Posts Tagged ‘emmer’

Sunday, October 16th: Fall Flour, Sweet Potatoes, Seedless Grapes, Sunchokes, Ginormous Leeks, The Difference Between Celery & Celeriac, and One Final Farewell To Carrie!

October 16, 2011

Freshly milled flour from Bluebird Grain Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Yuppers, it’s fall, good citizens of the People’s Republic of Ballard. And we are breaking out the layers. Brrr. But hey, Bluebird Grain Farms is just wrapping up their fall grain harvest, and that means they’ve got all sorts of freshly-milled flour with which you can warm up your house as you bake all manner of deliciousness. They specialize in growing the finest emmer in the country, but they also grow some rye and wheat, too, and it is super fresh right now. And you can get it whole, cracked, and in cereal and mix blends. Tis the season! Enjoy!

Canadice einset table grapes from Jerzy Boyz. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These canadice einset table grapes from Jerzy Boyz are sweet, juicy and seedless. That makes them perfect for turning into raisins. So break out the dehydrator, and stock up on these beauties. Of course, you can eat them fresh, too. Just don’t dilly-dally, as they’ll only be available for a couple more weeks.

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet potatoes are back at Lyall Farms. They are the only farm currently bringing local sweet potatoes into Seattle-area farmers markets. See, sweet potatoes like it hot, and Lyall Farms grows them in Sunnyside — about the hottest place in the state. These babies are deeply sweet. They are of the so-called “yam” school of sweet potatoes. Of course, they aren’t yams. Yams grow in Africa and Asian and are white, starchy things. The sweet orange and red tubers we call yams are sweet potatoes. Blah, blah, blah. Just get you some. You can thank me later!

Sunchokes from Summer Run Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

With our cool, fall weather and the plethora of root vegetables flooding your Ballard Farmers Market right now, it seems to me that it’s high time for a good, old-fashioned root roast. Some of those sweet potatoes, and some of these sunchokes (a.k.a., Jerusalem artichokes) from Summer Run Farm, will make a great start on that. Sunchokes make for an awesome alternative to potatoes in many recipes, including home fries and soups, too. So enjoy this North American native, tuberous vegetable that is from the sunflower family this fall. Eat like a pilgrim!

Celery (left) and celery roots (a.k.a., celeriac, right) from Boistfort Valley Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, it’s time for a little visual aid. Above is a photo of celery (left) and celery root (a.k.a., celeriac, right) from Boistfort Valley Farm. Yes, they are closely related, but no, they are not the same plant. And you do cook with them differently. Now you know. That said, you will be hard-pressed to find finer examples of either anywhere else.

A dizzying variety of flower bulbs from Choice Bulb Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D Lyons.

Welcome a new farm to your Ballard Farmers Market — Choice Bulb Farms. Mind you, they are not new to farming, just new to our Market. They produce an extraordinary variety of flowering bulbs up in our own little Holland in Skagit County, the #2 bulb producing region in the world. And now is the perfect time to plunk some fresh bulbs into your garden, so that you can enjoy them all next year.

Bulk yellow carrots from Colinwood Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D Lyons.

Woohoo! More sweet, delicious roots! It’s yellow carrots from Colinwood Farm. These are awesome. And did y0u know that Colinwood Farm is right smack in the middle of the city of Port Townsend? Yup. It sits on 12 acres of fertile bottomland, surrounded by several neighborhoods, just a stone’s throw from downtown.

Monster leeks from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D Lyons.

No, those are not miniature ears of sweet corn from Nash’s Organic Produce. To the contrary, they are full-sized and delish. It’s just that they are dwarfed by Nash’s humongous leeks. I have heard rumors that these leeks, if left unsupervised, will, in fact, destroy Tokyo! Make soup from just one of these bad boys, and you could feed an entire army.

Maple-walnut fudge with chocolate from Pete's Perfect Butter Toffee. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D Lyons.

Pete’s been in the kitchen experimenting again. The result is this new maple-walnut fudge with chocolate — the latest addition to the Pete’s Perfect Butter Toffee lineup. And hey, you eat all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables all the time from your Ballard Farmers Market, right? The meat, seafood and poultry you consume is all sustainably produced and healthy. And you’re eating your share of fermented vegetables from Firefly Kitchens. So treat yourself! You’ve earned it!

