Posts Tagged ‘cake’

Sunday, March 25th: We Present Proof Spring Is Truly Here!

March 25, 2012

Cascadian Edible Landscapes will help you eat your yard. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Yes, it is spring! Both the calendar and the weather agree on this this weekend! And that means it is time to start planning how you will eat your yard this year. To that end, we welcome the return of Cascadian Edible Landscapes to your Ballard Farmers Market. They’ve got all manner of fruit, vegetable and herb starts ready to go into the ground right now, and they can help you get your yard in shape for your garden, too.

KaYing, a.k.a., The Old Farmer. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

More proof that it is, in fact, spring, is the return of all of our flower farmers today — Mee Garden, Pa Garden, Ia’s and, above, The Old Farmer. Nowhere will you find fresher, more beautiful flowers from a more local source, or at a better price, than at your Ballard Farmers Market, unless, of course, you grow them yourself. And even then, odds are you couldn’t arrange them as well!

Fresh, Washington coastal red king salmon from Wilson Fish. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This sure sign of spring is nothing short of stunning! Yes, Wilson Fish will have the first fresh king salmon of 2012! State authorities had hinted at the possibility of an early opener on the Washington coast this spring, but Gene was convinced it was an April Fools prank. But hey, April Fools Day isn’t until next Sunday. So Gene called us on his way back from the coast this evening to let us know it is salmon time, baby! Woohoo!!! You see, apparently there will be a record salmon run on the Washington coast this year — well, a record for modern times, anyway. But get here early. It will sell out fast! (This just in: in a cruel twist of irony, the early April Fools joke was clearly played on me! It is fresh halibut and true cod today at Wilson Fish. Salmon next week. We’ll suffer through it!)

Fresh-cut herbs from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Children’s Garden has plenty of gorgeous flowers. They also have plenty of stuff for us to eat, as well! And what is truly exciting is that they are already harvesting early spring herbs like parsleychives and mint! They also still have plenty of tender kale and chard.

Over-winter broccoli from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Our sixth flower farmer, Alm Hill Gardens, has plenty of tulips and other beautiful flowers right now, too. And then there are edible flowers like these over-winter broccoli florets. They are sweet and delicious, and you have been craving local broccoli for a couple of months now, right? Indulge yourself! It’s spring! Celebrate!!!

Molten chocolate cake from Hot Cakes. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And if all this isn’t enough to make you run naked through the streets or pass out from hyperventilation, today, we welcome back Hot Cakes to your Ballard Farmers Market. Hot Cakes is in the process of opening a storefront just north of the Market, where it will share with us even more of their amazing sweets made from local ingredients. Like these molten chocolate cakes, from which the name Hot Cakes originates, made with local flour and Theo chocolate, sold to you in its own oven-safe jar, ready for you to take home, heat up, and enjoy all hot and delicious!

Dante's Inferno Dogs. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And, of course, you can always grab a snack in the midst of your trip to your Ballard Farmers Market. Besides the ever increasing number of local, storefront eateries lining Ballard Avenue, many featuring our market farmers on their menus, our own Patty Pan Grill makes tasty vittles using market ingredients, and Dante’s Inferno Dogs offers all-natural, grass-fed beef hot dogs from Whidbey Island’s 3 Sisters ranch.

Hey, there is plenty of local deliciousness waiting for you today at your Ballard Farmers Market. Just check What’s Fresh Now! for a more complete accounting of what is in season right now.

Sunday, January 8th: We’re Back & We Missed You, Too! Farewell Christina. Thanks for the Food Love.

January 8, 2012

Chef Christina Kim Choi slinging mushrooms for Foraged & Found Edibles at West Seattle Farmers Market in 2005. Photo copyright 2005 by Zachary D. Lyons.

With sadness, we share the news of the passing of Christina Kim Choi, a talented young chef who spent many days working at Ballard Farmers Market for Foraged & Found Edibles, which she co-founded with Jeremy Faber, as well as as a shopper. She dedicated herself to local, sustainable food. Christina passed away on Wednesday, December 28, 2011 from a brain aneurism at the age of 34. Rest well, Christina.

