Summer Jams

Late Summer Jam
We all know that the best time to enjoy fresh berries and stone fruits is during the Summer months. But if you can spare enough of the season’s bounty to make this sweet and simple jam, you’ll be thanking yourself come Winter whilst enjoying a bite slathered on fresh toasted bread with butter.

Ingredients

  • 8 cups of blueberries, raspberries or blackberries
  • 4 teaspoons Pomona Universal Pectin + 4 teaspoons calcium water (follow box directions)

-or-

  • 8 cups well mashed stone fruit (peach, nectarine or plum)
  • 2 tablespoons Pomona Universal Pectin + 2 tablespoons calcium water (following box directions)

-and-

  • ½ cup lemon or lime juice
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • Optional: 1 cinnamon stick or 1 vanilla bean, using the scraped out seeds, and the pod for added flavor

Directions

  1. Wash and rinse jars according to pectin package directions
  2. In a bowl whisk together the sugar and pectin to combine evenly
  3. In a deep sauce pan, combine the fruit, lemon juice and calcium water, and if using, the cinnamon or vanilla bean, and bring to a boil
  4. Add sugar and pectin mixture, stirring vigorously to dissolve pectin and return to a boil
  5. If using, remove and discard the cinnamon stick or vanilla bean pod
  6. Fill jars to ¼” from top, close lids, and boil according to pectin package directions
  • Enjoy jam within 1 year
  • Jam will keep for 3 weeks in the fridge once opened
Meg ChristmanSummer Jams
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Preserve the Summer

Tips from our kitchen to yours!

Late Summer Pickles
In a pickle with too many summer veggies? Brine your own with this simple recipe.
Ingredients

  • 1 lb firm vegetables. We recommend cucumbers, string beans, carrots, corn cut from the cob, peppers, beets, turnips, trimmed of stems and roots
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar (or rice wine or apple cider vinegar)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Optional: fresh aromatics such as cilantro, garlic, onions or chiles

Directions

  1. Clean your vegetables, and cut your vegetables into medium chunks. The firmer the vegetable (like carrots), slice thinner, or blanch briefly to soften.
  2. Loosely fill cleaned jars with vegetable pieces.
  3. In a small saucepan, bring vinegar, salt, sugar and spices, and 2 cups water to a boil.
  4. Pour pickling liquid over vegetables, and let cool. Close jars and chill in the fridge for at least 1 day for softer vegetables like cucumbers, and at least a week for root vegetables.

Homemade pickles should last about 2 months in the fridge. Fresh garlic can often turn blue when pickled. Don’t be surprised… this is perfectly okay!

Meg ChristmanPreserve the Summer
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Topo Chico in NYC

Ever since we first heard about the mineral water from Mexico whose miracle making legend proceeds it, we were curious. And once the New York Times put Texas on the map for its endless supply of this wonder drink, we realized that we needed to have it.

What makes it so special? For starters, unlike most mineral waters, this is one you’d actually want to mix into a cocktail. (While we’re not professional mixologists, we do know our way around a fancy cocktail or two!) What’s more, a sip of this water actually provides a healthy dose of magnesium, potassium, sodium and manganese to aid digestion. And its renowned fizziness makes for a fun and refreshing way to beat this week’s pervasive summer heat!

With only few places to find this fizzy lifting drink this side of the Mississippi, stop by Provisions, or order online with Instacart, to taste for yourself what all of the hype is about!

And if you’re looking for sparkling water that originated a little closer to home, head to Annex for a glass of seltzer from the Brooklyn Seltzer Boys – a family run seltzer company (the last of it’s kind in NYC) operating out of a bottling factory in Canarsie since the 1950’s.

Kate MalinTopo Chico in NYC
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The Olympics of Cheese

Every year the American Cheese Society receives thousands of cheeses from dairy farms across America. Perhaps more akin to the Grammy’s than the Olympics (but pardon us for the timely reference), the certified cheese tasters from ACS try curds and whey from all categories ranging from blue to alpine to fresh yogurt. This year we are proud to announce a number of award winning cheeses in our case.

Flory’s Truckle, Homestead Creamery, MO
Category: Cheddar, wrapped in cloth, aged up to 12 months

Red Hawk, Cowgirl Creamery, CA
Category: American Original Recipe, Cow’s Milk

Ledyard, Meadowood Farms, NY
Category: American Original Recipe, Sheep’s Milk

Winnimere, The Cellars at Jasper Hill, VT
Category: Farmstead Category, aged 60 days or more

Harbison and Moses Sleeper, The Cellars at Jasper Hill, VT
Category: Soft Ripened Cheese, made from Cow’s Milk

Maplebrook Burrata, Maplebrook Farm, VT
Category: Burrata 

Learn more about the American Cheese Society, and then stop by to ask for a taste of the crème de la crème!

