Saturday, July 24, 2010

Waverly: Heat Stroke 2010 Edition

I looked like I'd been in the fields this morning when I got done. Dirty, sweaty, smiling at all the good produce.

Of course, I hadn't been in the fields today. Just at Waverly with The Quiet One and Ms. Vertical. But still, it was hot.

Hot like Faulkner where the South envelops you and the air is thick or Bradbury where it's a Martian dawn and there is no air to blunt the sun's rays. And I cook…so hot like the steam that pops out of the oven when you check on the braise. But constant.

Enough with the analogies, apropos as they may be.

I usually just tell you about the market goods when I cook them, but did I mention it's hot? I might not cook today (statements about blackberry/plum clafoutis-baking in the car after the market to the contrary). And this haul was epic. Summer in full force and a few days of rain over the past few days of high heat have actually created an amazing spread.

There's always something that just pops out and catches my eye. This week it was the Swiss Chard and the Twinkle Eggplants. Lucky for me, the purple carrots caught Ms. Vertical's eye and they were with the chard. So Purple peppers, Swiss Chard, Burbank and Yellow Pear Tomatoes, and Purple Carrots from Summer Creek Farm in White Hall hit the bag.

Then over one stall to grab Blackberries from Frederick. Gent was, as he should be, proud of his work. "Taste one." Nice. Two pints for $7? Yeah, get in my bag so you can get in my belly (later). "Try one of those too, my own seedless Champagne grapes" Double nice. But no grapes for me this week.

Stroll on up the line for more. Purple and green basil, cilantro, and sage (because I have chicken) from my Market-crushes the herb ladies (Hi ladies, y'all have awesome herbs. I'm smitten!). They've had the most consistent quality produce at the market all summer. Gorgeous radishes and red cabbage. Spinach and arugula, mizuna and romaine. So good!

Onions and red potatoes from the Bartenfelders (they have land in Baltimore County and down on the Western Shore somewhere). Jalapeno and garlic here too.

Lamb and Pork from Woolsey Farms and the M&M Meats crew along with a pint of Black Raspberry ice cream. Good gravy, that ice cream is sooooo good. Real fruit, fun flavors too. Think Chocolate Orange. I'll be getting it next week.

I walked by those Twinkle Eggplants one too many times to not buy them. Three orbs of twinkly goodness and $2 later, I was happy.

Plums from who knows where because I was beginning to feel the weight of the bags.

My ubiquitous pints of shitake and cremini from the Mushroom Gang before heading to the Curry Shack.

West Indian Turkey pockets and Moroccan Beef Patties with fig and apricot this week. Ummm, I may have Moroccan-tested the goods before putting everything in the trunk to head back to Federal Hill and drop off the ladies.

Milk and bologna from South Mountain Creamery. Ummm, quick request...can you sell some thick cut bologna too? I'll ask in person next week, but I really just want a slab of bologna in a skillet for a few minutes, then on a piece of white bread with mustard.

So with a man-purse full of produce with purple carrot tops hanging out the side of the bag over my right shoulder and a market bag full of the meat, milk, and non-veg stuff to accompany my load, we left. Loaded down with Curry Shack for those lunches I don't have time to make. But also loaded down with some of Maryland's produce at its finest.

And a dinner in my head. Eggplant and Lamb stewed with basil and cremini. I know it sounds to thick and rich for a heatstroke meal. But it's what I got. Maybe I'll switch it up and do skewers of the eggplant and lamb with a Yellow Pear Tomato and Basil Salad. More summer I s'pose. I'm just a one-pot stew kinda guy. And I saw the word Moroccan at the shack so I was in a tagging frame of mind. Either way, I'll get good grub out of those farmers' hard work and my ability at this point in my life to wake up on a Saturday before 7am.

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