September 11th Mercer Island Farmers Market Events Highlights: Music, Sampling Table, Children’s Table

In addition to the commemoration for the 10th anniversary of 9/11 that the Mercer Island Farmers Market held this past Sunday and the chef demo by Kurt Daimmeier of Bennett’s Pure Food Bistro, there were several other events and activities.

Music

Patrick Daugherty (left with electric guitar), Bert Bertram (center with trombone), and Joe Ross (right with acoustic guitar) playing at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Patrick Daugherty (left with electric guitar), Bert Bertram (center with trombone), and Joe Ross (right with acoustic guitar) playing at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Musician Joe Ross returned to the MIFM. Joe last played at the market over July 4th weekend. This Sunday, he was joined for a few sets by another popular Mercer Island musician, Patrick Daugherty, who has been a musical mainstay of the MI Farmers Market, playing consistently throughout the market season, as well as in previous seasons volunteering as music coordinator.

In the afternoon, Joe was joined for a set not only by Patrick, but also by Bert Bertram, who played the trombone. We aren’t sure, but this might be the first time that a trombone was played at the MI Farmers Market. Over the years, there has been an extensive array of instruments played at the MIFM: guitar; banjo; bass; clarinet; harmonica, accordion; saxophone; steel drum; marimba…We love how the list and diversity continues to grow.

Thank you, Joe, Patrick, and Bert, for the great music.

Sampling Table

Kari Fisher (left in red top) talking with a family about the different varieties, tastes, and textures of the peaches at the sampling table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Kari Fisher (left in red top) talking with a family about the different varieties, tastes, and textures of the peaches at the sampling table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

In the morning, MI Farmers Market board members and volunteers, Tanya Bednarski and Kari Fisher, organized a sampling table featuring fresh peaches grown by our farmers.

There were Angelo’s peaches from Collins Family Orchard, Selah, WA, J.H. Hale peaches from Martin Family Orchard, Orondo, WA, organic donut peaches from Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA, and Diamond Princess peaches from Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA.

We want to thank Tanya and Kari for taking the time on such a beautiful day to put together this educational activity as well as Billy’s Organic Garden, Collins Family Orchard, Martin Family Orchard, and Tonnemaker Family Orchard for supporting it.

Children’s Table

Judy Witmer talking with a parent and her children about snails and slugs at the children's table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Judy Witmer talking with a parent and her children about snails and slugs at the children's table at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Volunteer Judy Witmer developed another educational, hands-on activity for kids at the children’s table.

This past Sunday’s activity was “snail hunts and slug traps.” While some might have thought that kids might be put off by such “slimy” and off-putting creatures, there was, in fact, a great deal of enthusiasm for them.

Each week, Judy is a wonder coming up with a different fun activity that teaches our community’s children about gardening and food.  Thank you, Judy.

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September 11th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event Highlights: Chef Demo by Kurt Daimmeier

Kurt Daimmeier demonstrating the proper technique for cutting corn kernels from the cob at a chef demo at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Kurt Daimmeier demonstrating the proper technique for cutting corn kernels from the cob at a chef demo at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

This past Sunday, Kurt Daimmeier, chef, owner of Bennett’s Pure Food Bistro, and Mercer Islander, came to the Mercer Island Farmers Market to do a chef demo. Last year, his chef demo was one of our most popular. This year was no different with such a large crowd gathering that there was standing room only.

Kurt chose a recipe that features sweet corn and peppers, which are both now showing up in abundance at the MI Farmers Market.

On Sunday, Crown S Ranch, Winthrop, WA featured boxes and boxes of freshly harvested organic sweet corn.

And Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA, Hedlin Family Farms, La Conner, WA, and Tonnemaker Family Orchards, Royal City, WA all featured an enormous variety of fresh peppers ranging from mild bell peppers to hot jalapeño peppers.

In addition to sweet corn and peppers, the dish, Aztec Trinity Salad (the recipe is below at the end of the post), features two other key ingredients: yams and black beans. Another ingredient in the salad’s dressing, honey, can be purchased at the Mercer Island Farmers Market from Island Apiaries, Freeland, WA.

Kurt Daimmeier discussing how to roast peppers and remove their skins at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Kurt Daimmeier discussing how to roast peppers and remove their skins at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Kurt is a natural teacher and so the crowd learned a wide range of things from him, from basic cooking techniques—the importance of chopping vegetables into similar-sized pieces to ensure even roasting and how to roast a pepper and remove the skin easily—to more complicated cooking questions—the substituting of ingredients and what kinds of oils to use in different dishes—to basic botany—the differences between the varieties of peppers: bell, poblano, jalapeño, Fresno…

The chef demo was a big success with our community excited to try a new recipe armed with new knowledge and cooking techniques.