Padron peppers from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D Lyons.

If you count yourself a foodie, you know that padron peppers are all the rage right now, especially since the good folks at The Harvest Vine in Madison Valley introduced many of us to them fried and salted. Full Circle Farm grew some this year, and if you are lucky, you will get to see David today before he sells out of them, so you can enjoy the deliciousness at home your own self.

Carrie disappears behind a mountain of roots from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo courtesy Clayton Burrows.

It’s time for one last, colorful, silly goodbye to Carrie Palk of Alm Hill Gardens, as she breaks our hearts and abandons us to return to her roots in Ohio. (Hey, ho, way to go…) In this photo, taken by Clayton Burrows last week, it’s as if Carrie is a setting sun behind a mountain of roots, and they are filled with all the colors of a spectacular sunset. Carrie, we’ll miss you, but it is good to know we’ve got a couch to crash on in Cincinnati.

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, May 1st: May Day! May Day! (Don’t Panic. It Is May Day, After All! Time To Celebrate Spring!!!)

May 1, 2011

Oxbow Farm's Luke Woodward proudly showing off his prized carrots. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Now, I am certain it is spring! Oxbow Farm returns today. Welcome back Luke and the gang for another great year of deliciousness. Luke tells me they’ll have parsnips, russets, wild nettles, spinach, various raabs and a bunch of plants, including their famous tomato starts and a variety of brassicas.

Hey, as much as I talk about it being spring, and today it will really feel like it, the Pagan calendar considers May 1st to be the beginning of summer, and they mark it with the holiday of Beltane. So celebrate looking forward to a great harvest, and celebrate fertility! Set a bonfire! Color some eggs and hang them from trees! (Oh, by the way, those colored eggs eventually led to the Easter egg hunt, after early Christians stole the Pagans’ eggs and buried them.) Today is also the international day of workers, so thank yourself, and someone working for or near you, for keeping things moving, in spite of Congress, the banking industry, oil companies and the lot. Oh, and today a bunch of anarchists will likely march around the streets of Olympia and do a dance with local authorities.

Asparagus from Magana. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Magana Farms also returns today for the 2011 market season with lots of Yakima Valley asparagus. Yup, it’s time to get your asparagus on, folks. In fact, not only Magana, but also Lyall Farms and Alm Hill Gardens will have asparagus today. Woohoo!!!

Squash blossoms & baby squash from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

No, this isn’t a file photo. These are squash blossoms photographed by yours truly just last Sunday. Colinwood Farm grows them in their greenhouse every spring, just to please us and confuse the heck out of us. But hey, stop questioning. Instead, grab some of these beauties, and then get some chevre or fromage from one of our various cheese makers and stuff these bad boys and fry ’em up! You can thank me later. Oh! They have adorable little baby squash ripe for the sauteing, too!

Canned smoked salmon bellies from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I’ve never understood why some people trim the belly fat off of their salmon. I mean, when are people gonna get it through their thick skulls that not all fat is bad? In fact, fat is a necessary part of our diets, and without it, our brains literally cease to function. That’s why fish is good brain food. And cold water fish is even better brain food. It’s got all those omega fatty acids that make our brains and our hearts so happy. And those salmon bellies so many of you are eschewing are full of them. Not to mention the fact that they are friggin’ delicious! Honestly, I was at this fish market in Florida — a place I already established two weeks ago with you as devoid of real farmers markets — and in addition to the great local seafood they had in their cases, they had wild Alaskan salmon… with the belly fat all trimmed away. In horror, I asked, “Why?!?” They said most people wanted it that way — more evidence that that state is just fundamentally twisted. So then I asked, “Do you at least save the bellies for yourself?” And they said, “Of course. That’s the best part of the fish!” Yes, a voice a reason in an unreasonable place. Blessed are the fishers and fishmongers! Well, salmon bellies are something many of us understand around here, and Loki Fish decided it was high time they canned some of them just for us. (I can only assume that Dylan and Pete simply had more salmon bellies than they could possible eat by themselves!) So come pick up a can of Loki’s smoked salmon bellies today. Okay, get three, and tell your family you got two, and then eat the third of them in your car in the driveway.

