Posts Tagged ‘shallots’

Returning Farms, Great Albacore, Devine Tonics and Wine

April 10, 2015

 Alvarez Organic Farms Returns

Organic Asparagus at Ballard Farmers Market

Hilario Alvarez of Alvarez Organic Farms harvesting fresh peanuts on his Mabton farm. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

They’re Back!

The Alvarez Organic Farm crew will be at Ballard Farmers Market this Sunday with their asparagus, dried peppers, red onions, beans, and shallots.

F/V St. Jude at

Ballard Farmers Market April 12

F/V St Jude's Amazing Albacore

F/V St Jude’s Amazing Albacore

Joe and Joyce Malley, the owners of Fishing Vessel St. Jude are dedicated to bringing you the right albacore. And right is

  • low in mercury,
  • high in omega 3 oils, and
  • caught in a sustainable manner.

They base their business on troll caught albacore and constantly test their catch to assure the product they bring to you is the healthiest and best ecological choice for the finest you can eat.

This albacore tuna, whether flash frozen, smoked, or canned has received the stamps of approval by Seafood Watch, Dolphin Safe and New Pacific Albacore.

Market Master’s Recipe- for a Simple Dinner

Organic asparagus from Alvarez Organic Farms. Copyright by Zachary D, Lyons.

Organic asparagus from Alvarez Organic Farms. Copyright by Zachary D, Lyons.

Roasted Tuna, Asparagus & Morel

1 large bunch of asparagus,washed and trimmed

2 ounces morel mushrooms, sliced in bite-sized pieces

1 small red onion, sliced

1 can of F/V St. Jude albacore, seasoned or use Natural in Oil

Extra Virgin Olive Oil,   ¾ tsp Salt, and pepper to taste

Now for preparation:  Set Oven to 425 degrees.  Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with foil. Use 2 if you need it.  In a large bowl, toss all ingredients until vegetables are coated with oil. Add EVOO if needed. Spread evenly on baking sheet and roast 20 to 25 minutes stirring once until vegetables are slightly charred and tender.  NOTE:  If you want a dinner fit for a grand banquet, use one of the albacore filets or steaks that Joyce brings frozen from the F/V St. Jude latest catch, instead of their canned products .  It thaws in a very short time, slices into 1/2 inch pieces easily, and should not be cooked very long.  So wait until after you stir the veggies then add the slices to the pan & sear until just before they turn from pink to white.  Serve with soy sauce and wasabi on the table, or not, as you please.

Servings are less than 150 calories per serving and HUGE in taste.

A dessert designed by Linda Harkness, the Firefly Kitchen manager, would be absolutely perfect for the end of a lovely albacore, asparagus and morel dinner.  Carrot Bars with Carrot Cream Frosting.

 Now for the Wines

Paul Beverage of Wilridge Winery.  The only winery in the City of Seattle.

Paul Beverage of Wilridge Winery. The only winery in the City of Seattle.

A Pioneer in Washington’s Wine Industry

Paul Beveridge, and his wife, Lysle Wilhelmi, are the owners of Wilridge Winery. (Yes, that is his name). They also own their own vineyard on Naches Heights, near Yakima, where the vines are tended organically and biodynamically.

Paul and Lysle opened a European-style bistro in the early 1990’s, in a house on 34th Ave, in the Madrona district. The restaurant was on the 2nd floor and their winery was in the cellar. It was the city of Seattle’s 1st winery. After the restaurant was closed because of laws that were established to prohibit ‘bathtub’ gin being sold in a retail outlet, including restaurants, the couple decided to close the Bistro. Paul and Lysle were pioneers again by working to get that law changed, with help from the Washington Wine Institute.

Paul also contributed significant time and efforts that led to the legislation that allows wine and beer from Washington producers to be sold at farmers markets.

And, if that isn’t enough pioneering, they have also been among the first wineries, let along retailers, to offer their fine wines in refillable bottles.

Stop by to talk to their representative, and have a taste to decide what vintage or blend you want.  You will be proud to be supporting ethically and sustainably grown fine wines from Washington State

Firefly Kitchens

Devine Tonics from Firefly Kitchens. Copyright by Zachary D. Lyons.

