Category Archives: Vendor Blender

Vendor Blender: Masala Loca

Happy Monday GFMers!

The week has flown by quickly and ferociously and we’re relieved to soak in the cool and breezy sunshine. We’re getting more and more excited for the upcoming market June 26th which will be themed Summer Heat. Prepare for all things spicy and cool: ice creams and popsicles of all varieties, hotness infused cupcakes and rice balls, and sexy rooftop grown vegetables to impress your tastebuds. Mark your calendar and see you there!

Til then please do welcome Masala Loca!

what is masala loca?

Masala Loca is a mixture of Indian and Mexican food.  We sell Indian tacos:

Masala Loca started as an Indian-Mexican supper club hosted by myself and my good friend Sabra.  This is us after our first one:

We serve a four course meal in Sabra’s dining room in Bed-Stuy.  The dinners usually have about 16 people – that’s all the chairs we have:) and each person pays for their meal and brings a bottle of wine.  Here are some pics from our dinners:

Indian Enchiladas

Curry Tamales

Mexican Papri Chaat

We’re starting to get friends to perform between courses too which is fun and looking to feature others at upcoming dinners.

how did the inspiration for it come about?

I write a cooking blog called the ABCD’s of Cooking (ABCD = American Born Confused Desi) where I share my vegetarian recipes, which are rooted in Indian cooking – mostly what I have learned from my parents, but that incorporate influences and ingredients from living in the US and traveling abroad.

Bringing Indian and Mexican flavors has been on my mind for some time.  Growing up, when my family went out to eat, the most popular choices were either Indian or Mexican (I’m sure other Indian kids know what I mean:) The flavors, ingredients and the heat are reminiscent of each other.

The opportunity to create dishes that mixed the two influences came about when Sabra asked if I’d like to start a supper club with her.  I was really excited because I’ve always admired and enjoyed her cooking and was a big fan of her previous supper club that she ran.  When I suggested we serve Indian-Mexican food, she was all for it.  We’ve had a great time collaborating ever since and our theme makes sense for us as I’m Indian and Sabra is half-Mexican.  Sabra is also very gifted at creating beautiful spaces and our dinners have a really nice cozy feel to them thanks to her aesthetic sense:

where do you source your ingredients?

All over the place really – Indian stores (mostly in Curry Hill), corner stores, farmer’s markets, CSAs.

can you share a recipe?

Of course! For the last market, we had a shahi paneer taco which is Indian cheese in a cashew sauce served with guacamole and a mixture of homemade yogurt and sour cream in a corn tortilla.  We are gonna share the recipe for shahi paneer. This is what homemade paneer looks like:

Shahi Paneer

1 14oz. package fried paneer (you can also use homemade or fresh and fry it up a bit before putting it in the curry)
3/4 cup cashews
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons oil
2 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
1 onion, grated or chopped fine
1 cup tomato puree or sauce
3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1 inch piece grated ginger
2 small Indian green chilis, finely chopped
2 teaspoons coriander powder
1/3 tsp turmeric powder
2 teaspoons cumin powder
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 1/2 cup water
salt and sugar to taste
cilantro for garnishing

Soak the cashews in milk for about 30 minutes. Blend the cashews and milk until it is smooth.

Heat oil in a pan under medium high heat. Put in the cardamom pods and bay leaf and stir once and then add the onions. Fry the onions until they start to dry out.

Next add the ginger, garlic and chilis and cook for three minutes.

Add the tomato puree/sauce and mix.

When the oil starts to separate out, add coriander powder, turmeric, cumin powder and garam masala. Mix everything up well.

Next add cashew/milk mixture and stir well, making sure there are no lumps.

Add the water and salt and bring to a boil.

Add in the paneer pieces and mix once. (Try not to mix the curry after you have added the paneer because the cheese breaks up easily.) Once the paneer pieces are soft, turn off the heat.

Garnish with fresh cilantro.

what do you do when you’re not masala loca-ing?

Chitra – Writing the ABCD’s blog, cooking for friends, traveling to find new recipes and ingredients (Portugal in July!) and coming up, I’ll be preparing food for a Converse for a Cure event. Oh yeah and I love to visit the planetarium and watch way too many episodes of the Golden Girls!

Sabra – Lately I’ve been mostly cooking, using food as art material (absurd inedible food), drawing, writing, making music with friends…I am also a sometimes yoga teacher, love to ride my bike about, and go on adventures as much as possible. My main concern is to remember to play every day!

why the decision to share at GFM?
I was first introduced to GFM by Sabra. I went to visit her there when she was helping her friend Amelia sell Sugarbuilt cookies. I really liked how vendors were offering original and creative foods and that people coming to the market were really open to trying them.  The market has a nice feeling of community and all of the vendors are so friendly.

Also, since Sabra and I are not able to have as many people at our dinners, GFM was a good way for us to share our food with a larger audience.

