Easy on the Digestive Tract

One of those crazy weeks! I only got to tear over to the 2nd week of the Bellevue Farmers Market in between my son's ortho appointment--where he got his new retainer which caused him to drool and spit and gag--and all three children's swim practices. Suffice to say, this time around I didn't have the leisure for long chats with friends and farmers, but I made some discoveries nonetheless and have good news for your digestive tract.

1) Kittitas Valley Greenhouse of Ellensburg had several varieties of "burpless" cucumbers on offer. Since I hate my cucumbers when they burp, I hastened over to snag one and ask the question you might not have: "Why are they called burpless?" The answer, I learned, is that the seeds in cucumbers cause some unfortunate people intestinal discomfort of the gaseous kind, which then issues forth (we pray) as burps. The burpless cucumbers have fewer, smaller seeds, leading to fewer, smaller...burps. It's all in the marketing, I guess.

2) Like buttah. I had my youngest offspring with me, so when the fellows from Golden Glen Creamery asked if we wanted to try a sample, my six-year-old galloped over there and had a squeaky curd in her maw before I could even respond. I already knew I liked Golden Glen cheeses, but I had to sample a couple more varieties to ensure I still liked Golden Glen cheeses. I did. But it was the new (to me) variety of their luscious butter that I came away with. Prepare yourself. "Winter Sunrise Butter with Cranberries and Orange." Uh-huh. And yes, it is as good as it sounds. I bought it for a friend as a thank-you but wouldn't let her have it until I had slathered some for myself on a toasted bagel.

3) In the fruits and vegetables department, I was too late for the first strawberries of the season at Tiny's Organics, but "first" strawberries at least means there'll be more this week! Probably just as well, since the six-year-old inhales berries, and I doubt I would have gotten even two out of the first pint. I did manage to lay hands on snow pea vines. Asking my usual, "How do you prepare them?" I received my usual answer: "Stir fry." Trust Asians to discover that, hey, this dumb plant doesn't produce much of a crop--maybe we should eat the plant, too! (Full disclosure: I am Asian and proud of the wily stereotype.)

So, three discoveries and then running into my neighbor and hearing about how her son took the wrong bus home and ended up walking seven miles while everyone went berserk with worry, and then it was time to go pick up my kids. A good lesson on how you really only need thirty minutes to experience food, farmers, and community, when they all come together in one place.