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  • Writer's pictureKaren Seiger

Festive Food at New York’s Holiday Markets

We are thrilled to be a part of Manhattan Users Guide’s “NYC Bloggers Do the Holidays”!  Here are links to all the other dedicated New York blogs participating!

Manhattan User’s Guide The Gift Guide: 21 Over $21

Patell and Waterman’s History of New York Christmas with Andy Warhol

Now On To The Markets! [nggallery id=70]

New York at the Holidays… Miracle on 34th Street… 5th Avenue Holiday Windows… Shopping… Skating…  Yeah yeah yeah.  We all know – and love – these things about our fair city.  But I’m here to tell you about the Food at the Holiday Markets!

The markets feature savory and sweet foods, as well as the hot drinks you need to sustain you as you wend your way through boutique after boutique.  I’d like to take you on a tour of some of my favorite edible delights at the big seasonal artisan and food markets in Manhattan, plus the Brooklyn Flea, long known for it’s amazing food offerings.

  1. Crif Dogs: Yeah baby!  These guys take a perfect food to a new level!  Of course I’m all for healthy, local, organic food and all that.  But a beef hot dog wrapped in bacon and covered in sour cream or avocado, or some other such topping?  Hold me back!

  2. Fatty Crew: Fatty Crab, Fatty ‘Cue, and Cabrito all rolled up in one booth?  Yes, please.  Their brisket sandwich at the Madison Square Market was so rich and delicious it almost killed me.

  3. Sigmund Pretzel ShopSigmund makes some pretty amazing organic, hand rolled pretzels.  I can’t stop going back for another gruyere cheese one!

  4. Pies-n-Thighs: Even if you’ve never been a Southerner, Pies-N-Thighs will make you nostalgic for the South.  Seriously.  Their fried chicken on a biscuit is out of this world, not to mention all the side dishes.  And the pies?  Well, you just have to try them for yourself.

  5. Raaka Chocolate – I had a sample of Raaka’s blueberry chocolate, and it was rich, flavorful and completely satisfying.  They are a new bean-to-bar maker in New York.  If I’m not mistaken, they are making their market debut at Columbus Circle!

  6. Les Canelés de Céline: Canelés are delicious traditional French pastries made from crêpe batter and with a crunchy coating.  Celine also makes tiny Financiers, perfect with a cup of coffee from New York’s own Ferrara Bakery at their nearby Central Park kiosk!

  1. Daisy’s GritsThe next New York food trend.  You read it here first.  Try the Sausage and Pepper and the Cuban Picadillo. If you’ve never had grits, just think of them as Southern Polenta. All the ingredients are sourced locally in Queens.

  2. Vegetarian Oasis: The name says it all.  Their food is beautiful, healthy and deeelicious.  I had the Black Bean Burrito with avocado, baby spinach, corn, salsa, and brown rice on a whole wheat tortilla.  Ahhhh…

  3. Kettle Corn NYC: You might recognize their HUGE industrial popcorn popper from the summer street fairs, and the fellow with a giant stirring stick and a protective visor making fresh popcorn all day long.  I just love their traditional caramel corn.  If that makes me boring, so be it.

  4. Big Apple Cider: Grab a cup of hot, delicious, smooth apple cider.  No bite at all.  ‘Nuff said.

  5. Yona’s Gourmet Delights:  These savory, bite sized borekas and quiches are the perfect market food.  You get a little bag of 5, and you can munch your way around the market.  I like to pop a whole earthy, salty, buttery mushroom boreka right in my mouth.

  1. Macaron Parlour: You may already know how much I ADORE Macaron Parlour!  They make perfect French confections, some with a distinctly American and Asian twist.  Touch my S’Mores macaron and suffer the consequences.  But I’ll share all the rest with you because they are so incredibly flavorful!

  2. Luke’s Lobster: My dad’s family comes from Maine, and I know from lobster rolls.  I’m here to tell you that Luke’s are absolutely sumptuous.  Just warning you that you’ll want more than one.

  3. Robicelli’s Cupcakes: Here’s all I have to say – Chocolate Candy Cane, Hot Buttered Rum, Tiramisu.  And run, do not walk for a DUCKWALK: vanilla cake, blueberry port mascarpone buttercream, port glazed wild Maine blueberries.

