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

Between berries. stone fruits lush handfuls of basil, brightly colored bouquets of zinnias, and ever more tomatoes cropping up, this is one of the most pleasant times of the year to check out a farmer’s market. You have my permission to overwhelm yourself with zucchini, to opt for a full dozen ears of sweet corn, and to throw in that extra pint of cherries, because if we know anything it’s that summer isn’t without end and for now, it’s high July and all those vegetables aren’t gonna eat themselves.

Watermelon & Cantaloupe – Whether its feta, prosciutto, or the salted rim of an ice-cold margarita, now would be a good time to stock up on the savory of your choice to celebrate the return of AT Buzby’s watermelons and cantaloupes to the Headhouse market this week!

Sweet Peppers & Shishitos – Though it’s a bit early for peppers yet, they’ve started showing up to market in modest quantities. Rineer Family Farm has them at Rittenhouse and Chestnut Hill, and Weaver’s Way has purple bell peppers at Headhouse. Perhaps even more exciting though are the shishito peppers from Rambling Roots Farm, available at Rittenhouse. A Japanese variety, shishito peppers have a spicy aroma, but only one in ten actually packs some heat. Their thin walls mean that they’re great left whole and blistered in a hot skillet with a little oil, or charred on a grill. Sprinkled with salt they’re a pretty excellent little snack – which is why they appear on the menu at Vernick, Pennsylvania 6, and plenty of other restaurants.

Artichokes – Ever the agricultural experimentalist, Tom Culton is harvesting Pennsylvania-grown artichokes for Headhouse Market this week. Trim up these overgrown thistles and stuff, fry, or marinate them to your heart’s content.

Eggplant – What do you mean you’re not excited about eggplant? You like Zahav, don’t you? Pick up some globe eggplant from Landisdale Farm at Clark Park or from Two Gander at Bryn Mawr, and do your best to replicate Solomonov’s charcoal roasted eggplant with harissa, lentils, and tahini. At the very least it’ll tide you over until Dizengoff opens…

Apricots & Sugar Plums – The late freezes of that horrific winter had a hangover effect on most of the area apricot trees, but Beechwood Orchards (Rittenhouse & Headhouse) is promising a supply of this stone fruit favorite this weekend alongside the first of the yellow plums and tiny, red sugar plums!

Find something great at your local market? Instagram it and tag accordingly: @foobooz #fooboozthedirt