Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Weekly Local Booty - Farmer's Market and CSA - June 27, 2009

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Weekly Local Booty - Farmer's Market and CSA - June 27, 2009

We've been in the midst of a heat wave here in Mid-Missouri and today is slated to be no different - highs in the upper 90s, heat index well into the 100s, and humidity, humidity, humidity. Neither Brett or I are fans of the whole "early to bed, early to rise" mentality, but not wanting to have heat exhaustion or come home feeling like a hot oozing mass of sweat, we decided to get up early and hit the market first thing. Apparently we weren't the only ones with that idea as the market was really packed already at eight in the morning.

It was a mighty success at market this week and this week's CSA share is the best one yet. Only one oddity - there are some Amish folks who are at market every week and have some of the best tomatoes I have ever tasted. I actually can't recall them ever not being there. Well, today they weren't. We're not sure if it was the weather or what, but there were only two stands that I saw that were selling tomatoes and boy, were their lines long. We decided to risk it and get tomatoes right before we left. The wait in line was well worth it, we have a lovely haul of some very gorgeous tomatoes.

Anywho, check out Week 7's Danjo Farms quarter share veggie CSA:

Starting from the bottom right: red spring onions, beets with their gorgeous greens, a yellow summer squash, two cucumbers (I'm not sure what kind the curled one is, but whatever they are, they are really, really good cukes), a full sized onion (!!!!!), and a lovely head of tasty cabbage (!!!!!).

That cabbage isn't going to even last a day in our house, I'm using part of it for dinner tonight.

And here is this week's farmer's market haul. It ran us $47.

Starting from the bottom right: 1/2 pound Beau Solais oyster mushrooms (seriously, any folks in Columbia who like mushrooms, try these, we've tried the other oyster mushroom purveyor at market and this one is just hands down way better), 2 red bell peppers (!!!!!), 2 green bell peppers, a bunch of banana peppers, 7 gorgeous tomatoes (we meant to get 6 and ended up with 7 on the scale and decided to go ahead and get the additional one), Stanton Brothers eggs (again, the best eggs we've found in Mid-Missouri), 2 heads of Georgian Fire garlic from Chert Hollow Farm, 2 bunches of small red onions from "The Awesome Guy that I Always Forget to Look at the Stand Name but Get His Onions Every Week Because They Rock" (talk about an "Indian Name"), a bunch of cilantro from the Korean/Vietnamese stand Kea International Market, a box of locally produced Pasta Italia penne pasta, Yukon Gold potatoes from The Veggie Patch, and two Texas candy onions.

I used to be one of those people who thought garlic was garlic - it didn't really matter. That was until I was introduced to the beauty that is heirloom varieties from the farmer's market. So far, our favorite was the Music garlic we had last year, funnily enough, unbeknownst to us, that was from Chert Hollow Farm. We also enjoyed the German Extra Hardy as well, but that Music garlic, man it made some killer refried beans. Anyway, there is a difference in the flavors and qualities of different garlics and we are trying to figure out what our favorite varieties are.

As I metioned in last week's Local Booty Update, we missed the first of the year garlic from Chert Hollow Farm. Eric, the owner/operator of the farm offered to hold some back for us so we could make sure we got some this weekend at market (super cool of him by the way, something that again, makes the farmer's market stand out from the grocery store, you wouldn't get that kind of service and treatment from Wal-Mart). He asked what we planned on doing with the garlic (Mexican food, of course) and picked out a variety he thought would work well. He chose Georgian Fire garlic.

It is lovely garlic that smells amazing even through the skin. We only got two heads because it is "green garlic" meaning it hasn't been cured and thus isn't meant to be stored. It will keep in the fridge for about a week. I can't wait to try it with dinner tonight. We are some mad garlic eaters around here, so two heads should tide us over until next Saturday. However, if we make refried beans again, all bets are off. :-)

I will be back sometime this weekend for a "cookbook teaser post" with pictures of the things Selina and I have been working on for the cookbook.

J's Songs of the Day:

With Words:
"Tonight She Comes" - The Cars
"Crawling King Snake" - The Doors
"Puddin' Taine" - Primus

Without Words:
"Classical Gas" - Mason Williams
"Grey's Groove" - Greyboy Allstars featuring Karl Denson
"Loose Cannon" - Los Angeles Guitar Quartet

I hope everyone is having an excellent weekend, stay cool!

'Til next time.


Heather @ SGF said...

Good food is just beautiful in its own right, isn't it. Great haul!

Anonymous said...

OMG--I hear you on the heat and humidity--it is hot and disgusting and sticky and muggy and oppressive here as well :o( Gross! It has to break soon, right!?

Your garlic sounds so good! I *love* garlic, but I am like you used to be--I always think garlic is garlic. It is so interesting to hear that each kind is a little different. I passed up garlic this week at the farmers market, but I will be sure to pick some up next weekend! I hope your two heads can hold you over... :o)


Eric Reuter said...

Regarding the Mennonite vendors, my understanding is that there was a big wedding in the Mennonite community this weekend and they were all attending, thus skipping market. There are no true Amish vendors; note the large trucks and cell phones.

Thanks again for your kind words on our garlic, which we're quite proud of. Another note on heirloom/market garlic versus generic, often the grocery store version is treated with preservatives to keep it from sprouting during its long storage and transport life, especially because it's increasingly coming from China. They don't have to label that, though (like wax on a cucumber) so you'd never know. Another reason to enjoy farmers markets.

Looking forward to seeing the review on the Georgian Fire, for better or for worse.

Anonymous said...

What nice peppers! We are still several 'veg/fruit weeks' behind you, so reading your blog gives a hint of what's to come.
I'll have to see what kind of garlic I'm getting from the CSA here. I had a couple bulbs last week and they both tasted different from each other.

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

Heather - It certainly is. I love looking at my bowls full of fresh produce after a trip to market, it is always so lovely.

Courtney - I hate humidity and that is what summers in the Midwest are, humid. It IS oppressive and so gross, it makes walking places no fun at all. It seems to have broken here, it's actually been even a bit chilly and you've needed a jacket a night or two around here.

Garlic is amazing. I think garlic and onions are my two most often used ingredients.

They didn't last, didn't come close. I got three this week but I still don't think that is going to be enough.

Eric - Thank you for the Amish/Mennonite clarification. Brett and I lived down in the Lake of the Ozarks area for awhile and there were a lot of Mennonite's down there, I remember him explaining the difference before as well.

I'm glad to know it was a positive reason for missing market!

Not a problem, we are happy to support (and sing praise for where necessary) small local farmers who treat their land and view their occupation in a ways that are in line with our principles. We know we can trust what you grow, whereas at the store we don't know where the food even comes from let alone who actually grew it. Who KNOWS what all makes its way on or in your produce as it dances the globe in ways most of us will never experience.

I finally reviewed the Georgian Fire, it is an excellent variety, I think you'll have a lot of satisified folks.

Living in a Local Zone - That is how I feel about some of the southerners blogs I read, seeing and reading about things we will be waiting a few more weeks for.

They all have their own flavor and I think they all even have applications that will showcase their flavors better than others, it is find to enjoy the different varieties and determine what kind we like in each type of food we make.

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