This week, last year: our market menu, featuring the hilariously informative sketch of the mythical vegetannual. We’re currently in the leafy green base part of the season, and will remain there for a few weeks.
My garden seems to have gone from March to June in the last week and a half, totally skipping April and May. Everything’s green (except for the Japanese Maple that apparently died in the fall – major sadfaces here!), and our rhubarb has already shot flower stalks up to the sky. But as with all green things, garden or farm, we take what the weather gives us, right?
So, at the market this weekend, we should definitely be seeing more asparagus and rhubarb, plenty of greens — including fresh cut herbs — and small/shallow roots like radishes and turnips, thanks to farmers with hoop houses, who got an early start!!
If you’re looking for some new recipes for Rhubarb, we’ve pulled a few that might be of interest:
- Hot Pink Rhubarb Compote – delicious in oatmeal or over yogurt, probably amazing in custard, according to the Brits.
- Rhubeena – a syrup/cordial, to be added to club soda or other drinks throughout the summer.
- Rhubarb Crisp – I love the oats and nuts in this recipe, but it would be just as delicious if you were to make it nut-free. It calls for AP flour, but I see no reason why you couldn’t substitute rice flour or another gluten-free option, since the dough doesn’t need to hold any kind of structure.
Asparagus probably needs no introduction, but here are a couple of ideas just in case:
- Shaved Asparagus Salad – a little extra work, but if you’re going for something unusual, it’s worth it.
- Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan – posted for the pictures, and oven temp, but it’s so simple you won’t need a recipe! (olive oil, salt and pepper, sprinkle of parm, roast in a 450F oven about 10 minutes)
The little roots might need a bit of promotion, though.
I really like spring turnips sliced on a mandoline (less than 1/4″ thick), sprinkled with a little salt and pepper, raw. They’re mild in the spring — it’s a great time to try turnips — and the white haukerei variety that’s become more popular in recent years are practically juicy like a fruit. You can also do a quick pickle, with vinegar and salt and pepper and a little ginger. The haukerei are delicate enough, you don’t want to overwhelm them with flavors. But that’s only if they make it in your crisper long enough to get to the pickling jar!! This farro salad with turnips and greens is also super lovely.
I also like to slice radishes on the mandoline (watch the fingers, though — get one of those knife-safe kevlar gloves!), either to add to salads or eat raw. I tried pickling them last year, and didn’t love the results. I usually enjoy radishes raw, but sometimes they do sit in the fridge awaiting an idea for something different; this roasted radishes w/ radish tops (and brown butter!) is the something different I found at one point last year. It’s really nice, mild and perfect for taming the heat that radishes can bring sometimes. Though radishes can be stored short-term, we’re at the peak of their fresh season right now, so enjoy them!
Hope to see you out and about this weekend, whether at the market, Green Top Grocery, Common Ground Grocery, or one of these local farms* (see below):
- Cook Farms / Legacy of the Land’s farmstand is open Tuesday-Friday, 4-7pm
- Rogue Carrots just off downtown Bloomington, drop them a line!
- Farm Fresh Front Yard for eggs and more
- Brown’s Fresh Produce’s farmstand will open in July
*Do you know of a local farm doing on-farm events or farmstand sales, not listed here? Please let us know, and we’ll add it!