Meg ChristmanThe Olympics of Cheese
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Sofrito for the Season

Mixtures of stewed aromatic vegetables, herbs and spices are at the core of almost every type of cuisine. Sofrito is the Spanish version, usually consisting of peppers, onions and tomato. Luckily all of those veggies are in season right now and Provisions Produce Buyer, Jason Rivera, has put together a recipe for sofrito success. The idea behind this homestyle dish is to use whatever vegetables are available to create a flavorful, easy to eat, easy to digest meal.

(And remember, the word sofrito doesn’t have to limit your cooking. In the Fall you could just as easily be using fennel, carrots and onions instead of peppers, onions and tomatoes.)

Ingredients
Extra virgin olive oil (preferably really tasty stuff)
A few sweet peppers, diced (whatever looks pretty at the market)
A fat juicy onion, diced (look for fresh uncured onions at this time of year)
A ripe tomato diced (Brandywines work really well for this, I recommend a red tomato)
1 bay leaf
1 1/2 cups white wine
water or chicken stock
1/2 pound of green, yellow, purple or romano beans with the tough end trimmed
2 heirloom squash cut into 1/4 inch rounds (my favorite is the Romanesca)
1 ear corn cut from the cob
4 red radishes sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
10 fresh basil leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Sherry vinegar to taste

1. Heat a pot, large enough to contain all of the ingredients. Add enough olive oil to generously coat the bottom of the pot. Throw the peppers and onions in there and cook them until they are soft without browning them. If it looks a little dry add more olive oil.
2. Add the tomatoes, bay leaf and white wine. Simmer this until all of the liquid evaporates.
3. At this point continue to cook the mixture until the oil separates out and the mixture starts to stick on the bottom. Be careful here, you don’t want burnt, just a little toasted. Stir very often.
4. Add the beans and cover with stock or water and simmer. It’s a good idea to take a wooden spoon and scrape all the tasty bits of the bottom of the pot.
5. Cook the beans until they are very soft and tender, and a lot of the liquid has evaporated. They will turn army green, and look overcooked, but they will also become sweet and soak up all of that sofrito liquid.
6. Stir in the squash, corn and radishes and remove from heat. At this point season with salt, pepper and vinegar.
7. This dish should be served just above room temperature with a piece of crusty bread to soak up the juices. Just before serving, stir in the basil leaves and a bit of fresh olive oil.

Enjoy!

Meg ChristmanSofrito for the Season
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Summer Cocktails & Craft Brews at Annex

With the dog days ahead of us, the team at Annex knew we needed to concoct something that encapsulated all of our favorite summertime survival beverages. Iced tea (check), lemonade (check), gin (check), and so was born the Your Majesty.  We mix one of our favorite spirits, Breukelen Glorious Gin with orange liqueur, earl grey syrup, and lemon juice to create one seriously refreshing cocktail.  A drink designed to appeal to everyone (royal pedigree not required).

And of course, we’d be remiss not to mention our selection of summer draft beers. Our lineup changes regularly, so enjoy a pint from the list below before we’re on to the next keg!

City Slickers IPA Other Half
You don’t have to wait in line outside of the brewery to get your hands on a pint of this beer brewed with prickly pear from the IPA master’s at Gowanus’ own Other Half Brewing Co.

Kirsch GoseVictory Brewing Co.
This sour cherry beer blends the right amount of tart and sweet. A delicious and approachable Gose.

Rubaeus NitroFounders Brewing Co.
Infused with nitrogen for a softer mouthfeel, this pale ale brewed with raspberries is exactly what the doctor ordered for mid-July heat.

Hopped CidahUrban Farm Fermentory
Wild Maine yeast fermented cider with the addition of cascade hops to turn an IPA lover into a cider drinker in no time.

Saison DoloresAlmanac Brewing Co.
California grown wheat combine with saison yeast to create this exceptionally fresh beer that is designed to pair well with just about any meal.

Megaboss IPANewburgh Brewing Co.
An IPA that lives up to it’s name with over 8 hop varieties jam packed into one fine brew.

 

Meg ChristmanSummer Cocktails & Craft Brews at Annex
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Stop, Pepper Time!

What makes local produce the ultimate in taste is the short amount of time it spends between farm and shop. And while peppers have become a grocery staple, they are only available locally in the summer months. This week, we’re all about the peppers from Marolda Farms in New Jersey and the Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative.

Perfect for Frying – Long-Hots & Cubanelles – both of these peppers come in way below jalepeño on the Scoville Scale, but what they lack in heat they make up for with a tangy almost sweet flavor. The thin wall of these peppers make them great for frying and there is only one season to enjoy them while they last.
Great on the Grill – Mini Green & Purple Bell Peppers – We think these mini green peppers would look darling on a skewer and who doesn’t love the vibrancy of purple produce?

