wasn’t an inexpensive meal with moderately sized dinner entrees averaging around $16 a plate for authentic home style Balinese cooking, but it was a great dining experience, the interiors are lovely, the staff is great and it’s so conveniently close to home.
Let’s welcome Selamat Pagi to the the other Greenpoint. Aside from dinner, they are open for brunch Tuesday thru Sunday and have delicious coffee and pastries every day.
If I wasn’t sick as a dog, I’d walk right out of my house this instant and try out Selamat Pagi, the new Balinese Restaurant on Driggs Ave that is now open!
If I could get off my couch I would enjoy a crisp walk across McGolrick Park and order Bali Style Deviled Eggs, Lemongrass Fish Curry, with pollack, noodles, fresh cucumbers and roasted peanuts and a Shirley Temple. For dessert I would get the Coconut Creme Brulee. And I wouldn’t share! (Because of germs.)
They also serve breakfast and lunch. They are open 7 days, but the kitchen is just closed Monday (so only ice cream, coffee and pastries then.)
For now I can only imagine and stalk their Instagram Feed.