Devine Tonics from Firefly Kitchens. Copyright by Zachary D. Lyons.

Located in Ballard, Julie O’Brien is brewing up fermented produce, much of which is sourced directly from our local farms, and is available right here at the Ballard Farmers Market.

During this work, they develop a tonic they call Divine Brine. Bring your own jar and she’ll fill it up for you with some of this healthy probiotic tonic. This is not only a super-healthy food for your digestive system, it is a culinary treat for your whole body.

A winner of America’s Good Food Award for each of the past 4 years, stop by Firefly Kitchens to taste. They also encourage you to bring your own jar for a fill-up of their Devine Brine.

Firefly Kitchens owners Julie & Richard

Firefly Kitchens owners Julie & Richard

And try the recipe for Carrot Cake with Carrot Cream Icing (link is above).

Sunday, November 23rd: Eat Local For Thanksgiving!

November 22, 2014
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.

It’s here, folks! The first really big holiday of the holiday season: Thanksgiving! Or as we call it in my family, “Thanks For The Land Day!” Whatever you and yours call it, this coming Thursday is a day to take a break, take stock, and express our thanks for what we have, and especially for the bounty that reaches our tables. For Thanksgiving, the first American holiday, ultimately commemorates when mighty, advanced indigenous peoples welcomed undocumented foreigners with open arms and saved them from starvation at Plimouth, so that they might make better lives for themselves in a new world.

We in the farmers market community encourage you to Eat Local For Thanksgiving this coming Thursday, and we have pretty much everything you’ll need to do so right here. We then ask you to give thanks for the many local farmers, fishers, ranchers and food artisans who bring you the best food on earth right here at your Ballard Farmers Market every Sunday, year round. This year, the best way you can do that is to make a public comment in opposition to unreasonably high permit fee increases on farmers markets and their vendors proposed for 2015 by Public Health – Seattle & King County. For a great discussion of the issues at hand, and what is at stake, check out this week’s Ballard News-Tribune article, and for more details on how to comment, please see this blog post from last week. And in return, we thank you!

Shallots from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Shallots from Alvarez Organic Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

One of my favorite dishes for Thanksgiving is Brussels sprouts with bacon and shallots. There are plenty of Brussels in your Ballard Farmers Market right now, including those beauties up above from Nash’s Organic Produce. And several farms will have shallots, including this from Alvarez Organic Farms. I caramelize my shallots while browning and rendering out my chunked up bacon in a hot skillet. When the bacon begins to get browned, and the shallots caramelized, I drop in the Brussels, cut in half, and sauté them in the bacon grease until they get bright green and just beginning to get tender. At that point, I deglaze the pan with some white wine. The wine combines with the tasty browned pits, or fond, on the bottom of your skillet, reincorporating them back into the Brussels with delicious results. The Brussels finish cooking in this yummy wine sauce and the wine cooks down. The result is that your Brussels sprouts hating kin will ask for seconds!

And speaking of cooking tips, celebrated James Beard Award winning local chef, Ethan Stowell of Ethan Stowell Restaurants (including Ballard Ave’s Ballard Pizza Company, Chippy’s and Staple & Fancy) will preform an Eat Local For Thanksgiving cooking demonstration at 11 a.m. today.

Bacon from Skagit River Ranch at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Bacon from Skagit River Ranch at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

You’ll need some of this amazing bacon from Skagit River Ranch to complete your Brussels sprouts masterpiece this week, but get here early, as it’s sure to sell out. And speaking of things selling out, here are some shopping strategy tips for today’s Market:

  • Get here early, if you can.
  • Pack patience with you, as crowds will be big.
  • Maybe pack a cooler, too.
  • Purchase things like eggs, bacon, cranberries and other items likely to sell out early first.
  • If you don’t plan on watching any sporting matches today, you may prefer to shop after 1 p.m., when big games will thin out our crowds, though keep in mind that some prime items may be sold out by then.
  • If you do plan to watch either the Seahawks or Sounders games, do your shopping first, or during halftime, and watch the games on one of the many TV screens in bars and eateries up and down Ballard Avenue. It will likely be cool enough that, even without a cooler, your Market goodies will keep just fine in your trunk until after the big game!

