Posts Tagged ‘Puget Sound keta salmon’

Sunday, October 19th: Fall Foods & Food Day 2014

October 18, 2014

food-day_2014

National Food Day 2014 is this coming Friday, October 24th. Inaugurated several years ago, it is designed, like Earth Day in April, to get us talking about food. After all, it is the one thing we all have in common — the one thing we all cannot live without. Just to confuse you, though, the UN has held International Food Day on October 16th since 1979, but given that neither you nor I ever heard much about this, it made sense to start anew. You’ll find lots of things to do, and more info, at the Food Day website, and read on to learn about some cool stuff happening in New York City that we could easily replicate here.

Jessika Tantisook rounding up freshly harvested cranberries at Starvation Alley Farms. Copyright Giles Clement.

Jessika Tantisook rounding up freshly harvested cranberries at Starvation Alley Farms. Copyright Giles Clement.

Starvation Alley Farms has begun the harvest of the 2014 crop of organic cranberries out on Long Beach Peninsula. They’ll have them flash-frozen for you today at your Ballard Farmers Market. And check this out from Wholesome Wave in New York City:

The New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) announced on October 16th the expansion of a program that allows doctors at HHC’s Elmhurst and Bellevue Hospital Centers to write fruit and vegetable “prescriptions” to children who are overweight or obese to help improve access to healthy food and promote overall health and wellness in the community.  First adopted by HHC hospitals in the South Bronx and Harlem last summer, the Wholesome Wave Fruit and Vegetable Prescription program (FVRx) proved successful in its first year when the program at HHC Harlem Hospital Center and HHC Lincoln Medical Center helped 40 percent of the enrolled children lower their Body Mass Index (BMI) and more than half of the families reported having more food to eat at home.

“A prescription for healthy food at an affordable price can be even better than a prescription for medicine,” said HHC President Dr. Ram Raju. “When doctors don’t just ask patients to eat more fruits and vegetables, but take concrete steps to make it easier for them and to demonstrate the benefits, patients listen. Obesity is a significant problem for children in New York City.  With HHC’s excellent primary care services and community collaborations like this one, we can help children learn at an early age that a healthy lifestyle and good food choices strongly affect their future health and wellbeing.”

… HHC selects pediatric patients for FVRx based on age and BMI eligibility. Over the course of four months, during farmers market season, patients receive a “prescription” to eat more fruit and vegetables. The prescription is designed to increase fruit and vegetable consumption for the entire family and is typically valued at $1 per day per household member ($28 per week for a family of four). This year, Wholesome Wave is piloting a $.50 incentive at two of the FVRx hospitals ($14 per week for a family of four). The prescription is exchanged on-site for Health Bucks, a city-wide Department of Health and Mental Hygiene program, which  can be used at all New York City farmers markets.

Gee, that sounds like something our local government and hospitals could do right here in Seattle in partnership with our farmers market Fresh Bucks Program.

Click image to download.

Click image to download.

And speaking of Fresh Bucks, the program has been extended through the end of December this year, so if you or someone you know receives SNAP benefits (a.k.a., Food Stamps), we will match the SNAP dollars you spend at your Ballard Farmers Market with Fresh Bucks, up to $10, each and every visit! Fresh Bucks can only be used for fresh fruits, vegetables and cut herbs, so use them to stock up on those items, and save your regular SNAP benefits to use for other food items, like eggs, grains, dried beans, honey, meat, pickles and such.

Fresh, whole, Puget Sound Keta salmon from Loki Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh, whole, Puget Sound Keta salmon from Loki Fish at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The commercial fishing season for Keta salmon on Puget Sound just opened, and that means Loki Fish should have the most local salmon you will ever find here at your Ballard Farmers Market today, as it is caught just a few miles from here in the heart of Puget Sound. Keta salmon used to be considered a trash fish, but in recent years, it has reemerged as a high-quality, affordable, local and wild salmon that also serves to maintain our local fishing economy. It is fresher, better tasting and generally less expensive than farm-raised salmon. It takes well to rubs, smokes and sauces. And unlike most farmed salmon, it is not on drugs and its color is natural. So enjoy some salmon tonight that actually hangs out in the same area code as you do!

