Saturday, May 28, 2011

Eat Local For Memorial Day!

First off...
A great event coming up next Sunday (June 5th) from 2 to 5 p.m.  The Second Annual Slow Food Whidbey Island "Taste of Whidbey."  Whidbey restaurants and Whidbey farmers pair up to create a fabulous "tasting" that features the best of that local farmers and chefs can provide. 
Restaurants include The Inn at Langley, Oystercatcher, Fraser's, Gordon's, Christopher's, Whidbey Pie Cafe, Prima Bistro and Front Street Grill. Tickets are $30 and benefit SFWI. Tickets are available at participating restaurants and at Bayleaf stores. See you there!
Willowood Farm will be selling tickets at our market booths today at the Coupeville and Bayview farmer's markets.  This event sold out last year so make sure to come get your tickets early!

And now back to the farm...

What's a good holiday without good food?  And when that food is grown and prepared by your local farmers and bakers and cheese makers.  Well that's the making of a GREAT holiday. 
I don't know about you folks, but as soon as I get back from the farmer's markets today I have great plans for hanging out with the family (we are "camping" in the backyard this weekend!) and enjoying some of the fruits of my labor (or my accurately, vegetables of my labor).  I'm already getting hungry.
So what's on our menu for the weekend?  Well...I'm still working out the details, but here's a few things my mouth has been watering just thinking about...
* Peregion Beans.  This sexy little bean can go all fancy and dress up bean salads with it's striking mocha and black swirls.  But I admit, I'm just thinking about cooking up a nice easy pot of these, with a bit of onion and garlic greens thrown in for flavor, and then having it around to complement the 3 Sisters Beef burger and hot dogs that will be coming hot off our backyard grill.  Easy peasy.
* Garlic Scapes.  First picking of these for this weekend so looking forward to eating one of my favorite seasonal treats.  And these are a great veggies for barbequing.  Just braise them with some oil and throw them on the grill.  They are a perfect side dish for burgers, for fish, for just about anything...
* Maris Piper potatoes.  These are the LAST of the potatoes we have left from last years abundance (the new crop is just coming up!).  Luckily this Irish heirloom potato is a fabulous grilling type.  We only have smallish ones left (again, these are the LAST of what we have left!) but they still lend themselves well to grilling.  I think we'll probably boil them just slightly so they are a bit cooked, them cut them thinly and once again, coat with oil and grill!
* Popped Emmer from Ebey Road farm.  This is another great snack.  Just pop these on the stove top with a bit of oil, it just takes minutes.  Toss with some yummy salt and these are great for eating out of hand are for dressing up a salad with a bit of crunchy pizzazz.  
* French Breakfast radishes.  I have a new favorite for eating radishes.  Clean them and then put out some softened butter and some flavored salts (Truffle Salt is my personal favorite available at bayleaf stores in Coupeville and Oak Harbor).  Great snack and satisfy that "summer holiday salt craving" I always get.
* Heirloom Butterhead Salad.  This is the time of the year for some beautiful and tender heirloom baby butterhead lettuces.  We grow two types - Amish Speckled and Bronze Mignonette - both beautiful, sweet tender little wonders of the lettuce world.  They are so beautiful I like to just barely present them.  I wash them whole and then carefully cut the stem off the bottom so the leaves are loose but keep the lovely lettuce rosettes whole.  Drizzle them with a bit of good olive oil, balsamic, a very chopped up garlic greens, some fabulous Chevre from our Whidbey Island cheese maker Little Brown Farm (available at Bayview Farmer's market or at bayleaf stores in Coupeville) and French Breakfast radishes and voila - a beautiful, simple, nutritious and tasty salad dish!
* Two-toned spinach and garlic green frittatta. This is on for our breakfast menu.  A frittatta using some local farm eggs and our mix of two colors of spinach - our classic green "semi-savoy" spinach and the ever beautiful red-veined Bordeaux spinach.  Add a bit of garlic greens and a bit more of Little Brown Farms chevre and some sweet breads for Treetop Bakery (selling at Bayview farmers market and bayleaf in Coupeville).  Yum!
And of course there is more, like I think I might whip up a batch of braising greens (just think sauteed greens) to go with some nice steaks from 3 Sisters Beef and a batch of crispy kale chips for the kids and me (just chop up the kale, toss with olive oil and kosher salt, spread out on a baking tray and bake at about 400 degrees til the leaves just begin to brown). 
The possibilities are endless!
So, on that note...Here is what we will have at the Coupeville and Bayview farmer's markets today...
From Willowood Farm:
* Garlic Scapes - First picking of the season!
* Kale bunches
* Baby Heirloom Butterhead lettuces
* French Breakfast Radishes
* Mixed Salad Greens - lettuce and some other yummy stuff
* Spinach bags - two types of spinach in each bag!
* Braising Greens bags
* Arugula bags
* Pea Vine bags
* Maris Piper potato bags
* Peregion Dry Bean bags
From our Friends at Prairie Bottom Farm:
* Garlic Greens
* Chives
* Napa Cabbage bunches
* Dry Beans - Rockwells
From Ebey Road farm:
* Emmer Farro
Hope to see you at market!
Farmer Georgie
Willowood Farm of Ebey's Prairie

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