Posts Tagged ‘ling cod’

Sunday, May 29th: Farewell To Anselmo’s, Our Founding Farm.

May 29, 2011

Chuck Long of Anselmo's Farm. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It is the end of an era at your Ballard Farmers Market. On Friday, May 20th, we lost our friend and farmer, Chuck Long, of Anselmo’s Farm after a lengthy illness. Chuck, with his partner Arlene Debrusca, who we lost just over one year ago, started Anselmo’s in 1998. Arlene had been a nurse, her daughter, Marie, worked in the health insurance industry, and Chuck was an auto mechanic. Chuck wanted to grow organic vegetables, so they got a 4-acre patch of dirt in Mukilteo. They originally sold at Fremont Sunday Market, as well as several other markets. They followed Market Master Judy Kirkhuff to the U.S. Bank parking lot in Ballard (where the library is now) in August 2000, when redevelopment in Fremont forced the Fremont Sunday Market to move to a location that hurt farmer sales.

During the first winter in Ballard — the winter of 2000-2001 — for almost all of that winter, Anselmo’s was the only farm at the market. Indeed, says Judy, Arlene was a trooper through rain and snow and cold to provide service to her loyal customers.

Daughter Marie Debrusca hugging her mom, Arlene, for warmth (and because Arlene liked to hide from my camera) back in November 2005, when we still set up the winter market in the lot on Ballard Avenue where Moshi Moshi stands today. Photo copyright 2005, 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

In 2001, Anselmos moved to a 28-acre parcel in Machias, in Snohomish County, where they began cultivating 10-12 acres, and where they produced greens all winter in their 90′ x 20′ greenhouse. By the winter of 2001-2002, they had been joined by five other vendors in a little lot off of Ballard Avenue (where Moshi Moshi resides now) after the Market moved to Ballard Avenue in late 2001. Anselmos eventually stopped selling at any other farmers markets because of the support they had in Ballard. “The customers we got when we were alone in the U.S. Bank lot still buy from us today,” Arlene told me in early 2009. “We love the folks in Ballard.” And Ballard loved them back.

Lilacs from Alm Hill Gardens in season now. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

We truly owe a debt of gratitude to Anselmo’s. Without its commitment to Ballard Farmers Market and the people of Ballard, we might not have seen the creation of the first year-round farmers market in Seattle, which has, in turn, inspired other markets to operate year-round. One farm, standing alone in cold winter rain, forged a path for what we know today as this amazing weekly event called the Ballard Farmers Market that draws more than 9,000 people per week to a neighborhood bustling with new storefronts and eateries that once was a ghost town on Sundays. Sunday, May 22nd marked the last day Anselmo’s would sell at your Ballard Farmers Market. Arlene & Chuck, and the entire Anselmo’s clan, thank you. You will be missed.

Michaele Blakely of Growing Things showing off her prized eggs. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Michaele Blakely and Growing Things Farm, another very familiar farm to Ballard Farmers Market faithful, will be moving to the corner stall at the 22nd Ave NW end of the Market to occupy the longtime space of Anselmo’s. Indeed, folks who have been patronizing the Market’s farms all the way back when they still were part of the Fremont Sunday Market may recall that Michaele was the first manager of the farmers market, before Judy took over from her not long before the move to Ballard. Perhaps the single most diversified farm in our Market, Growing Things offers everything — and I do mean everything — from fresh produce to amazing eggs to chickens my family eats for Thanksgiving to plants to soap made from the lard and tallow of the farm’s own cattle and pigs to the pork and beef from those animals to jams… the list seems endless. (And so does the paperwork Michaele has to fill out with the State because she produces farm products in so many different categories.)

Baby red butterhead lettuce from Oxbow Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Oxbow Farm, also with your Ballard Farmers Market for many years, will still be found back-to-back with Wilson Fish mid-market. This week, they’ve got some beautiful baby lettuces, like this red butterhead lettuce, as well as some amazing collard greens, dino kale, pea vines and other braising greens, and lots of tomato plants.

Fresh, brilliant red king salmon from Wilson Fish. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of Wilson Fish, they’ve got some incredible fresh king salmon today, including the first white and marbled king of the season. And did you know that marbled king salmon is unique to the north Washington and south British Columbia coasts? You won’t see it coming from Alaska! Wilson will have some true and ling cod, halibut, rockfish, and freshly smoked king today, too, all just in time for your Memorial Day barbecues and picnics!

Spring garlic from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I love spring garlic from Alvarez Organic Farms. It is fresh, sweet and mild compared to cured garlic. You can use all of it, even the hairy roots, though you should compost the dirt-hugging bit where the roots hit the bulb. But you can simply cut it up without peeling it, stalk and all, and toss it in with your asparagus and morel mushroom roast, your sautéed greens, or grill them whole alongside your salmon.

Morel mushrooms, finally, from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Few things have come to symbolize just how late our growing seasons are this year than the mighty morel mushroom. Between the cold, the record snow pack, and the fact that that snow pack persists at low elevations, morels have been especially slow to emerge this year. Well, finally, Foraged & Found Edibles has some. Finally.