Lobster mushrooms from Foraged & Found Edibles at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Lobster mushrooms from Foraged & Found Edibles at your Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

This fall has been great for wild lobster mushrooms harvested by Foraged & Found Edibles in the forests of Western Washington. They get their name from their bright red color, and they are a sturdy, earthy mushroom that holds up well when you cook them. They make a great topping for that Keta salmon!

Freshly shucked oysters on the half shell from Hama Hama Oysters at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Lauren McCool.

Freshly shucked oysters on the half shell from Hama Hama Oysters at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Lauren McCool.

As the waters of Hood Canal cool down with fall rains and shorter days, now is the best time of year to enjoy fresh oysters from Hama Hama Oysters. You’ll find a few varieties of live in-the-shell oysters today, ready for you to shuck and slurp, as well as jars of pre-shucked oysters, pickled and smoked oysters, and live clams!

Arkansas Black apples from Tiny's Organic at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Arkansas Black apples from Tiny’s Organic at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

These Arkansas Black apples from Tiny’s Organic turn almost black when in storage. It is a firm, tart apple good for fresh eating, cooking, juicing and making hard cider, and it will keep for two to three months.

Jack-O-Lantern pumpkins from Stoney Plains Organic Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Jack-O-Lantern pumpkins from Stoney Plains Organic Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

We talk a lot about cooking pumpkins here in the blog for your Ballard Farmers Market. There are so many varieties offered by our farmers, after all. But Halloween is less than two weeks away, so let’s talk about carving pumpkins today. Stoney Plains Organic Farm has a nice selection of carving pumpkins for you and the kids to turn into all manner of spooky creations. Pick out the best one for you today, and remember to roast these seeds!

Local granola from Marge Granola at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Local granola from Marge Granola at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cool, dark, often damp fall mornings call for a hardy breakfast, and for that you’ll find great granola in a variety of flavors from Marge Granola. Tall Grass Bakery also makes a great granola, or you can grab some muesli from Daddy’s Muesli. Besides being fine with milk or yogurt, they’re nice just heating up a little hot water, too.

Blackberries from Hayton Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Blackberries from Hayton Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Berry season is just about over, folks. We still are enjoying a few blackberries and blueberries from Hayton Berry Farms, but next week will be their last for 2014. So get your berry on one last time this year, and celebrate the epic berry season it was! (They go great with that granola and muesli, too.)

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, November 11th: Eating Local For Thanksgiving Begins With Your Ballard Farmers Market!

November 11, 2012

Chef Jason Stonerburner of Bastille at his 2011 Eat Local For Thanksgiving cooking demonstration at Ballard Farmers Market. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Thanksgiving, or “Thanks for the Land Day,” as I like to think of it sometimes, is less than two weeks away, or put more simply, there are only two Market days before it. Yes, it is very early this year — November 22nd! Time to get planning your menu and to stock up on local deliciousness from your Ballard Farmers Market. It is time again to Eat Local For Thanksgiving. And with all the amazing ingredients available from local farmers, fishers, ranchers and food artisans right here, not only have you no excuse to not build your holiday menu around local food, you’d be foolhardy not to. Besides, what better way to give thanks for our great local food producers than to serve their products for Thanksgiving dinner? But perhaps you are still a little nervous. To help you relax a bit, we have brought back our annual tradition of Eat Local For Thanksgiving Cooking Demonstrations for the next two weeks. This week, we feature Ballard’s own Chef Jason Stoneburner of Bastille from 12-1 p.m. Bastille was intentionally built next to, and around, Ballard Farmers Market. It has a garden on its roof. And Chef Jason not only builds his menu around what is available from Market vendors, but he actually used to be one of them! Who better to give you some tips on cooking simple deliciousness from local goodness. (Next week, look for Chef Dustin Ronspies of Art of the Table.)