Washington black truffles from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Jeremy Faber of Foraged & Found Edibles let me know that he will have his first Washington black truffles of the season today at your Ballard Farmers Market. This rare treat is lovely enjoyed simply shaved over some buttered emmer pappardelle from Pasteria Lucchese. Stop by, pickup some truffles, maybe some chanterelles, pay your respects to Jeremy, then go home tonight, cook up some amazing, local deliciousness with your love ones, give them a hug, and raise a glass to Christina. Because if you love Seattle’s locavoric food scene, whether you realize it or not, Christina’s fingerprints are all over it.

Purple goddess pears from Jerzy Boyz. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

We are sooo glad to be back today at your Ballard Farmers Market today. We’ve missed you woe these three long weeks. You know, it is a bit of a crap shoot for me today to tell you what you’ll find on the tables of the farmers at your Ballard Farmers Market in advance of them arriving this morning, since we haven’t seen them since December 18th. So I am shooting from the hip here. Last I recall, Jerzy Boyz assured me that they would have these gorgeous purple goddess pears for a while. Lets hope “a while” includes today. But if not, I am sure they’ll have plenty of other fruit for you to enjoy!

Beautiful cabbages from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And I am fairly certain Nash’s Organic Produce with have more of these loverly cabbages today. Hey, we’ve got a favor to ask of you. Please help us save the Farmers Market Nutrition Programs from the Governor’s budget axe. This federal-state partnership program leverages $900,000 of federal funds into our state with just a $100,000 state investment. It is also a rare government program that works, and that, in the end, actually pays for itself by generating local economic activity. Please call your state legislator tomorrow or Tuesday at (800) 562-6000 with this simple message: “restore funding for the Farmers Market Nutrition Programs.” To learn more about these program, see yesterday’s blog post on the subject.

Award-winning jersey cow yogurt from Silver Springs Creamery. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This jersey cow yogurt from Silver Springs Creamery took top honors in its class at the 2010 American Cheese Society Awards. And it’s no wonder. This is some of the most amazing yogurt you will ever taste. It comes with a thick, creamery cap atop it that is as rich tasting as any yogurt you’ve ever encountered. If you’ve been looking for some yogurt with some body, with an attitude, that ain’t no wussy yogurt, this is for you. And best of all, it comes to you directly from your local dairy!

Mustard greens from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

The weather’s been pretty mild since we saw you all last, and so I am going out on a limb and predicting that Full Circle Farm will have some of these mustard greens today. See, we haven’t gotten completely frozen out yet, so hopefully these beauties are still hangin’ in there. But if not, you can count on them to have plenty of other good vege today.

Beautiful bacon from the happy pigs of Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Mmm. Bacon. Salty, smoky, fatty porkiliciousness for any season, direct from George and Eiko at Skagit River Ranch. But get there early today, cuz just like their eggs, their bacon always sells out. Mmm. Bacon.

Desiree potatoes from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And, of course, Olsen Farms will have all manner of spudtasticness today, with potatoes of every shape, color and size. I am a particular fan of these desiree potatoes. They have a waxy, yellow flesh that is perfect steamed and slathered with lots of good butter. And they stand up well to being thrown in the pot with your corned beef, too.

A sampler pack of canned tuna from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fishing Vessel St. Jude makes their monthly appearance today with the best albacore tuna you will find anywhere, made all the better because it comes to you right from the boat that caught it off the coast of Washington. This tuna is high in beneficial omega-fatty acids and low in mercury, because they catch it young as it is swimming from the cold waters of their birth in the North Pacific on their way to the tropics to get their party on as young hipsters. Get it as frozen loins, ready to sear or eat raw as sashimi, or get it smoked or dried, and it is the best canned tuna you will ever taste. Just don’t drain off the liquid when you open the can. That’s not water. It’s the flavorful natural juices of the fish!

Gluten-free chocolate decadence cake and chocolate muffins from Deborah's Homemade Pies. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Let us finish with dessert. Mind you, I am a charter member of Dessert First! But most folks eat it after their meal. Go figure. Well, Deborah — the Deborah of Deborah’s Homemade Pies — tells me that she just may have some of these incredible, gluten-free chocolate muffins and chocolate decadence cake today. Seriously, this stuff is amazing. The muffins are moist and delicious, and the cake is rich, dense and, as it should be, decadent. You’ve had a week to get over your holiday gorging. It’s time to treat yourself again!

