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Rebel Rose

California Farmers' Markets

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3 - 7 pm tonight is the Farmer's Market off Moreno in San Diego.

Funny location - between PetCo and ToysRUs with Armstrong Nursery near by & a dog-friendly barbecue place across the street.

Even if the Farmer's Market is a bust, there's lots of potential for wallet damage. :laugh:


"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Any farmer's market recommendations near the Berkeley area?

Thanks!

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Are you new to the area?

In Berkeley:

http://ecologycenter.org/fm/

In Kensington:

http://www.kensingtonfarmersmarket.org/

In Oakland:

http://oaklandcvb.com/visiting_dining_farmers.cfm

There are numerous farmers markets all over Bay Area, including the East Bay. The San Francisco markets are worth checking out, especially the market in Alemany. A quick google will give you any info you need. All the farmers markets are listed on their own or affiliated websites.

The Berkeley markets tend to be expensive and boutique-y. They are as politically and nutritionally correct as you can imagine. I know vendors there, and they've told me about the organic requirements for the food, the ecological requirements for packaging, etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc...Parking is difficult, if you want to do it legally. The Saturday market in downtown Berkeley is accessible by BART. I still go to the Berkeley markets anyway, for unusual and excellent produce--just not every week. I don't have a favorite for any one of them.

The Oakland markets are more reasonable. The Friday market in Old Oakland sells a great deal of Asian produce and I like to go there. It's accessible by BART. A cooking teacher I know likes the Grand Lake market. A foodie friend has recommended the Temescal market to me.

The Kensington market is smaller, but friendly with very good if not excellent vendors. I like this one and I'll shop there if I'm passing through the area. Parking is less nervewracking than it is at the Berkeley and Oakland markets. That's not saying much, though.

good luck with your shopping, and parking if you're driving...

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The sunday market in Walnut Creek is quite nice, next to Target. I go just about every week. First strawberries from Watsonville already showed up and are quite good. I park at Target, they don't want you to, but ... There's also a free garage right in the middle of the market on California I think, parking is never an issue.

I hear great things about the Berkeley market but since I live in the Creek, I never go. Ours is also year round, which is nice, only closed on one or two holidays I think.

Market at the Ferry Building in SF is great, combine with a ferry ride if you live in the East Bay, makes for a great outing. Not cheap, but a fun thing to do. I think Rancho Gordo still has a booth (or even a store now?) there for their fantastic beans.


"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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Posted (edited)

From the Little Italy Mercado farmers' market in San Diego: Ponderosa bitter lemon (50 cents a piece, I should have bought more than one!), Bouquet de Fleurs sour oranges (for marmalade but I was told they were sweet this year), passion fruit, Haas avocados, rhubarb, Perfection tangerines, sage + buckwheat & orange blossom honeys (this is my favorite honey vendor, Mikolich, and their sage & buckwheat honey just won a Good Foods award), Asian pears, bay leaves.

 

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Edited by FrogPrincesse typo (log)
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We usually try to get to the Ferry Building farmers' market every Saturday.

 

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Today:  cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, zucchini, cauliflower, Sunset peaches, new potatoes, herbs (rosemary, basil, Italian parsley), chicken, eggs, onions, garlic.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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today:  Chelsea cherry tomatoes, lemon cucumber, Romano beans, yellow wax beans, zucchini, herbs (oregano, Italian parsley, chives), apricots, chard, celery, chicken, new potatoes, salad greens, nasturtium flowers

 

then I popped inside the Ferry Building and bought some Rancho Gordo chickpeas.

 

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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today:  Early Girl tomatoes, zucchini, Sunset peaches, strawberries, Little Gem lettuces, green beans, yellow onions, herbs (peppermint, basil), new potatoes.

 

then we went into the Ferry Building and bought a pork loin and mozzarella cheese.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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6 hours ago, ProfessionalHobbit said:

 

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Thanks for posting that. The artichokes with flowers still attached are so beautiful, and that is the first time I have seen them like that. I knew they were related to wild thistle, but with the flowers, it's really obvious. Makes me tempted to try to make use of some of the wild ones growing around here. Lots of interesting info about foraging wild thistle here. Just wear gloves and long sleeves and pants.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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I was amazed to see the artichoke in bloom.  Am I right to assume that it is more of a centerpiece or decoration then something to eat at that stage?  I would love to have one in the middle of a table.  What a conversation starter!

As to wild thistles, I really hope gfron1 will rise to the challenge once he starts to forage in the area.  Seems like something that is right up his alley.

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We didn't ask, but perhaps we should have.  There was a crate full of them, along with artichokes sold in the usual manner (i.e., no flowers).


The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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Leek flowers.  I wish I had bought some, come to think of it. 

 

They had a pungent onion flavor and would probably have made some fabulous tempura.

 

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Beignets from a shop inside the Ferry Building.

 

Each order of eight cost $10.  We decided to skip those, otherwise I'd have bought some.

 

Today:  heirloom tomatoes, Early Girl tomatoes, herbs (chervil, peppermint, Italian parsley), Little Gem lettuce, mizuna, curly cress, garlic, peaches from Froghollow Farm, dates, butter, buttermilk and broccoli tops.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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Posted (edited)

@ProfessionalHobbit,

 

I was born in CA and lived there until I was eight with one jaunt to Queens Borough, NY in between. I have many fond memories, and am thoroughly enjoying your skillful photos of beautiful CA produce. Apricot photos would be most welcome, if you run across any. I could conjure up the smell of those from the tree I used to pick through my screen. I fell for some again recently in the NC grocery store again because they had a few blush spots, but I'll probably be disappointed yet again.

