Posts Tagged ‘squash blossoms’

Sunday, May 4th: Fresh Bucks Returns Today! Plus Westside Asparagus, Turnips, Frilly Mustards, Green Garlic, Tuna & Gifts Unique For Mom!

May 3, 2014

FreshBucks_Logo

Happy May, good people of Ballard! We survived the anarchist uprising for one more year… apparently because they couldn’t agree on what they were protesting about… and tomorrow, all of America, and one small state in Mexico, will celebrate an unlikely military victory 150 years ago by eating guacamole and drinking mas Dos Equis. Woohoo! But the beginning of May is actually significant for one much more important occurrence: the return of the Fresh Bucks program! That’s right! If you receive SNAP/EBT benefits (a.k.a., Food Stamps), and you use them to buy groceries at your Ballard Farmers Market, we will match your SNAP dollars, up to $10, with Fresh Bucks coupons good for fresh, local fruits, vegetables and fresh-cut herbs from our vendors, once per visit, every week, through December!

Would you like to help us expand Fresh Bucks? Please buy a ticket to our Farmers Market Dinner & Live Auction to Support Fresh Bucks on May 13th, or simply make a donation now! Your generosity will help us create educational programming for kids about cooking with and eating farmers market produce, and to extend this great program into the winter months. And hey… the Farmers Market Dinner & Live Auction makes a great Mother’s Day gift!

Albacore tuna loin portion from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Albacore tuna loin portion from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Another reason to celebration the first Sunday in May is tuna! Yup, Fishing Vessel St. Jude makes its monthly visit to your Ballard Farmers Market today. Stock up for the month with some of these gorgeous portioned frozen albacore tuna loins, some canned albacoresmoked or even jerkied! This is the finest, sashimi-grade albacore available!

Japanese Wax turnips from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Japanese wax turnips from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

If you don’t know how much I love radishes, you have not been paying attention the last several weeks. And you know what I love almost as much as radishes? These lovely, little Japanese wax turnips! They are sweet and spicy, great sliced like radishes and added to salads, or sautéed in some nice butter, and their greens are edible, too, meaning you get two veggies for the price of one! In fact, you can do a very quick sauté of the greens, and then top them with the sautéed turnips for a beautiful presentation of deliciousness. You’ll find them, as well as some of that famous purple-tipped asparagus and more, at Alm Hill Gardens today!

Squash blossoms & baby squash from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Squash blossoms & baby squash from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Last week, we talked about adorable little baby summer squash from Colinwood Farms. Today, let’s talk about squash blossoms. Fill these puppies with some from fresh cow, goat or sheep cheese (all available right here at your Ballard Farmers Market!), and fry them up! Hey, now that sounds like a great way to celebrate Mexican military good fortune tomorrow, eh?

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

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

Over the last couple of years, our buddy Jimmy at Phocas Farms only had enough of his prized saffron to supply just a handful of local chefs. But his 2013 harvest was a good one, and he has a limited number of packets of saffron for you and I right here at your Ballard Farmers Market! Jim harvests these saffron threads on his farm in Port Angeles every October, when their crocuses bloom. It is meticulous, painstaking work from dawn to dusk during the harvest, as each thread must be harvested right when the bloom begins to open. It is no wonder this spice is so precious. And you will find no better saffron anywhere on earth!

Gold Frills mustard greens from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Golden Frills mustard greens from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These are the aptly named Golden Frills mustard greens from One Leaf Farm. Frilly indeed! And they pack a tasty little spicy kick, too. One Leaf also has the first pea vines of the season today at your Ballard Farmers Market, and the return of pink beauty radishes!

Spring garlic just harvested at Nash's Organic Produce. Photo courtesy Nash's.

Spring garlic just harvested at Nash’s Organic Produce. Photo courtesy Nash’s.

And the hits just keep on coming! (Yes, I am still giddy about spring!) This is spring garlic from Nash’s Organic Farm. Spring garlic is quite simply one of the most delicious things Al Gore ever invented, but it is only available for a short time each spring. Use it much like a spring onion in sautés, roasts, on the grill — heck, I like to cut it up with spring onions, asparagus and morel mushrooms, toss them with some nice olive oil, and roast them all together in a hot oven until just tender. It is so sweet and mild this time of year. Green garlic is a byproduct of garlic production. When farmers plant garlic in the late fall, they plant way more than they hope to harvest and cure come summer. That way, if some fails, they will still have plenty. In the spring, as the garlic begins to grow with gusto, they thin it out to allow the remaining plants’ bulbs to fill out comfortably. We get to enjoy the thinned plants as spring garlic. You can use the entire plant, from root hairs to the tips of the greens.