An appreciative audience gathers to try samples of Kurt Daimmeier's Aztec Trinity Salad at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

An appreciative audience gathers to try samples of Kurt Daimmeier's Aztec Trinity Salad at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

We want to give Kurt our thanks for coming out on a beautiful Sunday afternoon (perhaps the last one this year) to do the chef demo. We hope that Kurt enjoyed himself as much as we all did and will come back to the MI Farmers Market next season for another one.

Kurt Daimmeier displaying the finished Aztec Trinity salad at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Kurt Daimmeier displaying the finished Aztec Trinity salad at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on September 11, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Aztec Trinity

  • 1 ½ lbs. approx. of yams, peeled, cut in 3/4″ dice
  • 1 T of lime juice
  • 1 T of neutral-flavored cooking oil
  • 1 T of chili powder
  • 1 t of cumin
  • 2 t of Kosher salt

Combine the lime juice, canola oil, chili powder, cumin, and kosher salt in a large bowl. Mix well to coat the yams. Spread onto a parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer and roast at 400°F with the fan on high. Check after 12 minutes. Rotate the pans and continue to cook for a couple more minutes, until the yams are easily pierced with a knife. Do not overcook. Cool in the refrigerator.

  • 1 green bell pepper (2 poblano if you desire more heat), roasted, skinned, seeded, cut in ¾” dice
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 ears of fresh corn, cut kernels from cob

Dressing

  • ¼ cup of lime juice
  • 1/3 cup of canola oil
  • 1 t of Kosher salt
  • 1 T of honey
  • 1 Fresno peppers (red jalapeño, can be omitted), sliced 1/8″ strips
  • 1 T of chopped cilantro

Add salt and black pepper to taste after mixing salad

Salad assembly: combine roasted yams, dressing, peppers, black beans, corn, cilantro, and salt. Mix well. Taste for seasoning.

Source: Kurt Dammeier

August 28th Mercer Island Farmers Market Event Highlights: Music, Dancing, and Sampling

We had great weather for the August 28th Mercer Island Farmers Market—blue skies, 80°F temperatures…  And our customers came out in droves not only to purchase fresh, local fruits and vegetables, but also to be part of the fun.

Music and Dancing

Matt Lome performing and inspiring children to dance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Matt Lome performing and inspiring children to dance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Matt Lome, Mercer Island musician and teacher, returned for an encore performance on Sunday. The last time he played at the MIFM was June when the weather was unseasonably cool and he had to wear a heavy coat. He still did a wonderful job entertaining farmers, volunteers and shoppers.

This past Sunday with the great weather Matt was able to be much more relaxed and to wear shorts and a t-shirt. While the weather and his clothing might have been different, his music was as entertaining as ever. It even inspired some of our youngest shoppers to dance.

Sophie Feldman singing and playing the guitar at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Sophie Feldman singing and playing the guitar at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Heather Feldman)

Sophie Feldman, a student of Matt’s, was a big hit when she played at the MI Farmers Market in June. We are very happy that she agreed to return for an encore performance at the Mercer Island Farmers Market.

Children dancing to music played by Sophie Feldman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Children dancing to music played by Sophie Feldman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Heather Feldman)

We know that our customers were quite happy as well as she too inspired dancing among our youngest shoppers.

Thank you, Matt and Sophie, for coming back the MI Farmers Market and doing such a great job entertaining everyone. We hope that you will come back to play next market season.

Sampling Table: Peaches and Nectarines

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle in brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011.

Susie Rosenstein (on left) and Mindy Landsman (in middle background in the brown top) preparing peaches and nectarines, which customers are eagerly sampling, at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on August 28, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Susie Rosenstein and Mindy Landsman, who are tireless Mercer Island Farmers Market volunteers as well as MIFM board members, put together a sampling table to help educate our shoppers about the different varieties of peaches and nectarines available.

Susie reports our customers had an overwhelmingly positive response to the sweet stone fruit. “The only other times I have experienced such interest in the sampling was when we were sampling ice cream and baked goods from the market. Tanya [Bednarski, Susie’s partner in organizing the sampling events] and I used to say that nothing attracts the crowds like sugar and butter. Well, I guess we need to add peaches and nectarines to our list.”

