Posts Tagged ‘strawberry starts’

Sunday, June 10th: Hayton Berry Farms & Full Circle Farm Return, Dungeness Crab, Beautiful Broccoli, Ravishing Radishes & Strawberry Cream Puffs, Yo!

June 10, 2012

First-of-the-season strawberries from Hayton Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Hey kids, now we’re cookin’! That’s right! Hayton Berry Farms returns today for the 2012 season to your Ballard Farmers Market with plenty of their famous strawberries. So get up and get down here early, cuz you know they’re gonna go plenty fast!

English cucumbers from Colinwood Farms. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Because of year-round farmers markets like your Ballard Farmers Market, Seattle’s first year-round neighborhood farmers market, many Washington farms are able to confidently invest in season-extending infrastructure that allows them to sell more crops for more of the year, thus allowing us to enjoy those crops more, too. Case in point is Colinwood Farms from Port Townsend. They leverage their temperate climate in the so-called “Banana Belt” under the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains with acres of greenhouses that bring us their amazing spicy salad mix all winter long, and squash blossoms and these gorgeous English cucumbers in late spring, long before even Eastern Washington farms have them.

French breakfast radishes from Oxbow Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

With this winters record mountain snowfalls, many rivers like King County’s Snoqualmie River continue to run high and fast, and that means the farmland along its banks continues to be very wet from the high water table under it. No wonder many of our East King County farms have been a little slow with spring produce this year. The good news is, farms like Oxbow Farm are beginning to hit their stride now. Just take a gander at these magnificent French breakfast radishes from Oxbow. And they’ve got collard greenschardgreen garlic and much more!

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

Downriver from Oxbow, along the Snohomish River (for that is where the Snoqualmie River goes), Gaia’s Natural Goods is also adding new crops to its table every week. Check out this spectacular spinach they’ve got right now. It is crisp and tender and delicious, and ready for salads, sautés, stuffing pasta and more!

Strawberry plants from Red Barn Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Want your very own strawberry patch? It is still plenty early enough to plant some strawberry plants from Red Barn Farm. These plants are already baring fruit, and as they mature and spread out over the coming years, they will give you a seemingly endless supply of fresh strawberries from right outside your door every spring and summer!

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

Alm Hill Gardens is rightfully proud of its broccoli. Beautiful, isn’t it? And it’s broccolicious, too! They are harvesting lovely little florets from their late-winter planting right now. Roast it, sauté it, soup it, steam it, toss it with garlic, bacon and fusilli. Oh, life is good!

Dungeness crab from Hama Hama Oyster Company. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Dan says Hama Hama Oyster Company will have fresh, whole dungeness crabs today, while they last. He’ll also have some geoduck, the world’s largest, and our own native clam. Geoduck in particular is a rare treat, as it can only be harvested at especially low tides. But again, get here early if you want some. And hey, if he’s already sold out, just put an order in for next week, so you’ll be sure to get some, eh? Sounds like a good Father’s Day dinner to me!

Mizuna from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of fields slowly drying out and crops returning to the Snoqualmie River Valley, Full Circle Farm returns today to your Ballard Farmers Market after a month-long hiatus, and to be honest, I am not really sure what all they’ll have today. If I had to guess, which, I guess, I have to do, I’d guess they’ll have some of this mizuna, maybe some mustard greensradishesJapanese wax turnips, some spring carrots and such. Okay, now we all get to see just how clairvoyant I am.

Shaving kit from Brown Butterfly. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Speaking of Father’s Day (which is just next week, by the way), has your dad ditched those annoying, expensive, environmentally unfriendly aerosol shaving cream cans yet? No? Well, then, this is the year! Our own Brown Butterfly makes extraordinary shaving soap that will keep dads face smooth as a baby’s bottom, make him feel like a real man, save him money, and reduce his footprint on the earth, too. And to get dad started, get an entire shaving kit for him from Brown Butterfly. Seriously… ask any man who’s dumped the can for the pleasure of lathering up with a brush and soap. There’s just no going back!

More Is More cream puffs from Cupcake Luv. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

One of these day, I will have to start with dessert, but again this week, I will end with it. In this case, how about some More Is More cream puffs with fresh local strawberries from Cupcake Luv. Cupcake Luv is hardcore with its use of local ingredients. Heck, even the flour they use in these puppies is from Washington farmers. Yay! So get your Luv on today!

Hey, there is plenty of 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, April 10th: Nothing Says Spring Like Garden Starts, Easter Hams, Baseball, Radishes & Lard!

April 9, 2011

Baseball cookies from Grateful Bread. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

So let’s root, root, root for spring to show up. If it doesn’t, it will be a shame. But hey, ignore the forecast, as it’s spring at your Ballard Farmers Market right now! And that means, among other things, baseball cookies from Grateful Bread. You’ve just gotta love the creativity of these folks. I mean, have you seen the alligator loaf?!

Vegetable starts from Sunseed Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Rain or not, if you plan on having a garden, now’s as good a time as any to start planting you some veggies. Sunseed Farm returned to your Ballard Farmers Market last Sunday with all manner of organic veggie starts. So get out the slicker, boots and trowel, and get planting!