Here is a list of where you may be able to watch the Sounders playoff game in the neighborhood at 2 p.m. today:

  • Bad Albert’s
  • Ballard Smoke Shop
  • Billy Beach Sushi & Bar
  • El Borracho (on Leary)
  • Kangaroo & Kiwi (on Market, soccer only)
  • Kickin’ Boot
  • Lock & Keel
  • Loft
  • Market Arms (on Market, soccer only)
  • Moshi Moshi
  • Patxi’s
  • The Gerald
  • The Noble Fir

Here is a list of where you will be able to watch the Seahawks, in addition to all of the places above:

  • Bastille (at the bar)
  • Bitterroot (in the bar)
  • Hattie’s Hat (at the bar)
  • Matador (at the bar)
  • Stoneburner (in the bar)

And that’s how you can have your game, and Eat Local For Thanksgiving, too!

Siegerrebe wine nestled in siegerrebe grapes at LIV (Lopez Island Vineyards). Photo courtesy LIV.

Siegerrebe wine nestled in siegerrebe grapes at LIV (Lopez Island Vineyards). Photo courtesy LIV.

Now, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend that you use a bottle of Siegerrebe from LIV (Lopez Island Vineyards) to deglaze your pan whilst cooking up those Brussels, but it would be a nice accompaniment to your meal. It, or any of the many other award-winning wines from LIV. And try out their new raspberry dessert wine, too!

Rutabagas from Alm Hill Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Rutabagas from Alm Hill Gardens at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Another favorite of mine this week is steamed rutabagas mashed with lots of good butter. You’ll find these lovely little bagas at Alm Hill Gardens (a.k.a., Growing Washington), right at the bottom of the Market. Nummers!

Winter squash from Boistfort Valley Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Winter squash from Boistfort Valley Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Winter squash from Boistfort Valley Farm will help sweeten up your holiday feast. They have many different varieties from which to choose, in many flavors, textures, colors, shapes and sizes. Ask for cooking tips. Roast your seeds. And remember, you can eat the skins on many squash varieties!

Japanese turnips from One Leaf Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Japanese turnips from One Leaf Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Looking to add a little taste of spring to your fall feast? How about some of these beautiful Japanese wax turnips from One Leaf Farm? They come complete with greens, meaning you get two dishes for the price of one! Or, better yet, cook them together! Cut the turnips in half, sauté them in butter or olive oil until tender and a bit browned. Then add the greens and some crushed garlic and toss together until the greens wilt. Salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!

Red Lasoda potatoes from Olsen Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Red Lasoda potatoes from Olsen Farms at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

And don’t forget the spuds! Olsen Farms has a couple dozen varieties of potatoes from which to choose, with one perfect for your needs. Some or white, others golden, and others red or blue. Some are waxy and others starchy. Some are better suited to baking, while others like roasting, and still others steaming or frying. Ask questions. Read tags. Have fun with your potatoes.

Parsnips from Oxbow Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Parsnips from Oxbow Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

One thing you can do with your potatoes is mash them with some celery root and parsnips from Oxbow Farm. Talk about an elegant mash! You’ll want equal amounts of all three. I also like to cut up my parsnips into small chunks and roast them in a hot oven with some sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms cut into similar-sized pieces. When they’re tender, they’re done… in about 15-20 minutes. Toss them once, midday.

Spicy salad mix from Colinwood Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Spicy salad mix from Colinwood Farm at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

With all the meat, potatoes, sugary things, roots and such, you’ll want some roughage. Lucky for us, in spite of the recent cold weather, Colinwood Farm’s greenhouses are still cranking out some righteous spicy salad mix just for you! Slice up some of those turnips like radishes and add them to it.

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

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

Oh, and add some superfood to your salad, too! This week, we welcome Farmbox Greens to your Ballard Farmers Market with these Seattle-grown microgreens. In their seedling form, they are little nutrient bombs, and they are packed with flavor, too. Garnish your soups, mashes, meats and more with them.

