Once a week Etsy worker bees gather ’round our handmade farm tables to dig into seasonal dishes. We call this gathering Eatsy, and by far, it’s the best day at the office. Kitty Greenwald, cook and author, makes these dishes from scratch and the menu changes weekly. Eatsy’s objectives are simple: apply Etsy’s handmade values to food and provide the Brooklyn crew with a nourishing, communal meal. This is no different than what many of you do with friends and family in your homes. Eatsy strives to create a similar environment in the workplace, and we want to give you all a taste of Kitty’s amazing cooking. Here she is to share her tips for sourcing locally grown food and a recipe to boot.
Lucky for Eatsy, this past weekend strawberries were spotted in a tent at the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket. There were loads — rows, in fact. Big, small, red, ripe and just plucked from Phillips Farms, located in Hunterdon County, New Jersey. There was more, too. Delicate lettuces (more than six varieties!), green garlic, baby cucumbers, spring onions, chocolate mint, tarragon… But strawberries, after months of apples and pears and citrus, shone. They had to be featured at Eatsy, no question. With the new lettuce and basil around, a spring salad easily came together: strawberries with fatty mozzarella, basil and arugula. Good, no?
The recipe and tips are below. To change it up, try avocado instead of mozzarella or tarragon instead of basil. Down the road, use peaches instead of berries. Hopefully this salad whets your appetite for what lies ahead and pleases both you and the Brooklyn folks alike.
A tip for buying and storing strawberries: Good strawberries should be fragrant. While their size depends on the variety, always look for green stems, firm flesh and deep red berries; the darker the red, the riper the berry. Strawberries are best served room temperature and eaten soon after purchase. They keep 2-3 days in the fridge when laid out on a tray lined with a damp cloth and covered with another damp cloth. To clean, rinse in a bowl of water and shake the berries gently to dislodge any grit. Lay out to dry and remove stems with a pairing knife just before serving.
STRAWBERRY, MOZZARELLA and ARUGULA SALAD
1 pound strawberries, rinsed, dried and hulled
8 basil leaves, washed, dried, and roughly chopped
1 ball fresh mozzarella (The freshest you can get! Cow’s milk is good but buffalo, smoked or burrata, while slightly more expensive, are unstoppable.)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 cups arugula, washed and dried
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Cut the berries in half (quarter larger berries). Toss the berries with the basil. Tear or chop the mozzarella into bite-size pieces.
Whisk the oil and vinegar together. Season the dressing to taste with salt and pepper.
Season the salad with a pinch of salt and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Spread the greens out on a large platter. Tuck the mozzarella and berries in and around the greens. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and serve.
More information about this week’s Eatsy dishes:
- The fresh mozzarella came from Caputo‘s, in Caroll Gardens. It’s made just a few hours before being served so it will be super soft and creamy.
- I also made a chicken platter, which I sourced from Madani Halal in Ozone Park, NY. They are a family owned supplier of humanely raised lamb, goat and chicken.
- Learn more about the NYC Farmers’ Markets at grownyc.org/greenmarket.
About Kitty Greenwald, a cook and food writer living in Brooklyn:
I’ve cooked in New York, California, France, Italy and Portugal, been involved in Slow Food Nation, The Smithsonian Folk Life Festival: Food Culture USA, curated Slow Film Night at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and am currently collaborating with the great Grahame Weinbren for the SJ01 Biennial. I’ve written and contributed recipes to Real Simple, National Geographic’s Food Journeys of a Lifetime and the San Jose Mercury News. My first cookbook (just released!), Life’s Too Short to Chop Onions, published by Reader’s Digest, is a collection of handy-dandy easy recipes — you can find it on Amazon or through an independent bookseller. Happily, part of my week is devoted to Eatsy, a locally sourced and seasonal meal that I plan and prepare for the good people of Etsy. Here on the Blog, I’ll share recipes and chat with you about all things homemade and edible.
Do you support your local farmers’ market? Tell us about your recipes in the comments and share links to Flickr photos. Let’s make everyone hungry!