Easter hams from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Okay, now that’s a proper photo of Olsen Farms’ holiday hams, just in time for Easter. Much better than last week’s photo of ham hocks, don’t you think? Skagit River Ranch has hams, too, and Olsen is offering up leg of lamb this week, as well. Or, get a chicken from Growing Things or Stokesberry Sustainable Farm — perfect for Passover.

Ravishing red radishes from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Ravishing radishes just radiate spring. Just imagine dipping them in some butter and truffle salt, slicing them over a beautiful salad, or just eating them all before you even get home. These lovelies are from Full Circle Farm.

Spicy salad mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And speaking of salad, spicy salad mix has returned to the tables of Alm Hill Gardens. Woohoo! May your taste buds and colon rejoice!!! Get you a big ol’ bag, and a few bunches of them radishes, and just eat yourself silly!

Shucked, smoked & pickled oysters from Hama Hama Oyster Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Have you met our new shellfish farm yet? If not, meet Hama Hama Oyster Company. They’ve got a few varieties of oysters in the shell, as well as the above shucked, smoked and pickled oysters, and they’ve got some gorgeous manila clams, too. If you’ve been missing your oysters & clams, stop by for your fix. These sweet, briny bivalves will absolutely make your day!

Bluebird Grain Farms Orange Hazelnut Farro Salad. Photo courtesy Bluebird Grain Farms.

Bluebird Grain Farms returns today, with the plan of coming back now every week. So come on down and pick up some emmer, a little flour, and maybe a bag or two of biscuit mix. Oh, yeah.

Strawberry starts from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Strawberry starts from Stoney Plains Farm. Plant them now. Eat berries from them in June! ‘Nuff said.

Pork lard from Sea Breeze Farm. Photo copyright 2011 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And finally this week, nothing says spring like, um, lard? Oh, what the heck. You are going to make pie for Easter, right? Then why not make it right, with the most incredibly flaky crust ever? Well, that will require some of this beautiful lard from Sea Breeze Farm, it will. (Um, not the best choice for that Passover pie, but then again, such a pie would like be made of matzoh meal and eggs anyway, right?)

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. But please note that due to our recent cold weather, some crops may not be available as anticipated.

Sunday, March 7th: Miner’s Lettuce, Chickweed, Daffodils, Strawberry Starts & Other Undeniable Signs Spring Is Here To Stay!

March 7, 2010

Daffodils from Children's Garden. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Growing up in Northern New York, we had daffodils this time of year, too. The problem was that they were imported from, well, here, probably, since it was still a frozen tundra there this time of year. Good thing I live here now, eh? While the rest of the country is still battling snow, we are thoroughly diggin’ this whole El Nino thing, aren’t we? To that end, do pickup a beautiful bouquet of fresh daffodils from Children’s Garden to brighten up your home without having to disrupt the explosion of yellow and white that yours are giving your yard.

Fresh, tasty Miner's lettuce from Full Circle Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Another sure sign of spring that we lacked back East is Miner’s lettuce, a.k.a., claytonia or winter purslane. Native to our region, it gets its name because early miners would rely on it for an excellent source of nutrition after long, hard winters. Find cultivated Miner’s lettuce (above) from Full Circle Farm, or wild-harvested from Foraged & Found Edibles.

Fresh chickweed from Nash's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

It was a pair of cockatiels that originally taught me to appreciate that chickweed is indeed a tasty treat. But it is Nash’s Organic Produce that I first saw actually bring it to market. Chickweed is a highly nutritious green, like Miner’s lettuce, that is perfect this time of year to give our bodies a kick-start out of the winter blues.

Strawberry starts from Stoney Plains. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

As our ridiculously warm winter quickly heads officially into spring, many farmers are offering plant starts for your garden. Take these strawberry starts from Stoney Plains, for instance. Plant these puppies now, and you’ll be enjoying incredible strawberries right out of your own yard come June.

A trotter & a leg from Sea Breeze Farm. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Not necessarily a sign of spring, a trotter and a smoked hock is a sign of pork-o-liciousness. Think of all the wonderful dishes you can enhance with these beauties from Sea Breeze Farm. And they are a sure sign that their case will also be full of other fresh, yummy cuts o’ fresh pig. Yay!

Fresh fudge from Pete's Perfect Butter Toffee. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

And there is nothing I can do to tie this gorgeous fudge to spring, other than to say that any time of year is a good time for fudge. You’ll find this fudge at Pete’s Perfect Butter Toffee. You’ll find Pete there, too.

Spicy salad mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Back on the spring theme again, how about some tasty, peppy spicy salad mix from Alm Hill Gardens. Lucky for us, the warm winter has meant that salad mixes have returned with a vengeance to your Ballard Farmers Market, which makes our mouths and our bodies very, very happy.

Beef bacon from Olsen Farms. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Back off the spring theme again, how about some beef bacon from Olsen Farms. You know Olsen for the bazillion kinds of potatoes they grow in the NE corner of our fine state. They have a potato for every application you can think of, and for several you have yet to think of. They also have wonderful beef and lamb, and from that beef they make this beef bacon. We all need more bacon in our lives, so give some of this a try, eh?

Gala apples from Tiny's Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2010 by Zachary D. Lyons.

You will still find plenty of apples at your Ballard Farmers Market, like these gala apples from Tiny’s Organic Produce. Tiny’s also has a great line of jams. and dried fruit, too.

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.