Salad queen Hetty McKinnon and friends throw a New York City lunch.
“WHEN I MOVED to New York a few years ago, I brought a bunch of Utopia Goods cushion covers,” says Hetty McKinnon, the Australian expat, salad specialist and cookbook author. “In a world of austere grey, they are a ray of sunshine.” So it was altogether fitting that McKinnon would celebrate the arrival of her Brooklyn studio with the brand’s luminous textiles.
As its name suggests, Neighborhood is a communal cooking space devoted to craft workshops, culinary events and pop-up repasts, like the one delicious. was invited to on a balmy afternoon. Along with McKinnon, the other hosts included her collaborator, Jodi Moreno, and Utopia Goods’ Sophie Tatlow, who was visiting New York from Sydney on a business trip.
The vegetable-focused menu was inspired and informed by the fabric brand’s unflagging reliance on native flora and fauna. “Hetty’s beautiful food and our beautiful tableware make a poetic match,” says Tatlow, whose partner, Bruce Slorach, conceives the company’s exuberant designs festooned with banksias, flowering gums and honeyeaters. “Their work is bold, cheeky and completely cheerful, which captures the Aussie spirit,” says McKinnon.
“I’ve known Hetty since the days she delivered salads on her bike in Surry Hills,” continues Tatlow. Trading Crown Street for Atlantic Avenue, a dizzyingly diverse thoroughfare arrayed with ethnic delis, vintage stores and stately brownstones, has imparted McKinnon’s food with eclectic verve. “Being here has exposed me to so many new influences,” she says.
“This is a refreshing soup to be enjoyed chilled. It’s perfect for entertaining – make in advance and serve it straight from the fridge. But you can also eat this soup hot!”