Sometimes I feel like a food snob. I own. I tell people straight up. I am weird when it comes to food. Really I don’t want to go into a whole Paleo eating rant. I eat lots of veggies. Lots of meats. To me, my diet has lots of variety, but when I try to explain to people what I try to avoid it seems extensive: no grains, potatoes, sugars, most vegetable oils, beans, rice, processed foods, and raw tomatoes (just because I don’t do the texture).
The other day at work our poor sous chef Davey was proudly trying to get me to try some of the Leek soup he made. What’s in it? That is my initial question. Leeks, fennel, potatoes…..You lost me at potatoes. Of course our chef Zac made fun of me. Most people would be tripped up by leeks and fennel and you turn your nose up at potatoes? What can I say, I am anything but conventional.
Saturday at the market I went over to visit and shop at my friend Jason’s booth. As I’m waiting on him to calculate my peppers, the leeks are staring me in the face. My arm reaches out to grab them, devoid of actually realizing what I was doing. They were in my basket and home before I began to think of what I was actually going to do with them.
Hmm…..maybe I should make soup too? Soups are kind of sparse on my website. When I did some recipe updating on my page the other day I felt a pang of sadness when I saw the sad compilation of soups I had. Determined after this revelation, I set out to make a bomb-ass leek soup. One devoid of potato assistance, but equally as tasty. I had an apple to spare from the pie I have to make this week. Why not throw that in for good measure? It is starting to look good.
I am a fan of local. Duh, I write it all the time. I sell at our farmer’s market. I am also a believer in doing as much for yourself as possible. Growing up we always had our own gardens. We hunted for our own food. Self-reliance was high on my father’s character-building. I am thankful for it.
A few years ago I found an article saying Seattle was going to build a forage market. So not just a place where you go buy beautifully staged rows of fruits and vegetables, but a scene of plants. Ready and bulging to be picked. You are in control. What’s ripe? Which ones are the best? It would provide not only more education on picking ou your own fruits and veggies, but it would provide a sense of pride. Pride in selecting and picking your food with your own two hands. RAD.
This year there is a new vendor in town. They are called the Pickery and I am in LOVE with them. I am in incandescent, stupid love. In love with their organic produce. In love with what they represent. In love with their idea. In love with their rows and rows laid out in front of me, bursting with produce. Waiting on me. Saying pick me, pick me. So many options. Continue reading “Pick it Yourself: Perks of Foraging Your Food”→
Blissful. Food (and bag from Anne) from farmers and people I know. To each item there is a name. A face. A smile. A conversation and interaction. A memory. There is a connection. Things that matter to me in my striving to be more mindful.
This is most definitely the pic and words I posted after our farmer’s market on Saturday. I am about to give a whole page of why to shop at your local farmer’s market, but this is the summary of what comes straight from my heart.
I have always loved going to markets. Maybe it’s because I grew up in the Midwest. Because I’m used to drives in the country. To watching breathtaking sunsets over never-ending cornfields. Maybe it’s because my parents efforts to teach self-reliance, meant my brother and I grew up working for our cash. We spent our summers tending to the cornfields we planted, sitting at our little humble roadside stand, selling sweet corn to avid Hoosier lovers of the stuff. Continue reading “Why to Shop Local: Hit up the Farmer’s Market”→
So it is no secret that I am a big supporter of local shopping (and not just because I sell there). Last week I scored some major finds at our Terre Haute Farmer’s Market. I graciously decided to take the LAST watermelon off of the Bush’s hands next to me. While I was at it I figured I’d better grab some cucumbers from the Hale’s table on the south side of my booth. Hmm… as I looked in my shopping basket a Pinterest memory was sparked. I remembered seeing a salad with them together. I can do that. I should do that. I will do that. Stop and get some feta on your way home.
And now I am going to share my creation with you. I have to confess I do not like cooking in the summer when it is hot. I want fresh. Juicy. Cold yumminess. I do not want to be slaving away over an oven or stove top. Give me salads. This was easy to assemble too. Once you get past the watermelon cutting the assembly was a breeze.
It’s a seasonal dish. It’s colorful. It’s got a wonderful combination of flavors. Go to the market and give it a whirl.
One of my favorite Farms at the markets- L&A Farms- has this cool Farm Fan app. Basically sign up and get text messages. Each purchase of pasture-raised eggs or grass-fed beef can go towards points. Get so many points, get a reward. Cool, and progressive for a farm, right? I think so. But more to the Fan, is that I can a text before each market reminding me to come to the market and what they will have. Even cooler, right?!?! I think so, at least to a food dork to me this future farm technology combination makes my heart sing. Why?
Because 1. It brings awareness back to the market. People can look at their phone and be reminded to go to the farmer’s market that day. 2. You can do a little pre-shopping because you know what produce they will bring. 3. It promotes local shopping. Buy local, earn rewards. There a rad, positive feedback loop here.
Let us return to number 2 and a month ago. I am standing at my booth, waiting on some customers and for the day to get hopping. My sounds with a text message. Who is texting me this early? Even better, it is my Fan reminder! They have rhubarb today! I looked at my boyfriend at least once every 20 minutes to say: Don’t forget to remind me to buy rhubarb. Of course he tried to buy it for me, but then I wouldn’t get my points.
Now this was a very conceptual market. I could make pie. I could make strawberry rhubarb pie. Or I could make pie bars. Hmm…..I like this thought. And looking back now, writing this post, if I were to change anything about this recipe, it’s that I would add rosemary. Maybe you can give that a go. Let me know how it turns out.
So I have a problem and that problem is baking. I can’t stop. My job title is officially: BAKER and Caterer. Working at the newest, hottest spot in town means the place is hoppin’. Things need to be made and who better to make pretzel buns and desserts and me. We need more buns, can I come in? Of course. Although my bosses noticed the other day that I haven’t taken a day off in a bit. You can tell us no. But what is two hours out of my day to make some beautiful buns. What can I say I am a weirdo. I love working. I love my job. I am a firm believer in doing what you love. What you are passionate about. What gets you going?
Besides having the job title, I also decided to start my own gluten-free baking business two years ago. Now I am in the swing of summer market season and I spend Friday’s baking for my booth. And Saturday’s connected with the beautiful people who stumble upon it. But….besides all that, I’ve been baking like a fiend at home. Recipe, after recipe. I probably have at least 10 new recipes on my camera and 50 more in my head. Yesterday I made some rhubarb pie bars and hit up my friends and taste-testers to sample them out. I bake for the sheer joy of creating!
Growing up people told me I should be an artist (Just one of my sketches here, I love a portrait and some people). And while I always enjoyed drawing, it just didn’t fit. Now all the creativity finds itself channeled into my job. Food is art to me. I baked an Americana themed pie this week. I like to braid the crust. There is artistry in dessert, and I crave it. Following my other passion, walking, usually puts me in a creative flow state. And since I walk to work, Ed Sheeran jamming, I get in a creative flow. Ever heard of Jason Silva? You should check him out if not. His energy and enthusiasm send me into a mindful rapture. His philosophy shots of espresso. I feel POSSIBLE after watching his clips. I really feel a connection to this video right here below on Creative Flow States ——–>>>>–>>>->
I thoroughly, incandescently love being at the Farmer’s Market. I have always enjoyed going to the market as an outsider for years. Actually at markets in general, I could loose myself at Pike’s Place Market in Seattle. Now being a part of it every week, I look forward to each and every Saturday. Even if it’s raining, I am going to be sunshining and ready to go.I am happy, enthused, and grateful to be there. Grateful for every person I make. Thankful for each new connection. Thankful for everyone who stops to talk to me. Grateful to my neighbor vendors who help me set up my tent. So appreciative for any and every single sell. After two and a half months in I’m starting to feel more at home at the market. Friendlier with my neighbors. Talking with more vendors. Expanding my shopping list each week (last week I scored some beautiful flowers from Kate and Carol).
What is not to love? I get to connect with people. I get to connect with other vendors. I get to compliment, compliment, and compliment (I enjoy giving genuine compliments in case you didn’t get the hint (Rock an amazing outfit, emote a great energy, smile and I will likely stop you and say something). The sense of community is intoxicating. The good vibes from supporting your local economy. Of meeting the farmer or shaking the hand of the person who tenderly worked so hard to bring you your dinner. How much better food tastes with this history. With this soul. Like the good vibrations inject themselves into your food. Continue reading “Cucumber Chips”→