Falmouth Farmers Market June 12, 2014

Falmouth Farmers Market - Falmouth Farmers Market

Non-stop rain fell on last week’s market, hours and hours of it, soaking shoes and chilling bones, but Carrie Richter from Peachtree Circle Farm was not complaining. “We need the rain,” she said. Dig down a few inches into the soil, and fields are quite dry. We like a sunny attitude on what felt more like a bad day in March than June.

Some brave souls donned foul weather gear, or came to the market juggling umbrellas. And, perhaps, they bought an extra vegetable to show support or flowers to lift their mood. Dan Silva had to make a run back to his farm for additional eggs. “I could have brought more,” said Carrie, surveying her near-empty table at the end of the day.

On a slow rainy day, the market was certainly a bright spot. Rain-misted greens have never looked greener. Red radishes and peonies popped with color. Lettuces—lime green, deep burgundy and speckled in-betweens—looked ravishing.

There will be pretty much everything there was last week this week (except asparagus). Strawberries could start making an appearance soon. Possibly even this Thursday. Here’s what you might expect:

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Lettuces, arugula, spinach, salad greens, micro-greens, pea tendrils, cucumbers, scallions, radishes and freshly cut herbs.

Chard, collard, kale (both Russian and Tuscan), braising greens, velvety baby bok choy, sweet little salad turnips, purple kohlrabi. Broccoli, and—great with pasta—assertive flowering broccoli rabe.

Maybe still some over-wintered potatoes and root vegetables.

Hydroponic tomatoes, basil and English cukes from Cape Abilities’ greenhouses.

Cape-caught fish: probably bluefish, plus scallops—and a third “catch-of-the day.” Chicken, chicken parts (great for soups and stocks) smoked pork, and fresh eggs from DaSilva Farms.

Massachusetts-made cheeses: Great Hill Blue, Long Lane Farm goat cheese—made fresh the morning of the market—and Shy Brothers’ Hannahbells and Cloumage.

Vegetable starts for your kitchen garden, including organic tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants from Tina’s Terrific Plants (new this year: “indigo blue” cherry tomatoes, high in anti-oxidant anthocyanin). Pots of organic herbs and rabbit-proof hanging containers of “cut&grow” lettuces, and ever-bearing strawberries.

Flower bouquets—and buckets of peonies from Peachtree Circle Farm!

Details

Every Thursday, noon to 6 PM
Through October 9
Peg Noonan Park, Main Street
www.falmouthfarmersmarket.org

Breads: three varieties of Rein’s Real Rye—caraway, fennel seed and ever-popular Swedish Limpa, plus classic and garlic ciabatta. Bread and sweet pastries from Pain D’Avignon. Grain-free and gluten-free treats from White Lion Bakery, including the super crisp cheddar cracker served at “Tastes of Falmouth.” And, we dare say, Great Cape Baking’s apple cider doughnuts.

Jams, jellies, pickles, mustards, preserves, dried cobs of popping corn—and jars of locally made salt. Find Cape Cod Saltworks products at Cape Abilities’ new table.

Excellent wines from Westport Rivers Winery, including a “summertime special” rosé. Fresh coffee and coffee beans ground to order—talk to Wayne Santos and his daughter, Jessica. Seasonally-themed, exquisite handmade chocolates with a new floral collection for spring, and more.

Lettuces are at their peak. Delicious in salads, of course, but mysteriously good, too, kissed quickly by heat. Halve and grill them on the barbecue, on a stove-top grill pan, or even on a hot well-seasoned cast-iron pan. It only takes minutes—what you’re aiming for is a range of color and flavors, from outer char to still-crisp interiors. Drizzle the lettuces, sliced up a bit if you like, with olive oil, vinegar and seasonings. Or, for a new take on wedge salad with blue cheese, try this.

Grilled Romaine with Blue Cheese

2 romaine lettuces (or other firm compact lettuce heads)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
sea salt
Blue cheese dressing:
2 oz (1/2 cup) roughly crumbled blue cheese, such as Great Hill Blue from Olio di Melli
1 tsp. finely minced scallion, spring onion or mild green garlic (white parts only)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1 tsp. lemon juice
4 Tbsp. or so milk
salt

For the dressing: Put half the cheese, crumbled, with remaining ingredients in a blender—all except the milk and salt. Use a couple of tablespoons of milk to dilute the sour cream left clinging to the measuring cup and add that to the blender, too. Pulse repeatedly to make a very smooth creamy dressing. Add salt and more milk as needed. You want it light enough to drizzle. Keep remaining cheese to strew over the lettuce in distinct chunks, rather than mixing it all into the dressing.

Refrigerate if you make this ahead of time.

To grill lettuce: trim lettuce heads, keeping enough stem to hold lettuces together. Wash well. Swish head-down in several changes of water; drain and halve lengthwise. If you spot any dirt left between the leaves, swish in water again. Drain lettuces and dry—dry very well, so that they grill, rather than steam. Brush all over with olive oil. Preheat grill, grill pan or cast iron pan and lightly oil. Grill lettuces, cut-side down, for 1 to 2 minutes until they develop nice char marks.

Turn carefully (tongs are good for this) and give lettuces 1 to 2 minutes on the other side. Plate cut-side up and season with a little salt.

Drizzle lightly with streaks and splotches of the creamy dressing, and crumble over remaining blue cheese in nice large chunks. Serves 4.

For more recipes, go to www.falmouthfarmersmarket.org. For updates and newsflashes, follow Falmouth Farmers Market on Facebook.

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