Just a reminder to please help us save the Farmers Market Nutrition Programs from the Governor’s budget axe. This federal-state partnership program leverages $900,000 of federal funds into our state with just a $100,000 state investment. It is also a rare government program that works, and that, in the end, actually pays for itself by generating local economic activity. Please call your state legislator tomorrow or Tuesday at (800) 562-6000 with this simple message: “restore funding for the Farmers Market Nutrition Programs.” To learn more about these program, see yesterday’s blog post on the subject.

Hey, there is plenty of local deliciousness waiting for you today at your Ballard Farmers Market. Just check What’s Fresh Now! for a more complete accounting of what is in season right now.

Sunday, February 13th: Flowers, Wine, Cheese, Sweets… Sausage!

February 13, 2011

Gorgeous tulips from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, before I get into berating you to not forget your sweetie, mom, cat, dog or parole officer tomorrow, I just have to get a little something off my chest… How ’bout those Egyptians, eh? I don’t know about you, but I’ve been riveted to the international news broadcasts on Channel 28.2 these last few weeks. I fear we Americans too often take for granted what much of the world dreams of having — the right to choose our leaders and say what we want when we want. Maybe watching the brave people of Egypt will remind us not to so easily disregard what is perhaps the most precious right we Americans enjoy: our freedom. So consider this my valentine to the people of Egypt, and a thank you note, too, for reminding us just exactly why we party our American brains out on July 4th every year. Next year, let’s do it on February 11th as well.

Okay, I know I fell better know. So, let’s get to the beratement. You will need flowers for tomorrow, or you will need a comfy couch at your buddy’s house, if he ain’t too busy romancing to open the door to you. Lucky for you, Alm Hill Gardens has flowers. Lots of them. But then, if you are that slacker that shows up to your Ballard Farmers Market at 2:30 p.m. today, you might miss them, because everyone who gets here before you will be thinking the  same thing. I’m just sayin’.

Award winning wines from Lopez Island Vineyards. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Showing up with an award-winning bottle of wine from Lopez Island Vineyards will also be a good career move tomorrow. And Lopez Island Vineyards is right here at your Ballard Farmers Market. Maybe you should try a nice bottle of siegerrebe? It’s made from a German grape that grows well in the Puget Sound appellation, and it has a wonderful grapefruit finish. And best of all, as Brent from Lopez Island taught me, you can remember how to pronounce it by remembering the names “Bob Seger” and “Reba McEntire.” Just say “Seger-Reba”! Folks’ll be really impressed with you, which is, after all, what we’re all going for… to start with anyway… tomorrow.

Seastack cheese from Mt. Townsend Creamery. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

How about some good cheese? This Seastack from Mt. Townsend Creamery is award-winning, too. In fact, it has won multiple awards. With a nice baguette from Tall Grass Bakery, some of that aforementioned wine, and those flowers, you’ve got the foundation for a very special evening indeed!

Handmade truffles from Hot Cakes. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweets. Get you some sweets, too. Like some of these truffles, or perhaps a molten chocolate cake, from Hot Cakes. Talk about your decadence! If this stuff doesn’t lead to… well, you know, then that nut simply was not for cracking. Besides, you can brag that not only do you know the chocolatier, but that the chocolate she uses is organic, fair trade, and made in Fremont! And the flour in the cake comes from Bluebird Grain Farms. Let’s face it. Local, delicious, fair, organic – they’re all sexy. They show you care. They show you think about what you are doing. Who is not going to love you for that?!?

Artisan sausages straight from the farm at Sea Breeze. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And finally, nothing says “I love you” like sausage from Sea Breeze Farm. Am I right?!? Heck, get two — one for you and one for that special someone — or get one just for you, if you’re on your own tomorrow night. Nothing wrong with giving yourself some love by giving yourself some sausage. And frankly, you can’t go wrong with George’s sausage at Sea Breeze Farm. It comes in various sizes and flavors, with a sausage to please everyone. They can give it to you French-style, Italian, Spanish, Romanian — ooh, Romanian. Now, that’s some good sausage! So stop by Sea Breeze today, and ask them to hook you up with some fresh sausage for you to enjoy with your sweetie tomorrow.

There is much more waiting for you at your Ballard Farmers Market today. Just check the What’s Fresh Now! listings in the upper right-hand corner of this page for a more complete accounting of what is in season right now. But please note that due to our recent cold weather, some crops may not be available as anticipated.

