Tag Archives | Winter 2016-2017 Recipes


Gin Blossom


Makes 1 cocktail

2 ounces Hendrick’s gin
2 ounces whey
½ ounce fresh lemon juice
1 ounce simple syrup
2 dashes orange blossom water
Orange peel twist

Fill a shaker with ice and add all the ingredients but the twist. Shake until frothy and cold, then strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Garnish with the twist.

*Note: If you are not feeling kitchen crafty, whey can be purchased at Hawthorne Valley Farm Store in Ghent, among other places in the Hudson Valley, and may be easily procured from a local dairy, if asked nicely. Fresh whey can usually be kept a week in the fridge and about three months in the freezer.

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From Milk: The Surprising Story of Milk Through the Ages by Anne Mendelson (Knopf, 2008)

Makes about 8 ounces (1 cup) chhenna, 7 cups whey

2 quarts whole milk (local and/or organic)
¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice

Pour the milk into a heavy-bottomed 4-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring to keep the bottom from scorching. When it starts boiling up in earnest, remove from the heat and promptly strain the lemon or lime juice into the milk, stirring it gently. The milk should rapidly separate into clouds of white curd in a greenish-yellow whey. (If this doesn’t happen, add another spritz of juice.) Let stand for 8 to 10 minutes.*

Line a strainer or colander with tight-woven cheesecloth or other clean cotton cloth, set it over a deep bowl, and use a skimmer or shallow ladle to carefully lift out the larger clumps of curd into the cloth. Very gently pour in the whey with the remaining curd.

Let drain for a few minutes. Tie the corners of the cloth into a bag. Holding the bag by the tied corners, briefly rinse the curd under cold running water to remove a little of the lemon taste. Gently squeeze the bag in your hands to press out some of the water. Now you can either hang it up to drain further until it is a little softer than cream cheese (usually about 1½ to 2 hours; suspend it on the kitchen faucet or a wooden spoon set over a deep bowl) or speed the process as follows: Flatten the bag of curd into a rough disc or rectangle, put it on a plate, and cover it with another plate. Place a weight (a heavy can, a couple of large beach pebbles) on the top plate and let stand for about 30 minutes, periodically draining off any overflow. It can then be used as is, but will be easier to work with if you cream it with a large wooden spoon in a bowl or with the heel of your hand on a flat work surface. Imagining that you are creaming butter for a cake or putting a pâte brisée through the stage called “fraisage,” work the cheese very, very smooth a little at a time. If you are not using it at once, pack it into a container and refrigerate, tightly covered. It is extremely perishable and should be used within 3 to 4 days.

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Crispy Whey-Braised Potatoes


Serves 4 as a side dish

1 pound small red potatoes
1½ cups whey
1½ tablespoons ghee, melted
½ teaspoon sea salt
Smoked salt
2 tablespoons minced rosemary

Preheat oven to 400º.

Halve the potatoes the long way. Place them in a single layer in a large sauté pan. Add the whey and place the pan over medium-high heat. Cover and simmer until fork tender, about 15 minutes.

Using tongs, transfer the potatoes to a large bowl, discarding any whey that hasn’t been absorbed. Add the ghee and sea salt and toss to coat well. Spread the potatoes out, cut-side down, on a baking sheet, and lightly smash with the flat side of a large spoon or the bottom of a glass. Roast until golden and crisp, about 30 minutes.

Lightly season with smoked salt, garnish with rosemary, and serve warm.

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The Diva of Grilled Cheese

(Taken from My Kitchen Year, Random House 2015)

Makes 1 sandwich

1 onion (any color)
1 clove garlic (minced)
¼ pound cheddar cheese
2 slices sturdy sourdough bread

Gather a group of shallots, leeks, scallions and an onion—as many members of the allium family as you have on hand—and chop them into a small heap. Add a minced clove of garlic. Grate a few generous handfuls of the best cheddar you can afford, set a little aside, and gently combine the rest with the onion mixture.

Butter one side of each piece of thickly sliced bread and heap as much of the mixture as possible between the slices (butter facing in). Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the outside of the bread (this will keep it from scorching on the griddle).

Press the reserved grated cheese to the outside of the bread, where it will create a wonderfully crisp and shaggy crust, giving your sandwich an entirely new dimension.

Fry on a heated griddle or in a skillet about 4 minutes a side, until the cheese is softly melted.

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Squash Cassoulet

Recipy courtesy of
14 Mount Carmel Place, Poughkeepsie

Chef/owner Brandon Walker opened up his first restaurant, Essie’s, earlier this year in the Mt. Carmel neighborhood of Poughkeepsie— an area that had, decades earlier, been a thriving hub for the city’s Italian community. Walker, a Brooklyn native and graduate of the CIA in neighboring Hyde Park, named the restaurant after his grandmother and uses the menu to explore both local and seasonal ingredients. He incorporates the cultural influence of the area as well, creating dishes from Caribbean to South American to, of course, Italian cuisines. In winter, Walker likes to indulge his comfort impulses with dishes like osso buco and this standout vegetarian version of cassoulet. —E. Steinman


Serves 6

  • ¾ pound Goya 16-bean soup mix (or mix of any of the following: pinto beans, small red beans, pink beans, red kidney beans, great northern beans, baby lima beans, large lima beans, black-eyes peas, small white beans, black beans, whole green peas, yellow split peas, green split peas, lentils, chickpeas)
  • 4 ounces olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, medium dice
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 carrot, medium dice
  • 2 stalks celery, medium dice
  • 1 delicata squash, medium dice1 red kuri squash or kabocha squash, medium dice
  • 1 tromboncino (aka zucchetta) squash or zucchini squash, medium dice
  • Vegetable stock or water as needed
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • ½ sprig rosemary
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • Cashew cream (recipe below)

Add 16-bean soup mix to a pot of water and bring to a boil. Set aside for 30 minutes.

In a separate pot over medium heat, add olive oil and onions. Caramelize the onions until brown, then add the mushrooms, garlic, carrots, celery and cook until all are lightly brown. Strain the 16-bean soup mix from the water and add to mushrooms and onions mixture; also add delicata, red kuri and tromboncino squashes.

Add vegetable stock, thyme, rosemary; bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer until all vegetables and legumes are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper and finish with cashew cream to your desired consistency and creaminess. Serve in desired vessel. Note: The more cashew cream you use the creamier and thicker the dish will get.


  • 2 cups cashews
  • Water, as needed

Add cashews to a blender with water (a teaspoon or two) and blend until smooth, then reserve.

Note: Use enough water to make a puree. As you blend, the mixture will thicken. Use water (a teaspoon at a time) to adjust consistency in blender.

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