We were so excited to be at GFM – thanks for having us! xoSabra&Chitra


Vendor Blender: Red Cook

Greetings fans of GFM!

We’re a couple days behind with the Vendor Blender this week, Memorial Day put us in perpetual food coma for a couple days.

We hope you had a chance to check out today’s NY Times, we’re featured in an article AND a video. We’re super stoked to receive such mass media support and would like to send a big WELCOME to all our newest fans. See you June 26th!

Til then, please welcome Red Cook!

What is Red Cook?
The name Red Cook was inspired by a traditional Chinese cooking technique for braising meats, fish or tofu with soy sauce, garlic, rice wine and spices. My most popular dish, and the one that I sell at the Greenpoint Food Market, is Red Cooked Pork.
Red Cook is the name I use for my culinary endeavors, which include blogging, teaching and catering. On my blog, I share recipes, ingredients, and cooking techniques along with the cultural and historical background of Chinese cooking. I teach classes on dumpling making and creating Chinese banquets. These one-session classes are open to the public and are offered through the recreational division of the Institute of Culinary Education. I also cater and give private Chinese cooking lessons. I recently customized a lesson of Taiwanese home cooking for a couple adopting children from Taiwan. I cater for all occasions specializing in creating private dining experience of multi-course Chinese meal.

How did the inspiration for it come about?
Cooking has always been my passion and I love to share it. I love to entertain and create meals with seasonal ingredients and innovative approaches. After cooking for so many years I was finally convinced by a friend to start writing about my cooking. That’s when I started my blog Red Cook. Then I started receiving request to cater and cook for private functions. One thing let to another and I was invited to teach as well. Somehow my writing has generated interests in my authentic way of Chinese cooking.

Kung Pao Frog

Where do you source your ingredients?
I source my ingredients in the Flushing and Manhattan Chinatowns. I enjoy shopping in Chinatown where there are specialized vendors for meat, seafood, dry goods, produce and fruits. Because of their specialization, each vendor can offer a wide variety of the freshest products.

Red Cooked Pork with Steamed Buns

Can you share a recipe?
Yes, here is my Red Cooked Pork recipe…

Red Cooked Pork

1 1/2 lb. pork belly meat
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons sugar
3 cloves of garlic peeled
2 scallions cut into 2-inch long pieces
3 whole star anise
2 tablespoons dark soy sauce (老抽)
1/4 cup Shaoxing wine (紹興料酒)
1 1/2 cups clear stock (or the liquid from the par-boiling step) or water

Put the pork belly in a wok containing enough boiling water to cover the meat completely. Continuously skim off the scum as it forms on top of the boiling water. Boil for about 20 minutes then drain the pork belly and place on a plate to cool. The boiling liquid can be reused for braising after filtering through a fine sieve. When the pork belly is cool to touch cut it into pieces of about 1.5 inches cubes.
Melt the sugar and the vegetable oil in a wok over medium high heat. Continue heating until the sugar is slightly brown. About 3 minutes. Add the cubed pork belly and brown it with the caramelized sugar. About 8 minutes.
Put the garlic, scallion, star anise, dark soy sauce, rice wine and clear stock into the pot. Cover the pot and simmer over low heat. Cook for about 40 minutes. Stir the meat every 10 minutes to make sure the pork at the bottom of the pot does not get burnt. Remove the cover and turn the heat to medium high. Cook the meat for another 10 minutes until the sauce reduces to a smooth consistency.
You can serve this dish right away or keep overnight and reheat the next day before serving. Plate it in a shallow bowl and garnish with shredded scallion and sprigs of cilantro.

Steamed Dill and Crabmeat Dumplings

What do you do when you’re not Red Cook-ing?
My other interests aside from cooking are traveling and gardening. I travel to Asia quite often and love to sample all kinds of food during my trips. One of my favorite things to do when traveling is to visit the local markets. Unfortunately I often get frustrated by seeing beautiful products in the market but not having a kitchen to cook them. As for gardening I can’t really do very much being an apartment dweller. But I do grow herbs and lettuces near my sunny windows.

Kian teaching ICE

Why the decision to share at GFM?
GFM is an event that attracts serious foodies and is the only market in which I participate. I love sharing my passion for cooking authentic Chinese food with people who can really appreciate it. It’s also great to sample the high quality foods created by all the other vendors. I’m thrilled by the interest shown in the food I make and look forward to continuing to share my passion.

Vendor Blender: Skimkim

Happy End of Monday folks! We’re a bit late in the Vendor Blender game but when you’re starring at trees upstate taking a much needed break from the awesome craziness that was this past Saturday then you’ll forgive us as we do nothing but lay around and watch this gigantic turtle creep on by from one point of the backyard forest to the other.

We hope you were able to stop by and get all gluttonous, it sure was a feast for us. We’ll follow up with a recap of the madness shortly. Til then, we are very proud to present the one and only, major kickass foodstordinare Skimkim!