Organic vegetable starts from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Organic vegetable starts from Stoney Plains Organic Farm. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Planting your own vegetable garden this year? Well, the start of May also means it is time to get that going in ernest. Stoney Plains Organic Farm has a terrific selection of certified organic vegetable starts to facilitate you in that endeavor. Stop by today and load up, and then eat from your own backyard farm this summer!

Spa Day Gift Box from Brown Butterfly. Photo courtesy Brown Butterfly.

Spa Day Gift Box from Brown Butterfly. Photo courtesy Brown Butterfly.

Hey kids! Mother’s Day is next Sunday! Don’t be the schlump who didn’t take care of your mom! You can start with a Spa Day Gift Box from Brown Butterfly Aromatherapy. Everything they make is all natural and gentle, and their soaps, lotions and creams come in a variety of exhilarating scents. Mom will be happy. And when mom’s happy, everyone is happy!

Herbal teas from Harbor Herbalist. Photo copyright 2013 by Ben Chandler.

Herbal teas from Harbor Herbalist. Photo copyright 2013 by Ben Chandler.

Mom’s love herbal tea, too! And Harbor Herbalist makes an almost dizzying variety of herbal teas, most of which are caffeine-free. They are formulated using different combinations of herbs that offer a broad spectrum of medicinal and flavor profiles. Why not pick up a bag or three this week for mom, and greet her next Sunday morning with a lovely cup of herbal tea, before you take her down to her favorite farmers market, right here in Ballard, of course!

Non-toxic, natural candles from Cherepashka Candles. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Non-toxic, natural candles from Cherepashka Candles. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Mom’s also love candles, and these non-toxic, natural candles from Cherepashka Candles will lift mom’s sprits without asphyxiating her on the candles fumes. See, you’ll be telling your mom you love her… twice!

Beautiful flower bouquets from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Beautiful flower bouquets from Children’s Garden. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And just a reminder that you will not be the only one next week who wakes up and thinks, “Hey, I oughta get some flowers for mom from one of the many great farms at my Ballard Farmers Market!” Plan on long lines, and don’t wait until the end of the day. These tips will lower your stress level, and will keep you in good standing with the woman who brought you into this world.

Gluten-free cupcakes from nuflours. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Gluten-free cupcakes from nuflours. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Finally, nuflours gluten-free bakery has a new line of cupcakes! This little bites of gluten-free heaven will satisfy even the least sensitive to gluten person in your household. On the left, we have lemon-coconut cupcakes, and on the right, chocolate-chocolate cupcakes. I call dibs on that one in the second row on the right!

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.

Sunday, April 27th: Not A Holiday! Just Another Day Of Great Localiciousness!

April 26, 2014
Chef Jason Stoneburner of Stoneburner Restaurant. Photo courtesy Stoneburner Restaurant.

Chef Jason Stoneburner of Stoneburner Restaurant. Photo courtesy Stoneburner Restaurant.

Have you gotten your ticket to the best party this spring? If not, hurry, cuz supplies are limited. And dinner alone is worth the price of admission! I’m talking about the Farmers Market Dinner & Auction to Support Fresh Bucks, and it is happening in the Rooftop Pavilion of Hotel Ballard on Tuesday, May 13th. Chef Jason Stoneburner and his crew will be laying out a fabulous spread using ingredients from your Ballard Farmers Market, and the auction will feature food experiences, getaways, fine dining and art, and more, from places like Ray’s Boathouse, the NW Chocolate Festival, Taylor Shellfish, Cedarbrook Lodge, and even three nights in a beautiful house on Fresh Water Bay, west of Port Angeles! All to support our Fresh Bucks program. You get fun, deliciousness and goodies. Local families of limited means get greater access to the same great local food we enjoy here at your Ballard Farmers Market every Sunday! Buy your tickets now, or simply donate, if you cannot attend.

Tom Thumb lettuce from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Tom Thumb lettuce from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

We start our tour of what’s fresh this week under the heading of “Friggin’ Adorable Produce.” This is Tom Thumb lettuce from One Leaf Farm. One Leaf grows a wonderful variety of heirloom lettuces. This one is a tiny variety of butterhead lettuce that is about the size of a baseball when mature. A single head is perfect for one salad. So stop by One Leaf, and get your lettuce on, cuz lettuce is back, baby!