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, 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, November 15th: Chef Peter Birk of Ray’s Boathouse & Lots of Tasty Goodness!

November 15, 2009

Chef Peter Birk from Ray's Boathouse, Ballard's venerable seafood restaurant, explains to market shoppers how to make winter squash gnocchi at his Ballard Farmers Market cooking demo on November 23, 2008. Photo copyright 2008 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Chef Peter Birk from Ray’s Boathouse will perform a cooking demonstration today at noon at your Ballard Farmers Market. This cooking demonstration is part of the Eat Local For Thanksgiving campaign, which encourages everyone to pledge to have at least one item on your 2009 Thanksgiving table be from a local farmer. Chef Birk will give you ideas on dishes you can add to your holiday table using ingredients readily available at the Ballard Farmers Market. And hey, why not make your whole Thanksgiving dinner local this year. You can do it entirely from the Market, from the wine to the turkey to the oyster stuffing and mashed rutabagas. Heck you can even get a delicious pie and non-toxic candles to put the finishing touches on your evening.

Sunchokes, a.k.a. "Jerusalem artichokes." from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Try adding a food that our nation’s founders learned to eat from the native peoples in colonial times: sunchokes, which they called “Jerusalem artichokes.” Sunchokes, like these from Nash’s, are quite versatile tubers that can be used much like potatoes. I like adding them to root roasts. Another idea is to steam them until tender, then brown them in thyme butter.


Shucked oysters from Taylor Shellfish make it easy to add fresh, local oysters to any recipe. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Of course, if you are going to make that aforementioned oyster stuffing, you’ll need oysters. Taylor Shellfish has you covered. Get them fresh-shucked and easy to work with. Or, if your holiday table is more adventurous, get some live oysters, clams, mussels or geoduck.

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

For those of us who love sweet potatoes on our Thanksgiving tables, now we can get them at the Ballard Farmers Market along with everything else. This year, for the first time, two farmers — Lyall Farms (above) and Alm Hill — grew sweet potatoes locally. One more crop we don’t have to import, eh?

Cape Cleare, from Port Townsend, is back! Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Cape Cleare, a fishing vessel based out of Port Townsend, has returned to your Ballard Farmers Market. Cape Cleare are those folks who ride their bicycles to Market pulling their trailers with coolers of fish behind them. Cape Cleare fishes in Alaska, and then flash freezes their fish for maximum quality. They’ve got king and coho salmon, albacore tuna and ling cod frozen, smoked and/or canned.

Hazelnuts from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Alm Hill Gardens has certified organic hazelnuts for a short time longer. But remember, they keep well, so stock up while you can!

Caveman Bars are back! Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Caveman Bars are back at Ballard Farmers Market. These local favorites are the perfect pick-me-up snack on the go, or on the slopes. Their new coconut cocoa hazelnut bar, which uses local hazelnuts, is sweet and chewy, and even this non-coconut eater enjoyed it.

Delicate squash from Nature's Last Stand. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Nature’s Last Stand is one of several farms that have you covered on winter squash, like these delicata and carnival squash, above. And try out their kale mix, too.

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

Don’t forget the beverages. Be it wine, hard cider or sweet cider, Rockridge Orchards has got what you need in all sorts of flavors to please every palate, and in forms for both the adult table and the kiddie table.

Snooter-doots unique felted wool creations. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

As the holiday season approaches, remember that Ballard Farmers Market is your place for unique, locally-crafted gifts straight from the artists who created them. Check out Snooter-doots — felted wool creations that are truly one-of-a-kind, handmade fun. And what the heck, why wait for the gift-giving holidays. Grab a Snooter-friends “Veggee” for yourself to help decorate your Thanksgiving table!

Ascents scented votives won't pollute the air around your holidays. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ascents Candles has a wide variety of essential oil scented, non-toxic candles to adorn your home during the holidays. Don’t pollute the air in your home with toxic fumes from those cheap, imported candles from those big box store in Renton. While they may cost a little more, Ascents’ candles last much longer, so the price kinda works out the same in the end, but your lungs come out way ahead. And if you are looking for unscented votives for your dining room table, Ascents has you covered there, too. Just ask.

Okay, that’s it for me this week. But there is so much more waiting for you today at your Ballard Farmers Market. For a full accounting, click on “What’s Fresh Now!” in the upper right-hand corner.

Wild Alaskan Salmon from Cape Cleare

February 26, 2009

Cape Cleare is the latest fishing vessel to bring fish to Ballard Farmers Market. Based in Port Townsend, Cape Cleare flash-freezes its catch at sea. Cape Cleare offers fresh frozen salmon, albacore tuna and ling cod, as well as canned and smoked fish. And Cape Cleare uniquely pedals what it peddles, traveling to Ballard Farmers Market by two bicycles every Sunday, each one pulling a trailer with coolers containing their fish.

Cape Cleare's bicycle-powered fish trailers.  Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons

Cape Cleare's bicycle-powered fish trailers. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.