Many think of New York as a melting pot of diverse cultures and, of particular interest to me as a chef for more than 25 years, cuisines. The idea of exploring the rich agricultural history of New York with its lush farmland and scores of dedicated farmers producing extraordinary things was the inspiration for my book “I Love New York: Ingredients and Recipes” published last year.
And while there were many revelatory moments I experienced during my research for the book – one of the prevailing themes I kept coming back to is that with all this diversity and access to every cuisine imaginable we forget to look at what’s growing in our own back yard.
Thanks to the magnificent farmland landscape that makes up the New York region – and the many local farmers committed to creating artisan products and preserving the New York agricultural tradition – there is a whole other world of local cuisine for you to explore and share in the delights of truly seasonal dishes.
And this growing local movement world includes the full spectrum of sustainably grown and raised fruits, vegetables, flowers, herbs, cheeses, meats, and more.
For those of you with meat on your mind, you can learn more about cooking with, and eating, locally raised and sourced meat by joining me and a distinguished panel of industry professionals for an interactive discussion on “The State of Meat in New York” at the Brooklyn Kitchen tonight at 7:00 p.m. ET.
There is such an amazing history of agriculture, of farming, and of cuisine throughout New York and now more than ever it can be accessed so easily. I’m constantly inspired by all that is around us, helping us in establishing a sense of place at the restaurants, and celebrating the culinary roots of New York.
I hope you’ll join me on this exciting journey…
Executive Chef, Eleven Madison Park