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.

And speaking of adorable produce, how’s about these tiny baby summer squash from Colinwood Farm. That’s them, right there, in Jessie’s hands. They come with blossoms attached this time of year, and they are perfect for a quick sauté or tossed into a salad. How many months has it been since you had your last local summer squash? Nuff said.

Fresh Hood Canal Spot Prawns from Hama Hama Oyster Company. Photo courtesy Hama Hama Oyster Company.

Fresh Hood Canal Spot Prawns from Hama Hama Oyster Company. Photo courtesy Hama Hama Oyster Company.

Once a year, if we’re lucky, Hood Canal is opened for spot prawns.  This is that time! Today, at your Ballard Farmers market, Hama Hama Oyster Company will have a limited supply of the finest shrimp on earth, our own native spot prawns (which, BTW, are not prawns, but shrimp). Come get them while you can, but get here early, as they will go very, very quickly!

Spring onions from Magana Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Spring onions from Magana Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hopefully, we will see some of these wonderful spring sweet onions from Magana Farms today. As of last week, they were apparently right on the brink of readiness for market, so let’s hope so. They are great grilled or roasted with some of Magana’s asparagus!

Radishes from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Radishes from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

More radishes! As you know, I heart radishes. The more, the merrier. The promise of radishes come spring keeps me going all winter long. These beautiful radishes are from Alm Hill Gardens, up in Everson, in Whatcom County. You can actually see Canada from the farm. (Which is more than I can say for one being able to see Russian from their backyard in Alaska!)

Andrey is psyched to enjoy his Loki Fish salmon sliders. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Andrey is psyched to enjoy his Loki Fish salmon sliders. Photo copyright 2014 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Andrey is psyched. And can you blame him? He’s got a plate of Loki Fish Salmon Sliders hot off the grill. Booyah! Made using Loki’s own fish, rolls made with Washington flour, and local veggies and bacon for toppings, they are like one adorable, delicious bite of the Market, yo! But they keep running out of them early each week, despite bringing more and more, so get them early.

Gary Howell leading the goats out into the pasture at Twin Oaks Creamery in Chehalis. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Gary Howell leading the goats out into the pasture at Twin Oaks Creamery in Chehalis. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And we finish this week’s tale of all things (or at least several things) adorable at your Ballard Farmers Market with this photo of adorable dairy goats following Gary out of the barn and onto the pasture at Twin Oaks Creamery. These hardworking, and rambunctious, critters eat well, play well, live well, and produce amazing milk that Twin Oaks bottles, and makes into chevrefetaaged cheesesyogurt and more! Yeah, baby!

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.

Sunday, June 23rd: Happy Summer! New Winery, Raspberries, Artichokes, Goat Ricotta, Pie Cherries, Wild Saskatoon Berries & More!

June 22, 2013
Cabernet Franc from Kitzke Cellars. Photo courtesy Kitzke Cellars.

Cabernet Franc from Kitzke Cellars. Photo courtesy Kitzke Cellars.

Happy summer, all y’all! We peaked at 16 hours of sunshine on Thursday, and it’s just going to get darker from here on out. But we’ve got a whole summer of spectacular weather and delicious local flavors in store for you here at your Ballard Farmers Market. Let’s start this first post of Summer 2013 by introducing our newest vendor, Kitzke Cellars. Their vineyards and winery are located just west of Richland where they have an amazing view of Candy Mountain, and they produce some stunning wines. The Kitzke Family has been farming there since the 1970s, though their transition from being orchardists to being winemakers has been gradual. Stop by and introduce yourself today, and pick up a bottle of one of their big reds!

Raspberries from Sidhu Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Raspberries from Sidhu Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Your eyes do not deceive you. These are raspberries. From this year. Grown locally by Sidhu Farms. They just started harvesting them last weekend on their farm in the Puyallup River Valley. Just another sign of what a remarkable year we are in. It is warmer, drier, and crops are coming in earlier than we’ve seen in years. Enjoy!

