Posts Tagged ‘cornmeal’

Sunday, January 17th: Storage Crops (Go Hawks!)

January 17, 2015
The 12th Potato from Olsen Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The 12th Potato from Olsen Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Another Sunday, another big game. That’s been our reality here at your Ballard Farmers Market during football season the last two years. And in order for us to get us localicious on, we all have to do a little adapting. This week, with a 12:15 PM start time, we recommend that you come to your Ballard Farmers Market between 10 AM and noon, or step out of one of the many bars and restaurants on Ballard Avenue featuring the game on their televisions during halftime, if you want to catch the game and get your grocery shopping done, too. And if you focus on these great storage crops featured in this week’s epistle, like these potatoes from Olsen Farms, you can easily leave them in your trunk while you enjoy the game somewhere here in Downtown Ballard. (Oh, and if you are not planning on watching the game, coming to Market during the game will be a pleasure for you!)

Dried grains, beans and seeds from Nash's Organic Produce at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Dried grains, beans and seeds from Nash’s Organic Produce at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Winter is a great time to utilize and enjoy dried beans, grains, seeds and milled products from Nash’s Organic Produce. From freshly milled cornmeal and gluten-free buckwheat flour, to whole grains like triticale and naked oats, from mustard seeds to dried fava beans, Nash’s has an amazing, diverse and versatile selection. I love adding the naked oats to chicken soup, and using their cornmeal to bread pan fried oysters from Hama Hama Oysters, or true cod from Wilson Fish.

Mixed roots from Growing Washington (Alm Hill Gardens) at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Mixed roots from Growing Washington (Alm Hill Gardens) at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Looking for a quick and easy dinner idea? How about a root roast? This handy root mix from Growing Washington (a.k.a., Alm Hill Gardens) is just the ticket. The key to a successful, low maintenance root roast is to cut your roots into appropriate sizes based on their density, so that they all will be ready at the same time. Rutabagas are the densest, followed by carrots and beets, and then potatoes. Sunchokes and parsnips cook the fastest. The denser the root, the smaller the pieces. Follow this rule, and you will have great, simple, delicious root roasts. Just lather them up with your favorite oil, salt and pepper to taste, and slide them in a hot oven until tender. Give them a toss about midway through.

Frozen blueberries from Sidhu Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Frozen blueberries from Sidhu Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

I add a handful of these frozen blueberries to my hot cereal every morning. Sidhu Farms harvests them at their peak of ripeness, and quickly freezes them, so that we can enjoy them all winter long. If you do plan to shop the Market and then watch the Big Game in the neighborhood, we recommend that you bring a small cooler with some ice to keep your blueberries frozen.

Red storage onions from Colinwood Farm at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Red storage onions from Colinwood Farm at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

2014 was a great year for onions, and we will enjoy them all winter long. Just take a gander at these beautiful red storage onions from Colinwood Farm, for example. They are a great long storage onion, have a nice, intense oniony bite to them when raw that is great for salads and sandwiches, and they sweeten up beautifully when caramelized.

Dried beans from Kirsop Farm at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Dried beans from Kirsop Farm at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Besides all of their great veggies, Kirsop Farm produces many different kinds of dried beans, including hurreritetiger, black & pinto, as well as hard red wheat. All are great for hearty fall soups, stews, salads and more, and they will keep for months!

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Finally, don’t forget the wonderful Beauregard sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms. Great roasted on their own, steamed and mashed with garlic and chipotle peppers, roasted with parsnips, made into soup or pies, or however you enjoy them best, they are sure to warm your belly and your soul on a cool, damp Northwest night.

Go Hawks!

There is plenty more 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.

Midweek Update for Wednesday, November 5th: Pickled Things, Cured Things, Fermented Things, Aged Things, Milled Things, Dried Things & Baked Things!

