So much news this week! After several weeks of not much happening, there is almost too much to report on.
Peach season is officially over. Although initially Farmer Caskey and the Lightsey Farms believed that this years crop would hold out until Labor Day, last weekend was the end of the season. Peaches are gone from all area Farmers markets. It was a light crop, due to late frosts and hailstorms, but thanks to those two suppliers we had peaches at the markets all summer long. When the peaches end, the persimmons begin. Right now, Lightsey Farms has the green, hard Fuyu persimmons, but the orange, soft Hachiya are only a few weeks away. That helps take the sting out; also, in the meantime, Lightsey Farms has hard Texas pears, as well.
Confituras is not doing anything with pears this week, but Stephanie does have several new flavors: Mustang Grape Jelly, Texas Fig Preserves, Apple Hatch Chile Chutney, Pickled Peaches, and Harvest Tomato Jam. Her tables will also be selling the favorites Bourbon Brown Sugar Peach Preserves, Blueberry Basil Jam and Pickled Blueberries. Caeda Farms will be back at the Barton Creek Farmers Market this Saturday after a hiatus.They will have figs, flowers, squash blossoms, squash, black-eyed peas, pickles and cucumbers. STAR Market may also have figs, they had them last week.
New Bread Rising will also be back at Barton Creek with artisan loaves of many varieties, including sourdough and green chile polenta. Just last week I wrote that the artisan bakery FLOUR was expanding into the Downtown SFC Market; this week brought the news that the bakery is no more. Although business was going very well for them, co-founder and baker Hope Williams pulled the plug on the business, citing the impossible hours a wholesale baker must keep, and a desire to actually see her children and have semblance of a life outside the kitchen. A mainstay of the HOPE Farmers Market on Sunday, FLOUR will be sorely missed. Their artisan sourdough loaves were absolutely wonderful. Bounce Bakery at the Barton Creek Market specializes in gluten-free loaves and hamburger buns, and they have really hit on a great recipe. I believe it is based on teff flour, and their breads are good enough to eat even if you can eat gluten. It’s difficult to make a gluten-free bread that really pleases, so their current breads are kind of a triumph.
Dewberry Hills Farm (Really Good Chicken) will be at both the Downtown and the Sunset Valley Markets this weekend.
Celtic Seafare, which sells their artisan smoked salmon at the Barton Creek Market, is opening a storefront in Dripping Springs where their salmon products will be available during the rest of the week. More on this story as it develops! In the meantime, they have introduced a new product: small slices of smoked salmon belly, already uniformly cut for salads.
Round Rock Honey is launching a honey-sweetened line of ice cream, made with Full Quiver Farms grassfed, dairy-cow cream, and frozen right before your eyes (at the point of sale, if I understand this correctly) with liquid nitrogen. On Saturday they will be selling and demonstrating their new ice creams at the Cedar Park Farmers Market, and on Sunday they will be at the Mueller Market on Airport.
Tomatillo Heaven Salsa will be selling at the Barton Creek Market on Saturday and the Mueller Market on Sunday after gaining recognition in the Austin Chronicle’s Hot Sauce Issue. Every jar has at least one whole avocado in it. Fruitful Hill Farm (Barton Creek) will have sweet potatoes this Saturday; Richardson Farms has brought their fantastic organic heirloom popcorn to market at last (Downtown, Sunset Valley, and Barton Creek); Hilmy Cellars, a Fredericksburg winery, will start selling at Barton Creek this week as well.
Happy Kitchen will be making zucchini and summer squash fritters at the Chef’s Tent at the Downtown SFC Market on Saturday. Now that I am nearing the end of my news, those of you who have stayed with me (and only you) are going to get my super secret news item: Flintrock Hill Farm at Sunset valley had baby lettuces last Saturday! And they are going to have lettuce and lettuce mixes this Saturday, too. When it’s this hot, lettuce is almost impossible to grow because it gets bitter and bolts quickly. But if you water it enough, and harvest it fast, you can get a little. Only $2.50 a bag! Flintrock Hill, as you can see from this sign, has some of the best prices at any market. I think their goal is to sell everything they bring as fast as possible, and most days they have nothing to haul back to the farm. They offer a great price on eggs, too. If you think you can’t afford to shop at farmers' markets, check out their booth at the Sunset Valley Farmers Market. You might be surprised. What’s in Season: eggplants, peppers, hot peppers, onions, summer squash, butternut squash, zucchini, okra, basil, tomatoes, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, cucumbers. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, hard persimmons, pears, figs, garlic, and green onions. Jesse Griffiths and Dai Due will only be at the Downtown SFC Market this weekend. Here’s the hot food menu:
Peach Fried Pies; Tacos Dorados with longanisa sausage, beans, cheese, tomatillo salsa, and crema; Beef Picadillo Torta with pickled onions, parsley, chile pasilla salsa, and a fried duck egg; Egg Salad + Bacon Sandwich with dill pickles, parsley, and tomato on wheat; Cafe a la Olla Mexican coffee with molasses, brown sugar, and spices; Horchata
The Butcher shop will be selling Venison Hot Dogs and Bacon Poblano Burgers for home grilling, as well.
See you at the Markets!
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