Great Taste Recipes: A Three Course Meal by Cherry Point

Just across Newton Creek from Murray’s Cheese headquarters is the Brooklyn neighborhood of Greenpoint. The neighborhood dates back to the mid-1600s, when it was called Cherry Point. Drawing its inspiration (and its name) from the area’s rustic roots is one of our very restaurants in the area, Julian Calcott’s Cherry Point.

Julian is an alum of the West Village’s legendary Spotted Pig, and he opened his own restaurant back in 2016. It’s quickly gained acclaim for its seasonally-inspired menu and warm atmosphere. Here, for example, is the Michelin Guide:

“This charming Greenpoint restaurant…houses a buzzing open kitchen, great music, and jumbo windows that look out over the neighborhood, offering prime people-watching. Most importantly, though, Cherry Point is home to some luscious cooking compliments of Chef Julian Calcott.”

And here’s Zagat:

“Inside a refurbished 1930s butcher shop, this woodsy Greenpoint eatery by an alum of The Spotted Pig focuses on housemade charcuterie, American bistro dishes and seasonal sides and salads.”

And here’s us:

“Cherry Point. Oh, we really like Cherry Point. It is very, very good. So good is it that we want our customers all over the country to get a little taste. Perhaps we should collaborate with Cherry Point on a set of recipes for Great Taste at Murray’s. Hey, yes, that’s exactly what we should do. Okay. Let’s do it.”

Reader, done it we have. We are excited to share with you a three course menu that Chef Julian designed specifically for our Great Taste program, featuring a salad, a main dish, and a dessert. Best of all, they each have a cheesy element incorporated in an unexpected way. Let’s show you what we mean.

The first dish is the Spring Radish Salad with Goat Cheese. It looks like this:

The primary ingredients here are radishes (duh), basil, and greens. Chef Julian used pea shoots, but he notes, “You can use any greens you want. I would recommend something a little sturdier than arugula, though you can use arugula if you want.” He cited baby kale as an example of a green that would work well.

Here’s where things get unexpected: You knead the ingredients with your hands. “You’re making your own vinaigrette,” Chef Julian explains, “using the cheese as an emulsifier.” As you work the ingredients together, the salad dresses itself. This is a salad that’s quite literally handmade.

Here’s how to make the Cherry Point Spring Radish Salad with Goat Cheese.

Next up, the main dish. This plate is quite a beauty—crispy, juicy chicken over a bed of risotto-style peas. Check it out:

That’s the kind of plate you can expect to find in an acclaimed restaurant. Indeed, it was invented in one. But you can make it at home quite easily. The cheesy surprise here: the peas get their creamy, risotto-y consistency from a shaving of Pecorino Calabrese and a dollop of mascarpone.

And bringing it all home is one of the most astounding tarts you will ever have. It’s made with Gjetost and preserved walnuts. Seriously, this stuff is straight up nuts. It tastes somewhere between flan and pumpkin pie, yet somehow even better than both.

This has already become our go-to dessert for wowing guests, not least because the filling contains only five ingredients and is a super cinch to make. Here’s how you go about doing it.

If you’re looking to bring some restaurant-level results to your cooking game, we cannot recommend these recipes more enthusiastically. Really, it’s as easy as, well…tart.

Your New Year’s Eve Cheese and Meat Board

If you are reading this, it means you have just successfully completed a major holiday. Or at least endured it. Either way, you’re probably still feeling the effects in some way or another, perhaps as the aftereffects of a herculean cleaning effort or an incessant throbbing in your head that makes you vampirically sensitive to sunlight. But hey—you did it! Give yourself a pat on the back, if you can do so without throwing out your shoulder.

One of the challenges of the holiday season is that the occasions are anything but occasional—they come in quick succession. And it can be a tall order to maintain some sense of creativity in how you host a party or what you bring to the one you’re attending. With Christmas barely in the rear view, we imagine the last thing you want to do is start game planning New Year’s Eve. Listen: you don’t have to. We’ve already put the plan in place.