 

Those folks are mighty proud of their fried dough! Those aren't even beignets! I have had them at Cafe du Monde in New Orleans. Those in the photo look denser, and I've never seen any with granular rather than confectioner's powdered sugar. Hmmph. >:( You were right to leave them behind.

 

I don't have a tried and true recipe for beignets, but here's one I have used for sopapillas, and they came out light and puffy like the photos in the link. I used powdered sugar instead of the honey recommended in the link. They are much like beignets that way, but can also be stuffed with beans and cheese, meat or veggies after cooking.

 

Edit: I halved her recipe because it was just the two of us and they don't keep well.

 

Here's an excerpt from my comment to the author on Jan. 12 of 2015:

"Thank you for this recipe. I bookmarked it a while back, and just got around to making it tonight. They looked just like your photos! They were delicious. After making more than one internet recipe that didn’t perform as advertised, I can tell you that this one will definitely not disappoint you if you try it.

Next time I think I’ll use White Lily biscuit flour for an even lighter texture, and there will be next times for sure. :-)"


Edited by Thanks for the Crepes (log)
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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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Apricot season expired last weekend I'm afraid.  It'll be another year before they come again.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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BTW, these aren't edible according to a remark I overheard.

 

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today:  Summer Lady peaches from Froghollow Farm, San Marzano tomatoes, Romano beans, fava beans, strawberries, escarole, mozzarella cheese, applewood-smoked bacon, lamb chops

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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My local market haul is relatively pedestrian compared with the variety found at places like the big Santa Monica markets or ProfessionalHobbit's Ferry building market.  When I used to travel to SF for work, I'd try to schedule my meetings on Friday, hit the Ferry building market first thing on Saturday AM, shop until my carry-on was full, then BART to the airport and home. Always nice to get a little pleasure out of a business trip!

 

Back to today - clockwise from center front, eggs, tomatoes, summer squash, a bottle of "Down to Earth" rosé wine, sweet corn, lemons, partially out of frame avocados on the far right.  Dapple Dandy and Honey Punch pluots in the center.  Also peaches that were apparently to shy to pose.

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I have not been posting images because I had to switch from the fabulous Torrance Tues/Sat market to the reduced size Sunday one a few miles away. A couple farmers overlap. I'll try to at  least get the tomato assortment Sunday - the Hmong farmer does mix & match cherry size ones @ $4.50/lb and they are incredibly flavorful - so ripe you have to be careful on transport and storage but completely worth it. The larger ones are similarly excellent and this farmer has magnificent "Asian" greens and herbs. I wish I was cooking for crowds so I could take advantage of the diversity!!!

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19 minutes ago, heidih said:

I'll try to at  least get the tomato assortment Sunday - the Hmong farmer does mix & match cherry size ones @ $4.50/lb and they are incredibly flavorful - so ripe you have to be careful on transport and storage but completely worth it. The larger ones are similarly excellent and this farmer has magnificent "Asian" greens and herbs. I wish I was cooking for crowds so I could take advantage of the diversity!!!

I know what you mean - I'm mostly cooking just for myself so I struggle to scale back and avoid over buying.  And honestly, while I said the local market is smaller than the big guys,  there is still a very good variety here, just not as overwhelming.  I'll also try to take some photos next week. Tomatoes are really magnificent now.  Melons and stone fruits, too. 

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Haricot verts.  

 

Not cheap at $8/lb. and always worth the expense.

 

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Baby artichokes.

 

I knew within 2 seconds of taking this shot that this stand should have been my first stop this morning. Unfortunately I had a few other things on my list and no room for a splurge.

 

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Fresh bay leaves.  I wish you could smell these.  They're awesome.

 

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Part of this morning's haul.  Her jams are always worth it.  We're huge fans of her San Marzano tomato paste.

 

http://junetaylorjams.com/index.htm

 

today:  celery, carrots, haricot verts, yellow wax beans, strawberries, peaches, jams, herbs (basil, chives, fresh bay leaves), zucchini, Early Girl tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, cranberry beans, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, red onion, regular onions, La Ratte fingerling potatoes, eggs.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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I only had room in my loose plan for amaranth today (no image but it is so so beautiful, a couple plums, and tomatoes!  Had a great conversation with the farmer - in noted ht it must take some mad skills to pick the totally ripe cherry tomatoes and she started laughing and said her mom won't let her pick the juicy ones cuz she does not do it right. She said her mom is a bit nal bput it and I told her the customers so so appreciate that!!!

 

 

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today:  strawberries, assorted cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, peaches, Little Gem lettuces, zucchini, mussels, herbs (oregano, parsley, basil), sourdough bread, eggs, baby artichokes, Padrón peppers, cheese. 

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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today:  lamb sausage, assorted cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, peaches, nectarines, pluots, Romano beans, cranberry beans, broccoli rabe, mussels, butter, herbs (summer savory, basil, flat-leaf parsley), Padrón peppers, cheese and a baguette.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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today:  cherry tomatoes, Sungold tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, zucchini, arugula, upland cress, spinach, herbs (summer savory, basil, thyme, Italian parsley), rock cod, chicken, eggs, unsalted butter, strawberries, peaches, garlic, shallots, onions, bread.

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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today:  cherry tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, pluots, peaches, nectarines, Little Gem lettuces, strawberries, escarole, shishito peppers, cranberry beans, Romano beans, garlic, herbs (basil, chives, rosemary)

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The Spamwise Chronicles

 

"Always explore your garden and go to the market before you decide what to cook." --Alice Waters

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