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


Have you ever noticed the thing that happens this time of year? All at once, chefs around town seem to be unable to tolerate another turnip or stand another second of squash. Suddenly, magically, favas, peas, and rhubarb start appearing on menus, even if they haven’t quite made it to the farmers’ markets yet. The idea of what spring vegetables are doesn’t quite match the local timeline, and though these spring lovelies have yet to make their debut there are, creeping in to market, sure signs of the changing season.

Eggs – Though you might think of eggs as a year-round food, spring is definitely their season–and not just because of Easter. The longer daylight hours signal to hens that it is layin’ time! Look for a more plentiful supply of chicken eggs from your favorite farmstand.

Arugula – Pungent and peppery, Rineer Family Farm will have their first arugula for the year coming to Rittenhouse. Though it’s still too cold for the greens to be grown out in the fields, the cozy greenhouses are giving them a head start.

Spring Garlic – You might initially mistake spring garlic for fat, fibrous scallions, but these green shoots are worth seeking out from their onion brethren. Fresh, and with a delicate garlic flavor you can chop and use the entirety of spring garlic and they’ll have a much better flavor than last years’ sprouting heads. Landisdale will have them at the Clark Park market.

Pea Shoots – Shelling peas are still about a month away, but Taproot Farm at the Chestnut Hill Market has tender, sweet little pea shoots. Don’t bother sautéing these or they’ll shrink down to nothing.

Succlents – Though inedible, there’s something cheerful about the succulents and sedums 4Mula brings to the Rittenhouse Market, and they’re returning this week following a winter hiatus. Do a little spring cleaning and spruce up your space with a potted plant or two.