Posts Tagged ‘cream’

Sunday, December 12: Pork Bellies, Paprika, Lamb Skins, Smoked White King Salmon, All The Kale You Can Eat (for a price), Great Holiday Gifts & Miner’s Lettuce (really)!!!

December 11, 2010

A Mother's Day 2009 visit to Ballard Farmers Market from the entire family Vojkovich of Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

See how good looking you can be when you eat nothing but the bounty found at your Ballard Farmers Market? Actually, Eiko (left), Nicole & George Vojkovich of Skagit River Ranch are in large part responsible for keeping us all healthy and good looking around here with all of their pasture-finished, certified organic beef, pork, chicken, eggs, and for my money, the best sweet Italian sausage around these parts. Are you looking for a special holiday roast? Click through to their website (or ask them at the Market) to see how to call them to pre-order your whole beef tenderloins, prime rib roasts, boneless hams and pork bellies now, and they’ll deliver them to you at the Market on December 19th.

Spicy and delicious paprikas from Some Like It Hott! Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Welcome back, Some Like It Hott! Just in time to put some kick into your holidays. Charlie Bodony got his itch for all things paprika from his Transylvanian ancestors, and now he raises, dries, smokes and grinds his own paprikas, in the style of his elders, in Port Townsend. His paprikas range from mild to atomic, with a wide variety of flavors and colors. And don’t be intimidated by those small bottles. A little goes a long way. Oh, and ask if he’s got any of his homemade liquid smoke. He makes it from the condensation created when he alder smokes his chili peppers.

Fresh, tasty miner's lettuce from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I suppose that, given how screwed up the growing seasons have been this year, we should not be surprised by the appearance of miner’s lettuce from Full Circle Farm in December, instead of February. Miner’s lettuce is native to these parts, and it got its name when miners foraged it for food back in the late 1800s. Still widely found growing wild all over Western Washington in the late winter and early spring, it is now also cultivated by many local farmers. It’s leaves have a spinachy toothsomeness to them, though the flavor is very mild, and it takes well to a simple dressing of olive oil and lemon juice with some pinenuts or sprinkled over a pizza or gratin raw after they’re done cooking.

Fun hair barrettes from Solstice Designs. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Solstice Designs has all manner of lovely items to pretty up  yourself, or that special someone, this holiday season. (Not that you need any prettying up, mind you.) You’ll find fun and inspired earrings, pendants, necklaces, and more, including these great barrettes that’ll have all your friends asking, “where did you get that?”

Gift sampler 3-packs of canned tuna from Fishing Vessel St. Tuna. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

For the person who thinks they have everything, how about a gift 3-pack of canned tuna from Fishing Vessel St. Jude? They get three of St. Jude’s most popular versions of their canned tuna in a handy steel can, complete with colorful, decorative and informative label. And the tuna contained therein is, frankly, the best canned tuna they will find anywhere. Plus, it’s low mercury and high in omega fatty acids. Just don’t drain off the liquid. They don’t add water. That liquid is the delicious and nutritious fats from the tuna itself!

Sheep skins from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Olsen Farms has lotsa potatoes, beef, pork, lamb, bacon, sausage, ham, and right now, a limited number of sheep skins. These gorgeous sheep skins are soft, warm, and make for a cozy Hollywood moment with someone special in front of a crackling fireplace with a bottle of red wine from Sea Breeze or Lopez Island. And never fear, they are also washable, for when you ruin the moment by spilling that red wine on it. They’ve got about a dozen going for $120 each, and they go fast every year, so get yours early!

Dried fava beans from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stoney Plains had a rockin’ year for fava beans, and lucky for us, they dried some of them. Talk about the ultimate year-round farm. Greens and beans all winter long! So enjoy this new addition to the dried bean lineup at your Ballard Farmers Market, and enjoy your fava beans all winter long.

Adam Lewis, from House Of The Sun raw & vegan foods, stands behind lots of Nash's kale. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

From the category of “a picture speaks a thousand words” comes this photo of Adam from House Of The Sun raw and vegan foods holding up their deliciously famous kale chips while he stands behind a huge pile of Nash’s kale that he will use to make more kale chips. It is one thing to be a local food processor who makes a great product. It is another to be one who makes that great product from local ingredients!

Red storage onions from Anselmo's. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Anselmo’s, your Ballard Farmers Market’s founding farmer, is always a great source for all things onions, shallots and garlic. Just take a gander at these beautiful red storage onions, for instance. Just think of the Christmas morning bagels and lox with a slice of one of these lovelies!

