FARMERS’ MARKET REPORT: WEEK OF MAY 17, 2009

SUSTAIN:

Although this word has become a popular term in the culinary landscape, it has been at the root of the counterculture of American living since agribusiness became the new face of agriculture in a 20th century modern world.  While  big business always has its “positive” effects, it also has dire effects and costs that have left our lands and water riddled with agricultural despair  and dis-ease:  topsoil erosion, groundwater contamination, neglect of living and working conditions for farm laborers and the outright sale and decline of family farms.

The growing movement in the past two decades toward sustainable agriculture has addressed both social and environmental concerns while making its way into  the mainstream mindset, a collective consciousness that we need support from in order for this vital way of thinking and living to thrive in a 21st Century global world.

Sustainability relies on the present population to meet its own needs while not compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.  Sustainable living means that the natural life cycles must take place in order for survival.

The farmers that we work with are  so in tune with these cycles that they are direct agents in the vitality of sustainable agriculture.  One of the major factors in their crop success lies in diversity.  Diversified farming practices was once a way of life.  Monoculture farming was and is a product of agribusiness.  Yet the risk of planting one crop can put a farm of any size out of business.  Growing a variety of plants can help sustain a farm economically and lower the fluctuation of supply and demand.  Crop rotation protects against crop failure and also buffers the farm biologically.

Micro seasons appear within the bigger seasons as smaller “buffer” crops have shorter life cycles and yield smaller harvests.  As chefs, just when we get really excited about some of these littler more unique crops they vanish, only to appear again in another micro season.

That is the beauty and also the foundation of sustainability.  Take only what you need, enjoy and honor it.  We all participate in an invaluable and fragile system that hangs in the balance of cooperation of human and nature.

Embrace it~

Melissa

MARKET UPDATE:

Root vegetables and some lettuces and greens are vanishing from the farmers’ tables including Black Kale from Coastal Organics, Baby Beets and Watermelon Radishes from McGrath.  Look out for many heirloom tomato varieties in all sizes from multiple farms to be taking stage as well as peaches, peaches and peaches from Fitzgerald Farm.

Entering:  Apriums, First Lady Peaches and Debutant Peaches from Fitzgerald Farms, Cherries from Simms Cherry farm, Baby Green Artichokes from Life’s a Choke, Green Onion Chives from Yasutomi Farm, Shunkyo Radishes and Black Plum Tomatoes from Jaime Farm, Pink Variegated Lemons, Meyer Lemons and Murcott Tangerines  from Garcia Organics, Russian Red Kale, French Leeks (slim, sweet and savory all in one!) and Oriental Mix (red and green frill!) from Windrose Farm, and All blues Potatoes and Red Spring Onions from Weiser Famly Farms.

Gapping: Fiesole Artichokes from Life’s A Choke and Bloomsdale Spinach from Weiser Family Farms

Exiting: Meiwa Kumquats, Paige Tangerines and  Gold Nuggets from Garcia Organics, Black Kale, Baby Turnips (Coastal Organics) and Watermelon Radishes from Mcgrath Farms

MARKET TOUR:

Artichokes abound at the market and no grower produces meatier, flavorful and presentable and 100% delicious artichokes than Daisy at Life’s A Choke Farms.  If you have yet to try the giant Lyon or Baby Green varieties there is no time like the present!

Baby Green Artichokes – round, meaty and mild, more heart than other varieties, as it is simply a tinier version of its larger counterparts that get more sun. 100% edible!

Baby Green Zucchini with Flower – Life’s A Choke Farms inject water into each squash blossom’s stem to ensure their freshness and livelihood. A wonderful and glamorous spring and summer menu accoutrement!!

French Leeks – from Windrose Farms, sexy and slim stems, juicy bulbs full of sweeter savory leek flavor.

Shunkyo Radishes – Shaped like a baby pink carrot: one moment it’s hot, the next it is sweet! My personal favorite!

Persian Watercress – Rutiz Farms, a hot peppery leaf that has been an equally hot seller at the market.  Very unique shape and taste!

Japanese Tomatoes – I just love these meaty tomatoes! They are the most beautiful tomatoes at the market right now. Great pre-heirloom season variety nicknamed the “Tough Boy” for its heat-resilient texture and succulence!

Pencil California Asparagus – Skinny, tender, tasty purple-tipped and LOCAL! So thin it cooks in a flash!

Gem Lettuces: Red and Green from Coastal Organics – these lettuces are unparalleled in their sweetness, rich colors, crisp textures and succulent leaves


Baby Celery – from Yasutomi Farm, more leaves than stalk, hydroponically grown, slender and almost herbaceously tasty stalks. The best baby celery available. Period.

Jerry’s Berries Strawberries (Galante variety) from Rutiz Farm – sweeter than candy!!

Jerry's Berries Strawberries from Rutiz Farm

More >

Have you heard about Prepkitchen yet?

