Happy belated New Year…oh look! Salad! Oysters!
There is a woman at the Hollywood Farmers Market, and forgive me, I don’t know her name (but I will rectify that soon) who sells sprouts of ALL KINDS. I’m normally not a sprout girl. And I imagine lots of people probably aren’t. But if you linger in curiosity at her stand, she will give you a cup of this. This, my friends, is her special sprout salad, topped with fresh, peppery radish sprouts. And it is good. $5 a bag? Shoot. I sometimes pay that much for drinks at Peet’s.
I also have a new What’s In Season post up at the LA Weekly. I’ll be doing more market posts for them in 2010. Which means more market visits and chatting with vendors. Darn. So if you want to learn about this vegetal Sputniks, go there.
I also FINALLY found someone who grows leeks right. Look at the length of white on these! Perfectly etiolated AND organic AND grown locally. I had to calm myself – but not before I exclaimed to the sleepy market goer next to me that these were pure leeky gold. The last time I saw decently etiolated leeks was at a Paris market in 2008. I know it takes extra effort – you have to diligently hill the soil around the base of the leek to keep the sun from greening it up. But the final product is actually useful. Two inches of white on a leek stalk does not a happy cook make – especially when the other 80% of it ends up in the trash or compost pile. These beauties will be properly enjoyed. Yes.
Also enjoyed a nice oyster breakfast on Sunday. Carlsbad Aquafarms happily shucks you some of their freshest bivalves (these were plucked from the ocean mere hours before the entered my mouth) for $2 a pop at the Hollywood Market. On the left a Carlsbad Luna, and on the right a Carlsbad Blonde. Got to talking with Patrick at the stand – I normal eschew shellfish in my home cooking, for no other reason than good, really good shellfish is sometimes hard to come by unless you drive out to San Pedro and stalk the boats. The Blonde oyster was crying for a beer chaser – it was like a raging ocean in my mouth, full of salt and foam and brine. The quieter Luna had this creamy, melon-like aftertaste. Loved them both. But ended up buying a bag of their Sunburst clams instead. Made a nice clam chowder that evening. Mmmm.
I used to say that the fall harvests were my favorites. But winter is winning me over big time this season. More soon…