Taking Sides: 6 Stellar Vegetarian Recipes From New York Chefs

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"Just bring a side" can cause undue anguish. This year, fear not. We tapped some of the city's healthiest chefs for crowd-pleasing vegetarian recipes.

"Just bring a side" is a simple phrase that can cause undue anguish. This year, fear not.

We tapped the saute pans of some of the city's healthiest chefs—from Shanna Pacifico at Back Forty West and Scott Campbell at Bette Midler's New Leaf Restaurant to Ian Kapitan of Alobar—to bring you these crowd-pleasing recipes.

Every recipe is meat-free—four are vegan—and they showcase ingredients like seasonal veggies and wholesome ancient grains.

Time to get cooking!  —Lisa Elaine Held


Roasted Sunchokes with Cato Corner Farm Aged Bloomsday
Julia Sullivan, Haven's Kitchen, www.havenskitchen.com

Serves 6-8

sunchokes2 lbs sunchokes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup sprouted sunflower seeds
6 oz Cato Corner Farm Aged Bloomsday cheese, broken into small pieces
1 cup parsley leaves, cleaned and dried
2 each lemons, juiced
Fine sea salt, to taste

Preheat oven to 325°F. Toss sunchokes in 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil and about 2 teaspoons of fine sea salt and spread on a lined baking sheet.

Roast until tender, about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 350°F and continue to cook until sunchokes are crisp and golden brown, about 30 minutes more.

Remove baking sheet from oven and let sunchokes cool to room temperature. Toss cooled sunchokes, sunflower seeds, cheese, and parsley leaves with the juice of two lemons, remaining extra virgin olive oil, and sea salt to taste.



Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Dried Cherry Butter
Shanna Pacifico, Back Forty West, www.backfortynyc.com

roasted brussels sproutsServes 8

For the Compound Butter
½ pound butter (two sticks)
½ cup dried cherries
Zest of 1 lemon
½ clove of garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Salt and pepper

For the Brussels Sprouts
2 pounds small brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
¼ extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper

Leave butter out to soften and reach room temperature, then place in a bowl. Add the lemon zest, garlic, parsley and dried cherries, and season to taste with salt and black pepper. Using a rubber spatula, mix the butter compound together until the ingredients are distributed evenly. Place the butter on a large piece of plastic wrap, shape it into a log, wrap, then freeze in a plastic container until ready to use. (The compound can be made days in advance.)

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Place the brussels sprouts in a large bowl, sprinkle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and toss well. Lay brussels sprouts on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper, then roast for approximately 15 minutes, or until sprouts start to brown and reach a dark gold color. After about 7 minutes, rotate the tray and move the brussels sprouts around to ensure that they brown evenly.

Once the brussels sprouts are done, transfer them to a serving platter. Take the butter out of the freezer and using a vegetable peeler shave as much as you’d like onto the brussels sprouts and serve. (Return any remaining compound butter to freezer for future use on biscuits and vegetables such as roasted carrots and parsnips.)



Organic Mixed Whole Grain Salad
Scott Campbell, New Leaf Restaurant, www.nyrp.org/newleaf

New Leaf RestaurantServes 6

1/4 cup wheatberries
1/4 cup wild rice
1/4 cup brown rice
1/4 cup pearl barley
1/4 cup farro wheat
1/4 cup dried cherries, re-hydrated in cranberry juice
1/4 cup quinoa
1 1/2 ounces walnuts
1 1/2 ounces pumpkin seeds
1 1/2 ounces sesame seeds
1 1/2 ounces sunflower seeds
1 1/2 ounces sherry vinegar
1 ounce extra virgin olive oil
1 ounces walnut oil
To taste salt, sea salt (Fleur De Sel)
To taste pepper, freshly fround

Cook all grains and rices separately until al dente, when cooked place them all in a colander to cool.

Meanwhile toast all the nuts and seeds separately in an oven until they have a desired flavor and texture. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl; grains, cherries, seeds, nuts and flavor with oils and seasonings.



Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Anthony Moraes and Natalia Hancock, SPE Certified, www.specertified.com

sweet potatoesServes 8

4 large sweet potatoes (2lbs), peeled and chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
2 tsp brown sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place large baking sheet inside.

Steam sweet potatoes in large pot filled with 1 inch of water and a steam basket (or other preferred steaming method) for 5 minutes to start cooking process then remove from heat. In a bowl, toss the potatoes with olive oil, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and pepper and spread them on the hot baking sheet and place it back in the oven.

Roast for 20-25 minutes or until tender. Toss with brown sugar and serve.



Saffron Pickled Cauliflower
Ian Kapitan, Alobar, www.alobarnyc.com

pickled cauliflowerServes 4

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon saffron
1 teaspoon coriander seed
2 teaspoons mustard seed
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced
1 whole clove garlic, smashed
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1 bulb of fennel, julienned
1 cup water
1 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon pickling salt

Heat the canola oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the mustard seed and coriander seed, followed by the ginger and garlic. Stir and cook until the oil colors and the spices are fragrant. Add the cauliflower and fennel and toss to coat.

In a lidded plastic container, combine the water, rice wine vinegar, cider vinegar, sugar, and pickling salt. Shake to combine.

Once the cauliflower is slightly tender, add it to a glass jar. Pour the pickling liquid over the cauliflower, filling to the top of the jar. Cool, chill, and store the pickles for 1 week to allow the flavors to develop thoroughly.

NEXT: 508 Gastrobrewery's Multigrain Macrobiotic Salad...


Multigrain Macrobiotic Salad
Jennifer Hill, 508 Gastrobrewery, www.508nyc.com

multigrain saladServes 6

1 cup wheatberry
1 cup bulgur wheat
½ cup black beans
1 apple, diced
½ red onion, cut in half moon
½ roasted walnuts
2 Tbsp dill
2 Tbsp mint
1 cup olive oil
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp curry
2 tsp sea salt

For the raisins:
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup raisins
Boil raisins in apple cider vinegar to plump. Remove raisins and set aside.

For lemon vinaigrette:
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp honey
1/2 cup olive oil
Blend, set aside

Cook wheatberry and bulgur wheat until tender. Mix together bulgur, wheatberry, black beans, apples, red onions, walnuts, plumped raisins, dill, mint, cumin, and curry. Toss in lemon vinaigrette. Serve immediately.


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