Gourmet picnic recipes from top New York chefs

derby horchata talde picnic basket biscuits peaches fried chicken
Try these recipes by chefs from The Derby, Horchata and Talde.
Credit: Metro / Miles Dixon

Want to put together a gourmet picnic basket? Check out these menus from top New York chefs and recreate some of the dishes at home with these recipes.

Horchata’s guacamole


1 avocado
1 pinch salt
2 tsp. diced red onion
1 tsp. diced jalapeno peppers
1 tsp. diced serrano peppers
2 tsp. chopped cilantro
2 tsp. diced plum tomato
Juice of half lime


1. In a small bowl, muddle the salt with half of the red onion, peppers and cilantro to form a rough green-ish paste.

2. Cut the avocado in half and set aside the pit. With a spoon, make large scores in the flesh and scoop into a bowl.

3. Fold avocado into the paste. Texture should be smooth but with some chunks.

4. Finish with remaining red onion, peppers, cilantro, tomatoes and lime juice. Fold together and taste for seasoning. Add lime juice and salt if necessary.

Horchata’s corn bread


16.4 ounces flour
13 ounces sugar
7.5 ounces corn meal
2 tbsp. baking powder
2 tbsp. salt

7.5 ounces whole milk
7.5 ounces creme fraiche
1 pound butter
8 eggs

10 ounces corn kernels
10 ounces diced jalapenos
10 ounces scallions, sliced on a bias
1 ounce Queso Oaxaca, shredded


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, mix all dry ingredients.

2. In another bowl, combine the wet ingredients.

3. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Add corn, jalapenos and scallions. Fold mixture together.

4. In a buttered baking vessel, layer 2 ounces cornbread mixture, a layer of Queso Oaxaca, another 2 ounces of cornbread mixture and so forth until you use all of the mixture and cheese.

5. Bake for 15 minutes and let cool before serving.

Horchata’s flan


12 eggs
16 ounces heavy cream
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. Saigon cinnamon
1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
Caramel syrup (recipe below)


1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk well.

2. Place into 4-ounce souffle dishes that have been lined with caramel syrup.

3. Bake in covered water bath for approximately 45 minutes. After the flan has cooked for 30 minutes, check every five minutes to ensure the flan does not overcook.

Caramel syrup


2 cups sugar


1. Place sugar in a dry, clean pan. Set over medium high heat.

2. When sugar starts to melt, gently rock the pan back and forth to equally distribute.

3. When a dark amber color has been achieved, add a little water to create a syrup.

4. Coat ramekins in syrup.

deviled eggs jalapenos derby southern food picnic
These deviled eggs have an extra kick with chopped jalapenos. Credit: The Derby

The Derby’s deviled eggs with pickled jalapenos recipe


12 large eggs
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp. mustard powder or 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. Tabasco sauce
2 tbsp. chopped chives
Extra virgin olive oil
Smoked paprika to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
Pickled jalapenos (recipe below)


1. Hard boil the eggs and cool completely. Once cooled, peel and slice the eggs lengthwise and reserve the yolks in a medium mixing bowl, or bowl for a stand mixer if available.

2. Add the remaining ingredients and whip with a whisk or whisk attachment for mixer. Rinse the eggs whites in cold water to clean and refrigerate.

3. Place yolk mixture into a pastry bag with a medium star shaped decorating tip. Chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

4. Arrange the egg whites on a serving platter. Add some pickled jalapenos into each one, then pipe the yolk mixture on top. Garnish with more jalapenos, chives, olive oil and a pinch of smoked paprika.

Pickled jalapenos


1/2 pound jalapenos, seeded and small diced
1 cup water
1 cup white vinegar
2 tbsp. kosher salt
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. black pepper
2 bay leaves
1 garlic clove


Place diced peppers into a quart container. Bring remaining ingredients to a boil then cool until just warm. Pour over peppers and cover and place into refrigerator for at least two hours or overnight.

The Derby’s pimento cheese


1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
3/4 cup shredded white cheddar
2 tbsp. pickle relish
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. mustard powder
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
Diced pimento peppers to taste (approximately 6 ounces)
Salt to taste


1. Soften cream cheese and mix in a large bowl with the mayonnaise, Monterey Jack, cheddar, relish and Worcestershire sauce.

2. In a small bowl sift together dry spices and add to cheese mixture. Mix well, season to taste with salt, and lastly fold in the pimento peppers.

korean fried chicken dale talde
Chef Dale Talde says Korean fried chicken is still great at room temperature, making it perfect for a picnic.
Credit: Anne Massoni

Talde’s White Cheddar Biscuits


4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
8 ounces white cheddar
8 ounces butter
1 3/4 cups buttermilk


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Mix all dry ingredients together.

3. Using a pastry cutter, cut butter into dry ingredients.

4. After butter and dry ingredients are well mixed, fold in white cheddar, then, using a wooden spoon, stir in buttermilk.

5. Mix until the dough just comes together (do not over knead or the biscuits will be tough), then turn dough onto a floured surface. Press the dough down to about 1 inch thick.

6. Cut out biscuits using a knife or a round ring mold. Brush biscuits with buttermilk then bake in for 5 to 8 minutes, or until biscuit is golden brown on top.

Talde’s Korean fried chicken


For the chicken and batter:

One whole chicken, boned (ask your butcher to bone it for you)

For the kimchi yogurt:

4 cups Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
4 1/2 cups yogurt
1/2 cup fish sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. black pepper, ground
2 tbsp. paprika

First fry rice flour batter:

3 1/2 cups rice flour
2 1/2 cups water

Second fry tempura batter:

3 1/2 cups rice flour
1/2 cup fish sauce
2 cups water
1 tbsp. paprika


1 tsp. sesame oil
1 cup grapes, halved
2 tbsp. torn mint leaves
Lime wedges


1. Make the yogurt and marinate the chicken: Mix all ingredients together until incorporated; reserve 1 ½ cups for serving in a separate bowl. Marinate the chicken in the remaining yogurt overnight; store in the refrigerator.

2. Fry the chicken: Remove chicken from marinade, dredge in rice flour batter and fry at 280 degrees until 90 percent cooked, about 6 minutes. Drain on a wire rack, letting the first layer of batter crisp and dry.

3. Meanwhile, mix the reserved kimchi yogurt with the sesame oil.

4. Dip the chicken in the tempura batter and deep fry at 350 degrees until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Drain on a wire rack and serve with remaining kimchi yogurt, grapes and torn mint leaves.

Follow Andrea Park on Twitter: @andreapark


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