What is Skimkim?
Skimkim makes quality food using fresh, seasonal ingredients with flavors from all over the world: The South, Korea, Scotland, and Ireland. It’s in our blood! Our packaged goods range from inventive kimchees and vinaigrettes to spicy kettle popcorn and homemade flavored butters. In addition to our packaged goods, we also focus on the lifestyle associated with fine food and drink. Through strategic web-based placement, the art of food writing comes to life with Skimkim. We are honest, experienced, and educated in our art and endeavor to spread the word, one bite at a time.

How did the inspiration for it come about?
I hated my life as an art director. I have been cooking since I was a little girl and it just sort of happened. We started out as a catering company and it’s evolved into putting me (the half korean scotch irish redneck) and my favorite flavors into a jar.

Where do you source your ingredients?

I get most of my ingredients from the local markets. I’ve been growing herbs at home lately which I’m so stoked about. I did a cocktail party last weekend with all my own herbs!

What is your favorite and can you share a recipe?

I came up with Kimchee Butter a while ago but it still kills anything out there that I’ve tried. Here’s my fav application: grilled cheddar cheese sammy with candied bacon and heirloom tomato. I did it for an event when we were doing catering and it blew everyone away. These things are my weakness.

What do your goods go well with? What does it NOT go well with?

EVERYTHING. The butters make eggs a drool worthy meal, not just, eh. I like searing meats with the butters, too. And just smearing them on quality baguette. Nothing better. Butter is the goddamned best ingredient ever. The Asian Green Goddess can be used as a marinade or a salad dressing. I throw hanger steak in that stuff overnight and grill it the next day. It’s ridick.

What do you when you’re not skimkim-ing?

Ha. I’m never not Skimkimming. Everything I do, I do with my brand in mind. For the future. I am sous chef at a restaurant in the city, Tablespoon. I Dj at least twice a week. I write my blog, and contribute to others: M.I.S.S., Blac Renderings. I cater private parties, both food and drink (I’m a genius at alcohol, too). I’ve been producing some music, as of late. And I watch Lost and kiss Elijah Craig The Dog, my little Homey Mini-Daschund.

Why the decision to share at GFM?
I sold Skimkim at other markets and I knew that GFM would be the right demographic for us. The people that stroll through the church are looking for innovation, quality and thoughtfulness. No one just does strawberry jam. All of the vendors really go all out to make lasting impressions on the potential customers. I consider them peers and I’m grateful for them.

Vendor Blender: You Can’t Eat Bread!?

Happy Monday Greenpoint Food Marketers!

We hope you enjoyed a beautiful and sunny weekend! We spent the weekend supporting vendors offering tastings and selling their awesome foodwares at Slideluck Potshow’s special tasting hour and Taste Williamsburg Greenpoint‘s satellite Greenpoint Food Market joint, and by support we mean eating a whole lot. We hope you’re prepared for this Saturdays market, it’s going to be a big one! Til then, please welcome today’s vendor for the blender: You Can’t Eat Bread!?

What is You Can’t Eat Bread!?

I’m a full-time public health specialist and a part-time gluten-free baker.  Following in the hereditary footprints of my mother and aunts, I was diagnosed with celiac disease in March 2006.  Determined not to lead a life without baked goods (who could!?) I began baking gluten-free goodies immediately.  After 3 years of baking and a lot of positive feedback, I wanted to share my experiences!

How did the inspiration for it come about?

I found the majority of gluten-free goods on the market lacking in taste and texture so I began experimenting with different flour blends, applesauce, and Xathan Gum in my kitchen.  Now my gluten-free (and gluten-full!) friends are hooked on my tasty treats.

Where do you source your ingredients?

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-free flours are my favorite by a long shot, and I often add flax seed meal for extra oompf in my banana bread.

I’m lucky enough to live a few blocks from the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket, so on Saturdays I stock up on whatever happens to be in season and bake accordingly.

Favorite Recipe?
One of my favorite recipes would have to be:
Zucchini Pineapple Cake with Walnut Cream Cheese Frosting*

*Recipe is for 1 13”x9” sheet cake, double it for 8” layer cake.


1 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Baking Flour
1-¼ cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 Cup Flaked Coconut
2 teaspoons Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Xanthan Gum
2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
Freshly Grated Nutmeg, To Taste
1 Pinch Ginger
3 Tablespoons Apple Sauce
2 whole Large Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
2 Cups Grated (unpeeled) Zucchini (pat dry between paper towels)
1 (20 Oz.) Can Crushed Pineapple In Juice, Drained (reserve for frosting)

4 Tablespoons Butter, Softened
8 Ounces Low-fat Cream Cheese, Softened (can Use Full-fat Cream Cheese)
3 Cups Powdered Sugar, Approx.
½ teaspoon Xanthan Gum
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp Powdered Ginger
Splash of Pineapple Juice
¾ cup Chopped Walnuts
Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare cake, combine flour, sugar, coconut, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum and spices in a large bowl; stir well with a whisk. Combine apple sauce, eggs, and vanilla; stir well. Stir egg mixture, grated zucchini, and pineapple into flour mixture.  Add in a little splash of the pineapple juice for good measure. Spoon batter into a 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Bake at 350° for about 35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs and cake is pulling away from sides of pan. Cool completely on a wire rack. To prepare frosting, combine butter and cream cheese in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Beat in powdered sugar, xanthan gum, ginger and vanilla just until smooth. Add a splash of pineapple juice and stir in chopped walnuts. Spread frosting over top of cake. You can garnish with chopped walnuts, cranberries, or ginger etc.

