Sustainable in the OTHER City (New York, that is)

January 18, 2010 § 6 Comments

I feel like it’s been ages since I put a real post up… my apologies, it’s been an insane week. 

I did, however, have a fantastic weekend in New York City with 2 of my best girlfriends, Tara and Laura.  We have known each other since we were about 10 years old, and we live all spread out across the East Coast, so it’s very rare that we are all in the same room anymore.  Trying to explain my fairly recent devotion to eating all local foods was a bit daunting at first, but as only the best of friends can do, they immediately accepted it and we all went foraging for food I could eat.

Lucky for us, we only had to go about 14 steps out Tara’s front door and into the Union Square Greenmarket.  I proceeded to buy waaay too much food to take home, thus making my train trip rather cumbersome. But it was totally worth it, because among the many delightful things I bought, one is far more exciting than the rest.   

POPCORN!!!  I am holding in my hand a 2lb bag of local popcorn kernels, and I’m just not sure I could be any more excited.  I love popcorn far more than the average person, and not having it for the past 2 weeks has been torture (ok I’m being slightly overdramatic but you get the point).

I was convinced I’d be able to find it in Virginia with all the corn they grow there, but apparently not.  I had to go all the way to New York City to find some freaking sustainable popcorn.  But it was worth it. Oh yeah and I got to see my best friends. And get POPCORN!

Other fun purchases were maple yogurt (good, but runnier than I like it. I’m sticking with Blue Ridge Dairy.), kefir, cow’s milk mozzarella cheese, real maple syrup, whole wheat flour, and fresh whole wheat fettucine and tri-color penne pastas. 

After a strenuous morning shopping, we headed to Union Square Cafe for lunch- a place I’ve been dying to go for years.  They change their menu very frequently (I think daily) based on what is available in season locally.  I had a gorgeous bibb and red leaf lettuce salad and a small portion of Berkshire pork lasagna (I clearly feel the need to tell you it was the SMALL portion, lest you think I am a pig myself. Feel free to judge me. It was delicious.)

We were feeling very “Housewives of New York City” with our wine lunch at USC… and then realized we were showing our Florida roots when we took off our coats to reveal a veritable sorbet selection of cardigans.  I swear we are not that lame in real life.

Oh wait, yes we are. (see below: Laura and I crocheting at 10:30pm on Saturday night in NYC. Super lame.  But so happy. The drunken dress up dance party followed. )

 

 

As far as food (and everything else) goes, it was a pretty stellar weekend. 

Friday night Dinner at Tribeca Grill– had Long Island Grilled Duck and localish oysters

Saturday morning- Union Square Market

Saturday Lunch at Union Square Cafe– bibb and red leaf salad, Berkshire pork lasagna

Saturday dinner- poking around house eating market food

Saturday drinks- Jack Daniels (TN isn’t THAT far) and Boylan’s Root Beer (made in New Jersey with cane sugar! I found one lurking in the back of their fridge, really lucked out on that one.)

Sunday brunch at Craftbar- delicious Eggs Benedict with local farm eggs and bacon.  And a Bloody Maria (made with tequila. I’m sorry. I can’t give it up.)

I learned a good lesson this weekend- eating local food while you are staying at other people’s houses is really hard. But I think I did an OK job.  I brought some of my own food, hit up the local farmers market, and chose restaurants that buy from local farmers.  Sometimes it’s not all or nothing, you just do the best you can.

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§ 6 Responses to Sustainable in the OTHER City (New York, that is)

  • Gerry Hendershot says:

    Fun in NYC! Travel with a food regimen must be very, very hard. Congrats on staying with the program, but be careful–TN for whiskey pushes the envelope.

    • elittlestar says:

      Thanks Gerry! Yeah, beverages are tricky. Since my focus is really on the food, I made the decision to not be so strict on the drinks. The idea is, basically, try your hardest to find something local, but if it can’t be local, at least have it be from as close as possible. Also, it’s nearly impossible to have the ingredients come from the same place as the production (wine being that exception for the most part).

      People ask me about drinks all the time… actually, that’s a good idea for a post. Thanks! 🙂

  • Margo says:

    I couldn’t live without popcorn. Could not. And I’m not finding any local popcorn here in PA – I’m looking into it, though. And why can’t I find local dried beans?? A friend and I are serious about talking to local farmers. If they know that people want to buy this stuff, I think they will grow it.

    I like your beverage philosophy 🙂

    • elittlestar says:

      Yeah, popcorn was starting to stress me out. I’m so happy to have found this- but it basically means I’ll be making monthly trips to NYC now (not that I’m complaining…)

      Surely SOMEONE in the Mid-Atlantic produces popcorn? Anyone??

  • Marisa says:

    I also visited the Union Square Greenmarket when I went to NYC in November! Actually, it was one of the first things I did after I arrived. I’m happy to see I’m not the only one who visits farmers markets when travelling 🙂

    • elittlestar says:

      Farmers Markets are my VERY favorite thing to visit when I am travelling. In fact, I have been known to plan trips around going to farmers markets. It’s a sickness (but a delicious one… hehe)

      I can’t wait to visit Union Square again in the spring when the market is really in full force!

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