One of the benefits of long summer days is the extra daylight to do more outdoor activities. I have more energy when I leave the gym because it’s not dark out yet. Brian and I can go for evening walks, even if we have errands we need to run first. I can also take advantage of Party in the Park.
Party in the Park is the Thursday night happy hour at Farmers Park. While the farmers market isn’t as robust as it is on a Saturday morning, you still have plenty to choose from including samples from local wineries and brewing companies as wells as food vendors. I visited the market after I finished my Thursday sessions, once again showing up not long before closing. I wasn’t interested in partaking of the drinks or food but instead I was on a mission for fresh produce to accent my latest haul from Costco and Trader Joe’s. I had some specifics I hoped to find as well as a curiosity on what had change since my last visit to the market.
I can’t say if it was my timing or the fact that it was in the evening, but the crowd was much smaller on Thursday night than the weekend market. I REALLY liked this. I didn’t feel like I was in anyone’s way as I slowly meandered past the stalls. I wasn’t hurried in my analysis of who had the best kale for the best price. The trade off for this is a smaller selection. There are fewer vendors at the evening market and, since I came in late, they were out of or had a very small selection left of certain items. I almost had to duke it out with another lady for the last green onions at one booth. Luckily the dispute was settled peacefully when we discovered there was more than one bundle on the table.
Me efforts were rewarded with white peaches! If you’ve never experienced the goodness that a white peach is you are missing out! They are a perfect blend of peach and pear that has a way too short growing season here in the Midwest. It’s been a few weeks since my last visit to the market so I am not sure if I am catching them at the end or the beginning of their peak. I hope the beginning.
I also loaded up my bag with kale, leeks, zucchini and basil. Knowing I would be on the road again soon I didn’t want to load up too much. I didn’t partake of some of the other great goodies in season right now: peppers (of all varieties!), yellow squash, potatoes and green beans. Tomatoes are everywhere right now too but we are not tomato eaters. I think it’s too early for the spaghetti squash I was hoping to pick up but perhaps on the next trip.
What did I make with this small load of goodies plus the staples in my pantry? The zucchini along with red onions and carrots I already had were paired with tofu (I bought 2 cases at Costco) made a wonderful vegan frittata that I served with NEAT Breakfast Patties. The kale and leeks made a crustless quiche and the basil ended up in the spaghetti squash that I purchased from Mama Jean’s Natural Market. Kale is my new favorite smoothie ingredient too. I never need as much as I buy for a given recipe so I’ve started adding it to my post workout shake. Thanks to my new NutriBullet, I can add the kale to my regular shake of:
- 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 2 Tbsp PB2
- 1 Scoop Designer Whey Gourmet Chocolate Protein Powder
Nothing goes to waste and I get a little help eating meeting my veggie quota for the day.
Does the bounty of summer help you get your 5 servings a day of vegetables and fruits? How do you make sure the fresh picked farmers market produce doesn’t go to waste?