Posts Tagged ‘flowers’

Sunday, February 8th: Spinach, Sheep Yogurt & Things That Say (or taste like), “I Love You!”

February 7, 2015
First-of-the-year fresh tulips from Alm HIll Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

First-of-the-year fresh tulips from Alm HIll Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Just as we all crawl back out from in front of the nearest big screen TV to have to face the world for another eight months without Seahawks football (for which we, here at your Sunday Ballard Farmers Market, thank the NFL, cuz it gets kinda lonely here on game day), I must remind you that it is time to make plans for that special someone in your life who is already wondering what your are going to do for them this year. No pressure! Yes, Valentine’s Day is coming up this week. Why not get a jumpstart on the gratuitous, if not greeting card company induced, love fest this year with a bouquet of fresh tulips from Alm Hill Gardens? And if you get buds that are still pretty tight, they’ll be in full bloom come that magical day.

Baby spinach from Colinwood Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Baby spinach from Colinwood Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, I love root vegetables and kale just as much as the next guy, but it is nice to know that Colinwood Farm in Port Townsend is looking out for our culinary sanity by offering us something else out of their greenhouses this time of year. Like this beautiful spinach. No, this is not a stock photo taken in the summertime. This is an honest-to-goodness February image. Enjoy!

Pink Lady apples from Collins Family Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Pink Lady apples from Collins Family Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Pink Lady apples from Collins Family Orchards not only help keep the doctor away all winter long, but they also are just plain delicious! Still plenty crisp, they are one of my favorite eating apples.

First of the new year sheep's milk yogurt from Glendale Shepherd at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

First of the new year sheep’s milk yogurt from Glendale Shepherd at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The ewes up on Whidbey Island are making milk again, and that means more fresh sheep’s milk yogurt from Glendale Shepherd! I love this stuff. It is part of my morning routine year-round. And I love how the flavor changes with the seasons. You can actually taste the changes in the forage the sheep eat.

Kale-spinach tortelloni from Pasteria Lucchese at Ballard Farmers Market. Photo courtesy Pasteria Lucchese.

Kale-spinach tortelloni from Pasteria Lucchese at Ballard Farmers Market. Photo courtesy Pasteria Lucchese.

Having trouble getting a reservation for Valentine’s Day? Why bother? Make dinner at home! We’ve got the spinach salad and flowers covered above. Grab some fresh artisan pasta made with market-fresh ingredients from Pasteria Lucchese for your main course. They have a wonderful selection of pastas from which to choose, they can give you tips on how to prepare it, and they even have a great lineup of sauces, too!

Gift box of dairy-free truffles from Soulever Chocolates at Ballard Farmers Market. Courtesy Soulever Chocolate.

Gift box of dairy-free truffles from Soulever Chocolates at Ballard Farmers Market. Courtesy Soulever Chocolate.

How about a nice box of dairy-free chocolates for that special someone, even if that special someone is you! Made by Soulever Chocolates in West Seattle, they are made using many local, and always the best, ingredients!

Raw pet foods from Porter's Pride at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Raw pet foods from Porter’s Pride at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Don’t forget the love for Fido or Mittens! Stop by Porter’s Pride and check out their raw diet pet foods for cats and dogs. Made with human-grade, locally-raised meats and other ingredients, this is food you can feel good about feeding your four-legged loved ones. And they will slobber and shed all over you with affection in return!

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.

Sunday, January 11th: Tulips, Honey, Hazelnuts, Microgreens,

January 10, 2015
First-of-the-year fresh tulips from Alm HIll Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

First-of-the-year fresh tulips from Alm HIll Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

It’s January 11th, and that means it’s tulip season at your Ballard Farmers Market, of course! Yes, Alm Hill Gardens has harvested the first fresh tulips of the year from their greenhouses up in Everson, just south of the Canadian border. It may not feel like spring outside, but you can bring some spring into your home with some of these beauties!

Brussels sprouts from Nash's Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Brussels sprouts from Nash’s Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Nash’s Organic Produce is featuring both carrots and Brussels sprouts this week at your Ballard Farmers Market, and to that end, Patty has sent us this great recipe to enjoy them both together!

Glazed Carrot/Brussels Sprouts Sauté

  • 1 lb. carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 lb. cleaned Brussels sprouts
  • 3/4 cup chicken or veggie broth
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper

Blanch carrots in salted water for about 4 minutes. Remove and cool. Blanch sprouts for about 5 minutes. Drain and hold separately. Refrigerate if making ahead.

Bring stock, butter, brown sugar, vinegar and salt to a boil and stir until sugar dissolves and mixture is reduced to about half. Add carrots and shake pan to coat them. Cook for about 6 minutes. Add the sprouts and pepper and cook 4 minutes more, stirring or shaking until all is coated thoroughly. Serve immediately.

