This week at the South of the James Farmers’ Market, there was a rainbow of fresh produce among the stalls. It was evident that everything is really starting to come in, and we can now enjoy the end of the spring harvest and the beginning of the summer. With the holiday weekend in mind, Chef Sam Baker showcased the colors and flavors of this season with a parade of salads and sides that were fit for shoppers’ cookouts, picnics and dinner tables.
First up was a kohlrabi slaw made with Norma’s kohlrabi, parsley, dill and onions, plus Amy’s organic tri-color carrots. The matchstick sliced vegetables were tossed with sea salt, black pepper, olive oil, vinegar and herbs for a refreshing seasonal salad. Next, the Chef made chips from thinly sliced beets and potatoes from Walnut Hill Farm Produce.
There was also a sautéed vegetable medley made with Amy’s organic yellow squash and tri-color carrots, Walnut Hill beets with sautéed beet greens, and a medley of sautéed beet greens and Victory Farms Swiss Chard with Ault’s Spanish chorizo.
This week marked the debut of the Vegology Veg of the Week board, which features fun facts about a particular market item each week. In case you hadn’t noticed, I’ll spell it out for you: the star of this week was beets.
The Veg of the Week board also features an excessive amount of exclamation points. Apparently I can’t contain my excitement about fresh local produce. Walnut Hill Farm had gorgeous red beets and Touchstone gold beets for the feature. A lot of market shoppers hopped on the beet train for the first time this week, and I hope they have luck cooking them at home. You can learn more about beets in these past Vegology posts: We Got the Beet and (Almost) Free Greens.
Later in the morning, the Chef got fresh duck eggs from Empress Farm, which inspired a breakfast dish. Later shoppers were treated to samples of brunch food made with fresh, local ingredients. Prepared in about 15 minutes, these dishes would make an easy Sunday morning meal at home.
The Chef made French toast with Empress Farm duck eggs, Montana Gold Challah bread and Alfredo’s local honey. On the side were red and white potatoes cooked into home fries and topped with a duck egg Hollandaise sauce.
We have seen so much green at the market throughout the spring, and it was really exciting to see some bright new colors pop up on the tables this week. Who knows what next week will bring!
Thanks to Alfredo’s Honey, Amy’s Organic Garden, Ault’s Family Farm, Empress Farm, Montana Gold Bread Company, Norma’s Produce, Victory Farms, Walnut Hill Farm Produce, and all of the other featured market vendors for producing this week’s fresh and tasty ingredients.
Visit the Market Chef page to see other SOJ Market cooking demo recaps.