Archives

You are currently viewing archive for October 2008
Category: Picks of the Week
Posted by: admin
Local shrimp

The first week of October marked the opening of the local shrimp season, bringing with it a bounty of this sweet delicacy from the sea. Local fishermen J.R. and Manny Gorgita are catching the freshest shrimp local waters have to offer, as ocean conditions allow. Loaded with protein, iron and B vitamins, fresh shrimp is perfect for grilling, sauteing in a little garlic and butter, or when used to make a sweet shrimp pasta with freshly shaved fennel, as seen in the Fix of the Week on page D6. Available live on ice from the Gorgita family at the Tuesday Santa Barbara and Saturday Santa Barbara farmers markets. Be sure to get there early, as it often sells out. About $5 per pound.

Pickled Okra

If you like a nice hearty pickle with your sandwich, or maybe a little chopped relish on your burger, I highly recommend you try this new item from Jimenez Family Farm. Marinated in vinegar, water and salt, as well as garlic, chilies and dill from their Santa Ynez farm, pickled okra has great texture and flavor. Available at the Wednesday Solvang, Thursday Goleta, Friday Montecito, Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real markets. About $6 a jar.

Tahitian Squash

Grown by Tom Shepherd, this is one variety of squash that you must try. These monster 5- to 10-pound winter squash pack in the flavor and contain the highest sugar content of any other winter squash. The sweet flesh can be found throughout the long neck, where no seeds are present. Once you reach the giant bulb at the end, scoop out the seeds and enjoy the surrounding flesh. While it may be overwhelming to prepare such a large squash, simply start at the stem end and cut off the amount you need. The cut will heal quickly, allowing you to, for the next meal, cut off the healed portion, discard, and continue slicing off another section (keep in cool, dry place in the meantime). About $4 each.

Category: Picks of the Week
Posted by: admin
Quince

This apple and pear relative is hitting its prime right now and is only available October through December at local farmers markets. Brought to us fresh each week from Garcia Family Farm, the quince is often used in pies, applesauce and preserves. You can also bake it and serve with your favorite ice cream, as seen in the Fix of the Week on D6. When cooked, it takes on a beautiful pink to deep red color throughout, making for a stunning presentation. Quince is a great source of fiber, vitamin C and potassium. Available at the Tuesday Santa Barbara, Thursday Goleta, Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real markets. About $2 per pound.

Rainbow chard

The fall and winter greens have been rapidly arriving at farmers markets over the past couple of weeks. Fresh rainbow chard has been at the forefront. These large leaves are perfect for adding to stir-fry, soup, salad, and can usually be substituted for spinach. Before using, remove the thick stalks that run down the center of the leaves to ensure a smoother texture. A great source of beta-carotene and dietary fiber. Available at most Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Markets. About $1.50 per bunch.

Sibling Revelry wine

This new wine from Buttonwood Farm Winery is a must-try! A blended red table wine, it is produced directly from grapes grown on the Buttonwood estate in Los Olivos. Available at the Saturday Santa Barbara farmers market by the case. $60 per 12-bottle case.

New at the market

Santa Ynez Gardens, one of the newest additions to the Santa Barbara Certified Farmers Market Association, is offering an exceptional selection of indoor and outdoor plants. Perfect gift ideas for the holiday season or as a way to spruce up your house before company arrives. Watch for those poinsettias to come soon. Located near the Santa Barbara Street entrance of the Saturday Santa Barbara market.
Category: Picks of the Week
Posted by: admin
Mussels

Freshly harvested for the farmers market each week, these mussels are, without a doubt, the best I've ever had. A quick, five-minute steam in your favorite broth or stock is all you need for a great appetizer. Or serve over pasta with lemon grass sauce, fresh garlic and heirloom tomatoes, as seen in the Fix of the Week on page D6. Loaded with protein, mussels are available at the Saturday Santa Barbara market. $4 per pound.

Lemon grass

This native to India, traditionally used in Thai and other Asia-style dishes, really packs flavor. Perfect for stir-fry, soup and most seafood dishes, just a single stalk goes a long way in adding a hint of lemon. Although the entire stalk can be used, be sure to slice it very thin before adding; when it's too thick, the texture is less than ideal. Available from Her Family Farm at the Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real markets. About $2 per large bunch.

» Read More

Category: Picks of the Week
Posted by: admin
Sweet potatoes

Now is the time to grab fresh sweet potatoes, which are being harvested regularly this time of year. Available in yellow and orange varieties, this nutrient-packed vegetable is one of the most nutritious out there, as it's loaded with beta-carotene, fiber, vitamin C and potassium. Perfect for roasting, mashing or when sautčed and served alongside breaded pork chops, as seen in the Fix of the Week on page D6. Grown by Her Family Farm and Garcia Family Farm. Available at the Tuesday Santa Barbara, Thursday Goleta, Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real farmers markets. About $1.50 to $2.50 per pound.

Zesty garlic butter

Produced by Spring Hill Cheese, this organic butter is a must-try. Use it to butter bread, add to the pan before a fry, or top a freshly baked potato or, my favorite, homemade corn bread along with a little local honey. I have also used it to rub under the skin of a fresh whole chicken purchased at the farmers market from Lily's Eggs. Available at the Tuesday Santa Barbara, Wednesday Solvang, Thursday Carpinteria, Saturday Santa Barbara and Sunday Camino Real markets. About $6 each.

» Read More