Artichokes from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Artichokes from Nash’s Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Mmm. Artichokes. From Nash’s Organic Produce. Oh, the possibilities. Though if you’re like me, you’ll end up steaming them, tearing off the leaves, dipping them in a good mayo and eating the soft, fleshy bit. But hey, by the time I get home from your Ballard Farmers Market, that’s about all the creative energy I’ve got. You can probably put more thought into it!

Squash blossoms from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Squash blossoms from Alvarez Organic Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

More fairly simple summer fare can made with these squash blossoms from Alvarez Organic Farms. Stuff them with a nice fresh goat cheese, give them a dunk in a nice batter and pan-fry them. Oh, yeah, baby. That’s living!

Goat ricotta from Twin Oaks Creamery. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Goat ricotta from Twin Oaks Creamery. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Lucky for us, one doesn’t have to go very far from the Alvarez tables to find good, local goat cheese. Just a few tents down is Twin Oaks Creamery from Chehalis. They’ve got fresh and aged goat and cow cheese, as well as goat yogurt and fresh goat and cow milk! And you know what would be nice stuff in those squash blossoms? This new goat ricotta from Twin Oaks.

Pie cherries from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Pie cherries from ACMA Mission Orchards. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Looking for pie cherries? ACMA Mission Orchards has you covered, but only for a limited time. Pie cherries have a very short season — just a couple of weeks — so if you’ve got cherry pie, or maraschino cherries, in your future, you’d better get over here on the double!

Salad mix from Growing Things Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Salad mix from Growing Things Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Yay! More simple, and simply delicious, summer food from your Ballard Farmers Market. This gorgeous salad mix is from Growing Things Farm in Carnation. Just pick up some carrots and radishes, a little crumbly, salty cheese, and maybe some fresh peas, toss it altogether with your favorite dressing, and you are good to go! And talk about making picnics easy. Just grab a loaf of bread, some fresh fruit and a bottle of wine, and maybe a pie or some cake, and you have an instant, all-farmers market meal on the go!

Albacore tuna loin portion from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Albacore tuna loin portion from Fishing Vessel St. Jude. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Fishing Vessel St. Jude won’t be able to make it to your Ballard Farmers Market on July 7th for their normal first Sunday of the month visit, so they are coming today, and then again on July 21st, to make up for it. So be sure to stop by today to stock up on your monthly supply of the best albacore tuna anywhere, directly from the fisher. And right now, they’ve got these perfectly-sized frozen loins that will easily feed one or two people.

Carrots from Gaia's Harmony Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Carrots from Gaia’s Harmony Farm. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Carrots! Finally!!! These are from Gaia’s Harmony Farm. If we’ve been suffering one crop in particular this year so far, it has been a lack of carrots. We’ve had a few here and there, but these most colorful, sweet and crunchy of delectable roots are made of love, sunshine and puppy dogs, and we should always have them, and never have to wonder when we’ll see them again. Welcome back, dear carrots!

Saskatoon berries from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Saskatoon berries from Foraged & Found Edibles. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Welcome back wild Saskatoon berries, too! Foraged & Found Edibles let us know Saturday that the first wonderful wild berries of the season have arrived, a bit ahead of schedule, like so much else this year, although in reality, things are just on schedule this year, for a change. Oh, they’ve got morelsporcinis and sea beans still, too.

Red, white & blue new potatoes from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Red, white & blue new potatoes from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2013 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Just in time for Independence Day, Colinwood Farms has the first red, white and blue new potatoes of the season. In the past few years, we’ve been lucky to see any of these before mid-July. So there is no excuse this year not to have a red, white and blue potato salad on the menu for your 4th of July barbecue!

You would have this expression on your face, too, if you had just eaten an apricot from Bill's Fruit. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You would have this expression on your face, too, if you had just eaten an apricot from Bill’s Fruit. Photo copyright 2009 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey, kids! Bill is back! Yup, Bill’s Fruits returns today for one more summer of juicy, sweet stone fruit. Today, he should have Bing and Rainier cherries, and if we’re lucky, some of these apricots, though it is still just a little early for them. Welcome back, Bill!

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

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

One Leaf Farm just began harvesting these lovely fava beans this past week. And when fava beans are this young and tender, they are amazing on the grill. In fact, it was One Leaf’s Rand who turned me on to this method of eating them, and now I can’t get enough this time of year. Just toss them in a bit of olive, salt and pepper to taste, and throw them on the grill. When the pods get soft, they are ready to eat, pod and all. Just take off the stem and the string! You can thank me (and Rand) later.

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.

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.