Mindy related that one customer said that the peaches were so sweet that “they tasted like candy” to which Susie replied, “healthy candy.” Well, I guess we know why the sampling of peaches and nectarines was so popular.

Thank you, Susie and Mindy, for organizing such a successful event.  And thank you Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA, Collins Family Orchard, Selah, WA, Martin Family Orchard, Orondo, WA, and Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA for donating peaches and nectarines for the sampling table. Billy’s donated Red Haven peaches; Collins donated Sun Crest peaches and Honey Blaze nectarines; Martin donated Rosa Hale peaches and Red Gold nectarines; and Tonnemaker donated Delps peaches and Yellow Flesh nectarines.

Highlights from the July 17th Mercer Island Farmers Market

On Sunday, the Mercer Island Farmers Market not only had tables overflowing with beautiful, local produce but also had an abundance of wonderful activities and events.

Power Hour

"Early Bird" shopper picking up some free coffee during the Mercer Island Farmers Market's Power Hour.

An "Early Bird" shopper picking up some free coffee and pastries during the Mercer Island Farmers Market's Power Hour. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

From 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., we started off with a “bang” when we had free coffee and pastries at the Information Booth for the MI Farmers Market’s “early bird” shoppers. The “Power Hour” is a small reward for those dedicated customers who come during the market’s first hour. This market season the Mercer Island Farmers Market extended its hours by opening an hour earlier than previous years. We hope that our customers are enjoying the extra time to shop. Some of you have even suggested to us that we open even earlier at 9 a.m. Please let us know what you think of the market’s extended hours by posting a comment below. We can also be reached at info (at) mifarmersmarket.org.

This month’s power hour was sponsored by MIFM board member and long-time volunteer Tanya Bednarski and her family. We wish to extend our thanks to the Bednarski-Johnson family for the many ways that they support our organization.

Mercer Island Sister City Association Chef Tour

The outdoor market in Thonon-les-bains, France in May, 2009.

The outdoor market in Thonon-les-bains, France in May, 2009. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

At 10:30 a.m., chef, food writer, and cookbook-author Sharon Kramis led a group of fifteen curious and hungry Islanders on a tour of the MI Farmers Market. This chef tour was organized by the Mercer Island Sister City Association (MISCA) to reflect the shopping habits and cooking traditions of our community’s French sister city, Thonon-les-bains, which has the largest outdoor market in its region (Haute Savoie) with well over one hundred merchants.

Chef Sharon Kramis buying some rainbow chard and greens at Five Acre Farm's booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market.

Chef Sharon Kramis buying some rainbow chard and greens at Five Acre Farm's booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

With a meal in mind that they would prepare together just after the tour, Ms. Kramis and the group stopped by many of the booths, talked with the farmers, and purchased carefully selected fresh fruits and vegetables. We are so pleased that the MISCA chose to tour the MIFM as one of their activities.

Later this week, we plan to post on this blog some more photos of the chef tour as well as photos of the cooking demonstration and meal at Island House. So please plan to come back to this blog to read more about this event.

If your group would like to hold a tour of the Mercer Island Farmers Market, please contact us at info (at) mifarmersmarket.org or 206-235-1185.

Music

All market day, the Mercer Island Farmers Market vendors, volunteers, and customers were entertained by musician Patrick Daughtery. To Islanders, this was no surprise as Patrick is a wonderful performer, who is well-known not only from previous performances at the market, but also from his many years of performing on the Island and in the region.

Patrick Daughtery performing a song with John Morris at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

Patrick Daughtery performing a song with John Morris at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

However, Patrick did have a few surprises for us: guest performers. He was joined for a few songs by several other performers during the day including John Morris of Swamp Soul, which performed later Sunday evening at Mercerdale Park as part of Mercer Island’s Mostly Music in the Park summer series. Among the other unexpected guest performers was one of the MI Farmers Market’s vendors, Lorraine Ford of Two If By Seafoods, who performed a lovely duet with Patrick late in the market day.

The Flash Family Inspiration Award

Fran Call accepting the Flash Family Inspiration Award from Mayor Jim Pearman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

Fran Call accepting the Flash Family Inspiration Award from Mayor Jim Pearman at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

At noon, several dozen Mercer Islanders gathered to celebrate resident Fran Call receiving the 2011 Flash Family Inspiration Award. Mayor Jim Pearman presented the award to Ms. Call to honor her thirteen years of volunteer work at the Mercer Island Parks and Recreation Department, where she has created a program leading hikes in Seattle and its suburbs. During this period, over 200 Islanders have participated in these hikes.

