You wouldn't know it from the decorations up in the stores or the songs on the radio, but the Forgotten Holiday is almost upon us. Take a seat, Santa--it's time to talk Turkey.
This Saturday will be the final Bellevue Farmers Market of the Season (chorus of waaaaaahs!), and it's chock-full of goodies for your holiday and beyond. Never mind the Twelve Days of Christmas--tell your true love you've got some Thanksgiving Market Must-Haves.
1. Vegetables. Thanksgiving has the most wonderful variety of vegetable side dishes, and we've got the fresh, local vegetables to make them happen. Potatoes. Carrots. Squash. Onions. Brussels sprouts.
2. Apples and Pears.
|An impressionistic view from Collins' website|
Both Martin Family Orchards and Collins Family Orchard have got the apples for your homemade pies, this season. Talk to the farmers about which varieties they recommend. Some people like their apple slices intact with a little crunch, even after baking. My family prefers no crunch at all. And just for eating out of hand, try the Packham pears at Collins. I am not kidding--don't let these get away. We ate them with groans of utter delight.
3. Cranberries! For your sauce or to throw in your pies or to frost with sugar syrup and serve as a beautiful holiday appetizer.
Ask nicely at Bloom Creek, and they'll give you a handout of tasty, easy recipes.
4. Don't feel like making your own cranberry sauce? Camp Robber Jams has plenty of alternative jams and spreads. Rome Doherty has whipped up Cranberry-Jalapeno Jam, Cranberry-Apple Butter and Cranberry Chutney to accompany turkey, all made with Bloom Creek berries. Or, for the less traditional barbecued turkey, he suggests Smoked Apple Butter with Chili!
5. Speaking of things you might not feel brave enough to undertake, remember the Market has handmade pies and tarts and pastries.
|Yippie-Pie-Yay's pumpkin offering|
6. Or first-course soups made from perfect ingredients! According to Got Soup?'s website, this week Jerry will be carrying a mouth-watering Potato and Kale with Smoked Gouda, among other offerings.
7. Thanksgiving wouldn't be Thanksgiving without any bread. Bread to accompany soup. Rolls to go with turkey (my kids especially love this). Bread for stuffing.
|Tall Grass pics|
8. And finally, to wash all that goodness down, Ciders and Wines.
Finnriver Farm & Cidery will be sampling special, small-batch cider varieties at the BFM this weekend:
In Finnriver's own words, "The Apple Blueberry is made with Finnriver's own estate organic blueberries and antique Hewe's Crab apples, for a sparkling, ruby-colored blend of sweet berry field and earthy orchard. The Golden Russet release features the 'champagne' of cider apples for a bright, bubbly, off-dry, charismatic cider that will complement a holiday feast with its hearty taste and tribute to tradition." Oh my word.
And for those who prefer wine and no bubbles, Wilridge Winery suggests their Estate Nebbiolo as the perfect complement to our Thanksgiving meal. According to their website, "The 2010 Naches Heights Estate Nebbiolo is the second from Wilridge Vineyard. 2010 was a challenging year for many Washington vineyards. However, some late warm weather in the fall favored those who were not afraid to leave the grapes hanging as long as possible. Nebbiolo loves a long cool growing season like 2010 where it has time to gain ripeness but also maintain acidity from cool nights. The result is a delightful wine that will gain complexity for many years to come."
Since it's the Thanksgiving Holiday Market will be our last gathering of 2013, don't forget to put some goodies by as gifts and personal stockpiles. It's a long, long way to May.