What do your goods go well with? What does it NOT go well with?

I love liqueur based frostings, my peach cupcakes with bourbon cream cheese frosting go wonderfully with summer cocktails and backyard BBQs.  My baked goods do NOT go well with a diet, because it’s difficult to eat just one cookie!

Why the decision to share at GFM?

I had been looking for a Brooklyn venue to debut you can’t eat bread!? and I saw the call for vendors in a New York magazine e-mail.  The community engagement matched with Joann’s excitement was hard to resist, I’ve been a vendor ever since.

Vendor Blender: Electric Blue Baking

Happy Frigid Monday GFMers!

Just as we pack our winter clothes and stuff ’em up our closet’s back end the cruelty of wind and cold greets us with brute force. The only possible way we can refrain from sulking and whining is by highlighting another Greenpoint Food Market vendor and make sexy gastronomical daydreams. Also we hope you’ve marked your calendar for the next market on May 22, themed Picnic in the Park!

vegn pizette

What is Electric Blue Baking?
It is my Williamsburg –based vegan baking and catering business! I bake from-scratch vegan pastries and snacks for stores and cafes in Brooklyn (check my website for locations), occasionally cater events, and teach monthly classes at Brooklyn Kitchen Labs. Eventually I want to open my own teahouse/super funky catering hall so people will have a fun place to celebrate big events in style.

How did the inspiration for it come about?
3 years ago I was working full time, catering parties for friends on weekends, and baking muffins for a cafe on the side. I submitted some recipes to Bon Appétit and they published them. That gave me the confidence to quit my desk job.
I started working two pastry cook jobs and blindly consumed many delicious baked goods full of butter, eggs and cream. When I started to have stomach problems and rapidly gain weight, I put the brakes on all the cute cupcakes, huge cookies and decadent desserts I made at work and in general stopped eating food that made me feel bad, which led me to become vegan. After a week of feeling off (I think my body was detoxifying) I started to feel amazing all the time!
A few months later, I was recruited by an eco-hotel in Puerto Rico to be their vegetarian/gluten-free chef. I quit my job and went. When I got back, I baked my last non-vegan cake for a friend’s birthday. People in the food world thought that going vegan with my business was ridiculous, but I stood by my decision, and the Puerto Rico job helped me see that there was an audience for it.
The decision to start wholesale baking came one night after I got a serious pastry craving. A friend of mine had recently returned from France and captivated me with photos of patisserie cases stocked with tarts, crepes, croissants, and quiche. I traversed Brooklyn on the hunt and discovered plenty of vegan cupcakes, brownies and chocolate chip cookies, but nothing flaky, light, and a little more upscale. There was no vegan equivalent to what I wanted, so I would have to make it myself. I realized there were probably other people out there with the same unfulfilled craving, and that they would buy something healthy and vegan as long as it was affordable and just as delicious, if not more so, than the regular version.

raw vegan tart

Where do you source your ingredients?
Most of my produce comes from a family-run vegetable stand on Grand Street. Their prices and selection are unbeatable. I also get local, seasonal ingredients from the Greenmarket.
I get alternative flours for my gluten-free pastries, spices, and other dry ingredients from Indian markets in Jackson Heights. I love that neighborhood for ingredients and snacks. The most difficult part of the trip is deciding between a taco or samosa. Chinatown has things like water chestnut flour and agar powder, which are great for vegan baking. You shouldn’t have to spend more for vegan food so I price things as low as possible. I can only do this with the selection and value of New York’s ethnic markets.

What is your favorite and can you share a recipe?
My favorite things on the menu are seasonal. I love the raw vegan strawberry rhubarb tart. Raw rhubarb is a treat that everyone should experience. The crust is made with walnuts, pistachios and dates. I also love the fiddlehead pizzette we made at my last appetizers and cocktails class (recipe below).

photo courtesy

What do your goods go well with? What does it NOT go well with?

The savory items pair well with a fresh salad or refreshing soup like gazpacho. The sweet ones go well with tea–I love Thai iced tea with almond milk and a little agave. Nothing on my menu goes with a bag of pork rinds.

Why the decision to share at GFM?
When I quit my desk job I didn’t know anyone in the food world. Since then, the community I have become a part of, especially here in Brooklyn, has been kind of a dream come true. There is nothing more inspiring than being around people who are equally passionate about the food they make—and have also stayed up through the night, burned themselves, missed parties, and spent their last dime on packaging. I met people in the restaurant world who had an original idea and were scared to go for it. Everyone here has taken that chance and I admire them for it. It is not easy.

