As if the wonderful flowers and less than arctic chill in the air weren’t enough indication of Spring, last week marked the first official week of the full growing season for many farmer’s markets throughout the DC area. And to say I was excited is an understatement. Anyone who knows me is aware of my almost obsessive love for fresh produce. I get as giddy as a school girl when I am presented with the opportunity to peruse aisle after aisle of various fruits, veggies, herbs and the like. So this past winter was a bit hard for me (really, how many ways can I cook potatoes?).
All of this was forgotten when I headed over to the Penn Quarter FreshFarm Market on my lunch break with my friend James. Because I also frequent the Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market, I was familiar with several of the vendors. I happily bought some sinfully aromatic basil from Endless Summer Harvest (I always buy tomatoes, peppers and squash from them when they are in season), which I will be using in the next few days for a basil cream pesto sauce and a great basil, roasted garlic and tomato hearth bread (stay tuned…). Over at Togio Orchards I got some nice cherry tomatoes, which I have already used some of in a great mesculin mix I got from Sunnyside Organic. Also at Sunnyside I found very colorful rainbow chard that even James admitted was beautiful.
And finally (and definitely not least), I stumbled upon carb heaven: The Ovens at Quail Creek Farms. Not only did they have very tasty loaves of bread (I got a multi-grain that I can verify is nut-erific…yup, it was so good I had to make up a word), they had divine croissants, muffins, cookies and (wait for it) hazelnut fuckin’ brownies! I resisted the temptation to buy the brownies, but did give into the croissants. They will make for great breakfasts this weekend…or maybe a good croissant chocolate pudding (an idea I have been mulling in my brain since trying a similar dish at Fado this past winter…it’s no longer on their menu, so don’t go lookin’ for it). Either way, I already ate one of these flaky gems with Nutella for dessert tonight. I was too lazy to make chocolate brownies, so I improvised…with lip smackin’ results!
You may ask why I hit the farmer’s market when I belong to a great CSA. Both myself and my friend Greyhound Celebrity (whom I split a share with from Star Hollow Farm) will be out of town for most of the upcoming week, so we decided not to get a share this weekend. But I wanted to do a bit of cooking for the few days I will be in town before heading to New Orleans for a conference (I know, I know I have such a hard job). So this weekend will be spent in the kitchen when I’m not cheering on my beloved Braves at the new Nationals Park or going for my runs around the Tidal Basin. So all these ingredients you see now will soon turn into wonderful dishes I will happily share in upcoming blogs! Oh and I will be taking my trusty Canon with me to NOLA (my friend Daphne’s nickname), so stay tuned for tales of amazing food, wonderful music and gorgeous architecture!