“Meet Me at Market!”
Those are the words farmers markets in Washington and Oregon are hoping to hear you say. And there’s no better time to plan a trip to your local market than National Farmers Market Week, happening August 3-9, 2014. This annual event is part of a national campaign to deepen the connections between local markets and the communities they serve, and it’s a great chance to reconnect with your community and support your local farmers.
Farmers Market Week Events
This year, there are several great events happening at markets across the Northwest.
On August 9 in Seattle, the University District Farmers Market is hosting their annual Chef Contest. In this “Iron Chef”-like competition, two top Seattle chefs compete to create the best meal—spending less than $20 and using only market ingredients. A panel of judges will declare the winner, and market patrons can observe, cheer on the chefs and become inspired to create their own quick, healthy and affordable meals.
In Portland, award-winning chef Scott Dolich of Portland’s Park Kitchen is offering a summer market menu, with three courses featuring a main ingredient purchased from the local market.
INSPIRED TO COOK?
The Washington State Farmers Market Association has selected three favorite summer recipes that feature produce readily available at markets in the Northwest.
Think beets are only a winter vegetable? Think again. This simple Tasty Summer Beet Salad combines beets with summer-fresh cilantro for a unique twist on a classic salad.
For a refreshing and healthy summer treat, nothing beats watermelon. Instead of serving plain slices at your next barbeque, try making a delicious Watermelon, Peach and Heirloom Tomato Salad. Toss with lime juice and mint for a winning combination.
For those looking for a main dish, try the Spanish Tortilla with Greens, made with tender new potatoes and your favorite summer green. A healthy take on this recipe is below, reducing the oil and substituting sautéed zucchini for the new potatoes. It’s a delicious, quick way to use up that summer squash bounty!
RECIPE TO TRY: Healthy Spanish Tortilla with Zucchini
Similar to a frittata, this recipe uses sautéed onions, zucchini and garlic to create a healthy vegetable filling. Adding a light grating of sharp cheese—an aged Manchego works well—is non-traditional but packed with great flavor. (Remember: with sharp cheese, a little goes a long way!)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 Walla Walla Sweet onions, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 medium zucchini (about 2.5 pounds total), sliced thinly into rounds
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 whole eggs (or substitute three whole eggs plus five egg whites)
- 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup grated aged cheese (Manchego, Pecorino or Parmesan)
- Pepper to taste
- Optional: minced fresh herbs (parsley, basil, marjoram), sliced cherry tomatoes, additional grated cheese for garnish
- Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes until soft (do not let the onions brown). Add zucchini and salt and continue to sauté over medium-low, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. Spoon mixture into colander to drain.
- Whisk together eggs, parsley, cheese and a generous grind of pepper. Fold in zucchini mixture.
- Wipe out skillet, add remaining tablespoon of olive oil and swirl in pan to make sure it is well greased. Heat over medium-low and add egg mixture. Cook 5 to 6 minutes, then pull the set (cooked) eggs away from the side with a spatula, and tilt pan to let the runny eggs settle around the edges. Repeat around all sides of the pan. Cook an additional 3 to 4 minutes and repeat the process once again until eggs have set throughout.
- Run spatula around edge of tortilla to loosen it. Place a rimless frying-pan lid (larger than tortilla) over the skillet. Hold the plate handle with one hand and skillet with the other and quickly flip tortilla onto lid. Slide tortilla back into skillet. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until firm.
- Slide onto flat plate. Slice. Serve with an additional grating of cheese, sliced cherry tomatoes and some minced fresh herbs.
Whether you’re ready to cook, eat or just support your local farmers, Market Week is the perfect chance to connect with your community and share great food.
Tags: farmers markets