Goat milk soap from Harmony's Way. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Is your skin sensitive to many soaps? Are you looking for something milder? How about goat milk soap from Harmony’s Way in Chimicum? They raise and milk their own goats to make this wonderful soap, and they offer it in a variety of shapes, sizes, scents and designs. And while maybe a lot of the girlier looking and smelling bars won’t appeal to us manly men, these new standard-sized rectangular bars (above) with rugged, manly aromas will suit us just fine, so we can still look tough, even while pampering our delicate skin.

Smoked whole sides of white king salmon from Wilson Fish. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Are you entertaining an uppity bunch this holiday season — you know, the kind that will only accept the best nibbles laid out in front of them? Then pickup a side of smoked white king salmon from Wilson Fish. White salmon is the oiliest, most moist of all salmon, and when smoked, it is beyond divine. Lay one of these suckers out with your holiday spread, then scoff at your friends’ tables when you go to their parties!

Milk, cream and butter from Golden Glen Creamery. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You will be spending a lot of time in the kitchen over the next few weeks preparing all sorts of delicious recipes that call for butter, cream and milk. Lucky for you, Golden Glen Creamery has you covered. Bottled in refillable glass bottles for superior flavor and a kindness to the environment, their milk and cream has few rivals, and their farmstead butter is the only farmstead butter made in Washington. But cream supplies are limited, so get there early!

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, May 23rd: Head Cheese, Strawberries, Sea Beans & Maybe A Duck.

May 23, 2010

Head cheese from Sea Breeze Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I often rave about porkolicious, lambrific, beeftastic meat from Sea Breeze Farm, those crazy kids over on Vashon Island who drag their refer cases to Ballard every Sunday with all sorts of tasty animal parts in it. But these guys also rock the charcuterie, too. Each week, you will find any number of terrines, pates and other offal concoctions ready to slather on a nice slice of Tall Grass baguette with some mustard. Last week, Sea Breeze offered up this particularly lovely head cheese experiment from their kitchen. I ask you, why would anyone waste the perfectly good head of a pig when you can make some spectabulous dish like this out of it. In fact, while most Americans are turning their little puritanical noses up at the pig’s head, the guys working in the kitchen can’t wait to get their hands, and forks, on it. Oh, how much we entitled gringos with our steakhouse cuts of meat miss out on in this country.

A grain rolling mill in action at Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Nash’s has been doing a little equipment testing at your Ballard Farmers Market lately — grain rolling mills. These gadgets, like the one above, will roll out whatever whole grain you’ve got into flat, round pieces, like the rolled oats you get as oatmeal, or at least that’s the plan. Stop by and see what you think, though honestly, the one that Sequim Prairie Star let me play with when I visited their farm, just down the road a piece from Nash’s, worked much better than either of the two Nash’s tested last week. So if you must have one, ask the folks at Sequim Prairie today what kind theirs is. Then grab some grain from Nash’s or Bluebird and have some fun with it.

Dozens of empty milk bottles behind Golden Glen's table. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I love the fact that Golden Glen Creamery packages its milk and cream in reusable glass bottles. Besides the obvious environmental benefit, packing milk in glass protects its flavor as well. See, plastic milk bottles impart a slight plastic flavor into your milk. So if you haven’t tried milk out of glass, give it a shot this week. Once you go glass, you’ll never go back to plastic.

This first strawberries of 2010, from Tiny's. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, I’ve made you wait long enough. Yep, there are strawberries in the Market! Tiny’s is growing them in East Wenatchee, and lucky for them, they didn’t all get frozen out recently. Well, lucky for us, too. I did some quality control work on your behalf in a steady downpour on Wednesday at the Wallingford Farmers Market, and I can assure you, these are some sweet, delicious berries. But there aren’t many of them, and no one else has them yet, so they will go fast. Get ’em first thing. The eggs can wait! Oh, and grab a pint of cream from Golden Glen to drizzle over them.

Duck eggs from Quilceda Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of eggs, have you ever tried duck eggs? They are just a little richer than chicken eggs — and a little bigger with a deeply yellow, almost orange yolk that stands up firmly in your skillet. I love duck eggs. And you can get yourself some of them from Quilceda Farm, along with some goat sausage, for one yummy breakfast.

