on the range

Farmers Market Report: November 24

Thanksgiving weekend: somewhat tinier markets

By Kate Thornberry, 7:59PM, Thu. Nov. 22, 2012

Time to stock up on peppers!
I don’t have really any exact information about this week’s markets, because it’s Thanksgiving Week and folks are busy, but it is my understanding that the farmers markets will be where they always are and they will be open!

However, they are going to be reduced in size, because it’s Thanksgiving week and folks are busy. Farmers travel to be with family Thanksgiving weekend just like the rest of us. So a good approach would be to just go and see what’s there, rather than having a specific list.

I do know that J & S Seafood will not be at the Markets, cause I asked. Why did I ask? Because it’s time for oysters! More on that as the story develops.

The really key thing to remember is: this warm weather is not going to last, so it is time to buy enough bell peppers to last for a while. What I do is buy a few pounds, slice them and fill a Ziploc, and put it in the freezer for winter use in recipes (not salads obviously!) I also buy some for salads and use them up slowly (peppers last a few weeks in the icebox if they are fresh.) It is also not a bad idea to get a bag of jalapenos and slice them into a 1:1:1 water, sugar, and vinegar solution and keep that in the fridge to last through the cold (2 month) season. Oh come on! We can’t even really call it a cold season! Lets say, “The Cool Season”. (When exactly is it going to get here again?)

To the best of my recollection, this is the first Thanksgiving in at least ten years that we haven’t had a freeze on or near the holiday.

Georgetown Pecan Company Pecans
In other super important news: the pecans are coming in! Indian Hills Farm has a bumper crop (Downtown Mkt) as does Sand Creek Farm (Barton Creek Market) and the Georgetown Pecan Company (Barton Creek Market). Pecans are running about $11 a pound, so they are indeed cheaper at the farmers markets than they are at HEB, Central Market or Whole Foods. Also, fresher. In fact, they are perfect and wonderful!

Star Farmers Market Texas Cranberry Jam at Barton Creek MKT
Last week I lauded Confituras Tipsy Pecan Cranberry Sauce, but they aren’t the only local cranberry sauce out there anymore! Star Farmers Market has Texas Cranberry Jam, and Flume Creek has Highbush Cranberry Sauce, which is looks like to me is a bit spicy as well as sweet. (Both at Barton Creek).

Orange Blossom Farms Tangerines, only $5 bag!
As if that weren’t enough excitement, the tangerines are here! Orange Blossom Farm has made its yearly appearance. Typically they sell their tangerines at Barton Creek and the SFC Markets for several weeks right about now (until they are gone). And might I add, what a bargain, they are going for a mere $5 a bag! It’s not a small bag either.

Blue Fork Farms Sweet Potatoes, Barton Creek Mkt
Speaking of annual appearances, Blue Fork Farm in again at Barton Creek Market with their superlative sweet potatoes. These are the ones you want, folks, I am not sure what the variety is, but I watch for them every autumn.

Curly Endive from Johnson's Backyard Garden, all markets everywhere!
Wrapping up all this Rush of the New, Johnson’s Backyard Garden has curly Belgian endive. There are so many recipes that call for endive, and you can only get it at the farmers markets in the winter. Now is the time to really enjoy it, it is such a picky salad green to grow, but there is nothing else quite like it!

I won’t be at the markets this weekend, 'cause I’m going out to Fort Davis! I’ll see you at next week’s!

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