Fresh, local cranberries from Bloom Creek Cranberry Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This is the year to stop talking about making fresh cranberry sauce and actually make fresh cranberry sauce! And Bloom Creek Cranberry Farm has fresh, local cranberries ready for you for just that purpose. Available for just a few weeks each year, they are hoping to have them through next week. But they are not sure. So if this is, in fact, your year, get those cranberries today!

Rutabagas from Boistfort Valley Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

My Thanksgiving dinner table wouldn’t be complete without some Boistfort Valley Farm rutabagas steamed and mashed with Golden Glen Creamery butter. Simple, delicious, and oh, so complimentary to everything else on the menu, and for me, it is a lovely reminder of my Irish roots. (Did you see what I did there?) Of course, Scandinavians here in the Peoples Republic of Ballard will feel kinship to them, as well.

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

This week, we celebrate the return of another perennial fall and winter favorite, sunchokes, a.k.a., Jerusalem artichokes. Neither from Jerusalem, nor an artichoke, sunchokes are a member of the sunflower family, and native to North America. They were cultivated and used by native peoples long before the first arrivals of Europeans. Sunchokes make for great soups, sauces, root roasts, home fries and much, much more. These tubers are delicious, nutritious, and will sustain you throughout the cold, dark, wet months. Stoney Plains Organic Farm just started harvesting these red sunchokes (above). In the spirit of the original Thanksgiving feast, when Indians kept the Pilgrims alive and made them feel welcome with the local bounty, why not add sunchokes to your Thanksgiving menu, much like them may have been 500 years ago.

Porcelain Doll Winter Squash from Oxbow Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Oxbow Farm has an amazing variety of heirloom winter squash and pumpkins right now, like these really cool looking, and tasty, Porcelain Doll winter squash. Squash is a necessity for your holiday table, and how about making this year’s pumpkin pie from scratch, too, eh?

Brussels sprouts from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Another must on my Thanksgiving menu is Brussels sprouts, like these beauties from One Leaf Farm. Normally, I like them sauteed with Sea Breeze bacon and some Alvarez shallots, and finished off with some white wine. But since my folks don’t eat pig these days, these still are plenty good without the bacon. And a good substitute for shallots is cippolini onions

Cippolini onions from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And your source for those aforementioned cippolini onions is Port Townsend’s own Colinwood Farms. Cippolinis caramelize beautifully, coming out sweet and silky, and making for a perfect accent to many meat and poultry dishes, and Brussels sprouts, of course. They also fry perfectly for shoestring onions to top a chicory salad.

Fresh, whole, Puget Sound Keta salmon from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Today is the last day for fresh Puget Sound Keta salmon from Loki Fish, as the season has come to a close. Swing by Loki for fillets or whole fish. They also have fish trim, like bones, collars and wings, for making stocks or smoking, and even skeines, ready for curing into ikura. But fresh only this week! After that, it’ll still be available frozen, cured, smoked, etc. Enjoy!

Root Vegetable Crackers with Kim Chee from House of the Sun. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

House of the Sun raw and vegan foods has introduced another great cracker to its delicious lineup — Root Vegetable Crackers with Kim Chee. Loaded with beet goodness, they are packed full of flavor and nutrients. Try them with one of their great spreads!

Bread & Butter pickles from Purdy Pickle. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Please welcome the newest vendor to your Ballard Farmers Market, Purdy Pickle. Purdy Pickle makes an amazing array of pickliciousness from great, local ingredients direct from our local farms, like these Bread & Butter pickles, above. Purdy Pickle is one of our mainstay vendors at our weekday markets in Wallingford and Madrona over the summer season. Now, they bring their goodness to Ballard. Woohoo!

A variety of truffles from Trevani Truffles. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Another recent addition to your Ballard Farmers Market is Trevani Truffles from Renton. Trevani’s confections are made using lots of local ingredients, too, and they will add elegance to many a holiday gathering, be it large or small. Or just treat yourself on your way through the Market!

Finally, another reminder to please 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, November 7th: Did You Set Your Clocks Back?

