Wednesday, August 22nd: Heirloom Blueberries, Heirloom Tomatoes, Heirloom Melons & Lots Of Other Great Stuff!

Ruble blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These Ruble blueberries from Whitehorse Meadows Farm are descendant from wild blueberries that grow in the mountains of Maine. They have a unique flavor and are packed with antioxidant goodness, and they’re certified organic! And when I first tasted them, they took me right back to my childhood, hiking up Cadillac Mountain in Maine’s Acadia National Park, eating my weight in wild blueberries as I went.

Heirloom tomatoes from One Leaf Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

I’ve been teasing you with tales of heirloom tomatoes now for weeks — an heirloom variety here, one there. But until now, we have not been truly awash in heirloom tomatoes. Today, we are! It’s warm. It’s August. And the heirloom tomatoes are hitting their peak! Just look at this table from One Leaf Farm absolutely covered in all different kinds of heirloom tomatoes. Woohoo!!!

Blackberries from Sky Valley Family Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Sky Valley Family Farm is our new farm at your Wallingford Farmers Market keeping us in duck and chicken eggs this season, which given the shortage of eggs in past years, is quite a blessing in and of itself. And if you haven’t tried their eggs, you must! But Sky Valley also has some great blackberries right now, too! Hmm. Let’s see. I’m thinking blackberries over my pancakes with a side of eggs on Saturday morning. Yeah, that’s the ticket!

Jade beans from Gaia’s Natural Goods. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Jade beans from Gaia’s Natural Goods are along the lines of the traditional green beans most of us know and love. However, they are a little bit more slender, and have a wonderful, bright flavor. They are great for pickling, and they are wonderful sautéed with some pearl onions and some bacon, much like hericot verts. Indeed, there are many, many different kinds of green beans throughout the Market right now, each with its own name, flavor profile and in varying sizes and shades of green, just begging to be made into a nice salad with some freshly roasted chicken from Skagit River Ranch, and some tart summer apples, like the Shamrock apple from Tiny’s Organic Produce.

Sun Jewel melons from Tiny’s Organic Produce. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

How about some heirloom melons from Tiny’s Organic Produce?  These beautiful sun jewel melons are sweet, ripe and juicy right now. I know, they kinda look like a winter squash, don’t they — like a delicata? But no, they’re a melon. Why not mix it up this week and give these beauties a try?

Whole chickens from Skagit River Ranch. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

These are the aforementioned whole chickens from Skagit River Ranch up in Sedro-Woolley. Yes, I know you love their burgers and sausages hot off the grill every Wednesday, but they’ve got a full line of meat and poultry products produced on their farm from happy animals raised in fertile pastures and certified organic. Unlike the “organic, free-range” chickens you’ll find in the Big Box stores, these chickens actually get to live outside for much of their lives, not just get offered it after being kept inside for most of their lives, at which point they’re too afraid to even consider getting any fresh air. Seriously, if you haven’t read Omnivore’s Dilemma, I highly recommend it. And then, you will only get your chicken from the farmers market. And for those of you who have read this book, Farmer George Vojkovich of Skagit River Ranch is considered the Joel Salatin of Washington.

City figs from City Grown Farm. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

Figs in Seattle have a very short season, so honestly, I have no idea if City Grown Farm will have any today. But they did last week. And hey, the point here isn’t whether they have figs today, though that would be awesome.  The point is that City Grown lives their name, growing stuff not only right here in Seattle, but right here in Wallingford! You don’t get a much smaller carbon footprint than that without growing it yourself, and the produce doesn’t get any fresher, as it is harvested immediately before the Market. And their produce is truly stunning. If you haven’t tried City Grown yet, stop by today and check them out!

A bustling Wallingford Farmers Market on a warm, sunny August afternoon. Photo copyright 2012 by Zachary D. Lyons.

We finish our Tour de Wallingford Farmers Market this week with this lovely image of a bustling Market last Wednesday. Lots of people buying groceries, having picnics and listening to music in the warm August sunshine. We love how you’ve embraced this beautiful new location. And did you know that all the farms featured in today’s blog post, except Tiny’s, are new to the Market this year? So we ask of you a favor. Please tell your neighbors. Bring them along for a burger and introduce them to the farmers. Have them over for dinner and brag about where you got all the amazing ingredients. Help us to support our local farmers at your Wallingford Farmers Market.

Please remember to bring your own bags today, and every Wednesday, as Seattle’s single-use plastic bag ban is now in effect. Also, please take note of our new green composting and blue recycling waste receptacles throughout your Wallingford Farmers Market, and please make an effort to use them correctly. Each container has what’s okay to put in it pictured right on the lid. Please do not put the wrong materials in, because that drives up the cost of recycling and composting, and it can result in the entire container being sent instead to a landfill. Your understanding and cooperation are appreciated.

Of course, this is just a highlighting of what you will find today. There is still plenty of other stuff just waiting for you at your Wallingford Farmers Market this week. For a full accounting of what you will find, check out What’s Fresh Now!

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