The Dirt: What To Get At The Farmers Market This Weekend

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Get ready, because this weekend is a big one! This Sunday, May 1, welcomes the return of regular hours to the Chestnut Hill and Bryn Mawr markets, and the grand reopening of the Headhouse Square Farmer’s Market. Among the city’s largest outdoor markets, Headhouse is a favorite for many. It will officially open at 10:00am with the customary ringing of the bell, and there will be free commemorative tote bags for the first 25 folks to form a line at market organizer, The Food Trust’s, table. Round out the day with lunch from Philly Tacos (formerly Los Taquitos de Puebla), Mom Mom’s Polish, and Zsa’s Ice Cream. What could be better than pierogis and ice cream sandwiches? Getting to visit with baby goats from Shellbark Hollow Farm’s flock, which will also be on hand. Though I’m sure you’ll want to, you can’t take these little guys home with you. Pick up some of the following instead:

Bok Choy – Taproot at Chestnut Hill will have lush heads of purple bok choy in addition to their line-up of leafy and microgreens this week. Stir fry these juicy leaves, some spring garlic, and a few sliced shiitake mushrooms for a juicy addition to scrambled eggs.

Stinging Nettles – Another addition to the broad line-up of wild foraged greens available this time of year, nettles are supremely nutritious but they will actually sting your skin if you touch them. Neutralize the sting with a quick steam or sauté and eat them as is, or puree them and fold them into gnocchi as a righteous addition. Look for them at Primordia Mushroom Farm at Chestnut Hill and Clark Park, or at forager David Siller’s table at the Rittenhouse market.

Apples – Even if it’s May, it’s still a little too early for strawberries, the first really exciting fruit of springtime. Instead match still-sweet apples harvested last year with the tang of rhubarb in a crisp or a coffee cake. Three Springs Fruit Farm will have plenty of fruit at Headhouse, Beechwood has got you covered at Rittenhouse, Highland is at Fitler Square,

La Divisa Meats – This popular vendor of handmade sausages, salamis, pates, ham, and other charcuterie from chef Nick Macri makes its return to the Rittenhouse market this weekend.

Ramps – Peak season for these wildly popular wild leeks is winding down, but it’s not too late to find them at farmer’s markets. Pick some up this weekend from before you miss your chance!

Garden Starts – Chilly weather notwithstanding, it’s still time to think ahead if you’re planning to plant a vegetable garden this year. Stop by Two Gander Farm at Bryn Mawr this weekend to pick up seedlings for tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, parsley, basil, kale, chard, broccoli, and cabbage.

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