The event was full of laughter and humor. Ms. Call is a former Mercer Island Middle School teacher, and, during the presentation, Mayor Pearman, a graduate of the Mercer Island public schools, and Ms. Call joked that he could have been one of her students. But there were also serious moments during the event, particularly when Mayor Pearman discussed his recent heart attack and the value of Ms. Call’s long-time efforts promoting health and exercise.

The Mercer Island Farmers Market congratulates Ms. Call on her much-deserved award.

Community-Service/Non-Profit Booths

The Mercer Island Visual Arts League (MIVAL) at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

The Mercer Island Visual Arts League (MIVAL) booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Youth Theater Northwest booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

Youth Theater Northwest booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

This week the Mercer Island Visual Arts League (MIVAL) and Youth Theater Northwest (YTN) had booths at the MIFM as part of our community-service/non-profit outreach program.

Both MIVAL and YTN have been pillars of the Mercer Island arts community for many years.

MIVAL has also been a wonderful partner for the Mercer Island Farmers Market by jurying our first-ever poster contest earlier this year. We look forward to working with them on future poster contests as well as other projects.

Youth Theater Northwest and the MI Farmers Market share similar missions in that they both seek to educate our community’s young people: YTN on the arts; and the MIFM on health and local agriculture. So we really appreciated an opportunity to host another Mercer Island organization that strives to improve the lives of Mercer Island’s youth.

Kids Table

Judy Witmer digging for earthworms at the Kids Table with one of the Mercer Island Farmers Market's young customers.

Judy Witmer digging for earthworms at the Kids Table with one of the Mercer Island Farmers Market's young customers. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Volunteer Judy Witmer once again created another wonderful educational experience for our younger shoppers. Sunday’s farmers market’s kids table was dedicated to learning all about earthworms and the important role that they play in maintaining the health our soil.

A big “thank you” to Judy for all that she does for our farmers market and for helping to educate our community’s young people.

Vendors

Among the many vendor highlights from Sunday’s market was the return of Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA, and the first MIFM market days for two new-to-our-market farms: the River Farm Organic Produce, Ellensburg, WA; and Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA.

Billy's Organic Garden booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

Billy's Organic Garden booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Billy’s came with an large variety of organic produce, including apricots, arugula, blueberrries, herbs, and tomatoes. Billy’s was one of the most popular farmer-vendors at last year’s Mercer Island Farmers Market. We know how much our customers are waiting with great anticipation for their organic peaches and peppers as well as for their organic heirloom tomatoes to begin arriving in greater numbers and varieties as the weather gets hotter.

Jerry, owner of the River Farm Organic Product, waiting on customers at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

Jerry, owner of the River Farm Organic Product, waiting on customers at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

On Sunday, due to the poor growing season, the River Farm was able to come to the MIFM with only a few products: cabbage, peas, zucchini, and zucchini blossoms. But even this limited product still proved popular and demonstrated the farm’s commitment to producing quality organic fruits and vegetables. Depending on how the rest of the growing season works out, Jerry, the owner of the River Farm, plans to bring to our market chickens, eggs, melons, and peppers. We hear from our customers that have purchased Jerry’s melons at other area farmers markets that his melons are the most delicious around. Let’s all hope that the days and nights out in Ellensburg get hotter than they have been so that his heat-loving melons can grow and ripen so that we can get a chance to try them ourselves.

The Tonnemaker Family Orchard booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011.

The Tonnemaker Family Orchard booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 17, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Tonnemakers is well-known for their huge variety of tree fruit (they have well-over 100 different varieties). This past Sunday, the Mercer Island Farmers Market’s customers got just a small taste, literally, of this diversity. Among the produce that they brought to the MIFM were three kinds of cherries: Rainier, Sandra Rose, and Sonata. Like Billy’s and the River Farm, Tonnemaker’s diversity of product should increase in the weeks and months ahead. So plan to head to the Mercer Island Farmers Market weekly to find the freshest, local produce around.

The Mercer Island Farmers Market still does not have its full complement of farmers yet. Later this year as their produce comes into season, we expect to welcome back to the Mercer Island Farmers Market two popular tree-fruit farmers:

  • Booth Canyon Orchard, Carlton, WA, whose organic apples, pears, and plums were very popular at the MIFM in 2009. Due to a storm that destroyed a large portion of their crop last year, they couldn’t attend our market. We look forward to their return sometime in September; and
  • Jones Creek Farm, Sedro-Woolley, WA, whose organic apples, plums, and garlic have been a mainstay of the MI Farmers Market since our first season. We look forward to their return sometime next month.