November 5, 2014
Pickled garlic and red onions from Purdy Organics at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Pickled garlic and red onions from Purdy Organics at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

With the first midweek update of November, we give a tip of the hat to all things food artisan, value-added, or processed. What’s the difference? Nothing, really, except that when one says, “farmer value-added,” it means the farmer has processed their own ingredients into the artisan product. And food artisans are simply folks who take raw ingredients and craft (or process) them into something new. This time of year is great for such food, because we tend to enjoy them more now, because they extend the seasons of the ingredients they feature, and because many of those ingredients are done for the year already. And everything in this post features ingredients grown right here in Washington — something we require of our food artisans — and most include ingredients produced by farmers right here at your Ballard Farmers Market! Like Purdy Organics and their shiny new labels to match their new organic certification. They source their pickle ingredients from local farms, including our own Alvarez Organic Farms.

Kimchi, Krauts & more from Firefly Kitchens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Kimchi, Krauts & more from Firefly Kitchens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Firefly Kitchens got their start just a few short years ago selling at your Ballard Farmers Market and our midweek markets. They immediately began winning awards for their naturally fermented kimchis and krauts, not just locally, but across the country. This is food that will cure what ails you, and taste great doing it! It is living food. Personally, I heart the caraway kraut on a nice bratwurst from Skagit River Ranch.

Cordials from Finnriver Farm & Cidery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cordials from Finnriver Farm & Cidery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Finnriver Farm & Cidery may be best known for its hard ciders, but it also make these awesome fruit cordials, a deliciously sweet finish to any meal, and great for all those special occasions in your future. They are made with berries grown right on the farm, as well as tree fruit from their neighbors’ farms. Stop by for a sample this weekend!

Dried garbanzo beans from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Dried garbanzo beans from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Do you buy your garbanzo beans in a can still? Do you think they don’t grow around here? Cuz they do. Lots of them! And Alvarez Organic Farms has them — this year’s harvest, dried, shelled, and ready for you to soak and make the best hummus ever, or to add to salads, soups and more. Cut out the middle man. Don’t worry about what those cans are lined with. Get closer to the source of all of your food. And enjoy even more localiciousness!

Corn meal from Nash's Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Corn meal from Nash’s Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Nash”s Organic Produce may be most famous for its carrotsbeets and greens, but they also grow lots of grains, too. One of those grains is corn — milling corn. If you use corn meal at all, you absolutely must try Nash’s freshly-milled corn meal. You can actually taste the corn, in all its delicious sweetness! I use it for pan-frying oysters from Hama Hama Oysters or true cod from Wilson Fish myself. Nummers!

Gruyere bread from Snohomish Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Gruyere bread from Snohomish Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. FLyons.

Finally, how’s about some Gruyere cheese bread from Snohomish Bakery? Snohomish makes this bread using Shepherd’s Grain flour, produced right here in Washington by a bunch of farmers over in the Palouse. This stuff is seriously addictive, so consider yourself warned! And we’ll see you at your Ballard Farmers Market this Sunday!

Sunday, March 2nd: More Spinach, Salad Mix, Local Cornmeal, Brisket & More!

March 1, 2014
Fresh spinach from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh spinach from Children’s Garden. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Well, it’s snowing in Bellingham again. Good thing we’re not in Bellingham! Cuz we’ve got fresh spinach here at your Ballard Farmers Market. Yup, Children’s Garden has begun to harvest its winter crop of spinach. Spring can’t be far off now! Children’s also has mint and cilantro now, too. Yay!

Organic, pasture-raised beef brisket from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Organic, pasture-raised beef brisket from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You know what else is not far off? St. Patrick’s Day, that’s what. And if you want corned beef that is head and shoulders above the vac-packed stuff in the Big Box stores, why not corn it yourself? Skagit River Ranch has lots of beef brisket available right now just for that purpose. But don’t wait another week to get it. You need to get it today! Why? Because properly brined corned beef takes up to 10 days.

Spicy salad mix from Colinwood Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Spicy salad mix from Colinwood Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

In the meantime, let’s get our salad on again, Ballard Farmers Market style. Colinwood Farm’s spicy salad mix is hitting its prime right now, flush with lots of tender, spicy mustards, arugula, hearty greens and more. You’ll never have a dull mouthful, and your body will thank you for it!

