Saturday, April 12, 2014

farmers' market treasures

Today was our first visit this season to one of several local farmers' markets we have in our community each week. With markets on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, all having different farmers, it's a treasure hunt every single time we go.

One of the farms is close by and I had to stop and tell the story of a day a few weeks ago when I drove past and spotted two of her new sheep propped up on a fence rail straining to reach the leaves on the tree for a green nibble. I wished again I knew how to knit - she had gorgeous yarn from her wool, in my most favorite colors - cobalt blue, fuchsia, emerald. It would make the perfect poncho. One day. It's on my list to learn.

Tonight's meal was left-over roasted chicken sauteed with red and yellow peppers and onion, avocado, and salsa on warm from the pan home-made corn tortillas. Dinner was incredible.

Tomorrow night we'll use the chicken to make stock for risotto and the tender local greens and sausage we picked up at today's market.

We also got parsley, green garlic, salami, lettuce greens, and a few other things I'm forgetting. Ideas for meals line up like dominoes in my mind.

We love knowing where our food comes from, that it is grown and raised with love and care, that animals used for meat are treated with respect, and we love how good everything tastes.

I was in our garden this afternoon, tending spinach, kale, bok choi, brocolli, purple cabbage, sage, and basil. I saw at least 20 tiny seedlings sprouting, volunteers from last year's garden. And I'm starting some seeds inside as well. 

If you don't already grow some of your own food, or visit your local markets, give it a try this year. It makes the meals, and the season, extra special.


Grey Horse Matters said...

We should all visit our local farmers markets for food. It's nice to know where it's grown and how the animals are treated. Our local farmers haven't opened yet. I can't wait.

The wool sounds special. It's not so hard to knit or crochet you can really learn it from a book or the internet I would guess. Give it a try.

billie said...

A, I have a book that was highly recommended for learning to knit. I tried but was not very successful - the times I have had people with me to help me get started, I did much better. But one day I am going to make it a priority. All I want to do right now is knit myself a poncho!

Máire said...

Yum! I have four, brand new, raised beds. Looking forward to getting stuck in.

I used to be really into knitting a few years ago, but have lost the urge for the past while. It is a winter activity I always think.

billie said...

Maire, how exciting about the raised beds - what will you plant in them?

Totally agree about the kniting in winter. What I need to do is buy the local yarn at the last market of the season and then learn to knit before the next market season begins!

I have been trying to post a comment on your recent blog post and I can't make it work. But wanted to say that we are using the riding instead of rasping idea here and it's working really well, at least it has over the winter season. Eager to hear more about your experience with Nic Barker's approach.

Matthew said...

I always love Farmer's Market season!

billie said...

It makes a great date morning activity! :)

Máire said...

Youngest daughter is keen to teach me how to grow 'spuds' having had a lesson at school. A pupil's dad is a farmers market grower. I want to grow the types of veg we eat. And peas. I just love just picked peas. Also salad stuff.

I have more confidence to leave well alone having spoken with Nic. A really good point is if we take toes back too much to mimic miles of movement, are you stressing their caudal heel as they normally should have worn their way into this adjustment in their hoof. That is a clumsy way of attempting to summarise a pint she made.

billie said...

Thanks - I was noticing with ours that the trims were leaving them sore for several days - which made me feel like we were doing way too much - this was true if trimmer trimmed, slightly less so if husband and I trimmed.

Then after letting Keil go with riding doing the trimming (and the stone areas we have helping) he was moving so well - then I decided we should "touch up" the rough edges and he got ouchy again! I love the point about wearing their way into the adjustment - it is all dictated by their movement and activity and footing - and if we don't trim to exactly that, and I'm not sure how we could, we're probably almost always doing too much.