A brief introduction to some of the wonderful things you’ll find at the market. What it is, why it’s so wonderful, and why you should eat it.
— a member of the daisy family, lettuce gets its name from the Latin for “milk”, referring to the milky sap of the leaves. Ancient Egyptians considered it an aphrodisiac, Romans considered it a soporific (hard to see how it could be both…) Rich in vitamin A and folic acid, and low in calories, these days we consider it essential for salads, and a nice addition to wraps and sandwiches.
— a member of the cabbage family, probably one of the closest existing relatives of the non-heading ancestral cabbage. Kale ranges in color from light to dark green, and even purple, and the leaves can be smooth, fringed, or deeply savoyed. Kale is among the first produce to appear at market, as it is amazingly cold-tolerant, and actually becomes sweeter and more flavorful after a light frost. You can boil it, braise it, sautee it, or even enjoy it raw.
— all eggs at our market come from happy, healthy hens. These girls have plenty of access to green pasture (that’s what gives the yolks their lovely orange hue that battery-hen eggs lack) and are raised free of hormones and antibiotics. Market eggs can be found in a variety of colors outside the familiar white, including browns, pinks, blues and greens.
— part of the amaranth family, cultivated as far back as 2000 BC. Naturally sweet, low in calories, and rich in folic acid, calcium, and iron, the beet is as nutritious as it is beautiful. Both greens and root are edible: the greens may be used in soups or stir-fry, and the root can be roasted, steamed, or boiled and used cold in salads.
— green onions found at market can be either true scallions, which will never form a bulb at the base, or young varieties of bulb onions. Onions rank sixth among the world’s leading vegetable crops, and are arguably the most universally used vegetable and seasoning ingredient. Green onions are milder in flavor than bulb onions, and can be used raw or cooked, to complement almost any savory dish.