Fresh ducks from Stokesberry Sustainable Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And speaking of ducks, Stokesberry had these magnificent, whole, fresh ducks last week at your Ballard Farmers Market. And if we’re lucky, they will have a few more today. But if you miss out, they will have more in a month or so. Stop by and reserve one, and pick up some chicken while you’re there. Oh, and Stokesberry will be featured at Ray’s Boat House on Thursday, June 3rd, from 6-8 p.m., as part of Ray’s Year of Sustainable Stories dinner series. Check Ray’s or Stokesberry’s websites for more details.

Fresh mint from Mee Gardens. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It’s horse racing season, and you will be needing plenty of mint for your juleps. Lucky for you, Mee Gardens has it. This stuff is beautiful and fragrant, and waiting to be muddled. Enjoy!

Actually, I believe it is some of Children’s Garden’s mint that Tom uses in his mint-chocolate chip ice cream at Empire Ice Cream, and Theo chocolate. I know what you’re thinking. How come I don’t have a photo of some delicious choc-mint, as the Brits would call it? Simple. I ate it all. I mean, honestly, I hate mint-chocolate chip ice cream most of the time, because they all use mint oil. All, except Empire Ice Cream, that is. They use fresh mint leaves, and that makes all the difference in the world. But I am not gonna stand around taking pictures of it while it melts in front of me.

Sea beans from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sea bean season has begun. Sea beans grow, well, in the sea, ergo the name “sea bean.” These salty little rascals lend a wonderful flavor to many dishes, from salads to fish and meat, and more. Stop by Foraged & Found Edibles and pick some up, along with some preparation suggestions.

Clockwise, from left, is red king salmon, rockfish, marbled king salmon and halibut, from Wilson Fish. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

At Wilson Fish, they say that if their fish was any fresher, it would be from the future. In fact, most Sundays, the fish they are selling at Ballard Farmers Market was still swimming on Saturday. That means the freshest, truly local — as in from Washington — king salmon, halibut, rockfish, ling cod and true cod you are likely ever to taste, and because they handle it so carefully, it is always in beautiful condition. It also means these guys don’t sleep a lot from May through September, which may explain why they surround themselves with bad humor-covered fluorescent signs.

Original and chocolate Josephines from Hot Cakes. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Autumn Martin’s Josephines at Hot Cakes are about as rich and decadent as any hedonist could hope for. Loaded with plenty of eggs and butter and Bluebird Grain Farms flour, these little cakes are amazing, but they’re not diet food. And amen to that! Now, Hot Cakes offers a chocolate version of its Josephine to accompany its original. These things are to die for, as long as they don’t kill you. But if you need the number for my cardiologist, just inquire at the Market Info Desk.

Beautiful bok choy from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, I thought I’d better finish off with some ruffage. Some gosh-darned delicious ruffage, that is. And gorgeous, too. Just check out this bok choy from Colinwood Farms. I had some of this alongside an incredible piece of Wilson’s king salmon last week, and boy-howdy, was that good. A little garlic, a little oyster sauce. Oh, yeah. That’s what I’m talkin’ about, baby.

And remember, your Ballard Farmers Market is chock full of all sorts of goodness for  your kitchen, from meat, seafood, poultry, cheese, to all sorts of fruits and veggies, baked goods, sauces, confections, fresh-cut flowers and fresh milled flours, plants for the garden, wild mushrooms, and on and on. For a fuller accounting of what you’ll find at the Market today, go to “What’s Fresh Now!” in the upper right-hand corner.

Sunday, March 28th: A Holiday Ham, A Market Family Addition, Rhubarb (so much for the rhythm of this title) & A Small Amount Of (wait for it) Asparagus!

March 28, 2010

A holiday ham from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Don’t forget to pickup a lovely ham for Passover, err, I mean Easter, coming up this week. This beauty is from Skagit River Ranch. Honestly, their hams are among the best I’ve ever had. Seriously. Also seriously, Olsen Farms has plenty of briskets still for Passover, which starts sundown tomorrow. And for Easter, they have lamb saddle roasts and rack of lamb today for $18/pound and standing rib roasts for $14/pound.

By the way, Skagit River Ranch will be featured during a special dinner at Ray’s Boathouse on Thursday, April 1st as part of Ray’s farmers market and sustainability dinner series. Make your reservations now!