Washington honey from Brookfield Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Washington honey from Brookfield Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Please welcome back one of our old friends, Brookfield Farms, returning after a hiatus of several years. Brookfield offers local honey from their own hives, as well as the hives of some friends. They also offer lovely wool products, too!

Got Soup?'s Jerry Baxter stirring a steaming caldron of soupliciounsess. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Got Soup?’s Jerry Baxter stirring a steaming caldron of soupliciounsess. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Earlier this past week, I pulled a quart of Manhattan clam chowder from Got Soup? out of my freezer. It was the best of its ilk I have ever tasted. With a deep, rich flavor, thick with nice chunks of veggies and clams, it was nothing like the thin, watery versions I’m used to, and amen to that! Perfect on a bleak, foggy January day. Here is what Got Soup? is featuring this week at your Ballard Farmers Market:
Orange & Cumin Sweet Potato-Vegan: Vegetable stock (water, onion, carrot, celery, tomato, parsley) sweet potato, onion, celery, oranges, cumin, cilantro, jalapeno.
Cassoulet: Chicken stock (chicken, onion, carrot, celery, tomato, parsley) onion, white beans, carrot, celery, tomatoes, pork shoulder, garlic sausage, garlic, white wine, bay leaves, parsley, thyme.
Northwest Chowder: Fish/clam stock, onion, potatoes, celery, leeks, red pepper, salmon, clams, milk, butter, GF flour, parsley, chervil, chive, thyme, peppercorns.
Thai Style Pumpkin & Coconut-Vegan: Vegetable stock (onion, celery, carrot, tomato, parsley) Pumpkin, coconut milk (water, coconut extract) onions, cilantro, ginger, red curry, tamarind, coriander.
Corn and Mushroom-Vegan: Vegetable stock (onion, carrot, celery, tomato, parsley) corn, onion, mushroom, red pepper, coconut milk, spinach, cilantro, thai chilis, tamarind.
Farmbox Greens' vertical farm in West Seattle. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Farmbox Greens’ vertical farm in West Seattle. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Get a big boost of nutrient dense deliciousness in the new year with microgreens from Farmbox Greens. Grown in their vertical farm in West Seattle, Farmbox offers a variety of microgreens, from radish to arugula to broccoli and more! And because microgreens are the tiniest of baby vegetable plants, they are packed with nutrients to help them grow and mature. Juice them. Use them as a garnish for salads, soups, sandwiches and proteins. Eat them right out of the container. Nummers.

Preserves from V Smiley Preserves at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Preserves from V Smiley Preserves at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Have you met our newest maker of preserves and spreads? V Smiley Preserves takes wonderful local ingredients and honey, adds a few exotic flavors and a lot of love, and you get amazing toast! Stop by for a taste today!

Fresh eggs from Growing Things Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh eggs from Growing Things Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

We expected the return of Growing Things Farm, with their amazing pasture-raised chicken and eggs, last week. And then it rained over Saturday night. It rained, and it rained, and by the time they arrived at your Ballard Farmers Market last Sunday morning, they got word that both the Tolt and Snoqualmie Rivers were rising fast. See, the farm is located between the two rivers, right where they meet each other, and that spells trouble when we get a warm, heavy rain in the mountains in January. The result was one of the largest floods in the history of the Snoqualmie Valley. The good news is, Growing Things Farm raised its farmhouse last year (with your help, I might add), and they built and critter and equipment pad, so all the animals — chickens, goats, humans, etc. — and tractors managed to stay high and dry. And now, they’ve got an extra week’s worth of eggs to sell! But they always go fast. Get here early.

The Loki Special breakfast hash from Loki Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The Loki Special breakfast hash from Loki Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Loki Fish is mixing it up a bit at their grill, adding breakfast and chowder to their lineup of salmon sliders. Pictured above, The Loki Special is a potato hash that features a fried Skagit River Ranch egg, smoked Loki coho salmon, Skagit bacon, and Market veggies. It’ll cure what ails you!

Natural hazelnuts from Holmquist Hazelnut Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Natural hazelnuts from Holmquist Hazelnut Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

And don’t forget these amazing local DuChilly hazelnuts from Holmquist Hazelnut Orchards. Indeed, this particular variety of hazelnut, native to Washington, it on its way to extinction. There is a virus killing the trees. And that actually explains why you’ll see “Product of Canada” on some of the bags. See, while Holmquist is replanting their Lynden orchards with a European variety of hazelnut that is not vulnerable to this virus, they are needing to supplement their harvest, which is now down over 90% from its peak, with DuChilly hazelnuts from a handful of orchards just over the border in British Columbia. These orchards are within 30 miles of Holmquist, south of the Frasier River, and they are also infected and in decline. Holmquist is helping those orchardists out by taking their entire harvest as Holmquist waits for its new trees to mature. So enjoy our native hazelnuts while you can. They are the best in the world, and we will miss them when they are finally gone.

