From left to right: squash, corn, lettuce, mulberries, tomatoes, peaches, mushrooms, fennel, parsley, cherries, and potatoes.
Farmer's markets have started to wake up again. Going shopping outdoors with social distancing is a great way to stay healthy and get out of the house!
These 11 items cost just under $30 at a farmer's market in Castro Valley, CA. Even the flowers were a great deal at just $5 a bunch. The weekly local farmers market provided me with a way to walk somewhere fun, shop outdoors, and to support our local farmers. It is always so enjoyable to see what is in season.
Whenever you need inspiration for meal planning, the farmer's market is always a great place to go. It is fun to meet and support the people who grow our food and to search for recipes and meal ideas based on what is in the season.
My plan for the week:
- Oven-baked French fries with herb-baked shrimp
- Mushroom fennel pizza
- Taco salad with corn, lettuce, tomatoes, beans, and rice
- Grilled squash and chicken fajitas
- Fresh tomato pasta with white beans, salad
Here are more ideas plus see our handout and recipe links below. Or search our recipe database for more.
Potatoes: oven fries; I cut them in wedges, sprinkled with a new "Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Seasoning" and baked them to crispy perfection. They can be baked on the grill on oiled foil or in the oven. If they are sliced in thin wedges you don't need to flip them halfway. You can make your own pizza seasoning with cheese, paprika, garlic, and pepper.
Squash and corn: Slice the squash and husk the corn. Why not cook them on the grill? I always use a light oil spray and then top with lemon and herbs as they go onto the plates to serve them.
Fennel: You can grill or steam fennel but it is also so delicious when sliced raw and put into salads.
Lettuce: Salads are always a favorite in summer or any time of year and they can make a whole meal; just see our handout below.
Peaches, mulberries, and cherries: breakfast, dessert
One more thing you can do with summer fruit is to make a little aqua fresca.
Agua fresca is a delicious beverage made with fresh fruit, water, lime juice, and a little sugar. All you do is blend it in your blender. Check out the free recipe here.
Here is a fun handout for planning meals around your farmer's market shopping for summer.
Judy’s passion for cooking began with helping her grandmother make raisin oatmeal for breakfast. From there she earned her first food service job at 15, was accepted to the world-famous Culinary Institute of America at 18 (where she graduated second in her class), and went on to the Fachschule Richemont in Switzerland where she focused on pastry arts and baking. After a decade in food service for Hyatt Hotels, Judy launched Food and Health Communications to focus on flavor and health. She graduated with Summa Cum Laude distinction from Johnson and Wales University with a BS in Culinary Art, holds a master’s degree in Food Business from the Culinary Institute of America, 2 art certificates from UC Berkeley Extension, and runs a food photography studio where her love is creating fun recipes.
Judy received The Culinary Institute of America’s Pro Chef II certification, the American Culinary Federation Bronze Medal, Gold Medal, and ACF Chef of the Year. Her enthusiasm for eating nutritiously and deliciously leads her to constantly innovate and use the latest in nutritional science and Dietary Guidelines to guide her creativity, from putting new twists on fajitas to adapting Italian brownies to include ingredients like toasted nuts and cooked honey. Judy’s publishing company, Food and Health Communications, is dedicated to her vision that everyone can make food that tastes as good as it is for you.