Easter eggs & French breakfast radishes from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Radishes are absolutely rocking right now. Just look at these lovely specimens of radiliciousness from Alm Hill Gardens! Slice them over some spicy salad mix, for which Alm Hill also has you covered, dip them in some butter and truffle salt, or just eat them straight. Yeah, baby!

Mothers' Day gift bags from Woodinville Lavender. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I had a chance to visit Woodinville Lavender Farm amongst the wineries and distilleries of Woodinville on Thursday afternoon. It is rather extraordinary what can be produced on just a 1-acre lavender farm. They are infusing their lavender into soaps, bath salts, candles, neck & eye pillows, mists, and all sorts of things. In fact, just in time for Mothers’ Day, they’ve put together a little gift bag that’ll make any mom giddy.

Green leaf lettuce from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

“Lettuce entertain you.” Sorry. But every spring, the first lettuce of the year gets me singing that Queen song in my head. This green leaf lettuce is one of several varieties of the leafy wonderfulness offered up by Stoney Plains already this spring. Oh, happy day!

Whole emmer in husk from Bluebird Grain Farms. Photo copyright 201o by Zachary D. Lyons.

Emmer is just simply a beautiful grain in so many ways. This is it still in the husk last fall from Bluebird Grain Farms. They then husk it to extract the whole grain, which they sell as is, or milled as flour or cracked emmer. Bluebird returns to your Ballard Farmers Market today with all manner of emmer and other grain products.

Berry wines from Rockridge Orchards. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of Mothers’ Day, it is just next Sunday. No time like the present to grab some wine or cider from Rochridge Orchards in preparation. Then drink it this week, and come back next week, with mom, and buy some more to share with her!

Peppermint & chocolate mint from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Don’t you just love fresh mint? Of course you do! And the Kentucky Derby is next Saturday, you know. You will need plenty of mint to make proper mint juleps or iced tea for the occasion. So stop by Children’s Garden today and pick some up!

Chocolate milk from Silver Springs Creamery. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Chocolate milk, oh, how I love thee. And thank you, Silver Springs Creamery, for blessing us this day with delicious chocolate milk made with your wonderful Jersey cow’s milk. Okay, everyone, I’ll race you to Silver Springs’ tent for the last bottle!

Three different strudels from Little Prague European Bakery. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And for those of you who simply are not yet sweet enough, stop by Little Prague European Bakery for some of their famous strudel, and sweeten yourself up a bit. Believe me, we will all be the better for it!

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.

Sunday, April 10th: Nothing Says Spring Like Garden Starts, Easter Hams, Baseball, Radishes & Lard!

April 9, 2011

Baseball cookies from Grateful Bread. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

So let’s root, root, root for spring to show up. If it doesn’t, it will be a shame. But hey, ignore the forecast, as it’s spring at your Ballard Farmers Market right now! And that means, among other things, baseball cookies from Grateful Bread. You’ve just gotta love the creativity of these folks. I mean, have you seen the alligator loaf?!

Vegetable starts from Sunseed Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Rain or not, if you plan on having a garden, now’s as good a time as any to start planting you some veggies. Sunseed Farm returned to your Ballard Farmers Market last Sunday with all manner of organic veggie starts. So get out the slicker, boots and trowel, and get planting!

Easter hams from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, now that’s a proper photo of Olsen Farms’ holiday hams, just in time for Easter. Much better than last week’s photo of ham hocks, don’t you think? Skagit River Ranch has hams, too, and Olsen is offering up leg of lamb this week, as well. Or, get a chicken from Growing Things or Stokesberry Sustainable Farm — perfect for Passover.

Ravishing red radishes from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ravishing radishes just radiate spring. Just imagine dipping them in some butter and truffle salt, slicing them over a beautiful salad, or just eating them all before you even get home. These lovelies are from Full Circle Farm.

