Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


May 8, 2015

With Mother’s Day less than 48 hours away, the chances of scoring brunch reservations at your favorite spot are pretty slim. But there’s no need to throw in the procrastinator’s towel; we’ve got tons of ideas for how to fete your favorite gal this Sunday, right here at the market. (And no reservations required.)

Sparkling Cider from Finnriver Farm and Cidery Copyright Zachary D Lyons

Sparkling Cider from Finnriver Farm & Cidery. Photo courtesy Finnriver.

Brunch at Home, Market Style:

Smoked salmon from Loki Fish Co., with all the fixins:

Fromage blanc (better than cream cheese) from Mt. Townsend Creamery

Hothouse cukes from Nash’s

A loaf of that salt-crusted marble rye from Tall Grass Bakery

Granola from Marge and sheep’s milk yogurt from Glendale Shepherd

Sparkling pear cider from Finnriver

A leisurely dinner at home, Market Style:

Roast her a Peking duck from Stokesberry (See, 4/29 Post) with:

A compote of rhubarb from Sidhu Farms Stir-fried asparagus from Magana Farms

A bottle of red from Wildridge Winery

Snacks and apps hour, Market Style:

One of those fab raw milk Alpine-style cheeses and a slab of pork terrine from Seabreeze

Baguette from Tall Grass

Radishes from Kirsop Farm served on a bed of

Ginger and pepper pickles from Britt’s Pickles

Garlicky herb dip from Thyme + Season surrounded by pickled garlic cloves from Purdy Organic Pickles and Asian  Salad Turnips on a bed of Mizuna, both from Growing Washington Farms

Pa Garden Flowers Copyright Zachary D Lyons

Pa Garden Flowers. Copyright Zachary D Lyons

And of course, you’ll be showering her with flowers, right? You’ve got all kinds of choices: Mee Garden, Pa Garden, Ia’s Garden, The Old Farmer, Children’s Garden and Choice Bulb Farm will all have multitudes of beautiful blossoms.  Choose Mom’s favorite color or the type of flowers she most likes.

Fleur de Sel caramels from Jonboy Caramels. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fleur de Sel caramels from Jonboy Caramels. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

From eye candy, we go to candy candy — Fleur de sel caramels from Jonboy, try those locally sourced, organic truffles from Soulever Chocolates, or the ever popular and buttery-tasting Pete’s Perfect Toffee.

Goat milk soaps from The Fay Farm. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Goat milk soaps from The Fay Farm. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

There’s nose candy, too — soaps and skin care products from Karmela Botanica,   lavender potpourri and oil from Market Lavender Farm in Fife, or the silky salves from the Fay Farm on Whidbey Island.

Blu Skillet Ironware-

Blu Skillet Ironware. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

A few years ago, Santa surprised me with the 13-inch gratin pan from BluSkillet Ironware, which has become one of my most prized possessions. If you like to cook and have been hankering for a pan that will last you a lifetime, I might start putting the word out. These things are really special.

To our mothers and the many important mother hens in our lives, we salute you! Happy Mother’s Day. P.S. Next Sunday, May 17, the market will not be using Bergen Place and the market will close at 2 p.m. (one hour early) due to the previously scheduled 17th of May Festival and parade that travels through Ballard.


May 6, 2015


Nash's Organic Farm - Black Mustard Seeds

Nash’s Organic Farm – Black Mustard Seeds

The season for hot chile peppers may be months away, but in the meantime, Nash’s Organic Farm has just the thing to take care of that spicy hankering – black mustard seeds. Devon Beck from Nash’s reports that the flavor is reminiscent of wasabi – “its spice is in the front and goes away quickly.” If you’ve ever cooked with black mustard seeds, you’ve probably bought them in the spice section of the supermarket; what a rare treat to get these fresh from the farm. Who knew – black mustard seeds are a rich source of heart-healthy Omega-3s – something we typically turn to wild salmon and other oily fish for. As a member of the brassica family, they’re rich in cancer-fighting phytonutrients called glucosinolates. Eaten raw, mustard seeds are intensely acrid; but half a minute spent popping in oil mellows them in nutty morsels. Add them to vegetable stir-fries, rice pilaf, roasted potatoes, or as a finishing touch to a potful of lentils. Like any other spice, keep the seeds in an airtight container and in a dark, cool place to keep from oxidizing (and turning rancid). And in case you missed it, Nash’s is doing fun things with wheat; since February, they’ve been grinding their hard red wheat for Patty Pan Grill’s homemade tortillas.

Patty Pan Grill's Handmade Tortillas are made with Nash's Ground Hard Wheat

Patty Pan Grill’s Handmade Tortillas are made with Nash’s Ground Hard Red Wheat

 Pick up a package at Ballard Farmers Market from Patty Pan Grill


Colinwood Farm is bringing Summer it to Ballard Farmers Market in May.

Colinwood Farm in Port Townsend - Cucumbers

Colinwood Farm in Port Townsend – Cucumbers

Cucumbers and zucchini fresh from Colinwood Farm’s sustainably heated greenhouses.  While you pick up some of these tender beauties, ask Jesse about his system that allows the heat from the air conditioner to grow cukes & zukes for harvest in April and to Ballard in May. His system re-uses the energy.

Need a Special Gift Soon?

Consider Ballard Farmers Market as a Source

Flower bouquet making mayhem at Mee Garden. Copyright by Zachary D. Lyons.

Flower bouquet making mayhem at Mee Garden. Copyright by Zachary D. Lyons.

