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TOMATOES CATCH ONE LAST WAVE

October 9, 2012 - 9:19am
Author: 
Christopher S.

October usually brings apples and pears, pomegranates and pumpkins to the North Park Thursday Farmers’ Market (and you will find those things this week!), but the recent heat wave means we’ll also see another wave of warm weather crops that are usually gone by this time of year.

JR Organics and Valdivia Farms are still picking heirloom tomatoes; stretch summer out with this cool tomato and basil salad, using olives from Lisko Imports and crumbling some chevre from Taste Cheese on top. Or welcome winter with a warm bowl of tomato soup! Belen Bakery country French bread and cheddar from Spring Hill Cheese Company will make a tasty grilled cheese to go with that salad!

Kawano Farms and Proios Family Farm have more eggplants and summer squashes, and we spotted sweet and hot peppers at African Sisters’ and Suzie’s Farms.

R&L Farms and Smit Orchards are still harvesting peaches and pluots, and cantaloupe and watermelon are especially sweet right now. Enjoy the extended summer!

 

AUBERGINE DREAMS

July 11, 2012 - 11:01am
Author: 
Chris S.

Aubergine, or eggplant, is in season at Prois Farm, JR Organics and Suzie’s Farm at the North Park Thursday Farmers’ Market, and it’s one of our favorite summer vegetables. We can’t resist a classic eggplant parmigiana with fresh basil and, of course, real Parmigiano-Reggiano from Taste Cheese. If you have the patience and the need to impress, Japanese eggplant from Suzie’s Farm and summer squashes from Kawano Farms are perfect for this gorgeous ratatouille recipe; yes it’s the one from that movie! Pick up fresh parsley, lemons from Paradise Valley Ranch, and extra virgin olive oil from The California Olive for this baba ghanoush; don’t forget a crusty baguette from Belen Bakery for dipping. What will you make with eggplant? Give us some egg-cellent ideas! 
 

Stew You Feel Better?

October 12, 2011 - 10:36am
Author: 
Britta T

Seems that with the change of season comes lots of sneezin'. But although your grandmother might have just wanted to cook and dote on you when you came down with the flu, there's some truth to how fresh vegetables and warm soups do wonders for sick bodies. Stock up this week at the Little Italy Mercato on all your staple, seasonal ingredients for some homemade, good for the soul soups and stews.

Here's a delicious, nourishing stew from Carolyn Kates blog, "Cooking with Suzie's Farm CSA". Chopped zucchini, shelled Dragon Tongue Beans and sauteed eggplant give you nourishing nutrients and spices to calm the runny noses and sore throats, with plenty of flavor to perk you up. You can gather onions, garlic, and scallions from Schaner Farms, giant shiny eggplant and sizeable, sweet tomatoes from Rodney Farms, zucchini, parsley, and of course those gorgeous dragon tongue beans from Suzie's.

If you want to try a twist on the classic chicken soup, try this spicy Tomatillo Chicken Stew. Tomatillos resemble small green tomatoes with delicate, thin paper surrounding their flesh. Roast them with one or two jalapenos, depending on your spice threshold, and you've got the beginnings of an incredibly delicious stew that the whole family will enjoy. Sage Mountain Farm or Suzie's Farm both have yummy tomatillos, JR Organics offers spicy chili wreaths and you can pick up fresh cilantro and other leafy greens to add from Vang Farms.

For chicken, try taking home the whole bird from Spur Valley Ranch and use any additional meat throughout the week for other homecooked meals.

 

Cucina Romano

September 7, 2011 - 5:00pm
Author: 
Britta T and Catt W

Summer vegetables are at their peak, and we have to admit we're up to our cheeks in heirloom tomatoes, garlic and eggplant from the likes of Sage Mountain Farms, Maciel Farms and Schaner Farms. So let's revisit the real flavors of mediterranean cuisine. Do as the Romans do this week and set yourself up for a delectable and carbohydrate loaded Italian feast.

We're giving you the freedom to be creative here and let the produce inspire you. Be brave, and be colorful! (We won't blame you if you stop by Mona Lisa, Filippis or Buon Apetito Market on the way home, to pick up a nice bottle of red wine before cooking up a rich, sensational meal.)

Eggplant-can't get no respect!

August 2, 2011 - 6:55am
Author: 
Carolyn K

Have you heard that eggplants have arrived at the North Park Farmers market?  Often ignored or overlooked, we think that the eggplant is a majestic vegetable that just don't get no respect!   Native to India,  the eggplant has been cultivated since the beginning of their  historical record keeping.  It's so versatile that almost every culture worldwide has adopted it as reflected by the numerous tasty eggplant dishes prepared around the world from baingan bharta served in India, to baba ghanoush served in the Middle-East, to moussaka served in Greece, to aubergine parmigiana (a.k.a. eggplant parmesan) served in Italy, to beer-battered deep fried eggplant fritters served in Georgia, USA. 
We discovered the Rosa Bianca, also known as a Sicilian eggplant, last year and it instantly got our respect!  Available at Suzie's, this heirloom varietal, is sweet, fleshy and a lot less bitter than most other varieties. It also has a minimal amount of seeds,  making it perfect for grilling, baking and for just about anything that requires eggplant.  Slice it thinly,  sprinkle with olive oil and thyme from Thyme Essence,  grill the slices,smear on some of Nicolau's fresh goat chevre,  roll them up, top with chopped heirloom tomatoes from JR Organics and drizzle with Gianni's balsamic vinegar.   We think that you'll be giving the eggplant its due props!

 

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