November 7, 2010

Lindsay Brown from Platypus Breads in a dinosaur costume for Halloween last week. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I think Lindsay Brown from Platypus Breads made about the least terrifying dinosaur I’ve ever encountered. She’s just too adorable to be terrifying. What was terrifying this past Halloween Sunday was the tsunami of trick or treaters that descended upon Ballard Avenue as your Ballard Farmers Market came to a close last week at 3 p.m. Big farm trucks and lots of kids with peripheral vision impaired by masks makes for a high stress environment for your Market staff. We want to thank everyone for your patience with us last week, and for clearly obeying commands from our traffic control crew. You helped make the single most stressful load-out in Ballard Farmers Market history at least a safe load-out. And maybe in another 8-10 years, when Halloween falls on a Sunday again, the Ballard Chamber of Commerce will communicate with us ahead of time to work out a better plan.

Bacon & Cheddar Scones from Platypus Breads. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You know what else is terrifying? These gluten-free bacon-cheddar scones from Platypus Breads. Terrifyingly good, that is! I inhaled one when I got home from the Market last week. Lindsay proves once again that savory gluten-free baked goods don’t have to taste like sawdust. I mean, finally, someone put bacon and cheese in something gluten-free!

Sam Lucchese of Pasteria Lucchese as a pirate. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Arrrr. Okay, maybe I wouldn’t buy a used car from someone as disarmingly charming as Samuele Lucchese from Pasteria Lucchese, but pastas, sauces, desserts? Abso-friggin-lutely! The latest addition to their line of artisan handmade pastas is Rabbit Plin. Oh, yeah. And have you checked out their dessert selection lately? Enjoy their seasonal Pumpkin Rice Pudding, as well as new additions, Saffron Rice Pudding and Semi Freddo, both to die for. And they’ve brought back their Hot Chili Chocolate Mousse in time for the holidays.

Some delicious, this Apple-Cranberry Pie from Deborah's Homemade Pies is downright spooky! Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of dessert, have you gotten your pie on at Deborah’s Homemade Pies lately? These are the best pies you’re gonna find around here. Seriously. Their crust is flaky and delicious — a crust most fine pastry chefs dream of making. With the holidays here, save yourself some work and get your pie from Deborah. Of course, she’ll be switching those top decorations from black cats, ghosts and witches to turkeys and pilgrims in the coming weeks.

The Poem Store's Meredith Clark & Taylor Shellfish's Jon Rowley, in oyster costume. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

What Jon Rowley of Taylor Shellfish won’t do to promote oysters. Here he is dressed as one! And as if that weren’t enough, he commissioned a poem about oysters from our own poet laureate, Meredith Clark, of the Poem Store. Oh, by the way… if you need fresh shellfish for your holiday feasts — or fresh poetry, for that matter — I’m sure both Taylor and Meredith will accommodate you.

Indian Corn from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Alvarez Organic Farms has dried Indian corn, or maize, ready for grinding to make into tortillas or cornbread. But you should get it today, as this may be their last week at your Ballard Farmers Market. They’re just plain running out of produce! So stock up on your dried beans from them now, too.

Jack the Bat Dog. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, even the dogs got into the Halloween spirit last week. Check out Jack, dressed as a Bat Dog. There were plenty of cool dogs in great costumes last Sunday, but you’ve got to admit, this guy is pretty absurdly cute. Now, if you only knew what was going on over my shoulder to get him to pose so well for this photo — along with me shooting four frames a second to capture it!

Four Seasons Gourmet berry vinegars and extracts. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Four Seasons Gourmet returned to your Ballard Farmers Market last week, complete with brand new labels for their raspberry vinegar and blueberry extract. I think they look pretty sharp, don’t you?

Red kale from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Greens are rocking right now. This crappy weather we’ve been having is like heaven for them. Just look at this beautiful red kale from Colinwood Farms. Hey, it’s November. It’s time for some serious greens eating. Think of them as a vehicle for garlic!

Fresh sausages from Sea Breeze Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Mmm. Sausage. From Sea Breeze Farm. Nuff said.

