Sunday, August 15, 2010

Summer Plenty

It is a frenzy out there!

Go to any roadside produce stand, neighborhood market, or even the grocery store and you will find local produce and a lot of it! This is the best time to buy fresh, local fruits and vegetables. The end of summer bounty is showing up and quickly being hauled away in cart fulls and at really good prices. Yesterday I visited the Bellevue farmer's market and picked up two generous bunches of red beets (for pickling) for only $2 a bunch. Today, at the West Seattle farmer's market, I bought my usual $20 (mind you I try to only budget $40 a week for food- which is hard to do since I love food shopping- but so far have been able to stick to it and may soon cut it down to $35 and still manage to eat well for breakfast, lunch, and dinner). With the twenty dollars I brought, I was able to buy one bunch of sweet aromatic basil, two banana peppers (sweet but also mildly spicy), one sweet red bell pepper, four ripe plums, one melon, ten heirloom tomatoes, two squash, and a loaf of rustic Italian bread (made at the Tall Grass Bakery in Ballard)! Not bad! These items came from Grant, King, Snohomish, and Thurston counties.

Now that I've assembled all the ingrediants, what should I make? I'm planning on using the tomatoes, basil, and bread to make panzanella, an Italian bread salad. I plan to grill the rest of the vegetables for a quiche (to use with left over pastry dough I have on hand in the freezer). There will be no waiting on the plums and melon, those are for snacking now and throughout the week. I hope you are all enjoying your summer! I would love to hear how you are using your summer seasonal produce!


  1. Yesterday did apricot daiquiris, tomato and bell pepper slices on burgers, coated red potatoes in ranch dressing mix, olive oil, and seasoning salt, grilled those on the barbecue, fresh corn on the cob, watermelon and cantaloupe chunks, etc. Everything we had yesterday was grown either on the farm or within 20 miles of it. Been making lots of jellies and have been gearing up for canning and drying peaches, tomatoes, and other stuff.

  2. That's awesome Brett! Nice work. So, when you are having friends over for a BBQ? ;)

  3. Just had a family bbq last weekend. I'm in the thick of haying with stuff going on the next 3 of 4 weekends. Basically not much time to had a bbq again before fall. It would be fun to be setup better to have an annual preserving party each fall.

  4. Wow!! That's a beautiful display of produce! I have been getting corn at the local farmers' market here in Troy. It is so good! I don't do anything special with it other than boil it in some water. I find that it doesn't even need butter because it's so delicious as is!