  4. SkimKim:  Kim Chi Pot Pies? I’ll be honest and say that I never recovered from the time my jar of kim chi exploded in my market tote, but I’ll definitely try this pot pie at the Big Social!

  5. The Regal Vegan: Yup, delicious salty and sweet foods that are also super good for us!  Thank you, and can you please open up a counter at Newark Airport?

  6. Dora NYC: In case you’re overdosing on apple cider and hot cocoa, you’ll always have Dora’s LES coffee!

  1. Wild Gourmet Food Everything they bring to the market is wild crafted, or found growing naturally in, well, nature.  I got some incredible chanterelle mushrooms from them and made a lovely sauce.

  2. Shandaken Bake: I cannot wait to try these amazing baked goods.  Brioche sticky buns, maple glazed crullers, and chocolate dunked apple cider donuts?  Bring it on.

  3. Bellocq Tea Atelier: I just met Bellocq, hand crafted tea purveyors newly arrived from London, at the New Amsterdam Market two weeks ago, and I am in love with their amazing products.  I’ve been drinking their fragrant Bellocq Breakfast, which is wonderful for tea purists like yours truly.

  4. The Bent Spoon: Could these New Jersey ice cream makers and bakers be bringing ice cream to the market in December?!  Well, they did in November: roasted pumpkin cocoa nib, cranberry-apple-red pear sorbet, bourbon caramel sweet potato!

Union Square Holiday Market by Urban Space

  1. Bar Suzette:  This local creperie serves up perfect savory and sweet French crepes, made to order and served up steaming hot.  I just can’t get a Ham and Swiss without taking home a Nutella Banana.

  2. Stuffed Artisan Cannoli – Delicious bite sized nuggets of crunchy pastry filled with cream.  I had the chocolate one filled with chocolate cream and covered in chocolate.  Next time I’m trying the candy cane one.

  3. Momofuku Milk Bar:  Why on earth would you wait in line to get into Momofuku when you can just go to the market and sample their amazing Asian Fusion sweets?!

  4. Breezy Hill Orchard Ginger Bread Cookies: Breezy Hill is a Greenmarket staple, and it’s great to see their ENORMOUS gingerbread cookies all week long at the market.

  5. Nibmor Chocolate: All natural and organic chocolate bars to nibble on, and also delicious, rich hot cocoa served.  How can something made with no refined sugar, dairy or gluten be so tasty? It’s a mystery to me.

  1. Rick’s PicksCan I say that Rick’s Pick’s is the Gus for the New Millennium?  He’s been making pickles and selling them in the markets for years, and now he’s nationwide!  I reviewed his Hotties, and they were tasty and veeeery hot.

  2. Liddabit SweetsI cannot resist Liddabit’s signature slurtles (beer caramel + pretzel + chocolate).  Or, frankly, any of their handmade candies.  Great snacks and great gifts!

  3. Fine & Raw ChocolateI have seen people hunt down Fine and Raw at the markets to buy stacks of their bars.  They use low heat processing, and so their handmade chocolates retain all of the health benefits and the intense flavor they were born with.

  4. Nunu Chocolates: More chocolate.  See why I love the Brooklyn Flea so much?  NuNu Chocolates are made with care, love, and a dash of sea salt!  Their salt caramels are stupendous, and their chocolate covered graham crackers send me straight over the top.

  5. SchoolHouse Kitchen:  If ever there was a reason to eat breakfast, it’s so that you can spread Schoolhouse Rosemary Peach Spreadable Fruit on your whole wheat toast!  They make amazing fruit spreads, as well as mustards, chutneys, and dressings.  And they give a portion of their profits to support educational causes.

  6. Kumquat Cupcakery: A tiny cupcake from Kumquat Cupcakery was the very first thing I ate at the Brooklyn Flea when I was just starting to do research for Markets of New York City.  They are compact and loaded with flavor, and my favorite is the maple bacon.  I also love the chocolate lavender.  And the red velvet.  Oh, heck, I love them all.

And there you have it:  Markets of NYC’s Holiday Market Food Picks!  Now go out, eat it all, and let me know what you liked the best!

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