First farmer's market of the season

Though the spring saturday had turned out to be a bit dreary and even almost cold, it didn't stop me from heading to our neighborhood park to celebrate the first farmer's market of the season. White tents dotted the concrete pathways and music filled the air with the promise of a festive event. Market baskets and totes decorated the arms of eager locals like me, ready to fill them with the season's bounty, pantry staples, hopefully, a few surprises along the way.
I tasted pure bliss granola made with grains milled by the baker, sweet bread & butter pickles from a local organic farm and a wonderful sweet Tuscan snack called Brigidini made with anise and stamped out into a flattened disk.

I handpicked a basket of fresh strawberries and a few stalks of green garlic and garlic chives. A loaf of freshly baked ciabatta bread would surely compliment the sustenance of the produce turned into delicious meals throughout the week. One of my favorite finds was a collection of raku pottery seedpods filled with seeds. We added to our market basket with our culinary delicacies. It would be a wonderful addition to our abundance altar at home.

The market basket was full and we walked back home to lay out our finds on the kitchen island. Hunger pangs struck right on cue and, as we surveyed our foraged finds, a delicious menu for lunch quickly evolved. Green garlic soup with ciabatta parmesan croutons and a cool glass of sancerre wine. The garlic was pungent but once simmered in sweet butter with fresh shallots and sea salt, it became almost creamy and mild. Ciabatta slices were toasted, rubbed with more garlic and broken into pieces at the bottom of the bowl. The sweet soup was ladeled over the bread and topped with garlic chives and freshly grated parmesan cheese. What better way to savor a cool spring day!

Green Garlic Soup
2 Tbsp. sweet cream butter
6 heads young green garlic and stems, washed and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
4 shallots, peeled and diced thinly
1/4 cup garlic chives
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/8 tsp. cracked black pepper
3 cups organic chicken broth {or vegetable broth}
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
4 slices toasted ciabatta bread rubbed with fresh garlic, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

In heavy bottomed saucepan, heat the butter until melted. Add the garlic, shallots, 3 Tbps. chives, salt and pepper. Saute until soft, but not browned. Add the broth and bring to a low boil. Turn heat down to low, cover and simmer soup for 25-30 minutes.
Add cream and cook for another 5 minutes.
Place croutons in bowl. Ladle in soup and top with parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of garlic chives

Buon appetito!

copyright 2007 Alisa Barry

No comments: