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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Summer Markets and The Abundance of Fabulous Produce

I get pretty spoiled in the summer because I am the "market master" for a farmer's market twice a week. I have an early preview of beautiful produce that comes in every Tuesday and Sunday. This is my fourth summer of hosting a market, and it is loads of fun putting together, but frankly, even harder to sustain.

The young child in me can't wait for the market day to arrive and I am impatient as I await each growers' arrival. I've learned a lot about farming and even more about farmers, more than I ever thought I would know. They are a passionate group, whether they be the college-aged blueberry farmer who brings organically raised blueberries, (she picks them at 8:00 AM, and by 10:00 AM, they are on a table at my market), or the cheese producers from faraway in Chester County. The market unfolds like a fan, and once it is opened, my heart is happy and content. Not just because my store becomes a community resource for shoppers, but because I get to buy beautiful, fresh, and clean produce. It is so beautiful, it appears that diamonds are shining in the collected dew on each kale leaf. Really.

I whipped this up tonight and thought it turned out nicely, so I thought I would share it with you. Quick and easy would be its claim to fame.

Summer Vegetable Saute

One large summer squash, diced nicely into 1/2 inch cubes
Two shallots, finely minced
One clove of garlic, finely minced
Two cups of kale, ripped into bite-sized pieces (I use scissors to cut it up)
One can of organic artichokes (rinsed and dried, then smashed)
One can of organic pinto beans (rinsed and dried)
One cup of 365 Organic Pasta Sauce (fat free)
One cup of cooked, brown organic rice
1/2 teaspoon of oregano
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (or more, if you are so inclined)

"Saute" onion and garlic in about a 1/4 cup of water, on a low flame. When the shallots are clear, add the summer squash, and saute them until the squash starts to brown.

Add kale and "saute."

Add canned items, sauce, and rice.

Add spices, and simmer on a low flame (covered)for about 10-12 minutes.

Serves four, generously.

I like it best over a bed of fresh Romaine, of course from the farmers' market.

It's good that we get to see all of the good stuff that grows locally. And that going to a farmers' market allows you to see the "face behind the product."

1 comment:

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