Laurel Batho, new daughter of Julianna Batho. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ballard Farmers Market added a new member to its family on March 10, 2010 at 9:54 a.m., when Julianna Batho of Ascents Candles gave birth at home to daughter Laurel, who joined us at a healthy 8.5 pounds. Julianna may be back selling her candles as early as today, so do stop by and congratulate her, and say hi to baby Laurel.

Fresh mint from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It was just two years ago that Seattle Chefs Collaborative held a “Seasonal Ingredients” Meet & Greet on March 31st, for which there were mostly just roots and some braising greens available for the menu. Wow, is this year different! Yes, that is fresh mint you see above, and yes, this is a recent photo. Children’s Garden already has mint for you at Ballard Farmers Market, so why not muddle a julep or three for, um, well, spring. Yeah, that sounds like a good enough excuse.

Rhubarb from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And rhubarb. Yes, it is also now in season. Doesn’t a little rhubarb crisp sound pretty good right about now? Stop by Stoney Plains to pick some up today, but do it early, lest it sell out. And remember, you can get the flour for your crisp from Nash’s, and the butter and whipping cream from Golden Glen Creamery.

Wheat-free Oat Bread from Pacific Coast Bakery. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Pacific Coast Bakery took a little break from your Ballard Farmers Market during the dead of winter this year to upgrade its bakery. They’re back now with an expanded line, including this Wheat-Free Oat Bread. Yes, this stuff is made with oat flour, so if you are avoiding wheat, and missing bread, pick up a loaf of this stuff today.

Sunflower sprouts from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These sunflower sprouts from Alm Hill Gardens have a deliciously nutty sunflower seed flavor (okay, maybe that should be “seedy” instead of “nutty”, but who wants to eat some seedy, right?), and they are one of the most nutrient dense foods around. Oh, and rumor has it that Alm Hill may have a little of the year’s first asparagus today, but get there early if you want some.

Canned albacore tuna from Cape Cleare. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

“Line caught & handled with care” is what it says on the labels for Cape Cleare Fishery’s cans of albacore tuna. And besides the fact that their tuna is delicious, the labels on their cans are beautiful works of art.

Chives, green garlic and red mustard greens from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And talk about the happy days of spring, how about this shot. Chives, green garlic and red mustard greens from Colinwood Farms. Oh, happy days indeed!

Smoked salmon wings from Wilson Fish. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Here is a true delicacy — smoked salmon wings from Wilson Fish. These are the fins that are trimmed from the fish when it is being filleted, and because the fins are near the fattest part of the belly, they are incredible rich with fish oils. In other words, these suckers are like buddah.

And remember, your Ballard Farmers Market is chock full of all sorts of goodness for  your kitchen, from meat, seafood, poultry, cheese, to all sorts of fruits and veggies, baked goods, sauces, confections, fresh-cut flowers and fresh milled flours, plants for the garden, wild mushrooms, and on and on. For a fuller accounting of what you’ll find at the Market today, go to “What’s Fresh Now!” in the upper right-hand corner.

Sunday, March 14th: St. Paddy’s Day, Daylight Disorientation, err, Savings Time & Planning Ahead for Passover & Easter. So Many Major Eating Holidays, So Little Room In My Fridge!

March 13, 2010

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

You will need lots of these Red Norland potatoes from Olsen Farms this week to cook with your corned beef on St. Patrick’s Day, that 1,600-year-old holiday that celebrates St. Patrick running the snakes (read “Pagans”) out of Ireland (as if), leaving behind Catholicism, which ultimately led to all that much more brutal oppression of the Irish by the English hundreds of years later when the Pope wouldn’t let England’s king get a divorce, and the king kicked the Church out of the British Empire. Of course, my Irish ancestors who helped colonize New York in the late 1600s after being thrown out of the old country by the Brits for being poor ended up giving up their Catholicism anyway, since it was no more legal to be Catholic in the 13 colonies than it was in England or Ireland. Thus, St. Patrick’s Day has become for my family, and for most other folks, really, a celebration of Irish heritage and all things Irish. And that is fine, I suppose, as long as we never forget that the holiday has as its foundation genocide. (And now you know why we Irish drink so much on St. Patrick’s Day.)

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

But I digress. (No kidding, you are thinking.) Good, firm red potatoes like the Red Norlands, or these Desiree potatoes, also from Olsen, are a must for cooking with your corned beef, both for tradition’s sake, and because you need a potato that will hold up to a long cooking time in salty water with the beef without crumbling to starchy mush. These two kinds of spuds fit the bill, and lucky for you, Olsen has them on sale today — 5 pound bags for $6! Yukon Golds, too, which you will need for latkes for Passover and for boiled or mashed potatoes for Easter. Olsen Farms also has plenty of briskets for Passover and Easter, and they have sirloin tips on sale this week for $9/pound.