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, October 29th: Artichokes, Fall Flowers, Local Wine, Cippolini Onions, Kirsop Farm & More!

October 29, 2014
Artichokes from Growing Things Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Artichokes from Growing Things Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

It’s time for your mid-week teaser! Here is some food for thought — literally — to fire you up for this weekend’s trip to your Ballard Farmers Market. These are some gorgeous artichokes from Growing Things Farm, don’t you think? And they are just waiting for you to use them in your favorite recipes. And though you cannot really tell from this photo, these babies are nice and large.

Red Delicious apples from Martin Family Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Red Delicious apples from Martin Family Orchards at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

It’s gotten so many people disregard the humble red delicious apple in favor of exotic or classic heirlooms, or because they just seem mundane and boring. And while modern red delicious apples that are bred for storage and appearance — the ones you get at the Big Box store or with school lunches — have been accurately described as “akin to old potatoes when they come out of long storage” by a former Washington State Director of Agriculture, these red delicious apples from Martin Family Orchards are not those red delicious apples. These are, in fact, an older variety of them that hasn’t been bred black and flavorless, but instead is one of the finest eating apples you will ever encounter, because Martin brings them to Market fresh from harvest, when they’re at their peak of flavor and crispness. These are the red delicious apples that earned them their name in the first place!

Maggie and pup Lola inspecting the Madeleine Angevine grapes at LIV (Lopez Island Vineyards). Photo courtesy LIV.

Maggie and pup Lola inspecting the Madeleine Angevine grapes at LIV (Lopez Island Vineyards). Photo courtesy LIV.

The harvest and crush are in full swing at vineyards and wineries all over Washington right now, and that includes LIV (a.k.a., Lopez Island Vineyards & Winery). Here, Maggie and farm dog Lola are inspecting some of this year’s Madeleine Angevine grapes on their Lopez Island vineyards. These are the grapes responsible for their most award-winning wine. Stop by for a sample at your Ballard Farmers Market!

Fall dahlia bouquet at Mee Garden at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Fall dahlia bouquet at Mee Garden at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

It seems our amazing, endless summer of 2014 has truly come to an end, though we continue to be blessed with lovely Sundays, as the weather gods love them so Ballard Farmers Market as much as you and I do. Still, we can continue to bring home summer sunshine in the form of these spectacular flowers from Mee Garden until they receive their first frost in the Lower Snoqualmie Valley. So stop by for a beautiful bouquet this week!

Cipollini onions from One Leaf Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cipollini onions from One Leaf Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cipollini onions from One Leaf Farm cook down and caramelize wonderfully, making them brilliant for adding deep, rich onion flavor to soups, sauces and sides, or just as a simple garnish. Try them with one of their winter squash! One Leaf also has other great storage onions now, as well as shallots.

Beets from Kirsop Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Beets from Kirsop Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

This Sunday, we welcome a new farm to the vendor ranks here at your Ballard Farmers Market, but Kirsop Farm is by no means a new farm. In fact, they’ve been around for almost 20 years! We’ve enjoyed their stunning organic produce at both Wallingford and Madrona Farmers Markets for the last two years, and they’ve played a starring role at the Olympia Farmers Market going back to the 1990s. Based in Tumwater, Kirsop Farm is one of those farms, like Boistfort Valley Farm, to which many other farms in Washington look up. Their displays are magnificent, and their produce superb. And for an example of both, just take a gander at the beets in the photo above.

Sunday, September 21st: Today We Enjoy One Last Official Day Of The Endless Summer Of 2014!

September 20, 2014
Ocra shelling beans from Alm Hill Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ocra shelling beans from Alm Hill Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Orca beans from Alm Hill Gardens are one of those varieties of shelling beans that was developed in partnership with Washington State University in an effort to produce beans that would thrive in the climate of Western Washington. Alm Hill actually developed and named these right on their farm in Everson, Washington, a stone’s throw from the Canadian border. They are gorgeous, aren’t they? And they do look like Orcas. Alm Hill has a number of fresh shelling beans, both in the pod and shucked, right now. If you haven’t cooked with fresh shelling beans before, I highly recommend it. Mmm. Think of the soups, the salads, the sides… think of the succotash!

BTW, today there will be a major People’s Climate Action March in New York City, but you won’t have to hop a climate-deteriorating flight there to get in on the action. You can simply ride your bike or hop a bus to Downtown Seattle (check the People’s Climate Action site for event details on many marches globally). Now, why should you care? I mean, if global warming means we get more summers like this, we’re sitting pretty here in Seattle, right? Wrong! Do you love oysters? Because our spewing of massive amounts of carbon from fossil fuels into the atmosphere over the last 50 years has made Puget Sound so acidic that oysters are having to be spawned elsewhere and then planted in our oyster beds now. And the krill that our beloved local salmon feeds on are having even more trouble reproducing, which spells trouble for the salmon themselves. So, if you like to eat great local seafood, just for starters, then it’s time to care!

