When it comes to the Greenmarket, we are like the Postal Service: Neither snow, nor rain nor heat, nor gloom of night, keeps us from making our weekly appointed rounds until we are laden with local goods.
But we love the market most during these hazy summer days, when the market’s tents can barely contain the baskets of ripe and bright produce.
A newly released cookbook, The New Greenmarket Cookbook: Recipes and Tips from Today’s Finest Chefs—and the Stories behind the Farms That Inspire Them ($20) is here just in time to make good use of all of those peak-season fruits and vegetables.
Author Gabrielle Langholtz (who knows a thing or two about all things local as the editor of Edible Manhattan magazine) had notable Greenmarket lovers—including Mark Bittman, Michael Pollan, Daniel Boulud and Eric Ripert—contribute a bevy of recipes to the collection.
Organized by the four seasons, the recipes follow the natural cycle of a year at the market, making it easy to flip the book open and find a recipe using things that are being stocked at the market right this very minute.
We’re smitten with the ever-growing number of cucumbers available at the market right now: thin-skinned Korean cucumbers, round Lemon cucumbers and runty Kirby cucumbers.
As fun as all the shapes and sizes of cucumbers are to look at, they are even better for you: At around 95 percent water, they are wonderfully hydrating and can help reduce inflammation, while being high in potassium and antioxidants like B-carotene.
Try using a selection of cucumbers in this recipe for a fantastically refreshing cucumber soup from chef Kenneth Wis of Brooklyn’s steadfastly farm-to-table Diner and Marlow & Sons.
Cucumber Soup by Kenneth Wiss, Diner and Marlow & Sons
6 to 7 cucumbers, about 3 1⁄2 pounds
1⁄3 cup lime juice, from about 3 limes
1⁄2 cup olive oil, divided
1⁄4 cup loosely packed dill leaves
1⁄4 cup loosely packed tarragon leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1⁄2 cup loosely packed basil leaves
1⁄2 cup loosely packed mint leaves
Peel the cucumbers and halve lengthwise. Using a spoon, scrape the seeds from half of the cucumbers, so the soup is not too bitter. Slice the cucumbers thinly and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Toss with the lime juice, 1⁄4 cup of olive oil, dill, tarragon, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1⁄2 teaspoon of black pepper. Dress the cucumbers like a salad that you would eat raw and let sit for one hour. The seasoning will marinate the cucumbers, and they will begin to break down and release liquid.
Transfer the mixture and its liquid to a blender (in batches if needed) and add the basil and mint. Blend at high speed, stopping to scrape down as needed. Puree for at least one minute, until perfectly smooth.
Reduce the blender speed to medium-low and slowly drizzle in the remaining 1⁄4 cup of olive oil.
Adjust seasoning with salt, pepper, and lime juice and serve chilled.