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. (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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.”
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 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.
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.
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.