Website and Blog?

Electric Blue Baking

Electric Blue Blog

photo courtesy Parsiri Audcharevorakul

Cashew Ricotta and Marinated Fiddlehead Pizzette
serves 10 as appetizer

3 lb      raw pizza dough
1c        unbleached flour
1c        olive oil
¼ c      sea salt

2 lbs     fresh fiddleheads, halved
½ c      sundried tomato, finely chopped
2          lg. cloves garlic, minced
2T        extra virgin olive oil
1-2       lemons, juice and zest
½ t       red pepper flakes
½ t       each sea salt and pepper

1c        cashew ricotta (recipe follows)
½ bu    basil leaves

special equipment: rolling pin, food processor

Toss the fiddleheads and sundried tomato with the garlic, olive oil, lemon juice/zest, red pepper, salt and pepper. Adjust seasoning to taste & set aside.

Preheat oven to 500˚F.

On a floured surface, roll out dough to 1cm thickness. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Cut out 4-4.5” circles and transfer, upside-down, to baking sheet. Brush tops with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pierce each piece a few times with a fork.

Bake 8-10 minutes, until golden around edges. Remove from oven and brush with a little more olive oil, if desired. Transfer to rack to cool.

Spread each pizzette with cashew ricotta. Top with a layer of fiddleheads, and garnish with fresh basil.

Cashew Ricotta
2 c       raw cashews, soaked overnight
1 lb      sprouted tofu
¼ c      extra virgin olive oil
2 ea      garlic cloves, chopped
2          lemons, juiced
2 T       nutritional yeast
2 T       fresh oregano
½ t       coriander
2 t        sea salt

Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor until smooth and creamy. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Vendor Blender: Token Confections

Happy Stormy Monday!

We sure hope you slept well amidst a tumultuous noisy night, we sure as hell didn’t. We’ll just go ahead and accept its one of those groggy testy Mondays and deal with it. However it was a beautiful, if ridiculously hot, weekend and a few GFM vendors were sharing their delicious wares at Brooklyn Lyceum’s Food and Craft market. Did you get to stock up on your kimchi and soda and tempeh? If not make sure to come out to the next market May 22! It’s bigger than ever and will probably blow your mind. We are hoping it will.

We are also very happy to present this week’s vendor blender: Token Confections


I’m in publishing, which is similar to being unemployed, so I started making gourmet caramels for a little extra cash. I have about half a dozen flavors, which I rotate depending on the season, and I’m just about to introduce a dark chocolate butternut crunch to the line-up.


About a year ago I took a confection making class at The Institute of Culinary Education (I highly recommend their recreational classes), where we learned how to make all sorts of sweets—truffles, bon-bons, butternut crunch, turtles and of course, caramels. I love working with chocolate, but not as much as I like working with sugar. There’s a lot of chemistry involved, which I find intriguing.


Whole Foods and my local farmer’s market. I use a French chocolate and glucose (caramel needs a liquid sugar to give it that nice chewy texture and I prefer to use a cane-based glucose over corn syrup), which I get from an importer in Redhook.


My favorite is whichever flavor is the newest! I just finished tweaking my latest recipe, which I’ll debut this summer—crème fresh caramels with honey and walnuts, topped with a citrus fleur de sel. I’m pretty into that right now.  Here’s a good, basic recipe to start.

You’ll need:

A candy thermometer (it has to go up to at least 400º degrees)

A Silpat or similar non-stick baking sheet placed over a heatproof tray

A tart frame


1 cup cream

1 and 1/2 cups sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter

1/4 cup water

In a tall thick-bottom pot, combine sugar, glucose and water and mix until ingredients are slushy. Begin to cook over a med-high flame. With a pastry brush and water, wipe down any sugar granules stuck to the sides of pot (they can cause the caramel to recrystalize). At this point, do not stir anymore. Let the mixture come to a boil and continue to simmer until it turns golden amber. Remove pan from heat and add the butter. Let it sit for a minute, then stir. Be careful: the moisture from the butter will release as soon as you stir it. When butter is melted, add the cream. Whisk together until the mixture is emulsified and return to a med-high flame. Insert the thermometer into the pot and continue to cook, stirring only occasionally, until mixture reaches 240º (if you prefer a chewier caramel, you can take it as high as 250º). Remove the pot and gently stir until bubbling ceases, then pour into frame. When caramel is firm to the touch, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (overnight is better). When the caramel has set, cut into squares. Refrigerated, they’ll last about three weeks.

If you’re making chocolate caramels, add the chocolate in with the butter. Other flavors—vanilla, liquor or spices—work best when added to the cream before you start.


Caramel goes with everything! Sugar is a real team player, that’s why I like it so much and caramel pairs well with pretty much anything. I like the peanut butter caramels served with sliced pear or a crisp Granny Smith apple and the salted chocolate caramels are delicious with red wine or port.