Over at our restaurant, Cheese Bar, we’re featuring a holiday cheese and meat board that has been on the menu for the past couple weeks. It is excellent, and it looks like this:

Murray's New Year's Eve Holiday Cheese Board Plate Platter

Murray's New Year's Eve Holiday Cheese Board Plate Platter

Murray's New Year's Eve Holiday Cheese Board Plate Platter

This holiday spread was developed by our veritable Cheese Bar mongers Michaela Weitzer and Ian Pearson. “We wanted to have something that’s very decadent,” says Michaela. That is, after all, the M.O. of New Year’s: decadence for the sake of it. This here’s what an NYE platter looks like when prepared by the pros.

Here’s a quick key of what we’re working with, along with some insider info from Michaela. A few of the items are exclusive to Cheese Bar, but we’ve got you covered with ways you can fill in those spots.

New Year's Eve Holiday Meat and Cheese Board Spread Plate

  1. Blueberry Balsamic Compote – Our Cheese Bar team makes this in-house by pickling blueberries and mixing them with a balsamic compote. That’s not an easy thing to pull off. What is easy to pull off is the lid from a jar of Murray’s Wild Blueberry Preserves or Strawberry Balsamic Preserves from our pals at Anarchy in a Jar.
  2. Rabbit Pate – Made out in the Bay Area by Fabrique Delices, masters of artisanal charcuterie. It’s “a very sweet meat on its own,” says Michaela, “so we wanted to put some acid with it.” Hence the blueberry balsamic compote, and hence the reason either of our readily available alternatives will make for a great pairing as well.
  3. Truffled Potato Chips – The idea behind these in-house chips is twofold: something decadently earthy and something dippable. Potter’s Onion Crisps hits both those marks with panache.
  4. Rush Creek Reserve – Per Michaela: “We wanted to feature a very special holiday cheese on there.” Nothing does that job quite like the highly seasonal, universally adored Rush Creek. It’s super gooey, which is why you want a crisp with dippability to go along with it.
  5. Prosciutto San Daniele – A customer favorite over at Cheese Bar. “Super buttery and really smooth,” says Michaela.
  6. L’Etivaz – Gruyere as it used to be. Hazelnutty and fruity with a trace of smokiness.
  7. Brûléed Chestnuts –Every time the Holiday Board is ordered, we torch a batch of chestnuts to bring out their sweetness. This is done as a way to play off those salty, nutty qualities in L’Etivaz. Basically, you’re looking for a large, darker nut with some caramelized properties. Murray’s Preserved Walnuts fit the bill wonderfully. They are cured whole, with a mix of cinnamon and allspice, and develop a rich taste and pliant texture.
  8. Lamb Ham – The idea behind this item was to include a smoked meat that’s a little different and a little more exotic than your traditional pork products. We only have it in our restaurant, but some duck prosciutto from Fabrique Delices is more than game.
  9. Stilton – “Stilton is such a holiday cheese,” says Michaela. Indeed, out in its homeland of England, Stilton is synonymous with holiday feasts. To take it to new levels of holiday-ness, Ian developed the final item on the board:
  10. Cranberry White Chocolate Ganache – It is, to use a technical term: super good. The idea behind this creation is that a sweet, candied pairing would make for the ultimate holiday bite. Short of spending New Year’s Eve at Cheese Bar (which you can! We’ll be open from 11am ‘til midnight), this flavor profile can be best approximated with the Murray’s Sundred Cranberries that Ian uses and a bar of Zotter Caramel Milk bar.

So, if you’re feeling some pain up in the ol’ noggin as you try to think your thoughts today, just take a breath and slow it down. Your New Year’s Eve spread is now one less thing you need to mull over. Of course, you don’t have to go whole hog (and rabbit and duck) on your own board; calibrate to the size of your crowd. At the very least though, a couple of these pairings will be their own causes for celebration on Sunday night.

But, you may ask, what about champagne? How does that fit into this pairing party? Check out the blog tomorrow, when we’ll have the relationship between champagne and cheese broken down and explained.

Til then, Cheesers.

Rush Creek Reserve Uplands Cheese Company