Asian pears from Tiny's Organic at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Asian pears from Tiny’s Organic at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These Asian pears from Tiny’s Organic may look like apples, but they are all pear. Now, I say that only to then tell you that they are really another fruit unto themselves in many ways. They have a flavor that is almost wine-like. The point is, they are wonderful, and you should get some.

Oh, and speaking of climate change, cooler temps will come this year… eventually. If you think you could use some help with your utilities this coming winter, be sure to stop by the Market Information Desk today to find out how Seattle Public Utilities can support you with their winter assistance program.

Fresh, Washington coastal red king salmon from Wilson Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh, Washington coastal red king salmon from Wilson Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Today is the last day in 2014 for fresh Washington coastal king salmon from Wilson Fish at your Ballard Farmers Market. The Washington coastal fishing season closed earlier this week. Of course, next week, they will still have plenty of their amazing smoked salmon, as well as other fresh fish. But this is your last chance this year to get your fresh, truly local king salmon on!

Sweet corn from Nash's Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet corn from Nash’s Organic Produce at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Nash’s Organic Produce is rocking the organic sweet corn right now with their biggest crop in years. You can help them by bringing lots of it home and making with it this recipe from Nash’s for corn salsa:
Corn Salsa

2 cups sliced, ripe tomatoes
2 cups fresh corn kernels
12 oz-can black beans, rinsed well, drained
4 green onions, sliced thin
1 or 2 green jalapeño, seeded, diced fine
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 fresh lime, juiced
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. sugar
Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Toss all ingredients in a large glass or stainless steel bowl to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. May be made up to 8 hours ahead. Toss well before serving.

Also, Nash’s encourages you to save the date for Clallam County Farm Day and their Fall Barn Dance and Farmland Fundraiser featuring Seattle sensation Spoonshine.  On Saturday, October 4th, Farm Day runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Nash’s Community Potluck begins at 6 p.m., with the band starting at 7:30pm. Nash’s also has hay and straw available for your animal and mulching needs. Please contact Sid at the Nash’s Sales Desk at (360) 681-7458.
San Marzano paste tomatoes from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

San Marzano paste tomatoes from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

San Marzano paste tomatoes are the pride of Italy, growing near Naples in the fertile volcanic soils around Mount Vesuvius. So it is no wonder that they also thrive in the rich volcanic soils in the Yakima Valley of Eastern Washington at Alvarez Organic Farms. And in this epic year of the tomato, this is perhaps the best year we’ve ever had for these little treasures. They are a thick fleshed tomato with fewer seeds than a Roma tomato, and a robust flavor that makes them an ideal sauce tomato. If you ever wanted to can some sauce tomatoes, this is the year, and these are the tomatoes to can! They are great roasted and grilled, too.

Snow peas from Boistfort Valley Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Snow peas from Boistfort Valley Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Look kids! Snow peas are back at Boistfort Valley Farm! Yes, Boistfort as a late crop of snow peas they are harvesting now, right alongside their celery root and winter squash! See, when the summer lasts this long, you can squeeze extra plantings out of it. Enjoy!

Gluten-free brownies from Nuflours Gluten-Free Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Gluten-free brownies from Nuflours Gluten-Free Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

These gluten-free brownies from Nuflours Gluten-free Bakery are as good as they look. Seriously. If you require gluten-free baked goods, these will thrill you with the bakedliciousness you’ve been missing. Even if you don’t require gluten-free goods, you will still love these. And Nuflours uses all sorts of yummy local ingredients from local farmers in many of their goodies. Right now, their products feature produce from Hayton Farms, Kirsop Farm, Martin Family Orchards and Stoney Plains Organic Farm, to name a few.

Late summer flower bouquet from Pa Garden at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Late summer flower bouquet from Pa Garden at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Don’t forget to pick up a lovely bouquet of late summer flowers from Pa Garden today at your Ballard Farmers Market. These beautiful, local flowers are fresh, affordable, have a smaller carbon footprint, and come with the face of a local farmer, unlike the flowers from the Big Box store which come via airplane from places like Holland, Israel, South Africa and who knows where.

Organic fig brittle with almonds from Pete's Perfect Toffee at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Organic fig brittle with almonds from Pete’s Perfect Toffee at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Let’s end on something truly sweet today. This is the latest creation from Pete’s Perfect Toffeeorganic fig brittle with almonds. It’s delicious. And it has perfectly good for you things like figs and almonds in it, so you can enjoy it while justifying away any misplaced feelings of guilt.

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.