For now I’m selling at local markets like GFM and in the future, who knows? I can be reached at

Vendor Blender: The DP Chutney Collective

Hello Greenpoint Food Marketers!

Happy Rainy Monday. We are deep in prep mode for some super amazing event coming up in the next few weeks. Make sure to check out Brooklyn Lyceum’s Food & Craft Market this weekend where a few GFM vendors will be sharing their delicious foodstuffs alongside handy crafters. We’ll have announcements for other events soon!

Today’s weekly Vendor Blender presents The DP Chutney Collective!

What is The DP Chutney Collective?

It began with the now familiar story of getting laid off during the economic downturn . After too many weeks spent in faux-speakeasies, I decided to start a micro-business hawking the chutneys I’d been making for years as gifts for close friends and family. It’s called a collective because I make more than chutney and because I’m fortunate to have a wide network of supportive taste testers and helpers with very creative suggestions and strong opinions.

The D P Chutney Collective is an ever-expanding line of exotic condiments produced here in Greenpoint. On a very small scale we’re trying to introduce chutneys to people who don’t typically eat them or else relegate them to Indian take-out meals only. Or conversely, provide them for diners with a taste for big, bold flavors who can’t find a decent chutney selection elsewhere. We like to think of The Collective’s chutneys as culinary exclamation points to any meal and filling a void in the market (albeit a quirky, niche one), brightening charcuterie/cheese boards and backyard bbqs everywhere.

How did the inspiration for it come about?

I grew up in the South where the pickle/relish/condiment tray is a staple at most meals. Then 20 years ago I moved to NYC and fell in love with the vast range of Indian/Indonesian/South Asian food available and began cooking it at home. Chutneys, sambals and sauces quickly became the favorite things to make. After a brief stint cooking in a restaurant in London I gained deeper knowledge but realized I’d rather cook and sell my own product than deal with kitchen egos.

Where do you source your ingredients?

As much as possible from local, sustainable farms and small businesses. Our cider vinegar comes from an orchard in Greene County, NY, the honey from a tiny, family-run apiary in the Finger Lakes region, the jars from Roebling Street! We’re building new relationships with lots of NY and NJ farmers so roughly 75% of our produce will be sourced from within a 90 mile radius this summer. Plus we have friends with vegetable plots in Brooklyn community gardens we hope to soon plunder! The Collective uses 20+ different spices in our full range of products and those are purchased from Mountain Rose, an amazing online source for traceable Fair Trade products.

What is your favorite and care to share a recipe?

Right now is all about Spice Route Citrus Chutney with small chunks of really good Parmesan or aged Provolone, served with aperitifs. Plum Ketchup is going everywhere, from home-made fries to a glaze on roast duck and chicken, and we never make an omelet without the Sweet Tomato and Black Mustard Seed Chutney.

A lot of the chutneys take a long time to cook and a large number of spices to develop deep flavors. The recipe below for a Rhubarb Chutney is easy to make and good with fish and vegetarian meals.


2 lbs washed and sliced rhubarb
2 large onions chopped fine
8oz sultanas
8 oz demerara sugar
10 whole tomatoes cut into quarters
1 pint of malt vinegar
2 tablespoons of butter or olive oil

1. Fry the tomatoes in a large pan on a medium heat until they are soft
2. Add the rhubarb, onions and sultanas and stir. Bring to the boil and stir all the time, use a wooden spoon. Keep it at a low simmer.
3.Add the sugar and simmer until the sugar dissolves.
4. Pour in the vinegar, mix all the ingredients and simmer until the chutney starts to thicken.

This chutney will also go well with all cold meats, cheeses, pasta and bread.

What does your chutney go well with? What does it NOT go well with?

Chutneys marry well with most cheeses, roast chicken and other poultry, rice and beans, burgers of all types . . . almost anything, anytime you need a sweet/spicy contrast to a savory dish. Chutney never met a pork or lamb chop it didn’t love. Some are better with specific partners; for example, Blueberry Chutney has a natural affinity for venison and wild game and strong, aged dry Gouda or ultra creamy Brie and Camembert. Other than cheese I would not suggest chutney with dessert. Oops! Some have told us they love the Kerala Pineapple Chutney on vanilla ice cream.

Why the decision to share DP Chutney Collective at GFM?

GFM and Brooklyn’s locavore movement were major inspirations behind the formation of The Collective. It’s a dream to be able to sell these chutneys within a block of their origin. The entire GFM community is so embracing and kind and adventurous when it comes to the palette; we’re proud to be participants.

Website? Contact? Where else might we find your awesome foodstuffs?

Check out the blog at for more info, recipes, suggested food pairings etc. You can also email us there and order chutneys online. Soon we’ll be on the shelves of several NY metro area shops and right now most of the line is carried at an amazing specialty store in Atlanta called Tuckaway Downs. This is just the beginning . . .