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.

Apples are good for all sorts of dishes, from salads to sauces to pies, during the holidays. I chose this particular photo of Arkansas Black apples from Tiny’s Organic because I recently returned from a trip to Arkansas, and I am here to testify that this apple is, in fact, the apple of Arkansas!

Cirrus cheese from Mt. Townsend Creamery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cirrus cheese from Mt. Townsend Creamery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Cirrus cheese from Mt. Townsend Creamery is what they, and I, call a “Northwest camembert.” It is the perfect cheese for any occasion, great on a nice slice of local bread and topped with some ikura from Loki Fish. You’ll need some for your holiday festivities!

Kalamata olive bread from Snohomish Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Kalamata olive bread from Snohomish Bakery at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

And here is a perfect local bread for that pairing: kalamata olive bread from Snohomish Bakery. It is all chewy and salty and delicious, and it keeps fairly well, so fear not picking it up today for later in the week. And if you are simply a worrier by nature, then pop it in the freezer today, then pop it in the oven around 300 degrees on Thursday for about 20-30 minutes. It’ll be like it just came out of the bakery’s oven!

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

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

Loki Fish will have just a little bit more fresh Puget Sound Keta salmon today in fillet form before the Puget Sound season closes for 2014. They had one more brief opening on Thursday night, so this is super fresh. If you’re just not a turkey eater, or you are looking for something distinctly different for your other meals this week, here you go! But it will sell out early. However, they will have plenty of that aforementioned ikura, freshly cured and ready to pep up that cheese and bread, or your soup or salad.

Thanksgiving pumpkin pie from Deborah's Homemade Pies at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Thanksgiving pumpkin pie from Deborah’s Homemade Pies at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Why spend the entire day in  your kitchen on Thursday? Give yourself a bit of a break and get one of these amazing pumpkin pies from Deborah’s Homemade Pies, or apple or pecan. Not only will it lower your stress level, it will likely be better than anything anyone you know can bake! And if you are attending a feast at someone else’s house, and you’re supposed to bring dessert… here you go! Just grab a pinch of AP flour out of the cupboard before you leave home and dust yourself a bit. Everyone will believe you baked it yourself.

Green Dragon hummus from House of the Sun at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Green Dragon hummus from House of the Sun at Ballard Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Finally, we’d like to give one last shout out to Adam and House of the Sun Raw & Vegan Foods. Adam is retiring his company as of today’s Market, and he is moving to Portland. Stop by, wish him well, and grab yourself one last container of his awesome Green Dragon hummus for old times’ sake. Thanks, Adam! We’ll miss you!

Don’t forget to check out this week’s midweek blog posts (Tuesday & Thursday) for more information on what you’ll find today at you Ballard Farmers Market. And 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, October 27th: Fresh Cranberries, Apple Cider, Old World Cooking Oil, Ornamental Gourds, Sweet Potato Chips & More!

October 26, 2013

We are sad to report the loss of one of our longtime vendors over this past weekend. Jaroslav “Jerry” Makovicka, of Little Prague European Bakery, passed away suddenly on Saturday, October 19th. He was a fixture at Ballard Farmers Market for many years, selling his wife Marie’s famous Czech pastries. He always had a smile and a joke to share through his thick Czech accent. Our thoughts are with Marie and his family and friends. (A memorial service will be held next Tuesday, October 29th at noon in Lynnwood. For info, or if you wish to share a memory, you can also do so at this link. If you wish to make a cash contribution to help the family with expenses at this time, you can do so at the Market Information Desk this Sunday at Ballard Farmers Market.)

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

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

It is fresh cranberry season at your Ballard Farmers Market! Bloom Creek Cranberry Farm, from Olympia, returns today with their beautiful fresh cranberries. Time to make that homemade cranberry sauce, cranberry juice and all manner of cranberriliciousness. But they are only around for a few weeks, so get them now, while you can!

