Category: What’s in Season?

The eatin’ o’ the greens

What a relief to welcome back springtime rituals like St. Patty’s Day! Spring brings cravings for bright, fresh flavors and lighter dishes. Microgreens can boost your nutrition and mood as you create healthy meals for a new season.

Microgreens are different than the alfalfa sprouts you may remember from sandwiches and salad bars. Microgreens are very young plants, generally harvested after 10-14 days of growth. They’re a little more grown-up than a sprouted seed. As such, micros have more texture and flavor–and microgreens are simply packed with nutrition. One study by the University of Maryland and the USDA found that microgreens are four to 40 times more nutritious than the mature form of the same vegetable.

Microgreens by Great Northern Microgreens. Pictured front to back: Chinese cabbage, broccoli, red cabbage and kale

We are thrilled to feature microgreens at every market. On Sunday March 21, you’ll find Farming Gardens and Great Northern Microgreens at market. Each of these local growers offers a colorful variety of micros and they’re generous with information and advice about how to use them.

For immediate use, purchase cut, ready-to-eat microgreens. Living trays of microgreens are available to harvest at home–fun for adults and kids alike! Or, purchase a grow-your-own kit so you can experience the whole process, from planting to harvest.

When outdoor markets begin on May 13, you’ll also find a great selection of microgreens at Morning Sun Farms. Janet and Everett include microgreens in their CSA shares, as well.

Try microgreens for breakfast or brunch as in this Avacado Bagel with Microgreens by Yummly.

Blend up a smoothie for a post-workout treat, like this Tropical Broccoli Breeze smoothie recipe from Great Northern Microgreens

Incorporate microgreens into a plant-based lunch or dinner, as in this gorgeous Best Buddha Bowl recipe by Love and Lemons.

Out with that last season of cold and dark…in with a new season of bright flavors and healthy new dishes. Be sure to comment on our Facebook and Instagram pages with your favorite uses for microgreens.

We’ll see you at market on Sunday, March 21 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Find us in our bright, airy new location, the Maple Grove Parks & Recreation Studio at the Shoppes, at 12059 Elm Creek Blvd N, D-6. That’s on the east end of the Shoppes near P. F. Chang and Biaggi’s.

Here’s to your good health in a bright new season.

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Merry and Bright

Can “local” also be “festive”?

In a word, YES!

At the market you’ll find many presents and stocking stuffers; the “ingredients” for customized gift boxes for neighbors, friends and colleagues; and the ingredients to create your own holiday recipes…all in one place! What better way to bring the cheer in this dark year than with delicious new flavors, handcrafted with love?

Here’s a quick rundown of some new, seasonal items you’ll find at the market on December 10 and December 17 from 3-6 p.m. Remember, we’re temporarily located in the Shoppes at Arbor Lakes, 12059 Elm Creek Blvd N, D-6 (formerly Forever 21). This large, open space enables us to host safe and socially distanced markets. If you prefer to minimize your time in public, please make use of our vendors’ pre-order offers. This will enable you to shop from home for quick-and-easy pickup on market day.

Indulge in fine French chocolates from Crepe and Cake. Florence is getting tres creative with chocolate Christmas trees, hot cocoa bombs, and much more.

The Honey Hut has prepared lovely gift boxes featuring a variety of raw honey products.

Cran-Orange and Home for the Holidays kombucha from Shekinah Wellness make festive and healthy non-alcoholic beverages for enjoying every day. They’ll add some sparkle to your spirit and some good health to your gut.

Do not miss rich pan de pascua, or Christmas bread, full of candied fruit and nuts, from Atacama Catering! I was thrilled to discover this bread a couple of years ago as it is very similar to the Scandinavian Christmas bread that is traditional in my own family.

Every single person on your list will benefit from beautiful, skin-friendly soaps from Rapha farms. Lathering up with peppermint soap will bring a little happiness to this very “2020” activity.

This is just a small sample of the delights you’ll find in the market. Please take a moment to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for gift ideas for every eater in your life.

As you plan your shopping trip, we hope you’ll also review our COVID-19 guidelines and procedures. Don’t forget your mask!

Wishing you peace of mind and ease of shopping this December!

Gratefully,

Kirsten Bansen Weigle, market manager

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August at the Farmers Market: What’s in Season?

August 2020

These pandemic days are the slowest fast-moving days–or maybe the fastest slow-moving weeks–I have ever experienced. Do you feel the same? There is time to savor moments and flavors and even the long-forgotten sensation of boredom. But it’s already August? What???

Growing conditions have been ideal for warm-season crops this year. Air temperatures have been above average, both in the daytime and nighttime. As a result we’re moving into high season for market produce even earlier than usual.

The key to a continual succession of vegetables is timed plantings of the same crop at intervals throughout the spring and summer. For example, the earliest, fastest-maturing corn varieties have already been harvested. Our growers are now harvesting a second planting of sweet corn for your table. They are experts–we all benefit from their hard work.

August is a great time to preserve the harvest, whether on a small scale (perhaps a few jars of blueberry jam) or to fill a winter pantry (tomatoes, cucumbers, and more are available in bulk quantities. Market vendors are happy to reserve large orders for you to pick up on market day.) It’s a great idea to assemble your supplies BEFORE you purchase the produce you intend to freeze, can, dehydrate or jam. Food preservation supplies like freezer bags, jar lids, and pectin can be a little hard to find.

Want to preserve the good feeling of the market along with the good flavors? After the canning or freezing is done, when you’re writing on your jar lid or label, include the vendor’s name. For example: “Cherry tomato sauce, Yang family, 8-1-2020.” Doing so helps me pause to mentally thank the folks who grew and harvested my food, even in the cold of January. Everything tastes better when seasoned with gratitude.

Here is a list of the produce you can expect to find in the market as the month progresses. We can’t possibly list everything. New varieties will appear every single week in August, so be sure to keep an eye out for that hotter pepper or new variety of muskmelon. Savor. Enjoy.

  • apples arrive mid- to late August. Early varieties include State Fair, Beacon, First Kiss, SweeTango, and crabapples.
  • basil
  • beans (green, yellow, purple,speckled, more!)
  • beets (golden and red)
  • bitter melon
  • blueberries
  • broccoli
  • cabbage (regular, napa)
  • cantaloupe and muskmelons
  • carrots (orange, red, white, purple)
  • cauliflower (white, purple, yellow)
  • chard
  • cherry tomatoes–many varieties
  • cilantro
  • cucumbers (pickling slicing, and specialty)
  • dill
  • eggplant (MANY varieties)
  • garlic
  • greens
  • ground cherries
  • kale
  • kohlrabi
  • microgreens
  • mint
  • mushrooms
  • Potatoes–red, yellow, white, purple; fingerling; russet potatoes by late August
  • onions (green onions, as well as yellow, white and red)
  • pattypan and other summer squash varieties
  • peppers (new varieties added every week in August)
  • radishes
  • raspberries
  • sweet corn
  • tomatoes (slicing, sauce, heirloom varieties)
  • watermelon (yellow, red, orange, many sizes–seeded and seedless)
  • zucchini

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