Various cabbages from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You’ll need cabbage for your corned beef, too. For that, check out Nash’s Organic Produce (above). Green cabbage is most traditional, but I like using Savoy cabbage because it is less dense and full of lots of crinkly pockets that allow it to cook more quickly in the hot, salty, spicy beef broth, where it soaks up all that brothy deliciousness.

Freshly harvested rutabagas from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It is also traditional to throw some lovely winter roots into the pot with the beef. They cook nice and slowly, and they, too, soak up all the spices from the broth. Carrots are commonly used, but I like tossing in rutabagas, like these from Alm Hill Gardens. Their denseness holds up well to the long cooking time, whereas things like turnips and parsnips turn to mush, and rutabagas balance well with the flavor of the rest of the meal. Besides, rutabagas are about as Irish as potatoes. The Vikings left them behind in Ireland forever ago — longer ago than potatoes. In fact, in Ireland, they simply call rutabagas “turnips”.

Milk, cream and butter from Golden Glen Creamery. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

What is St. Patrick’s Day without butter? Lots of butter to slather all over those boiled potatoes and rutabagas. Butter is sacred stuff in Ireland. In Irish lore, there is an entire type of fairies that are dedicated to butter. And if you make fresh soda bread or brown bread (which you can make with flour from Nash’s, by the way), you will need even more butter. Get that butter from Golden Glen Creamery. And if you are making a famous chocolate wafer cake, too, you will need heavy cream for whipping, which Golden Glen also has, as well as lots of other milky goodness to aid your Irish Coffees and homemade Irish Creams.

Wine and hard cider from Rockridge Orchards. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And what is St. Patrick’s Day without that aforementioned drinking, right? Well, it is also tradition at my St. Paddy’s Day table to raise a glass of Rockridge Orchard’s finest and toast Wade & Judy Bennett for making it for us. So pick up a bottle or three of hard cider or wine and party like its the Stone Age, just like the Irish have been since the Stone Age!

Chicken poo compost from Prana Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Here is something many folks think we Irish are full of when they hear us waxing poetic about just about anything. It is “Very, Very Potent Chicken Poo Compost” from Prana Farms. It is some serious fertilizer, folks. If only I could package some of the bovine feces that comes out of my mouth. I’d be a gagillionaire!

Wild morel mushrooms from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, there is other stuff to be had at your Ballard Farmers Market this week, and hopefully that will include some more of these lovely morel mushrooms from Foraged & Found Edibles. Unfortunately, while our warm winter led to these bad boys being at the market last Sunday, the cold week we just had might have set them back a few weeks more, so check with them early if you have any hope of getting any.

Goat cheeses from Port Madison. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Port Madison returned to your Ballard Farmers Market with their lovely goat cheese last week, so if you were in serious chevre withdrawal, you are in luck. Their girls have begun producing milk again for cheese making.

Dandelion greens from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stoney Plains continues to roll out more and more early spring greens. Check out these dandelion greens. Cleanse that liver with a dandelion green salad tonight! (It’ll get it ready for all the damage you are going to do to it on Wednesday.)

French Breakfast radishes from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Another sure sign of spring are these French Breakfast radishes from Full Circle Farm. Add them to the salads you will be eating in abundance on either side of St. Patrick’s Day, or just eat them straight, with a little truffle salt. Oh, yeah. That’s what I’m talkin’ about.

A selection of frozen, prepared meals from Cibo Pronto. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And if you just don’t feel like doing any cooking yourself, why not pick up one of these tasty frozen prepared meals from Cibo Pronto, based right here in Ballard. I enjoyed some of their Split Pea & Bacon soup this past week that was out of this world.

And remember, your Ballard Farmers Market is chock full of all sorts of goodness for  your kitchen, from meat, seafood, poultry, cheese, to all sorts of fruits and veggies, baked goods, sauces, confections, fresh-cut flowers and fresh milled flours, plants for the garden, wild mushrooms, and on and on. For a fuller accounting of what you’ll find at the Market today, go to “What’s Fresh Now!” in the upper right-hand corner.

p.s., Did you set your clock forward for Daylight Savings Time?