Vendor Blender: Sandwich Friend

Hello Greenpoint Food Market Fiends!

Happy cool breeze Monday! We are still reveling in the afterglow of last week’s amazing market and can’t WAIT for the next one to arrive May 22nd. We’ve run out tables with swift urgency, and we hope you’ll prepare to attend with empty bellies and curious tastebuds.

Til then, this week’s Vendor Blender highlights the one and only Aja Marsh, aka Sandwich Friend!

What is Sandwich Friend?
Sandwich Friend is my sandwich shop creation where I make one-of-a-kind, gourmet sandwiches for the GFM masses (for now– talks of a shop/cafe are underway).

How did the inspiration for it come about?
I was a strict vegetarian for several years and still do not eat much meat, and I’d grown tired of the same 3 vegetarian sandwich offerings found everywhere. I mean how many times can you eat some variation of hummus and sprouts or mozzarella-tomato-pesto or grilled veggies with cheese before growing sick of them? The answer: not very many. While not all the sandwiches I make are vegetarian, I do get weary of boring sandwiches. Sandwich Friend is anything but boring.

Where do you source your ingredients?
I try to work as closely with the seasons as possible. My ingredients are primarily local and organic– including locally sourced artisan bread when possible– I shop at the Greenmarkets and natural foods stores. I also love to feature ingredients sourced by GFM vendors– I’ve used pickles, jams, chutneys, chocolate, and the like from my fellow vendors and it’s really made the sandwiching that much more fun and special.

What is your favorite and can you share a recipe?

I never liked being asked about “favorites” only because I never really do the same thing twice– there are too many food-ventures to have! But, the only thing I haven’t yet forayed into with Sandwich Friend at the GFM is pressed or grilled sandwiches. Those can be really great, but even at home I don’t have a press. But I do love the broiler. One open-faced sandwich I whipped up one day in the summer was with a leftover bagel, some spicy hummus, sliced avocado and red peppers, topped with some feta cheese and cilantro. I sprinkled it with salt and pepper, broiled it until the cheese browned and ate it with a little salad of mesclun and seckel pears. Yum.

Two of the favorite sandwiches I’ve made for the GFM are the Coq au Kasbah– a Moroccan inspired chicken salad with homemade preserved lemons, olives, kale, and other yumminess. In February I detoured a bit from my generally pretty healthy sandwiches and created The Lonely Hearts Club– two kinds of sliced turkey, lettuce, tomato, mayo, chiccarones, and maple-infused bacon grease on sourdough. Amazing.

What do your sandwiches go well with? what does it NOT go well with?
Sandwiches are great because they go with pretty much anything and stand alone on their own. I put many of levels of flavor into these sandwiches so that they can really be their own thing. That being said, chips, cookies, pickles, veggie sticks, and/or a yummy drink are always nice accompaniments.

Why the decision to share Sandwich Friend at GFM?

It’s been the best way for me to combine my desire to get to know other people in my neighborhood and food community with expressing myself creatively through food in a more personal way and get feedback on some of my zany ideas. I think the GFM has been such an important opportunity for the community to come together around a universal, delicious theme.

Vendor Blender: La Tia Faby

Hello GFM lovers!

We hope you are as high and ecstatic about the sun and warmth as we are, we’ve been frolicking non-stop all weekend soakin’ up some sun. We’ve got tan lines to prove.

The next market is THIS SATURDAY and we cannot WAIT to share all the goodies in store. Come by, say hi, eat some grub, and frolic with us!

For this week’s vendor blendor, we are proud to introduce to you, La Tia Faby:

What type of foodstuffs does La Tia Faby provide?

Empanadas, cake pops, cookies and other random baked goods like pao de queijo.

How did the name come about?

The name was inspired by how I got into baking. I have a huge family that gets together every Saturday night for some Argentinean bbq and bibimbob- we have birthdays almost every week and I was always baking the cakes… hence, La Tia Faby.

How did the inspiration for the products come about?

I love empanadas-  You can find them everywhere in Buenos Aires and I missed having them around. They are perfect for a meal or just a snack. My mom has a recipe I stole and modify to make my own.

Where do you source your ingredients?

I get most of the empanada ingredients at the Union Square green market; otherwise, at local grocery stores.

Can you share a recipe?
I recently developed a kimchi sausage empanada that will kick your taste bud-ass. I’ll have it at the next GFM- hopefully people will enjoy it as much as I do.