Also worth a mention…
We don’t usually associate summer as the time for potatoes and onions, but right now they couldn’t be better. Enjoy new potatoes with skin so thin you’ll hardly need to peel them and fresh onions with bright juicy flavor before they are all cured for cellaring to await the winter.

Meg ChristmanStop, Pepper Time!
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Summertime and the cookin’s easy

Are you dazzled by the abundance of summer produce, but don’t have time to fire up the grill? Does just the thought of turning on the oven in your NYC sized apartment make you sweat? We’re here to help.

For extra flavor, with minimal work we suggest:
-a dollop of Hernán Mole Sauce with stock or water
-a spoonful of Masala Mama curry sauces with a can of coconut milk
-a tablespoon of One Culture Asian sauté and finishing sauces
-or a squeeze of EnTube harissa paste for a Morroccan flair

Use any of the above sauces and follow the steps below for a meal that will get you in and out of the kitchen in no time.

Step 1: Start a pot of pasta, rice, or polenta, following package directions. If you’re making polenta, don’t forget to stir every now and then. Rice, grains and pasta should all be ready in about 20-25 minutes.

Step 2: Cut your proteins and vegetables into bite sized pieces. (Make double batches so you only heat up the kitchen once every few days!)

Step 3: Pre-heat a large saute pan on high, and then drop down to medium-heat. Add a little olive oil, coconut oil, butter, or Provisions house made lard and sear your veggies just enough to get a little color. Remove from the pan, and add a little more oil if needed.

Step 4: Stir-fry your proteins, about 5 minutes, until fully cooked.

Step 5: Add your favorite sauce and add your vegetables back in the pan. Stir until your meal is coated with sauce, adding stock or water as needed.

Step 6: Once all is cooked through, turn off the stove, serve your stir-fry over your starch or grain. Garnish with a squeeze of lemon or lime, or shredded fresh basil and enjoy a fresh, seasonal meal bursting with flavor.

Meg ChristmanSummertime and the cookin’s easy
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Grassfed Burger Guide

The most quintessential item at any Fourth of July cookout, the burger is as classic as it gets. Our whole animal butchers grind specific cuts of beef to create our All-Star line-up of burgers. Let us introduce you to the team!

Short Rib: The short rib burger is becoming increasingly common in restuarants across the city, and we know why – it’s extra juicy, and full of flavor
Pair with: Jasper Hill Clothbound Cheddar, and a tangy mustard (we suggest Tin or Wilder)

Lamb Burger: Made using the leg of the lamb, this burger is hearty, unique, and sure to impress your guests
Pair with: a classic feta or heat it up with the spice and acidity of Brooklyn Delhi tomato achaar

Bacon Brisket: Our house made bacon is hot smoked in-house so this burger can happily be enjoyed medium rare
Pair with: a sweet alpine cheese for extra umami and melty goodness!

100% Brisket: We’re not messing around with this one. No bacon, no problem, get the full flavor and insane savory notes off of this all brisket burger
Pair with: Nettlemeadow’s Kunik, an exceptional triple crème

Meg ChristmanGrassfed Burger Guide
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Good Food

Do you know if the honey you purchased is made by people who engage their local community in educational efforts? Are you certain that your olive oil comes from olives pressed in the most recent harvest? Can you be sure if the ingredients in your cider are grown or produced with practices that promote resource conservation and minimize synthetic inputs, including pesticides, herbicides and fungicides?

If your purchase was produced by a member of the Good Foods Merchant Guild, then the answer is yes, yes, and yes!

At Provisions, we strive to find ways to make informed shopping choices easier for our guests. We do not have one set standard criteria for entry into our shop, because we acknowledge the nuanced nature of food production. One rule may not encompass the unique challenges faced by producers in different fields, but one thing that a honey maker, cheese maker and cider miller can have in common is a drive to create something authentic and real. The Good Food movement highlights the details that are important in defining a craft and creates opportunities to educate eaters on the process it takes to bring a product to market. It is our hope that the Good Food Awards logo will help our customers identify products that they can trust, and inspire them to learn a little more about why.

The Good Food Awards are more than just decorative; they have also inspired a nationwide retailer’s collaborative, a merchants guild and this weekend’s 2nd Annual NYC Good Food Mercantile, hosted at the Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint. The Mercantile is where American producers are given access to share their products with like-minded retailers from across the country. Events like these help retailers meet the consumer demand for clean food in their shops, and they also keep us encouraged on the path towards a more sustainable food system.

The Greene Grape is on a mission to build commerce and community between the people who make, purvey, and enjoy Good Food. We are a proud sponsor of the Good Food Awards and the Good Food Mercantile and a founding member of the Good Food Retailers Collaborative. The Retailers Collaborative is a group of like-minded stores across the country who share the values of taste, authenticity and responsible production. 

Meg ChristmanGood Food
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