Sunday, October 31st: BOO!!! How About Some Market Treats!

October 31, 2010

Dante Rivera, owner of Dante's Inferno Dogs, slinging dogs at your Ballard Farmers Market. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I spent Saturday afternoon partying with Dante Rivera, his staff and his friends, family and fans to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Dante’s Inferno Dogs. In fact, Dante’s is the same age as your Ballard Farmers Market. We both were born in the summer of 2000 here on the mean streets of Ballard. One could say we grew up together. In fact, Ballard Farmers Market has nurtured, or incubated, a number of businesses over the years. Indeed, it is one of its roles. Today, let’s take a look at our five prepared food vendors, four of which developed their businesses by vending at Ballard Farmers Market to the point where they now have storefronts. And vending at Ballard Farmers Market seems to give our vendors a unique sense of community that they carry with them as they grow, as evidenced by Dante’s support of other Market vendors in his business, and the party he threw today. Thanks, Dante!

Devra, owner of Patty Pan Grill, slinging fine veggies quesadillas at Ballard Farmers Market. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Patty Pan Grill is another one of our bedrock vendors. You may be one of the throngs of people who enjoy one of their veggie quesadillas every Sunday, but you may not realize that Devra gets most of those veggies directly from our many farmers each week. You should just see her load up on boxes of veggies at the end of the Market each Sunday. And if you can’t wait to get your weekly fix, you’ll be excited to learn that Patty Pan Grill just opened, last week, a new storefront at 23rd & Madison in the Central District, just a short distance from our sister Madrona Farmers Market. The menu there will change daily and will be seasonally based, using ingredients from our Market farmers and other local farms.

Veraci Pizza co-owner Marshall Jett being interviewed by Food Network Canada. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Veraci Pizza is another Market vendor that now has a storefront — theirs at 5th & Market here in Ballard. From Veraci’s humble beginnings with its pizza oven wagons in our market system, Veraci Pizza has expanded to operating multiple wagons throughout the Seattle area on any given day, as well as doing so in Portland and Spokane, too. So great has the legend of Veraci grown that Food Network Canada interviewed owner Marshall Jett at Ballard Farmers Market earlier this year for a series they are doing on great street food in North America, due to air in the next year.

Fresh, hot mini donuts from Market Mini Donuts. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Market Mini Donuts is our most recent addition. It is a sibling business to Ballard Farmers Market’s founding farm, Anselmo’s. These little suckers are nothing short of addictive, and since they’re small, you don’t have to feel as guilty about polishing off a dozen of them! They actually were slinging their donuts at Dante’s party yesterday afternoon. Their chocolate coated donuts, if you ever get a chance to try them, are outrageously good. I finally forced myself to stop eating them when, well, they ran out.

A typical wall of humanity cued up for Anita's Crepes. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You may wonder why I don’t have a lovely, close up photo of Anita’s Crepes, our fifth prepared food vendor, that also now has a storefront of its own, on Leary Way across from Hales Brewery in Frelard. Well, the simple answer is that the line at Anita’s is always so long, it is hard for me to get close enough to get such a photo. You see that black canopy on the left in the photo above? That’s Anita’s. Now, you see that sea of humanity stacked up in cue for Anita’s Crepes — that wall of people? They wait patiently for a long time to get their crepes. I am not going to risk my life by trying to barge into that line, or get inside their booth and slow them down, lest that mob becomes unruly!

Whole grain emmer, rye and wheat from Bluebird Grain Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, there’s lots of other deliciousness to be had amongst the many tables of your Ballard Farmers Market. Bluebird Grain Farms is here today, but then they’ll be gone for a couple of weeks, so stock up on grains and flours now. Today will likely be the last for corn, peas, tomatoes and many other sensitive summer crops, so grab them while you can. Mind you, it is the last day of October. In a normal weather year, these crops would have come and gone weeks ago! Autumn Martin returns with her Hot Cakes! today. Yunmers! These little cakes that you take home and pop in your oven that come out all molten chocolate are to die for! And you’ll find lots of great fall crops, from apples and pears to winter squash, sunchokes and Brussels sprouts.

There is much more waiting for you at your Ballard Farmers Market today. Just check the What’s Fresh Now! listings in the upper right-hand corner of this page for a more complete accounting of what is in season right now!