This will make about 20 empanadas

For the dough, you can use frozen ones or make your own:
3 cups of all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon of salt
3/4 cups of cold butter cut into small pieces
1 egg
4-5 tablespoons of ice cold water
Place the flour, salt, butter and egg into the food processor. Blend until you form a nice uniform dough and add the water as needed.
Chill the dough for about 1 hour
Roll out the dough about 1/4″
Use large cookie cutter (about 5″) to cut the dough into the discs.
Keep the discs in the fridge until you’ll use them

For the filling
4 cups of chopped kimchi
1 large onion, chopped
6 italian spicy sausage without the casings
3 cups of chopped and cooked glass noodles
20 empanada dough discs
1 large egg (beaten for brushing the empanadas)
Cook the glass noodles following the package instructions. Rinse them and cut into 1 inch pieces (it’s easier if you use shears)
In a large pan with veggie oil, cook the sausage and break them into bite size pieces.
Once the sausage is half way cooked, add the kimchi and onions
The kimchi and onions will cook in the sausage oil.
Let the sausage cook all the way
Add the cooked glass noodles and cook for another 2 minutes while mixing all the ingredients
Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature, otherwise the dough discs will break.
Preheat the oven at 425 degrees
Fill each discs with about 3 tablespoons and seal with water and fold over to create a tight seal.
Place the empanada on a cookie sheet with parchment paper
Brush the empanadas with the egg for a nice golden color
Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown

Why the decision to share your goods at GFM and where else might we find your goods?
No brainer -The Greenpoint Food Market is a great place for people who want to share their love for food. Hopefully you’ll find me in Dumbo this summer and I make goods to order on

Vendor Blender: Mombucha

Hello lovers of Greenpoint Food Market!

We are one day behind in featuring this week’s vendor for our weekly vendor blender. Hope you will forgive us for the delay. Please gather and welcome Mombucha.

What is Mombucha?

Mombucha is my little renegade home-brewed kombucha operation.  I’ve basically figured out a way to brew up to 20 small batches of kombucha in my kitchen and then bottle them in liter bottles for the people in the neighborhood.  I’ve been BLESSED to have the opportunity to sell at the Greenpoint Food Market and now I do home deliveries once a week for all my little Mombuchkins.

How did the inspiration for it come about?

My mom’s really the main inspiration for all this, hence the name “Mombucha.”  She’s been brewing this funky stuff for us since we were kids and I HATED it but later in my adulthood starting wondering why I wasn’t getting sick anymore and realized it was from drinking this stuff daily.

Where do you source your ingredients?

I use a very specific medicinal recipe handed down from my mom’s mushroom guru, Ruth, whose daughter relies on kombucha to stay alive.  She has an incurable liver disease and the cleansing property in kombucha is the only treatment that seems to work.  So basically I use bottled distilled water (from wherever sells it the cheapest), organic sugar, and PG Tips brand black tea.  That’s pretty much all you need to make this stuff, that and a starter culture which was handed down from my mom.  After you make your first successful batch, you can subdivide the culture and start multiplying  it for more and more brews.

Can you share the process? Perhaps a recipe?

I can share the process because it’s sooooo simple.

1.) Boil 3 quarts of distilled water.
2.) Add 2-3 cups of organic cane sugar to the boiling water and let it boil for 5 minutes.
3.) Turn off the heat and add 4 tea bags.
4.) Steep and let cool and transfer the sugary brew into a 4 quart pyrex bowl.
5.) Once the brew has cooled to room temperature, add 4 ounces of a previous batch of kombucha and your culture.
6.) Cover with an old t-shirt secured with an elastic band and put it away in a well-ventilated, warm, dark place.  The cultures are like plants but without the sunlight.  They prefer humid warm places with lots of room to breathe.  I know a lot of people who put their batches in their cupboards which definitely works.  I have mine on top of my kitchen cabinetry with a humidifier and space heater going to regulate the temperature and humidity at all times.

What does Mombucha go well with? what does it NOT go well with?

Mombucha is best just on it’s own.  Since it’s unfiltered, undiluted, unpasteurized, raw kombucha, we recommend one only drink 4 ounces of it per day in the morning on an empty stomach.  Since there is a trace amount of alcohol in it (.5-1.5%), I’ve mixed some insanely delicious kombucha cocktails using bourbon, whiskey, and scotch.  I’ve also used Mombucha to deglaze a pan as the base of a chicken stew I was making.  The alcohol in the Mombucha worked just like wine and gave the stew a fantastic savory sweetness.  I’ve heard of people using the cultures as soap and even to make fabric!

What are the benefits of Mombucha?

There are SO many benefits to drinking Mombucha but since the FDA doesn’t quite know what to make of the stuff, there haven’t been very many tests done to verify these purported benefits.  The main benefits are that it helps your liver clean your blood, lowers your cholesterol, gives you the daily B vitamins you need, regulates your digestion, helps your skin and nails, and gives you a totally awesome kick in the morning.  There’s a whole big repost of the kombucha wiki on my site for all the benefits and scientific analysis and even risks.

Why the decision to share Mombucha at GFM?

Not too much thinking required to wanting to be part of the grooviest food market in the Northeast!  I’m a resident of Greenpoint so I wanted to get in front of my neighbors and spread the good health vibes to those around me.  I’m in the process of expanding the reach of Mombucha but I’ll always opt for manning the booth at the GFM no matter how big I get (((crosses fingers))).  Anyway, come see me there on April 10th or email for a try!