Fava bean leaves from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fava bean leaves from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stoney Plains Organic Farms has fava bean leaves now, for a few weeks. Yes, fava bean leaves. Fava beans grow a lot like peas, and like peas, you can eat the leaves, too. Try giving some a quick sauté for dinner tonight!

Camelina cooking oil from Old World Oils. Photo courtesy Old World Oils.

Camelina cooking oil from Ole World Oils. Photo courtesy Old World Oils.

Please welcome a new farm vendor to your Ballard Farmers Market: Ole World Oils and their Camelina Gold cooking oil. Camelina is an ancient seed oil crop that is non-GMO, high in omega-3 fatty acids. packed with antioxidants, and has a very high (475 degrees) smoke point. It is cold-pressed and unrefined. The Greenwalt family was among the original homestead farmers in Eastern Washington in the late 1800s, and they have been farming just west of Ritzville for over 110 years. Not only does camelina, a member of the mustard family, make for great cooking oil, it also helps the farm maintain healthier soils, allowing them to farm more sustainable.

Fresh apple cider from Jerzy Boyz.  Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh apple cider from Jerzy Boyz. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey kids! Jerzy Boyz has fresh apple cider! This stuff is like the old-school cider you remember as a kid, before everything had to be cooked to death. Mind you, this is pasteurized. It has to be now. But it is minimally processed, and it is fabulous! (Oh, and it’s organic, too.)

FreshBucks_LogoDo you have WIC or Senior Farmers Market Checks or Fresh Bucks coupons that are about to expire on October 31st? Be sure to use them today at your Ballard Farmers Market!

Fresh ducks from Stokesberry Organic Poultry. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fresh ducks from Stokesberry Sustainable Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Stokesberry Sustainable Farm has fresh ducks this week, and they should have more next week. They are certified organic, and they are delicious! But here’s a tip: if you try to buy one this week and they are sold out, be sure to reserve one for next week!  Mmm. Fresh duck.

Shallots from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Shallots from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These beautiful, big shallots are from One Leaf Farm, and they have plenty of them. 2013 was a stellar year for onions, garlic and shallots, and besides tasting wonderful, these foods are full of essential nutrients to keep the doctor away, and lots of other things, too!

Taylor's Gold pears from Booth Canyon Orchard. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Taylor’s Gold pears from Booth Canyon Orchard. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This week’s heirloom pear of the week from Booth Canyon Orchard is Taylor’s Gold pears. Originally from New Zealand, these organic lovelies are grown in the Methow Valley in the North Cascades. Booth Canyon has a limited supply of these, and of all of their fruit, this year due to late summer storm damage, and to that end, they will miss the next two weeks of your Ballard Farmers Market, so stock up now, while you can!

Sweet potato chips from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet potato chips from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You know and love sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms, right? Well, now you can also get these sweet potato chips from Lyall Farms! They are offering them with a couple different types of seasonings, from sweet to savory. Try something a little different — a local chip that also comes with all the goodness and flavor of local sweet potatoes!

Sweet peppers from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sweet peppers from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It is last call for sweet peppers and all things nightshade from Alvarez Organic Farms. The nights have gotten colder over in Mabton, and that means the peppers and eggplants are done producing. Enjoy them this week for one last time!

New fall flavors from Soda Jerk Sodas. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

New fall flavors from Soda Jerk Sodas. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Soda Jerk Sodas has rolled out some new fall flavors, like this Theo Chocolate soda (left), just in time for Halloween, Lemon Lavender and Sour Apple (right). The sun is back today. Celebrate with a fresh, local soda! (And please remember to vote. Every vote will be critical this year, and several items on your ballot will directly affect your Ballard Farmers Market.)

Ornamental gourds from Alm HIll Gardens. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ornamental gourds from Alm HIll Gardens. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Dress your house up for fall with these ornamental gourds from Alm Hill Gardens (a.k.a., Growing Washington). Not only do they complete your Halloween display, but they will round out your Thanksgiving table, too!

A fall flower bouquet from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

A fall flower bouquet from Children’s Garden. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And while you are gussying up your house, hows about a gorgeous bouquet of fall flowers from Children’s Garden? You won’t find a bouquet like this at any Big Box store, and these are local, fresh, unique and fit the season perfectly!

