This Week's Podcast: A Taste of the Good Earth -- with Leeann Lavin
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Long Island has
rich sandy soil and gorgeous weather with long languid autumns that often do
not end until December. For decades, this was farm country, and the number one
crop was potato.
Towns on the south fork of the east end of Long Island, NY,
are often collectively referred to as “The Hamptons,” today, and are among the
top vacation spots in the Country. And as for farms, many are still there, but
the crops have diversified to serve weekenders and the restaurants they
frequent -- many of which have become world famous.
Nick and Toni’s, Loaves
& Fishes, The Frisky Oyster are but three of 27 establishments profiled in
Leeann Lavin’s new book: The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook about locavore
chefs and their connection to the land, the sea and the artisanal growers who
inspire them. Leeann said,
“[It’s about] the respect and reverence the chef & farmer have for each other, their work and passion, and the respect and reverence they have for the land.” (Biodynamic farmer Kathy Keller with chef Robby Beaver of The Frisky Oyster, left. Right, Author Leeann Lavin.)
“Long Island is still recognized as the most productive farming area in New York State,” said Leeann. She profiles the growers on the north and south fork of Long Island and the chefs who are inspired by their produce. The book is filled with signature recipes from the featured restaurants. The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook is a tribute to the farms, gardens, vineyards and waterways on Long Island. Leeann honors the chefs who are bringing the local homegrown harvest to food-obsessed patrons and in doing so support local farmers and a precious way of life.
To learn more, visit Leeann Lavin’s Chefs and Gardens blog.
The Frisky Oyster’s Roasted Baby Beet Salad with Humboldt Fog Goat Cheese
makes 4 salads
for the beets…
10 baby red beets
10 baby golden beets
10 baby candy stripe beets
1 bunch fresh thyme
2 cups balsamic vinegar
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
for the plating…
roasted baby beets
1 # baby arugula, best fresh from a local organic farm
½ cup sherry vinaigrette
4 slices of Humboldt Fog goat’s milk cheese or your favorite goat’s milk cheese
1 cup salted pistachios
the beets, thyme, oil and vinegar in a baking dish and cover with aluminum
Bake at 375 until a toothpick or knife slides into and out of the beets with little resistance.
Uncover and allow to cool in the cooking liquid, then refrigerate for several hours or until cold.
Remove the beets from the liquid and peel each one, removing any peel around the stem end.
Cut them in half and set them aside.
for the pistachios…
1 cup pistachios, raw
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
Place the pistachios on a baking sheet and put in the 375 oven to toast for 8-10 minutes.
While they are cooking, place a small sauté pan on a high flame to allow to get hot.
Add the tbsp of butter and swirl, remove from the heat and reserve for the nuts.
When the pistachios are done, place them in a mixing bowl, add the brown butter, salt and sugar and toss to evenly coat.
Set the nuts aside and allow to cool to room temperature.
for the sherry vinaigrette…
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 shallot, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 fl oz dry sherry
5 fl oz sherry vinegar
1 cup canola or neutral salad oil
½ cup pure olive oil
3 Tbsp walnut oil
salt and fresh black pepper to taste
Place all ingredients except the oils in a blender and process on high.
slowly stream in the oils, one at a time until the vinaigrette is smooth.
season to taste with salt and pepper to your liking.