Flowers Always Qualify are Always Special

Chinese Peking Duck in Your Kitchen

April 29, 2015
Stokesberry Ducks copyright Zachary D. Lyons

Stokesberry Ducks copyright Zachary D. Lyons



When we talk about seasonal ingredients, most of us think of fruits and vegetables. But animals have a seasonal clock, too – and now’s the time for Peking duck! Also known as Long Island duckling, Peking (also spelled as Pekin) duck is an American descendant of the Chinese Mallard. Mild, tender and meatier than the gamier Muscovy, Peking duck loves high heat, all the better for that crispy skin. Many of us only have had the pleasure in a Chinese restaurant; now’s the chance to try it at home – while they last! Janelle Stokesberry reports that they will also have duck eggs on hand.

A few kitchen tips:

* Ducks typically have a thick layer of fat (not as fat-laden as geese but noticeably denser than chickens). Take the time to trim away fat pockets, particularly around the neck cavity.

Many duck-loving cookbook authors suggest air drying the duck to help draw out the moisture in the fat and ensure your chances of crispy skin. Pat it dry inside and out, place uncovered on a rack-lined pan or plate, in the refrigerator for up to 8 hours. (Don’t fret if you don’t have that kind of time; even an hour will help.)

About 30 minutes before you’re ready to cook, preheat the oven 425 or 450 and bring the duck up to room temperature.

  • Season really well with salt inside and out – estimate about 1 teaspoon salt (we like fine sea salt) for every 1 ½ pounds. Other seasonings that are nice: Grated fresh ginger in the cavity, five-spice powder, smoked paprika, a simple syrup of honey.
  • With a fork, needle or pin, prick the fat all over, be careful not to pierce the meat. If you don’t own a rack, make one with a few ribs of celery so that the duck doesn’t sit in its own juices.

After 20 to 25 minutes, spoon off any fat in the roasting pan (and there will be some). Don’t discard – it’s like liquid gold, taking roasted vegetables to a whole new deliriously delicious level. (Use sparingly –it’s rich!)

Reduce the heat to about 350 degrees and roast for an additional 20 minutes, drain more of that glorious fat, and check its internal temperature with an instant-read thermometer. Now here’s when cookbook authors are all over the map – some like it pink inside, at about 145 degrees in the deep part of the breast; others wait til juices are closer to clear, at about 170 degrees. That’s cook’s choice.

Some, including Janelle Stokesberry, recommend a final blast of heat (back to 425 or 450 degrees ) to ensure crispy, crackly skin. Regardless of what you decide, transfer the duck (and carefully) to a platter. Check for accumulating juices inside the cavity and pour out (and reserve – those are delicious morsels). Allow to rest for at least 15 minutes before carving. Enjoy!


April 24, 2015


The MeltMac

It features goat milk from Left Foot Farm, delicious goat and sheep milk cheeses, and locally farmed dried tomatoes and spinach.

Melt.  Now offering goat milk based macaroni & cheese dishes, inspired by mediterranean recipes.

Melt. Now offering goat milk based macaroni & cheese dishes, inspired by mediterranean recipes, for those who want to avoid lactose

The delicious sun-drenched flavors of the Mediterranean are the inspiration for this “no moo” MeltMac. Made with real Greek Kasseri, Mizithra, a ‘ewe’-phoric Gouda, Kalamata olives, dried tomatoes and spinach; one bite will transport you to the beaches of the Greek Islands. Kali Orexi!  If some of these ingredients are new to you, stop by to ask for a taste and explanation of all of those wonderful names.


Wild-harvested, and fresh as a Gift from Mother Nature can be. Copyright by Zachary D. Lyons

Wild-harvested, and fresh as a Gift from Mother Nature can be. Photo courtesy Hama Hama Oysters.


Better get these wild-caught prawns while they are here at Ballard Farmers Market.  We never know when or how long they’ll be available. A delicate and unique flavor treat, easy to prepare, and absolutely delicious.

EASY RECIPE FOR SPOT PRAWNS DINNER: Start a 2-4 quart pan of heavily salted water to boil.

Wash and trim off tough ends of one bunch Asparagus,

Smash Garlic cloves (as many as you think you’ll like),

Coat a pretty large pan with a good dash of olive oil, add smashed garlic and gradually bring heat up to medium-high.

Wash prawns in fresh, cold water as the fry pan gets hot, pat-dry prawns.

When water is boiling fast, add Pasteria Lucchese’s Tagliatelli, (or any favorite pasta). Stir pasta as water starts to show bubbles again.

Add spears of asparagus or bok choy into the water as the pasta finishes.

This is when you need to watch all the cooking pots because it takes only a short time for everything to be cooked perfectly.

Add prawns into garlic saute pan, stir until they turn red, it will be just a few minutes.

Use tongs to remove veggies from pasta, drain pasta by pouring through a colander.  Plate pasta, pour spot prawns over pasta, including the garlic-oil, add asparagus.  Serve and get rave reviews.

NOTE:  When eating everybody should use their fingers and tongues. Lick the prawns for a great flavor burst, then peel the prawns, bite, eat pasta, eat vegetables, enjoy.


Cascade Bicycle Club has worked to develop a bike rack valet parking program for the community of Ballard Farmers Market.  It will be premiered this Sunday.  Come by the market and check it out.

Cascade Bicycle Club Valet Bike Rack in Gasworks Park

Cascade Bicycle Club Valet Bike Rack in Gasworks Park

We are so excited to be able to offer a safe place at the market for all our biking friends to stash their bikes while they shop at the market. Thanks go to Cascade Bicycle Club for thinking of Ballard Farmers Market as the place for this and for their generous donation of time and efforts to make it happen.  And we want to give a shout out to Second Ascent for providing the storage of the bike rack during the week. The support from this neighborhood is so awesome.