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Farmers Market Report: June 29-30, 2013

Watermelon, cantaloupe, okra, jalapeños

By Kate Thornberry, 11:05AM, Fri. Jun. 28, 2013

By the time I got to the 2 Happy Children Farm table last week, the cantaloupes were all sold out; this week, there should be enough to last all day. They will also have seedless watermelons (Barton Creek Market and Cedar Park Market).


Heirloom tomatoes at the FUNKYTONK Market

Farmer Johnson (have you seen the gigantic billboard on South Lamar that says Barton Creek Farmers Market and shows a farmer standing in a field? That’s Farmer Johnson) has personal size watermelons for sale at all area farmers markets as well.

The sweet corn has ended for all farmers except for 2 Happy Children Farm; they had abundant sweet corn last week and told me that they would have it this weekend as well. When their crop is all bought up, that will be it for the sweet corn.


Corn from 2 Happy Children Farm. If you look, in the corner you can see my dog's nose.
To distract us from this sad news, the eggplants are really starting to come in! I must have about a hundred in my garden, and they are starting to pile up on the market tables too. There are so many great things to make from eggplant: eggplant parmesan, fried eggplant, eggplant caviar, baba ganoush, Thai basil and eggplant, Indian eggplant curry, not to mention oven-roasted eggplant for sandwiches.

Jalapeños are starting to show up too, though they won’t really hit their stride until the temperatures start to cool a little in the fall. It’s best to can them then, but at least for now there are fresh ones available for everyday cooking. Fruitful Hill Farm will have jalapeños on Saturday at Barton Creek and Sunset Valley; they will also be bringing cucumbers, onions, potatoes, eggplants, tomatoes, sweet peppers, and Italian peppers.

Dewberry Hills Farm (Really Good Chicken) was absent from the markets last weekend, but this Saturday they will be both Downtown and at Sunset Valley.


Jars of Bread and Butter Pickles and Chunky Tomato Spaghetti Sauce from Bikkurim Farm at the Funkytonk Market
Celtic Seafare (Barton Creek Market) will be bringing salmon from British Columbia this Saturday. The weather is perfect right about now for bagels with lox and cream cheese for breakfast; that, and iced coffee!

Barton Creek Market will have two new vendors this week: Spiral Horn Apiary, who will be selling honey, beeswax candles, and skin care products, and Tomatillo Heaven Salsa, a company making fresh salsa, each jar of which contains an entire avocado (along with tomatillos and hot peppers).

Last Saturday I finally made it over to the Funkytonk Farmers Market at the North Austin Trailer Yard at 1012 Anderson Lane. For those who live in that area, definitely check it out! Jean Kruse, owner of the market, has been promoting local farmers and food producers for some time, and this location has quite a few things going for it. For starters, the North Austin Trailer Yard (or NATY for short) has several food trailers, including Snarky’s Moo Bawk Oink (offering sandwiches, tater tot specialties, and doughnuts), and The Purple Tongue (offering traditional Louisiana-style shaved ice topped with real fruit syrups).


Awesome sofa at the Funky Junk Market
On the other side of the parking lot, the Funky Junk Market is going on. The Funky Junk Market is a flea market in the old-fashioned sense: the booth operators are selling actual old junk (not cheap plastic junk) and the quality of the junk seemed very high to me. There were several booth operators with furniture and art, and one booth had the HIGHLY desirable sofa that you see pictured above.

The Noodle Man at the Funkytonk Market
The Funkytonk Farmers Market has a Johnson’s Backyard Garden booth, which was the mainstay of the produce offerings. They also have South Star of Texas pastured and grass-fed meats (beef, lamb, and pork) and Bikkurim Farms, who sell heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers and other produce, pastured eggs, homemade pickles, and sauces. Perhaps the most interesting of all, however, is the booth featuring homemade Swedish noodles. These are the same sort of noodles made by the ladies of the Texas Wendish Heritage Society in Serbin, Texas. Sadly, I had run out of money by the time I got to the noodle booth; so I am hoping to go back this Saturday to buy some. Because Omigod, I have been waiting to try these noodles ever since I read this article about them.

The Traditional Wendish Noodles
If the Funkytonk Market can just hold on through the blistering summer months, by the time it cools off in the fall, they should have a well established farmers market. No other market has the built in attraction of a decent, old-fashioned Flea Market. Crestview is a vibrant neighborhood these days and a great location for a market as well.

Every Saturday the Funkytonk Market tries to have a kid-friendly activity. This Saturday they will be having a Kid’s Kitchen Event from 9:30 to noon, featuring a class about food seasonality and a demonstration of grilling fresh vegetables and watermelon. There will also be live music and a kid’s band.

See you at the Markets!

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