Best Thing I Ever Ate … Healthy, Yummy Menu Selections in Westchester, NY

Oaxacan Chicken Burrito
Oaxacan Chicken Burrito

To celebrate this season of abundant, fresh, delicious food, Natural Awakenings asked the owners of two local farm-to-table restaurants to name their favorite thing on the menu. Here’s what they said:

 

 

Tomatillo in Dobbs Ferry

“This is a tough question, since I love just about everything on both of my menus. But if I had to choose, I’d go with the item that I probably eat the most: our Oaxacan Chicken Burrito. I add guacamole to the burrito and just love the combination of the bright lime guacamole contrasting with the roasted, chocolaty taste of our mole negro. This mole is my own recipe with all of my favorite ingredients, including three types of dried chiles, almonds, prunes, plantains and, of course, some chocolate. Moles go great with our marinated chicken. Add some seasoned brown rice, creamy black beans and melted Monterey Jack cheese, and you are living large. It is my favorite burrito, hands down and mouths open, as we like to say here.”

– David Starkey, owner of Sweet Grass Grill and Tomatillo Restaurant.

 

Tomatillo

Mexchester.com

13 Cedar Street, Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522

914.478.2300

 

Sweet Grass Grill

SweetgrassGrill.com

24 Main Street, Tarrytown, NY 10591

914.631.0000

 

 

Thyme in Yorktown Heights

“One of best things on the menu at Thyme is our gluten-free crab cakes. You wouldn’t even know that they’re void of gluten! We take juicy lump crabmeat and combine it with sautéed vegetables, gluten-free breadcrumbs and a gluten-free pale ale. Add some spice, form the patties and you’re good to go. It’s a simple recipe, yet full of flavor and much more health conscious than the average crab cake.”

– Tom Costello, Executive Chef and owner of Thyme, who shares his crab cake recipe with Natural Awakenings readers:

Thyme Crab Cake Final

 Gluten-Free Crab Cakes

by Tom Costello, Executive Chef and owner of Thyme

Ingredients:

1 lb. lump crabmeat

1½ garlic cloves, diced

½ small red bell pepper, diced

½ small green bell pepper, diced

½ small orange bell pepper, diced

1 small shallot, diced

1 small Vidalia onion, diced

3 oz. Steadfast Sorghum Pale Ale (gluten-free)

½ cup gluten-free bread crumbs

4 eggs, beaten

4 oz. mayonnaise

1 tbsp. Dijon mustard

1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. onion powder

gluten-free flour for breading (such as Bob’s Red Mill brand)

salt and pepper
 

Directions:

Clean crabmeat, taking care to remove all shells

In a sauté pan on medium heat, sweat garlic, peppers, shallot and Vidalia onion in canola oil for about 6 minutes

Combine the breadcrumbs with Steadfast Sorghum Pale Ale to moisten

To breadcrumb mixture, add crab meat, garlic and vegetables along with 1 egg, mayonnaise, mustard, Old Bay seasoning, garlic and onion powders

Use 2 oz. of the crab mixture to form crab cakes

Prepare 3 bowl dredging station. In bowl 1, place flour and add salt and pepper to taste; in bowl 2, place the beaten eggs; in bowl 3, place the bread crumbs

Dust each crab cake lightly in the flour mixture, then the egg mixture and lastly the breadcrumbs

Fry in sauté pan with canola oil over medium high heat until golden brown on each side.

 

Thyme, 3605 Crompond Road,

Yorktown Heights, NY

914.788.8700, ThymeRestaurant.net

Sweet Grass Grill and Tomatillo Restaurant, Terrific Local Food Dining in Southern Westchester

Chef Iain Falconer at the Sweet Grass Grill

Chef Iain Falconer at the Sweet Grass Grill

Sweet Grass Grill

24 Main St. Tarrytown, NY 10591

914.631.0000; SweetGrassGrill.com

Hours: Monday through Friday 11:30 a.m. – ‘til, Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – ‘til, and  brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Tomatillo Restaurant

13 Cedar St. Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522  

914.478.2300; Mexchester.com

Hours: Tuesday through Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. (most nights); kitchen stays open until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday

Sweet Grass Grill and Tomatillo Restaurant are located in the heart of Southern Westchester and both are owned and operated by David Starkey. I stumbled upon Sweet Grass Grill one summer afternoon when I was searching for a great farm-to-table lunch option. Chefs Ian Falconer (Sweet Grass Grill) and Starkey (Tomatillo) are both dedicated to healthy, locally sourced foods and Starkey’s commitment is to ensure that his food is not only delicious, but also socially responsible. Many of the ingredients used at both restaurants come from nearby farms, such as Stone Barn in Pocantico Hills and Ryder Farm in Brewster. My favorite dish at Sweet Grass Grill is the free-range chicken, which is covered in an array of savory toppings according to the season.

Sweet Grass Grill offers American-infused traditional comfort dishes with a healthy twist, while Tomatillo offers Mexican favorites with the same health consciousness (e.g., brown versus white rice). The menu items change seasonally according to the local foods used to create them. Sweet Grass Grill also offers Meatless Mondays, giving vegetarians a prix-fixe menu option. Their children’s menu items come with vegetables to provide a balanced meal and promote healthy habits. Many of the wines served are also local. One of their most popular Chardonnays comes from Red Tail Ridge Winery in the Finger Lakes region.

Whether he’s buying garlic from California, shrimp from the Gulf Coast or pumpkin from the farm next door, Starkey seeks to make sure that his business boosts the American economy while staying on top of food trends. His restaurants are a great option for those seeking to enjoy a healthy, local and sustainable meal that is both delicious and reasonably priced.

Natasha Bernardez is the Executive Chef of Clean Plate Culinary Inc. Her team specializes in healthy food culinary services, including personal chef and other customized offerings. To book their services visit CleanPlateCulinary.com or call 347.644.8306 for a consultation.