July 17th Vendor News for the Mercer Island Farmers Market

For our Sunday, July 17th market, the Mercer Island Farmers Market is thrilled that three farmers will be joining the market for the first time this market season: Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA; the River Farm Organic Produce, Ellensburg, WA; and Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA. All three farms have been working hard through this difficult growing season to have enough quality produce to supply our farmers market as well as others. As of this week they finally do. Please welcome these three highly anticipated farms to the the MI Farmers Market: stop by their booths; talk with the farmers; and buy some of their fresh, local produce.

Billy’s Organic Garden, Tonasket, WA

Many of our customers have missed Billy’s this season and their wonderful organic produce. At last year’s market, the farm’s tomatoes and tree fruit were particular favorites. Well, after a long absence, they will finally be back. Billy’s is expecting to bring tomatoes tomorrow, but the full list of what they will have isn’t quite certain. So be sure to head over to see their full selection.

The River Farm Organic Produce, Ellensburg, WA

Jerry of the River Farm Organic Produce, Ellensburg, WA talking with a customer at the Bellevue Farmers Market earlier this year.

Jerry of the River Farm Organic Produce, Ellensburg, WA talking with a customer at the Bellevue Farmers Market earlier this year. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Tomorrow will be the first time that the River Farm will be at the Mercer Island Farmers Market. They are very popular at other farmers markets in the region, such as the University-District and the Bellevue Farmers Markets. Just as with Billy’s Organic Garden, the farm’s final product mix for our market tomorrow isn’t 100% certain yet, but they definitely plan to bring to the MI Farmers Market zucchini, zucchini blossoms, and cucumbers. Our customers should have a great time meeting Jerry, the owner of the River Farm, and checking out his wonderful organic produce.

Tonnemaker Family Orchard, Royal City, WA

Tonnemaker is also a new farm for the Mercer Island Farmers Market. They grow a large variety of different fruits and vegetables, including over 100 different varieties of tree fruit. The farm expects to bring to the MIFM tomorrow three varieties of cherries: Bing; Sonata; and maybe Sandra Rose. In addition, they will be bringing summer squash, zucchini and maybe some cucumbers. We know that their produce will be a big hit with the Mercer Island Farmers Market customers.

We are no less thrilled about the many farms and other vendors that have been with us since the beginning of this market season. Below are some specials and highlights from many of them, including “Amazing” cauliflower and chocolate-ripe bell peppers.

Crown S Ranch, Winthrop, WA

Jennifer Argraves of Crown S Ranch, Winthrop, WA and her daughter at the Mercer Island Farmers Market earlier this season.

Jennifer Argraves of Crown S Ranch, Winthrop, WA and her daughter at the Mercer Island Farmers Market earlier this season. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

This week, in addition, to their wonderful eggs and wide selection of organic, pastured beef cuts (T-bone steaks, ribeye steaks, top sirloin steaks, New York steaks, ground beef patties, chuck roasts, round roasts, and short ribs), Crown S Ranch has a special on freshly harvested, pastured chickens, which are $4.95 per pound, as well as a special for their pastured pork chops, which are 10% off at tomorrow’s market.

Farmers Market Preserves, Seattle, WA

Rome Doherty of Farmers Market Preserves has two new jams this week. After “scoring” some Montmorency cherries last week, he make “Pie Cherry” jam. In addition, Rome also will have the first raspberry jam of the season.

The “magic” word this week for a dollar off of your first jar of jam is “peleton.” Rome didn’t explain, but our guess is that this market’s word-of-the-week is in honor of the Tour de France. So, stop by Rome’s booth to buy some of his delicious jams, jellies, and preserves as well as to talk about cycling.

Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA

Customers at the Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in June, 2011.

Customers at the Full Circle Farm, Carnation, WA booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in June, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

Full Circle will be bringing two varieties of cauliflower: Romanesco and “Amazing,” which they swear is really the name of the variety. Check it out yourself to see if it really is as amazing as the name indicates. In addition to the cauliflower, Full Circle will also have both green and red dandelion greens, sugar-snap peas, English-shelling peas, rainbow carrots (orange, while, yellow & purple) and red and white currents.

