Posts Tagged ‘frozen blueberries’

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.

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Sunday, April 14th: More Asparagus, Baby Red Chard, Blue Oyster Mushrooms, Baby Summer Squash, Rhubarb, Green Onions & Sausages!

April 13, 2013
Asparagus from Magana Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Asparagus from Magana Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ignore the thermometer, or you will miss out on all manner of spring deliciousness at your Ballard Farmers Market this week. Like even more asparagus. Yes, Magana Farms rejoins us today for the 2013 season, and they will bring with them plenty of asparagus. And Lyall Farms will also have plenty more asparagus with them today, too!

Baby red chard micro greens from One Leaf Farm. Photo courtesy One Leaf Farm.

Baby red chard micro greens from One Leaf Farm. Photo courtesy One Leaf Farm.

These beautiful, adorable little micro greens are baby red chard sprouts from One Leaf Farm. Thinning time on the farm means stunningly deliciousness, delicate greens for us at your Ballard Farmers Market. Don’t go cooking these lovelies. Use them raw in a salad, or garnish a nice piece of fresh halibut from Wilson Fish with them. Of course, you’ll have to get to One Leaf and Wilson Fish early enough that they each still have these delicacies. Consider yourself warned!

Rhubarb from Oxbow Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Rhubarb from Oxbow Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Oxbow Farm, newly returned to your Ballard Farmers Market just last Sunday, is also rocking the springliciousness with cabbagecollard and kale raabspurple sprouting broccoli that is nothing short of jaw-dropping grilled alongside some of the first fresh king salmon of the season from Wilson Fish, and everyone’s favorite Oxbowteer, Alice. But really pleases me is the first rhubarb of spring — something I like to think of as the first fruit of the summer, even though it is a vegetable. Doesn’t your first rhubarb crisp of 2013 sound like a pretty nice dessert for tonight?

Farmer Jessie Hopkins of Colinwood Farms holding baby zucchini with blossoms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Farmer Jessie Hopkins of Colinwood Farms holding baby zucchini with blossoms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Jessie Hopkins of Colinwood Farms always warms up your Ballard Farmers Market on the coldest, wettest days with his smile, but what really makes him happy are the first baby zucchini of spring. Fresh out of his greenhouses in the heart of Port Townsend, they come with the blossoms still attached. Cook them for a nanosecond, and maybe stuff those blossoms with some fresh chevre from Twin Oaks Creamery for a reach treat.

Blue oyster & shiitake mushrooms from Sno-Valley Mushrooms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Blue oyster & shiitake mushrooms from Sno-Valley Mushrooms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

One must arrive at your Ballard Farmers Market pretty early in the day in order to score some of these beautiful blue oyster mushrooms from Sno-Valley Mushrooms. And while their shiitake mushrooms stick around deeper into the market day, they also almost always sell out. If you haven’t tried these great, locally-cultivated mushrooms from Duvall, you are missing something special. Just don’t dillydally getting here for some!

Green onions from Gaia's Natural Goods. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Green onions from Gaia’s Natural Goods. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

What up! Yes, another spring favorite as arrived at your Ballard Farmers Market — green onions. No, these are not scallions. That is an entirely different oniony beast. Green onions are simply baby onions, usually produced as the farm — in this case Gaia’s Natural Goods — thins its onion fields in order to let the remaining onions stretch out into the beautiful, bulbous creations we will enjoy later in the summer. So, enjoy these kids while you can, as they will  be teenagers (a.k.a., spring onions), and then mature onions before you know it!

Sausage from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sausage from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Did someone say sausage? With so much spring deliciousness to grill right now, from raabs to broccoli to mushrooms to greens to green onions, why not toss on some gorgeous sausages from up yonder in Sedro-Woolley, too? Skagit River Ranch is renowned nationally for its organic ranch and its practices, but we love them locally for the amazing meat and poultry they bring to your Ballard Farmers Market every week. For instance, have you ever tried their sweet Italian sausage (bottom-center, above)? They are so spot-on, they bring tears to the eyes of expat New Yorkers who long of a real sweet Italian sausage like they remember growing up back East. Just leave a package for me today, okay?

Frozen blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Frozen blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

There is no need to be missing local blueberries with your morning oatmeal this time of year. That’s because Whitehorse Meadows Organic Blueberry Farm has lots of them frozen from last year’s harvest. I just take a handful of them every morning and toss them in the bottom of my bowl, and then I dump my hot oats right over the top of them. Of course, they are also great for blueberry pancakes and muffins, a nice sauce, or whatever else you desire!

Making a breakfast burrito at Los Chilangos. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Making a breakfast burrito at Los Chilangos. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Then again, maybe you’d like someone else to cook breakfast for you this morning. How’s about a freshly made breakfast burrito from Los Chilangos, then? Los Chilangos is our newest vendor at your Ballard Farmers Market, and they are making their breakfast burritos using fresh eggs from Stokesberry Sustainable Farm, and potatoes and pork (in their homemade chorizo) from Olsen Farms! Their fish tacos feature fresh fish from Wilson Fish, and their are working into their menu many more ingredients from Ballard Farmers Market farmers, fishers and ranchers. I dare you to show me another taco stand, truck or shop in town that can say that!

