|Photo courtesy Esterina's|
Berries and peaches and eggs and cheese and salmon and flowers might get all the press, but our Bellevue Farmers Market features many a lesser-known find. Give these surprises a try--especially if they're only at the Thursday market (three more Thursdays!).
|Toto, we aren't in Georgia anymore|
- Fresh, real milk. (Thursdays) Vashon Island's Sea Breeze Farm produces this. If you're used to the nonfat, supermarket variety, swirl some of this into your cup of tea and see if it isn't worth keeping a quart on hand. And speaking of Sea Breeze Farm, they have a few another unique offering:
- Lard. (Thursdays) We don't do Crisco pie crusts in our house any more, with all the fuss over which vegetable oil is worst for you or the environment...
- Amaretti. (Thursdays) I've sampled Esterina's delicate pizzelle and sturdier biscotti and found them delicious, but the amaretti have the power to transport me instantly to the Michelangelo Ristorante & Caffe in San Francisco. After dinner, the waiter comes round with one bowl of Gummi bears (your guess is as good as mine) and one plate of amaretti--rich, fragile little almond cookies. Mmmm...
- Specialty melons. (Thursdays) You may or may not have noticed the produce vendor on the far end across from where the Molly Moon's truck parks. Last week they were roasting peppers and drawing some attention, but I hit the stand for their varieties of unusual melons. Tiny Charentais, Fastbreak Canteloupe, Galias with their pale-green flesh, and one whose name I didn't catch but which fizzed on the tongue like soda water! Tasty alternatives to storebought melons, even if their canteloupe Listeria outbreak from melons grown in Colorado didn't freak you out.
- Roasted Peanuts. (Saturdays) Did not know you could grow peanuts in Washington, but Alvarez Organic Farm in Mabton offers each of their customers a sample roasted peanut. Tender and tasty. See how fast your family can demolish a bag.
- French Macaroons from Lilli-Pilli. (Saturdays) I say "French" for two reasons: (1) actual macaroon cookies are similar to amaretti (see #3) and having nothing in common with those coconut cookies which also go by the name of "macaroon." And (2), the last place I found flavored, real macaroons was Laduree in Paris. Like Laduree, Lilli-Pilli offers "les macarons de saison," or seasonal macaroons--past flavors have included Orange-Rhubarb and Hazelnut Buttercream, as well as the more traditional flavors like Chocolate. Treat yourself this week.
If you have some special finds from your Market wanderings, share them here!