At the Market – May 23rd, 2009

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With this post, I am introducing a new regular feature on Docsconz – The Blog. I love food markets, all kinds of food markets, but especially public or farmers markets. I go to them every chance I can, whether they be my local farmers markets or special markets when I'm traveling, like Barcelona's Boqueria, Mexico City's Merced,  or Philadelphia's Reading Terminal Market. I love them because they have unique and great displays of food and represent the ideals and customs of their communities. I love my local markets because they provide wonderful quality produce unmatched by the local supermarkets. In addition to improving my home pantry and dinner table, they make me feel good knowing that I am helping to support people who care about what they are doing and do a great job in the process. It is nice developing relationships and friendships with the people who grow and raise the food that I and my family eat. It also happens to be a great place to socialize with other customers.

For this feature I will mostly be chronicling the markets of Glens Falls, Queensbury, Saratoga Springs and Troy, N.Y., but I will occasiionally include other markets as I visit them. With each post, I will focus on one particular product on sale that day at the market.

The local asparagus season is in full swing, though I don't expect it to last much longer. For the last couple of weeks, I have purchased asparagus from Saratoga Apple at the Saratoga Farmers Market. Picked fresh that morning, the asparagus is tall and straight, demonstrating little phototropic curve like asparagus that has been picked some time ago. Cooked, it has been tender and sweet requiring little to no adornment. I peel the bottoms of the stalks, par-cook them in a microwave with a little water for about three minutes on high, then finish them on the charcoal grill. Just a little salt and olive oil is all that I have generally been adding. I might try shaving some of the asparagus from today's batch to include in a salad. How do you like to prepare your asparagus when it is fresh and sweet like this?


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5 Responses to At the Market – May 23rd, 2009

  1. Marco says:

    Excellent photo, Doc. I was going to come up today to the Saratoga market, but wound up cleaning the gas grill et al. I like to season them with olive oil, salt and herbs de Provence and grill them in foil.

  2. Tucker says:

    Peeled and compressed with vinagrette or just shaved real thin raw with S&P

  3. Laurence says:

    Grilled most recently, but I like them roasted with a sprinkle of parm gratineed on top. The best ever though was cut and eat raw in the field. It was a totally different texture.
    Too bad they make my pee-pee smell awful.

  4. John Sconzo says:

    All nice suggestions, thank you. I love them with a little parm and olive oil too. The current asparagus crop has been too good to do too much to them, but another way I like asparagus is sautéed with olive oil, red pepper and anchovies until the anchovies melt into the oil.

  5. John Sconzo says:

    Thanks for the great suggestions! They all sound delicious. I love asparagus with a little parm and olive oil drizzled over it and then briefly broiled. Another approach I like, though the recent crop has been too good to do anything but be a minimalist, is to saute the asparagus with diced red pepper in olive oil that has incorporated anchovies in it. This works very nicely over pasta.

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