Market Berry Salad and a New York Weekend

August 21st, 2011

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Last weekend, I got a chance to travel to New York, a city I love very much. I had a few particular places to visit in mind and, unsurprisingly, they were mostly food-related. Pure Food and Wine, Chelsea Market, Hangawi, the list went on. But most of all, I couldn’t wait to explore the Union Square Greenmarket.

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I’d been to the Greenmarket once before. It was in the dead of winter, and I was amazed by the variety of potatoes and other root veggies being sold, and how the vendors braved the cold, wrapped in layers of clothing.

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Goodies from the market, like a Dutch still life painting.

The summer market, of course, is a completely different experience. The stands are overflowing with colour and assortment, there is abundance all around. To me, it’s paradise, a candy shop. I’m not sure how much time I spent at a certain microgreens tent, trying to pick the prettiest of the twenty offered kinds (which is impossible), but I am pretty sure it was an inappropriately long while. In case you are wondering, radish microgreens took the prize.

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I loved the crowd, in their straw hats, with loaded canvas bags, smelling the peaches for ripeness, digging through mounds of heirloom tomatoes to find the prettiest, carrying home beautiful bouquets of flowers. And the vendors – so passionate, friendly, ready to talk about their product and how to prepare it for best results.

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This heirloom tomato display was especially picturesque, they were huge and plump, and so beautifully coloured.
We took it all in, making many rounds, snapping photos, picking the best produce. And imagining what to prepare for lunch. It had to be something simple, as we were away from our usual kitchen appliances, and the produce just spoke for itself.

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This girl was selling flowers and had flowers in her hair.

A salad with fresh, tender greens, heirloom tomatoes, sweet peaches and berries, topped with microgreens, is what we made. It was as if the greenmarket was miniaturized and placed into a bowl.
For the dressing, we used lavender, honey, and apple cider vinegar. There was a lavender vendor at the market, and upon approaching her tent, we were surprised with the delicious and calming scent of her dried lavender bouquets – absolutely irresistable. The slightly sweet dressing added another hint of summer to the mix.

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After the market, we were set with food for the next couple of days, although tempted to eat it all at once.

I was so glad to see that such a beautiful, positive place existed. The people shopping there looked excited to be buying the wonderful, fresh produce, grown mindfully.

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I only wish there was a market like this in every town.

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   This tomato left us speechless.

Another highlight of the trip was finally having dinner at Pure Food and Wine. I’ve talked so much about my admiration for Sarma Melngailis, the proprietor of the restaurant. Her cookbooks are always on my kitchen table, with many bookmarks sticking out of all sides.

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Hen of the Woods Tacos al Pastor and Spanakopita with Spinach, Almond Feta, and Cucumber Yogurt at Pure Food and Wine

Our meal was incredible, accompanied by the cozy setting in their famous garden. It seemed very natural that such fresh and beautiful ingredients came together to make something so tasty. And the dessert, a chocolate ice cream trio with Indian spices, was a perfect finish to a perfect evening.

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One evening, we made squash blossoms stuffed with eggplant.

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Also, tasty popsicles on the High Line, Van Gogh’s delicious brushstrokes at the Met, morning and evening walks through Central Park, and a bit of summer thunderstorms thrown into the mix.

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It’s always so nice to be able to get away and experience a change of setting, even if only for a few days. It was a great weekend.

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Market Berry Salad
(Serves 2 -4)
market fresh baby greens – any variety
1-2 heirloom tomatoes – sliced
2 ripe peaches – sliced
handful of strawberries – sliced if needed
handful of blueberries – optional
handful of microgreens – any variety

Lavender Dressing
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons raw honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers – ground or whole

In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients together and let infuse for about 30 minutes. Pour over the salad, and enjoy.

Tags: raw food, recipe, salad, travel

  • Marcela says:

    Those recipes look delicious, especially the dressing…yumm, will try it soon!

    I LOVE NY too. Unfortunately, I haven’t been there since January 2001, hopefully one day soon I’ll get to go back :)

  • Kelsey says:

    What a beautiful dressing!

  • Elena Bensonoff says:

    I love your new post!

  • foodistic says:

    Lavender! What a great idea! Love your your beautiful blog.

  • Looks like a wonderful trip! So fun to see all your pictures and the beautiful produce.

  • VeganLisa says:

    We would be such perfect NYC travel buddies. We seem to adore all the same spots. I tend to spend most of my time wandering around the market, or stopping in to see Sarma. It looks like you made the most of your short stay.

    Thank you for sharing another delightful recipe and photographs that make me yearn for NYC.

  • That first photo is just gorgeous. I also love the huge stack of skinny carrots. What a wonderful NYC trip. I miss the big apple being down here in the South. Your photos are beautiful and so so colorful.

  • Knife man says:

    Wonderful to see how you can get some of the freshest produce available right in the middle of the city. The photos are awesome and the dressing sounds amazing. You certainly shined a very positive light on the big apple.

  • Coco says:

    I just love New York in the summer, despite the heat:) And look at all you brought home from the market! What a feast! One thing I dearly miss about Seattle are the amazing farmers markets.

  • Jill Riter says:

    What a colorful post!

  • Zita says:

    Gorgeous photos of NYC. I love the Hungarian cloth on the third photo. The cloth has a special embroidery from a Hungarian town, called: Kalocsa. Very nice and very unique. More info here: http://www.kalocsa-embroidery.com/

  • April says:

    I love Pure Food and Wine. It is a beautiful restaurant with great food. Thanks for sharing.

  • Penni says:

    Always fabulous and inspiring. Sharing, as always, at Raw Food Rehab.
    xo – Penni

  • Elri says:

    This is so beautiful! I love it. Inspiring blog. Greetings from Oslo, Norway

  • Laura says:

    How beautiful! The salad! Your holiday snaps! So lovely.

  • Iris Larisa Kogan says:

    Great post:)

  • Golubka says:

    Thanks, everyone! Loved sharing this with you ;)

    Lisa, we really would be perfect travel companions!

    Coco, thank you. Yes, I wish the southern states had such great fresh markets as well. Maybe one day :)

    Zizi, yes, thank you for sending me that link. It’s gorgeous.

  • Anonymous says:

    Oh my Golubka! What a treat. The fantastic pictures,your love of the fresh produce and of course NYC itself showed so nicely in this blog. I felt as though I were with you travelling along the sunny market with so much delicious food.Thanks so much for sharing it with us all.
    Lisa K.

  • lovely shots of the city. new to your blog. nice snaps :)

  • Excellent post. I am going to make this recipe soon!!

  • Josh Gibson says:

    Absolutely gorgeous pics. So inspiring!

  • Looks great – glad you enjoyed New York! I LOVE Pure Food & Wine too! And for your next trip, a few other great veggie options! http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/eat-sheet-go-gourmet-vegetarian-227768

  • I need to visit NYC in warmer weather to see the markets! It was freezing in January when I was there. But absolutely loved Pure Food and Wine but would love to sit on that patio and dine! One day:) Lovely salad, must try the lavender business!!

  • Lisa Kassoff says:

    New dimensions is where it’s at! Your event makes me so hungry and jealous that it was so far away.You have added to the food culture that is popping up all over the world. Your pairing is really a genius at work, Your choice of raw foods is an event to behold….Lots and lots of good and creative energy for you always.
    Lisa K.

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