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.

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.

Saturday, October 28th: A Tribute To Essential Fall Crops!

October 27, 2012

Winter Luxury pumpkins from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, kids. It’s pumpkin pie season. And you can’t get much better for pie making than these Winter Luxury pumpkins from One Leaf Farm. They are not only beautiful, they are delicious! Indeed, they are aptly named. Stop by One Leaf for a couple of these cool looking gourds, and perhaps some lovely radicchio, too.

Sweet potatoes from Lyall Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Nothing like sweet potatoes fresh out of the oven on a cool, fall night. They fill you with warmth while stoking your energy and pleasing your palate. And while they are a perfect side dish to so many proteins, try adding them to a simple or downright busy root roast. I love cutting them up and roasting them with parsnips, or with beets, carrots, parsnips and sunchokes. Or you can mash them with garlic, some chipotles in adobo sauce, and a touch of maple syrup. Yeah, baby. These Beauregard (left) and O’Henry sweet potatoes (above) are from Lyall Farms.

Golden Nugget squash from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These Golden Nugget winter squash from Stoney Plains Organic Farm have a sweet flesh with a wonderfully smooth texture that’ll just make you purr. And isn’t that what you want from fall foods? It’s cold. It’s wet. It’s dark. Give us comfort food! This is comfort food.

Yellow storage onions from Nature’s Last Stand. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

What doesn’t call for onions in the recipe this time of year. And while the onslaught of October rains may quickly be making our record warm and dry stretch this summer a distant memory, the truth is that that weather made for an epic onion harvest. They loved the sun, and then they were able to dry and cure without getting wet and moldy. That means we’ve got more storage onions, like these yellow onions from Nature’s Last Stand, than we’ve had in years at your Ballard Farmers Market. Enjoy!

Celery from Nash’s Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

This also seems to be a stellar year for celery, too. It is bigger, crunchier, even sweeter than in years past. And again, every recipe seems to call for it, from roasts to soups to stuffings. Nash’s Organic Produce has some lovely celery right now at your Ballard Farmers Market.

Viking purple potatoes from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These Viking Purple potatoes from Olsen Farms are one of my favorites, and not just because they are gorgeous and have a really cool, Ballard-friendly kind of name. They have this amazingly fluffy, snow-white flesh when they are steamed that just begs for a big dollop of your favorite butter. Mmm.

Shallots from Summer Run Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Shallots also find their way into many a fall recipe. One of my faves is to caramelize them in the same pan with some nice chunky bacon, then toss in some Brussels sprouts, and cook them until they just start to get tender. Then deglaze the pan with some white wine, which will finish cooking the sprouts while it reduces. The shallots above are from Summer Run Farm.

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

Fall is an excellent time to enjoy pears, like these Purple Goddess pears from Jerzy Boyz. So great in salads, baked, in pies and tarts, or just on their own, eaten right off the core. Right now, there is a great selection of pears at your Ballard Farmers Market, so do enjoy them while you can!

Carrots from Gaia’s Natural Goods. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Let us not forget the formidable carrot, whose own ubiquitous presence can be found on almost any fall recipe page. Carrots are sweeter this time of year, due to cooler whether, making them great for any application, or just plain munching on their own. The lovely specimens (above) are from Gaia’s Natural Goods.

Spanish red garlic from Jarvis Family Garlic Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And perhaps no ingredient from your Ballard Farmers Market is more called for in your fall cooking than garlic, and lucky for us, Jarvis Family Garlic Farm from out of Sequim joined us this year with a bunch of amazing heirloom varieties of garlic for you to enjoy. After all. there is no such thing as too much garlic!

Fresh cranberries from Bloom Creek Cranberry Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Let’s finish off this week’s installment with one of the most quintessentially fall crops — cranberries. Bloom Creek Cranberry Farm returned last week with their gorgeous cranberries, so there’s no excuse for you not to bring fresh cranberry sauce with you to grandma’s house on Thanksgiving, is there?

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.