The Dish: A Top NYC Resto Spills Its Best Salad & Cocktail Recipes

It's hard to really flip over a salad. It's not that we don't like being healthy, but sometimes they tend to taste the same: all lettuce-y. So, when we had the Green Goddess salad at rustic East Village restaurant Exchange Alley, and heard our fork hit our empty plate in five seconds flat, we knew we had to scoop up the recipe. Also not-to-miss at the New Orleans-inspired spot (that has its own garden out back)? Creative cocktails like the Lavender Lemonade and Djinn Verde. And, yep, you bet, we've got those kitchen how-tos for you, too, straight from head chef Paul Gerard. Click through for three must-serve recipes for your next summer get together and try all the finger-lickin' fare at Exchange Alley.
Green Goddess Salad
Serves 4
2 heads butter lettuce (a.k.a. Boston Bibb)
2 ripe avocados
8 tablespoons of Green Goddess dressing (see below)
Crunchy sea salt
Fresh pepper
1. Clean and cut the lettuce in half. Hydroponically grow Bibb is best.
2. Gently slice the core of the heads down the middle and tear the head in half. This keeps it more "frilly looking."
3. On chilled plates, put one tablespoon of dressing in the center of the plate and place the half head of lettuce on each.
4. Slice the avocados in half, spoon out the meat on to a cutting board, and make 4-5 ½” slices across the avocado the short way. Use each half for each half head of lettuce, distributing throughout the leaves.
5. Drizzle one more tablespoon of dressing on the lettuce, a bit here, a bit there.
6. Sprinkle with a good crunchy sea salt to taste. We use Maldon for this salad. Grind an ample amount of fresh pepper on each salad.
Green Goddess Dressing
2 salted anchovies, rinsed

1 cup chopped fresh parsley 1/8 cup chopped fresh chives

¼ cup chopped basil
1/8 cup chopped chervil
1/8 cup chopped tarragon
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

Juice of one lemon

3 cups greek yogurt

 Salt and black pepper to taste
1. Put anchovies, vinegar, lemon juice, yogurt, salt, and pepper in a blender and blend until smooth. 2. Combine all herbs in a bowl, then mix in the yogurt blend. 3. Divide the mix into small batches and quickly, yet thoroughly blend. It should be bright green with specks of freshly chopped herbs. Putting too much in the blender at once will beat up the herbs and risk discoloration. Small, quickly blended batches are best. 4. Season to taste, and adjust acid accordingly.
Photo: Courtesy of Exchange Alley
Djinn Verde
2 ounces Djinn
1/2 ounce Pear syrup
3/4 ounce grapefruit juice
4 dashes Regan's orange bitters
5 basil leaves 
1. Clap and tear the basil leaves.
2. Add all ingredients and shake vigorously.
3. Strain into a cocktail glass.
4. Garnish with a basil leaf.
Photo: Courtesy of Exchange Alley
Lavender Lemonade
2 ounces sake
1 ounce lemon juice
1 ounce lavender simple syrup
1. Shake all ingredients very hard, and strain into a medium-sized beer glass with ice.
2. Add a splash of sparkling water to top.
3. Garnish with a sprig of fresh lavender (if available) or a lemon wedge.
Photo: Courtesy of Exchange Alley

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