Got Soup?, Seattle, WA

Jerry Baxter as always has four great new soups for the market tomorrow:

  • Green Pea with Mint and Tarragon
  • Curried Lentil with Spinach and Tomato
  • Italian Broccoli with White Bean and Sausage
  • Watermelon Gazpacho

This week’s soups include fresh fruit and vegetables from many of our farmers, including Full Circle Farm (onions, fennel, and spinach), Tonnemaker Orchards (peppers and dried chilies), and Kittitas Valley Greenhouse, Ellensburg, WA (tomatoes and cucumbers).

Hand-Farmed Organics, Fall City, WA

Spicy arugula, sweet carrots, and Easter-egg radishes from Hand-Farmed Organics, Fall City, WA at the Mercer Island Farmers Market at the July 3, 2011 market.

Spicy arugula, sweet carrots, and Easter-egg radishes from Hand-Farmed Organics, Fall City, WA at the Mercer Island Farmers Market at the July 3, 2011 market. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

New this week from Hand-Farmed Organics will be romanesco cauliflower. They will also be bringing more of their wonderful greens and delicious broccoli and carrots. Last market day, their Flashy Trout lettuce with its large, dark green leaves with purple patches was a particular hit. Stop by the booth and talk with Ryan and Casey to learn more about the farm and its produce.

Hedlin Family Farm, Mount Vernon, WA

Cute sign announcing "Slightly late, but worth the wait" berries at the Hedlin Family Farm booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 3, 2011.

Cute sign at the Hedlin Family Farm booth at the Mercer Island Farmers Market on July 3, 2011. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Hedlin Family Farm will be bringing sugar-snap peas, English and salad (aka Persian) cucumbers, and red-ripe, orange-ripe, yellow-ripe, and chocolate-ripe (yes, that is the name of the variety, really) rainbow bell peppers. According to Kai Ottesen, one of the owners of the farm, this will be the last and the best week for the farm’s ‘June’-bearing strawberries. He writes, “So it’s a good week to stock up for the winter.” In addition, the first of Hedlin’s Tulameen raspberries are on.  Kai writes, “Tulameens are to raspberries what Shuksans are to strawberries and if you haven’t had either, start asking for them.”

Molly Moon Ice Cream, Seattle, WA

Customers at the Mercer Island Farmers Market getting ice cream at Molly Moon's ice cream truck.

Customers at the Mercer Island Farmers Market getting ice cream at Molly Moon's ice cream truck. (Photo by Joel Wachs)

Molly Moon has two new additions to their menu this week: Cherry Chunk Ice Cream and Strawberry Lemonade Sorbet.

Parfait Artisan Organic Ice Cream, Seattle, WA and Molly Moon Ice Cream, Seattle, WA

Parfait Artisan Organic Ice Cream truck at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in June, 2011.

Parfait Artisan Organic Ice Cream truck at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in June, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

Congratulations to Parfait and Molly Moon!  They are currently featured as the editors’ picks in the July food issue of Sunset Magazine. We love it when our vendors get much deserved recognition like this. We are all certain that the editors didn’t get a chance to try to Whidbey Island Ice Cream, otherwise it would have been a three-way tie. Starting this week, Parfait will be at the market beginning at noon. So remember if you need an ice cream fix on Sunday, the Mercer Island Farmers Market features both of Sunset Magazine’s editors’ picks for the best ice cream in the region.

Overland Enterprises, Seattle, WA

Mark Overholt of Overland Enterprises tending his plants at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in July, 2011.

Mark Overholt of Overland Enterprises tending his plants at the Mercer Island Farmers Market in July, 2011. (Photo by Alyssa Hatsukami)

Overland Enterprises plant-of-the-week is Hydrangea Bluebird-A, which is a “stunning blue and white lace-cap variety for part sun to shade that can fit in almost any garden due to its compact nature (four-foot-square size at maturity). The plant is extremely cold hard, requires little pruning, and blooms for months.” Mark and Susan Overholt will be bringing these hydrangeas in full bloom. So stop by their booth to check out these beautiful plants.

Snohomish Bakery, Snohomish, WA

Chocolate babka from Snohomish Bakery, Snohomish, WA.

Chocolate babka from Snohomish Bakery, Snohomish, WA. (Photo by Andy Papadatos)

This week Snohomish Bakery is introducing a new product: chocolate babka. We can’t wait to try some as Snohomish has yet to make something that we didn’t love. They will also be bringing their ever-popular, wide selection of artisan breads, croissants, muffins, and cookies.

Highlights from the July 17th Market

Check back here on the Mercer Island Farmers Market blog for photos and highlights from the July 17th market.

See you all tomorrow at the market.