Spicy salad mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And speaking of salad, spicy salad mix has returned to the tables of Alm Hill Gardens. Woohoo! May your taste buds and colon rejoice!!! Get you a big ol’ bag, and a few bunches of them radishes, and just eat yourself silly!

Shucked, smoked & pickled oysters from Hama Hama Oyster Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Have you met our new shellfish farm yet? If not, meet Hama Hama Oyster Company. They’ve got a few varieties of oysters in the shell, as well as the above shucked, smoked and pickled oysters, and they’ve got some gorgeous manila clams, too. If you’ve been missing your oysters & clams, stop by for your fix. These sweet, briny bivalves will absolutely make your day!

Bluebird Grain Farms Orange Hazelnut Farro Salad. Photo courtesy Bluebird Grain Farms.

Bluebird Grain Farms returns today, with the plan of coming back now every week. So come on down and pick up some emmer, a little flour, and maybe a bag or two of biscuit mix. Oh, yeah.

Strawberry starts from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Strawberry starts from Stoney Plains Farm. Plant them now. Eat berries from them in June! ‘Nuff said.

Pork lard from Sea Breeze Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And finally this week, nothing says spring like, um, lard? Oh, what the heck. You are going to make pie for Easter, right? Then why not make it right, with the most incredibly flaky crust ever? Well, that will require some of this beautiful lard from Sea Breeze Farm, it will. (Um, not the best choice for that Passover pie, but then again, such a pie would like be made of matzoh meal and eggs anyway, right?)

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, February 27th: Bluebird Grain, Suh-weet Sweet Potatoes, Moby Bread, Righteous Salad Mix & Some Tasty Chickweed!

February 27, 2011

Whole emmer/farro from Bluebird Grain Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It’ll be fairly short and sweet this week, folks, as honestly, I am a bit wiped from prepping for the 2011 Farmer-Fisher-Chef Connection tomorrow. (If you are a chef, you need to check this event out, BTW!) Bluebird Grain Farms makes its monthly visit to your Ballard Farmers Market today with whole grain emmer/farro, cereals, flours, mixes and all things graintastic.

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Lyall Farms still has plenty of sweet potatoes, but they won’t last forever, and you won’t find local sweet potatoes anywhere else in Seattle. Stock up on this super food, and sweeten up your dinner tonight. Tell Lizzie I sent you!

Colinwood Farms' salad mix is big and bold with spicy mustards and bitter mizunas. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Oh, happy day! Colinwood Farms from Port Townsend is finally turning out their incredible salad mix from their greenhouses. (And hopefully, the recent cold weather didn’t set it back too much.) This is one of my favorite salad mixes anytime, what with all the beautiful, tender mustards, arugulas and other leafy deliciousness. But right now, it is just about the only salad mix! Amen it’s here!

Gala apples from Tiny's. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Lotsa lovely apples still to be had at Tiny’s Organic Produce, like these gala apples, for instance. Keep that doctor away with these babies!

Ahoy! It's Moby Bread from Grateful Bread Bakery. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ahoy, matey! It’s Moby Bread!! I love the cool looking loaves the bakers at Grateful Bread create each week for us, from this whale to lobsters and crabs to alligators and more. And really, if you must eat whale, wouldn’t you feel better about yourself if that whale was made of bread?

Deli to-go food, Sea Breeze Farm-style! Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Do you ever find yourself marveling at all of the spectabulousness in the refer cases at Sea Breeze Farm, wishing they would just come to your house and cook it for you? Well, George and the gang have met you halfway. Now, they are preparing dishes in their restaurant and bringing them to Ballard Farmers Market, and you can take them home to enjoy later. I enjoyed that Farm-Cured Sauerkraut with Pork Belly & Potatoes (right, above) last week. They used their pork in it, and the rest of the ingredients came from other Market farmers, except the bay leaves. I harvested those puppies for them! (Thanks, Jenny.)

Chickweed from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And I end this week with another sign that this winter cannot last forever — chickweed from Stoney Plains. Hey, not only can you eat this stuff, but it actually tastes good. It kinda has a grassy flavor to it. Try it alongside some albacore from St. Jude. You can thank me later.

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.