Freshly-milled Yellow Dent cornmeal from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Freshly-milled Yellow Dent cornmeal from Nash’s Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I like to pan-fry Hama Hama jar oysters or Wilson Fish true cod in a nice coating of spices and cornmeal. Now, I can get my cornmeal from our buddies at Nash’s Organic Produce! They continue to diversify their farm, adding grains and legumes, and producing pork for restaurants. But just recently, they began to bring dried corncornmeal and even buckwheat to your Ballard Farmers Market. Awesome! Soon, we will only have to go to the Big Box store for lemons and avocados! (Of course, with global warming and such, we’ll be able to source those locally soon, too.)

Certified organic D'Anjou pears from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Certified organic D’Anjou pears from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

ACMA Mission Orchards still has plenty of great, certified organic apples and pears from the fall 2013 harvest. They’ve got about a dozen different varieties still, including these D’Anjou pears. Great for the lunchbox and to keep the doctor away.

Bagels from Grateful Bread Bakery. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Bagels from Grateful Bread Baking. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Bagels from Grateful Bread Baking will help brunch you through this fine, if not dry, Sunday. Fresh from the bakery and nice and chewy, they are the perfect vehicle for…

Fromage blanc from Mt. Townsend Creamery. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fromage blanc from Mt. Townsend Creamery. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

…some fromage blanc from Mt. Townsend Creamery. Or better yet, try some of their truffled fromage. Beats the heck out of that stuff from Philly, and that is coming from a guy who used to live in Philly!

Sweet yellow Spanish onions from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet yellow Spanish onions from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Add a nice slice of one of these sweet yellow Spanish onions from Lyall Farms next. It provides a nice crunch and a bit of a bite to contrast the cheese and bagel, and it provides a nice platform for…

Salmon lox from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Salmon lox from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

… some wild salmon lox from Loki Fish. They lox up cohoketa and sockeye. I actually prefer the coho and keta to the sockeye. It’s all great, but I grew up in the East, and they use a milder fish than sockeye there for lox. Loki’s coho lox is the closest thing to it, while still being wild and local! And don’t forget to try out their salmon sliders!

Spicy fermented pickles from Britt's Pickles. Photo courtesy Britt's.

Spicy fermented pickles from Britt’s Pickles. Photo courtesy Britt’s.

You know, a nice, naturally-fermented, spicy, kosher pickle from Britt’s Pickles would go well alongside that bagel we just constructed. (And no, it is not called a “bagel sandwich.” It is a bagel. Just like the French eat fries, and people in Buffalo eat wings… well, wangs, actually.)

Siegerrebe from Lopez Island Vineyards. Photo courtesy Lopez Island Vineyards.

Siegerrebe from Lopez Island Vineyards. Photo courtesy Lopez Island Vineyards.

I don’t know whether a bottle of Siegerrebe from Lopez Island Vineyards goes well with our bagel or not. I suppose, with its nice grapefruit finish, that it does have a kind of brunchy quality to it. Of course, you can decide for yourself , since Lopez is sampling its wines today at your Ballard Farmers Market. And did you know that siegerrebe grapes grow in the Puget Sound appellation? Yup. Lopez Island Vineyards grows them right on the island. They like the cool, damp climate.

Breakfast burrito from Los Chilangos. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Breakfast burrito from Los Chilangos. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Of course, you could just get breakfast right here at your Ballard Farmers Market and eat it while you shop! Stop by Los Chilangos for one of their famous breakfast burritos made with Olsen Farms’ pork and Stokesberry Sustainable Farm’s eggs. Yummers!

There is plenty more 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.

Please remember bring your own bags every Sunday, as Seattle’s single-use plastic bag ban is now in effect. Also, please take note of our new green composting and blue recycling waste receptacles throughout your Ballard Farmers Market, and please make an effort to use them correctly. Each container has what’s okay to put in it pictured right on the lid. Please do not put the wrong materials in, because that drives up the cost of recycling and composting, and it can result in the entire container being sent instead to a landfill. Your understanding and cooperation are appreciated.