Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Farmers' Market Goodness

Awesomely fractal romanesco
I always tell people to hit the farmers' market in the last half hour; they always look at me like I'm crazy.  "Won't all of the good stuff be gone?"  Well, I suppose it's possible you'll miss a gem or two, something someone just managed to harvest a few of.  But you get some great deals when you show up at the end--some of these folks won't have another market this week, and they'd rather give their produce to you than throw it out.

My finds this week included a free pile of amazing, juicy, tangelos, a basket of enormous, juicy strawberries, some slender, beautiful sweet carrots, and some heavily discounted romanesco, which the geek in me just loves. Sunday night, I put the carrots and tangelos together to come up with a very nice braised carrot recipe.

Tangelo-braised sweet carrots
1 bunch of fresh sweet carrots, washed and trimmed, but with some greens left
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
~1 tbsp fresh chopped oregano or rosemary
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1 cup beef broth
juice of one tangelo

Melt butter in oil over medium heat, toss in garlic and sautee with frequent stirring until just brown.  Add carrots and cook, stirring occasionally, until carrots begin to soften, about seven to ten minutes.  Add herbs, cook a minute or two longer, then add broth and juice.  Season with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until nearly all of the water has evaporated, about ten more minutes.