Good Things at Ballard Farmers Market

Glendale Shepherd Farmstead on Whidbey Island

Happy Swanson family, including newborn lambs photo 2015

Finally we can see the babies!  Born in February, they are just now getting the chance to explore outside of their barn.  Aren't they beautiful?  And their mommas are getting back into production.  Pick up a jar of some of the best tasting Sheep Yogurt that you've ever tasted, and handcrafted farmstead Sheep's cheese this Sunday at Ballard Farmers Market.

Glendale Shepherd's baby lambs born January and February 2015

An Easy Recipe for the Newest Spring Vegetables at Ballard Farmers Market

EARLY MUSTARD GREENS, PEA SHOOTS, AND GARLIC STIR FRY WITH CAYENNE

Pick up a bunch or two of Green Garlic at Growing Washington

Growing Washington Farm has some of the first green garlic.Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

One Leaf Farm has lovely, mild-flavored and tender mustard greens Copyright Zachary D. Lyons

One Leaf Farm Mustard Greens

2 Bunches Mustard Greens and a handful of Pea Shoots for each person.  Wash and spin dry (or wrap in a clean towel for 15 minutes), pile leaves on top of each other and slice lengthwise, 2-3 times.

1 to 2 Tbls Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 to 1 tsp. Crumble a dried Cayenne Pepper or use ground powder  (depending on your taste) available at Stoney Plains Farm and at Alvarez Farms

1 Red or Yellow Onion, cubed coarsely from Lyall Farms or Colinwood Farm

3-5 Stalks of Green Garlic, washed, with ends cut, peeled, if needed, and chopped into 1/2 inch slices all the way up the stems available from Growing Washington

Salt to Taste

Heat oil to medium high (the oil will start to shimmer) in wok or frypan.  Add onion and a dash of salt and let sizzle for 3 minutes or until they start to show some brown.  Add chopped greens, pepper and the rest of the salt.  Stir every minute or so until greens are bright and shiny, 3-6 minutes.

Serve with rice.

You can also add tofu ( I like to marinate the firm-type while I'm starting rice and chopping things).  Then I add it to the pan with the onions.  Beans are another great idea, and really quick if opening a can.  Of course, you can add some type of meat, like savory sausage, or stir fry cuts.

Pea Shoots from Kirsop Farm

Pea Shoots from Kirsop Farm Copyright Zachary D Lyons

A really Good Idea:  

Store left over produce properly to use later

An Example:  If you buy leafy greens at Ballard Farmers Market, they will stay fresh in your fridge for 5-8 days, a couple of days more than if you go to a grocery store for your greens.  But we all know sometimes it doesn't work out to get to them by that time, and they can start looking a little limp.  Easy Fix: soak them in a bowl of very cold water for about 30-45 minutes.  They'll perk right up for you.  Spin them dry & they'll keep another 3-5 days in a clean plastic bag in your veg drawer.

But if you don't plan to cook the 2nd half of the bunch of greens after a week, store the remaining bunch in your freezer.  It won't take but a few minutes.  1) Wash and Cut off the largest part of the stems.  2) Blanch by plunging them into boiling water for 1-2 minutes.  3) Fill large bowl with cold water while leaves blanch.  4)  Use tongs, and remove leaves from boiling water & plunge them quickly into the bowl of cold water.  5)  Spin or pat with a towel  to remove excess moisture. 6) Place in airtight containers or freezer bags and freeze immediately. They will keep for 10-12 months.

Wonderful cookies from Pinckney Cookie Cafe

This is a great success story for one of our newer, local food businesses, Michael Pinckney, Owner.

Pinckney Cookie Café is a Seattle area gourmet cookie company with a delightfully unexpected offer…  cookies that are as moist, chewy, flavorful and as delicious as any that you can bake at home!  Containing top quality, dark Belgian chocolate (Callebaut), and many ingredients from local suppliers, you'll find Wheat, Wheat-Free and Vegan & Wheat-Free choices in many different flavors.  And as if that isn't good enough, you can find Frozen Cookie Dough (wheat only) in scoops that can go right into your preheated oven!

A measure of the quality and popularity of Pinckney Cookie Cafe products is that his cookies are now available at the Espresso Stands in Safeco Field.  So you can get a delicious cookie even when you're watching a game.

Stop and talk to Michael to ask what he has for his Cookie of the Day.