Phocas Farms succulents nestled in a Daily Bird Pottery planter. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Phocas Farms succulents nestled in a Daily Bird Pottery planter. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

We finish this week’s installment of all things delicious and wonderful at your Ballard Farmers Market with a little bit of the wonderful, and perhaps delicious… in its beauty! This lovely table top planter from Daily Bird Pottery is perfect on your back deck filled will adorable and colorful succulents from our own Phocas Farms! What a simple idea, eh? Stop by to see Darby at Daily Bird for the planter, and then head on down to see Jimmy at Phocas for some chicks to fill it!

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.

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 6th: Happy New Year! It’s Time To Get Your Winter Fruit & Veg On!

January 6, 2013
Stew Mix from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stew Mix from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Happy New Year! We’ve made it to 2013, and we’ve got only one college bowl game left. It’s time to get serious again… about winter fruits and vegetables, that is! And nothing says “winter” like a nice, house-warming pot of stew. Get a head start on your stew with this bag of stew mix from Colinwood Farms. It’s a bag of roots, from carrots to onions to potatoes to daikon radishes, and more, all together and ready to bathe you in their delicious nutritiousness. Or you can throw them all in a baking dish and roast them. Or use them as a base for soup. It’s your call. Just imagine how good your kitchen will smell, how warm it will feel, and how happy your mouth, belly and soul will be.

Pa-zazz apples from Collins Family Orchards. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Pa-zazz apples from Collins Family Orchards. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Winter fruits, you ask yourself? Who is harvesting fruit in winter around here? Well, no one, really. But lucky for us, our state is full of farmers who have figured out how to grow delicious fruits that they can harvest in summer and fall at their peak of flavor, then carefully store, ready to break out throughout the winter to keep us happy, healthy and well-fed well into spring. Like these Pa-zazz apples from Collins Family Orchards. These are essentially the same as Jazz apples, but since that name is already trademarked, we’re calling these Pa-zazz! Delicious, crunchy, satisfying, and they’ll even keep the doctor away… assuming you eat one every day.

Red Sunchokes from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Red Sunchokes from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

There is, perhaps, a bit of irony in the fact that sunchokes are a winter dietary staple. After all, their name, and their membership in the sunflower family, conjures up more images of summer sun than the long, dark, grey days of winter. But the truth is, these tubers have actually stored all that summer sun in them to nourish our bodies and our souls all winter long. They are great in a root roast, pan-fried, in soup, and even raw. You’ll find these uniquely American red sunchokes today at Stoney Plains Organic Farm.

Pink Lady apples from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Pink Lady apples from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

A true staple of winter, and certain to help keep the doctor away, are these Pink Lady apples from ACMA Mission Orchards in Quincy. These sweet, crunchy apples are a great munching apple, perfect for the kiddies’ lunchbox. Of course, ACMA still has a large selection of apple varieties, so mix and match!

Braised mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Braised mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Looking for a quick, simple, tasty dish of nutritious greens for dinner? Pick up a bag of these braising greens from Alm Hill Gardens. They contain a nice mix of chards and kales, and a few other surprises, depending on what’s ready to harvest from week to week. Simply sauté them until tender with olive oil and garlic, or cook them up Patty Pan Grill style with Mexican seasonings, and make your own veggie quesadillas. Add them to soups and stew. Whatever floats your boat!

Purple Goddess pears from Jerzy Boyz. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Purple Goddess pears from Jerzy Boyz. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Jerzy Boyz returns this week with their excellent heirloom tree fruit, and perhaps even a few bottles of fresh cider. What’s great about specializing in heirloom varieties is that they generally have apples and pears you just won’t find on other farmers’ tables, and each one comes with is own story. Like these Purple Goddess pears. No one else has them around here. Stop by for a sample, and ask them to tell you the back story on them, while you’re at it!

Golden turnips from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Golden turnips from Nash’s Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

To you and I, it is the dead of winter, and working in our gardens is the last thing on our minds. For the good folks at Nash’s Organic Produce, out on the Olympic Peninsula in Dungeness, in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains often referred to as the Banana Belt, it is peak season! And right now, they have these amazing golden turnips, great roasted on their own, or in a nice mixed root roast.

Frozen blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Frozen blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Whitehorse Meadows Farm grows beautiful organic blueberries for us in the summertime. And I like to freeze a bunch of them to use with my oatmeal all winter long. Unfortunately, I never seem to freeze enough, and they run out long before winter’s end. Lucky for me, and you, they freeze lots of their berries, too, and these two-pound bags of frozen blueberries are available right now at your Ballard Farmers Market!

Local albacore tuna loins from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Local albacore tuna loins from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And it is time for our monthly visit from Ballard’s own Fishing Vessel St. Jude, based at Fishermen’s Terminal. That means it’s time to load up for the month on the best local albacore tuna you will find anywhere. Their tuna is high in beneficial omega-fatty acids and low in heavy metals, and they offer it in a variety of ways, from frozen loins to smoked to canned in a variety of flavors. If you haven’t tried it… if you’re still getting your tuna from the Big Box stores… you are truly missing out!

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.

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.