Fresh Local and Best is a blog that features a collection of stories related to food, dining experiences and sights and scenes in New York City. Each month I write a post that reviews the seasonal offerings at the Union Square Farmers' Market, and this month Girlichef has graciously let me to guest post this column on her blog.
If you haven't been to the east coast recently, I can tell you it's been unseasonably warm in New York City. In the recent days, I've been able to walk outside with a simple a thin turtle neck. I know that as soon as this gets published, we're going to get dumped with snow! Christmas decoration has already been strung across the city, and everyone is in a festive and celebratory mood, so perhaps a little snow wouldn't hurt.
Despite all of the glitter and sparkle donning the city, my favorite part of New York remains the Union Square Farmers' Market. Even over the quiet Thanksgiving Day weekend when people stayed in to recuperate from the festival of eating, many farmers were present faithfully bringing us their freshest produce. Although we are entering into a slimmer produce season, there are still some good fresh produce options at the farmers' market. In season right now are several vegetables in the brassica oleracea family, including cauliflower, broccoli, collard greens and brussels sprouts.
Watermelon radish add such a delightful color and flair with its bright fuchsia flesh.
Green daikon, which is great for radish kimchi. If you have a great kimchi recipe, I'd love to know!
Also available at the market is burdock, which is a root vegetable that is popular in Asia. If you know how it's incorporated into cooking, please chime in. It's gained popularity in recent years for its beneficial medicinal qualities.
Several varieties of mushrooms including white button, crimini, portebello, and shiitake are available all year long.
Over the next several months many of the fruits and vegetables at the market will be sold from storage to sustain us until the next growing season.
Apples harvested over autumn will be offered as late as next June. Some people actually prefer their apples at least one month old, noting that the sweetness is more complex while the fruit still remains crisp. I enjoy them as crisp as possible.
Outside of fruits and vegetables, fresh locally caught fish is offered every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, year round. These were a few shots taken at the P.E. & D.D. fish stand.
Fresh pasta made from Knoll Krest Farm free range eggs is being offered at the Hudson Valley Farm stand on Saturdays. Plain pasta is available for $4 per 12oz, while seasonal flavors such as spinach and beets are sold for $5.
In addition to organic breads, cakes and other baked goods, Hawthorne Valley Farm also offers a range of organic granola mixes and raw cultured vegetables, which are great kitchen staples.
If you're looking for holiday decoration, there were so many Christmas trees and garlands at the market that surrounding scent was filled with a refreshing pine fragrance.
I hope you've enjoyed this visit with me to New York and the Union Square Farmers' Market!