Sunday, September 5, 2010

Welcome Home

Today we voyaged out for groceries at the Ballard Farmer's Market. It's been awhile--about two weeks--and I realized as soon as I heard the street musicians how much I missed this whole experience.

Immediately we dove back in, buying 5 pounds of green beans (some for the week, some for freezing for winter) and other norms (braising greens, bright yellow squash, cheese and bread). We stocked up on Garlic and porridge from Blue Bird Grains, and then something caught my eye. Purslane.

I was surprised to find a veggie I've never seen before, particularly one that looks something like a common vine that grows on your house. For instance, here, doesn't it look like it blends in with the shrubbery just a little too well?

I was even more surprised to find out this veggie is something of a power-food.
It carries 7 times the amount of beta-carotene than a carrot, a healthy dose of Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamins A, B and and C, as well as dietary minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium and iron. I'm so excited to try it out this week, apparently it has a savory flavor that is great in stews, sautees or even as a topping on salads.

This is just another reminder as to why I love this whole experience. At a grocery store, I have my head down, throwing things in the cart that I think I need. There is no engaging, no learning, no growth. I stagnate. Here I find Purslane from a local farm, and learn from an educated, local farmer the benefits, what I should cook it with, and the health benefits involved. Beautiful!

Feeling experimental, I decided to finally give squash flowers a go. I've been eying them for weeks now, and am finally ready to figure out something yummy to do with them this week.

All in all, a great homecoming for two weary travelers who have been eating wayyyyy too much fatty, meaty foods.

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