All Posts In Farmers’ Market Finds

Market Watch: Early Apples

by in Farmers' Market Finds, September 15, 2012

apples
It’s only mid-September but I’ve been enjoying apples for months –thanks to these early varieties.

  • Delightfully crisp Gala are super crunchy and sweet with rosy skin. They’re good for applesauce or snacking.
  • Streaked pale green and red Honeycrisp are slightly tart and fabulous for baking or applesauce.
  • Red and shiny with a touch of green, MacCoun have the best of everything – sweet, tart, crunch. Fabulous for vegetable, chicken or tuna salads
  • Petite, Early McIntosh have the aroma of an orchard and are perfect for little hands (my kids gobble them up). They make a sweet and delicious pie, too.

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Market Watch: Sun Jewel Melon

by in Farmers' Market Finds, August 5, 2012

melon
After my weekly CSA delivery, I was prepared to write all about a gorgeous looking spaghetti squash that was in my share. But when I open the “squash,” I discovered that it wasn’t a squash at all, but a melon!

I put in a call in to my farmer (yes, proud to say I have her on speed dial); I wanted her to enlighten me – what was this bright yellow melon called? She introduced me to the Sun Jewel. This Asian variety (also called a Korean Yellow Melon) has pale yellow flesh that tastes similar to honeydew, but with more of a cucumber-pear flavor.

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Market Watch: String Beans

by in Farmers' Market Finds, July 11, 2012

string beans
Also known as snap beans or green beans, nutrient-filled string beans aren’t just for Thanksgiving casseroles.

Piles of slender green and yellow beans are spilling over tables at the farmers’ market this time of year. Whatever color you choose (they have similar flavor), they’re marvelous for salads and stir fries, but that’s not all. Here are 5 delectable uses you probably haven’t tried… it’s time to start!

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Market Watch: An Ode to Beet Greens

by in Farmers' Market Finds, April 26, 2012
beets and beet greens
When you buy beets, don't toss the greens!

Some folks foolishly cut and throw beet greens aside, but don’t make this mistake!

Beet greens have a better bite than spinach and a touch of leafy green sweetness, plus a list of valuable nutrients that’s practically never-ending. One cup of cooked beet greets has 39 calories, 4 grams of protein, hefty doses of vitamins A, C , K, riboflavin, calcium, iron and nearly 20% of your daily fiber needs.

Enjoy finely chopped beet greens raw in a salad with balsamic vinaigrette. Saute the greens with olive oil and garlic, use as a pizza topping, or wilt into a steamy bowl of pasta or risotto.

Recipes to Try:
Roasted Beet Risotto
Beet Green Gratin
Garlic Beet Greens

Market Watch: Winter Produce

by in Farmers' Market Finds, February 21, 2012
winter produce
Winter CSA shares can provide fresh, local produce, even in the dead of winter.

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you can’t get your hands on local produce. Eating locally year round is easier if you live in California or Florida but here’s how I do it in Connecticut.

Farmers Markets Finds
Farmers are extra good at holding on to their harvests. If you didn’t turn your own summer bounty into a winter-friendly form, stop by a local farm or winter market to find baked goods, pickles, honey, jams and relish.

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Market Watch: Early Butternut Squash, and a Butternut Squash Focaccia Recipe

by in Farmers' Market Finds, October 5, 2011

butternut squash
Typically winter squash isn’t ready until mid-October, but I get to enjoy it extra early since I grow this special variety in my garden.

While it’s too late now to plant it in your garden, put these seeds on your list for next year. Be on the lookout for it at the local farmers’ market too, its name is simple to remember, it’s actually called Early Butternut Squash. The sweet and tender squash will be ready to eat as early as August and the plant will keep producing through October. Make soup, add roasted chunks to pasta or make this crowd-pleasing foccacia recipe.

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Market Watch: Japanese Eggplant (and an Easy Eggplant Dip Recipe)

by in Farmers' Market Finds, September 12, 2011

eggplant spread
When tiny, cutie-pie eggplants turned up in my CSA box, they were a little small for eggplant parm, but that’s not where my eggplant options end.

Get our quick eggplant dip recipe »

Market Watch: Cherry Peppers (and Cheesy Hot Pepper Poppers)

by in Farmers' Market Finds, August 30, 2011
cherry pepper poppers
Find hot cherry peppers and grill cheesy, spicy pepper "poppers."

Green peppers just don’t get the love they deserve! This time of year you’ll find all different kinds at the farmers’ markets including sweet bell, mild frying peppers and these little babies – sweet and fiery cherry peppers.

These tiny peppers just scream “stuff me.” They’re not as hot as jalapenos, but they still have a bit of heat. Try this grilled appetizer, a take on japaleno poppers made with seafood, cream cheese and salty Manchego. They make deluxe appetizers but only take minutes to make.

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Market Watch: Black Raspberries

by in Farmers' Market Finds, August 3, 2011

raspberry granita
While black-raspberry ice cream may be the extent of your black-raspberry knowledge, these sweet and succulent berries (not to be confused with blackberries) do exist in the primitive form – you just won’t find them in most grocery stores.

Scout out your farmers’ market for deep violet raspberries hiding among the typical red varieties. While blackberries (a completely different variety of berry) are easy to come by, I only know of one local farm that grows black raspberries in my area. They’re only available for a short time (usually mid-June to late July). Use them for any raspberry recipe – trifle and salad dressing are just a few favorites. They make an incredibly special and refreshing granita.

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Market Watch: Pea Shoots

by in Farmers' Market Finds, July 11, 2011
pea shoots
Tender, sweet, delicate pea shoots at the farmers' market.

A true farmers’ market find: Sweet and tender pea shoots are too delicate and perishable for the supermarket.

Pea shoots are the green, coiled tendrils of the pea plant with delicate rounded leaves. They’re bursting with nutrients like vitamin C, fiber and even some protein. Shoots have a subtle pea flavor and add a fresh bite to salads, seafood recipes, and summer rolls (see recipe below). You can also wilt them into soups or pasta dishes by tossing in right before serving.

Shopping Tip: Choose crisp and bright green shoots. Store in the refrigerator gently wrapped in a paper towel and a plastic bag, use within 2 days.

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