Packed to the Gills
If you think scheduling your family vacation is tough, just imagine what it’s like juggling the schedules of a hundred different vendors between five farmer’s markets. Of course, you have your weekly vendors, your tried and true favorites who provide the market staples like bread, coffee, cheese, produce, fish and, yes, flowers and pie – two weekly musts in my book.
Then you have your rotating vendors. They’re the ones who add the “spice” to the market, as it were, the more unusual items that you wouldn’t necessarily buy every week. There are weeks when, as the schedule falls, we have more than most. This is one of those weeks. You DO NOT want to miss the market this week.
This Saturday, you will find everything from fermented veggies (Dacha) to frozen hot chocolate (Carbon Chocolate Workshop) to strawberry ginger Kombucha to Kalbi marinated steak (Kimchi Culture) to all natural bug spray (Found Herbal).
As for shopping from our weekly vendors, this is my annual reminder to buy a cherry pie from Pie Lady & Son, during cherry season. They use local cherries for their homespun pies and if for some crazy reason you have not tried this pie yet you will be thanking me. Or cursing me, depending on your self-control.
And, of course, now that the tomatoes and basil are rushing in, it is your duty to buy creamy mozzarella from Joe Tomato and make a simple Caprese salad at least once a week.
Another summer reminder to remember to throw fish on your grill. Pura Vida has been bringing some whole fish of late and throwing a sea bass on the barbie along with fennel bulbs from Sun Sprout Farms is one of life’s simple pleasures. Here’s a great recipe for whole branzino with greek fish sauce. You can also grill fillets if a fish head intimidates. Arlotta Food Studio makes a bright lemon olive oil that would be perfect for this recipe.
Also: if you are in need of a generous gift for someone who is hosting you this summer stop by the Misshapened Bowl tent. I can vouch for the fact that those market greens taste better in a hand-turned bowl made of elm wood.
See you at the market!
Pascale Le Draoulec
food writer/ farmer’s market director
author: “American Pie:Slices of Life (and Pie) from America’s Back Roads” (HarperCollins)