Dante Rivera with his new Dante's Inferno Dogs pretzel cart. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Check it out. Dante Rivera — the Dante of Dante’s Inferno Dogs — has got a new cart, and this one is for pretzels! What’s kinda funny is that his pretzels are sorta hot dog shaped, but they still eat plenty good. I did some serious quality control on, um, well, okay, about seven of them at Dante’s 10th anniversary party last weekend. These pretzels are made for Dante by Heavenly Pastry in West Seattle. Heavenly Pastry used to sell at Ballard Farmers Market in years past, before the success of their pretzels caused them to outgrow us. I have only myself to blame. Once, I described their pretzels at the best soft pretzels this side of Philadelphia in a Market press release, and the media picked it up. Well, lucky for me, and the rest of us, they’re back, via Dante’s.

Fresh fillets of Puget Sound Keta salmon from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

The Puget Sound keta salmon season won’t last much longer, so take advantage of fresh, local keta salmon from mere miles away brought to you by Loki Fish, while it lasts. And now, you can get it filleted or in whole fish.

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!

November 1st: Puget Sound Keta Salmon, Sunchokes, & Did You Set Your Clocks Back?

November 1, 2009

Fresh Puget Sound keta salmon from Loki Fish. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Yes, there still is a local salmon fishing season happening, and it is happening right here on Puget Sound. It is Puget Sound keta salmon season, and Loki Fish has them. Keta is a milder salmon than king, coho or sockeye. It takes well to many applications, from smoking to grilling, from rubs to sauces. This is truly our local salmon.

Storage onions from Billy's. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This may be the last week for Billy’s Organic Produce. It is routinely getting well below freezing in the Okanogan Valley, and Billy’s is simply running out of crops to sell. But they still have some great stuff, including these storage onions and some shallots, both of which you are going to want all winter. But get them now, while you can. They keep well in a cool, dry, dark place. So stock up!

PranaKabocha

Kabocha squash from Prana Farms. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Winter squash continues to be abundant throughout your Ballard Farmers Market. Another great storage crop, you can stock up on winter squash, and it will keep for months. Warm your house up with squash roasts, sautés, soups, risottos, and more. Check out these lovely kabocha squash from Prana Farms. It’s one of my favorites.

Spooky pecan pie from Deborah's Pies.. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, Halloween is past, but I just love this pie on the table at Deborah’s Pies last week. And even if Deborah is done with her “spooky” pecan pie for this year, she will still be making pecan pies without the “spooky.” Mmm. Pecan pie.

Red mustard greens from Growing Things. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Mustard greens are abundant through the Market right now, and they are wonderful. They range from this mild, red-leafed variety from Growing Things to spicy, spikey green-leafed greens from Sidhu. Pickup a bunch or three, add them to salads, sauté them, even add them to soups.

Sunchokes, a.k.a., Jerusalem artichokes, from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stoney Plains has the first sunchokes of the season. This native North American crop was a staple of many colonists. A relative of the sunflower, it is neither from Jerusalem, nor an artichoke, though many know them as Jerusalem artichokes. They can be used in many applications like potatoes. I like throwing them in with my root roasts, or you can give them a brief boil until tender, then brown them in butter in a hot skillet and eat them like home fries.

Corrine "Gypsy" Mirenda and her Gypsy Beaded Creations. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

As we all start gearing up for the holiday season, remember that in addition to all the great food for the holidays you will find at your Ballard Farmers Market, you will also find beautiful gifts directly from the local artists who hand-crafted them. Corrine “Gypsy” Mirenda creates gorgeous jewelry and clothing for her Gypsy Beaded Creations.

phocasfarmssaffron

Washington-grown saffron from Phocas Farm in Port Angeles. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Phocas Farms from Port Angeles is back at the Market with their Washington-grown saffron. In fact, it is saffron season right now. Phocas Farms is harvesting hundreds of tiny saffron blooms by hand every day, then carefully drying them. It is a painstaking process that frankly justifies saffron’s reputation as being the most expensive spice on earth. But considering the price at Phocas Farms is the same as the imported stuff at local fine spice shops, and the quality is excellent, why pay for all those imported saffron frequent-flyer miles when you can support a hardworking farmer right here at home?

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.