You know those days where you just don’t feel like cooking, and you don’t feel like going out to eat, and you definitely don’t want anything from the “fast food” or “take-out” joints? Well, now you have an option……. Prepkitchen!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Katherine Randall
BERKMAN
619.231.9977 (office)
katherine@berkmanpr.com

PARTNERS OF NATIONALLY ACCLAIMED RESTAURANT WHISKNLADLE OPEN PREPKITCHEN, A GOURMET TAKE-OUT EATERY

Serving handcrafted quick-service meals for lunch and dinner in La Jolla, Calif.

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (May 12, 2009) – The managing partners of nationally acclaimed Whisknladle Restaurant today announced the opening of Prepkitchen (www.Prepkitchen.com), a gourmet take-out eatery serving quick-bites, complete lunches and fully balanced dinners in downtown La Jolla. Inspired by all the prep work that goes into making food from scratch, Prepkitchen serves handcrafted, artisanal food offering the convenience of to-go dining without compromising the quality of the meal.

“The success of Whisknladle has been so rewarding and we are excited to further expand our signature brand with the opening of Prepkitchen,” said Arturo Kassel, managing partner of Whisknladle and Prepkitchen. “Our goal with Prepkitchen is to make the handcrafted cuisine we serve at Whisknladle accessible to those who want to dine in the comfort of their own home or want to grab a quick meal to eat-in on their lunch break.”

Ryan Johnston, executive chef of Prepkitchen and Whisknladle, has fashioned an a la carte take-out bill of prepared foods, made fresh daily, with a special emphasis placed on fresh high-quality proteins and organic produce purchased from local farms.

Prepkitchen’s dinner menu, available all day, from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., offers a selection of prepared entrées such as Niman Ranch Pork Loin Porchetta, Roasted Jidori Chicken, Braised Lamb Shoulder, Slow Roasted Niman Ranch Tri Tip Beef, Herb Roasted Fresh Catch and Handmade Pasta of the Day. Entrée prices range from $12 to $19.

Served by the half pint are side dishes of vegetables, starches and snacks such as Chicken Stuffed Piquillo Peppers, Squid Escabeche Ceviche, Rustic Potato Salad, Marinated Olives and more. Also available is a cutting board of house cured meats and artisanal cheeses. Lunch menu items consist of a homemade soup of the day and a variety of salads and sandwiches.

Other unique features include half bottles of wine carefully selected to complement the food and served at retail prices to-go and with an $8 corkage fee for dining-in. Retail and catering options allowing customers to order their own platter of antipasto, cured meats and artisan cheeses for easy entertaining are also offered.

Prepkitchen is located at 7556 Fay Avenue, La Jolla California 92037. Prepkitchen is open for walk-in or call-ahead orders daily from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and offers delivery services from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Monday through Friday) within an eight-block radius via bicycle. Lunch and dinner menus are available all day. For more information please call 858-875-PREP or visit www.Prepkitchen.com.

About Prepkitchen

Prepkitchen (www.Prepkitchen.com) is a gourmet take-out eatery serving quick-bites, complete lunches and fully balanced dinners in downtown La Jolla. Inspired by all the prep work that goes into making food from scratch, Prepkitchen serves handcrafted, artisanal food offering the convenience of to-go dining without compromising the quality of the meal.

Prepkitchen offers homemade soups, sandwiches and salads for lunch, as well as a fully balanced dinner selection of roasted meats, poultry and fish, complemented with a selection of locally grown starches and vegetables that are packaged to-go and can be heated in your oven at home. Also available for pick up are house-cured meats, artisan cheeses, fresh handmade pastas and sauces and Mediterranean anti-pasti.

Prepkitchen is located at 7556 Fay Avenue, La Jolla California 92037. Prepkitchen is open for walk-in or call-ahead orders daily from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. and offers delivery services from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Monday through Friday) within an eight-block radius via bicycle. Lunch and dinner menus are available all day. For more information please call 858-875-PREP or visit www.Prepkitchen.com. 7556 Fay Avenue • La Jolla • CA • Across From VONS Supermarket

About Whisknladle

Whisknladle is a neighborhood spot that takes a back to the basics approach to food and dining. Arturo Kassel, owner and proprietor, and Ryan Johnston, executive chef and partner opened the new concept in February 2008. Whisknladle specializes in gourmet comfort food, which is tasty, honest, healthy and fresh, and meant to satisfy the belly and satiate the soul. The restaurant purchases all of its ingredients from local organic farms and growers like Chino Farms and La Milpa and Chef Johnston also bakes, churns, smokes, ages, cures and pickles everything in-house, taking a very old-world approach in his kitchen.

Whisknladle features private dining, off-site catering and an after-hours bar and lounge. Lunch is served daily and brunch is served on Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 to 3:00 p.m. Enjoy Happy Hour cocktails and the bar menu daily from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. Dinner is served from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 10:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Happy Hour cocktails and a limited menu are available after hours from 10:00 p.m. until last call on Friday and Saturday nights. 1044 Wall Street, La Jolla, CA, 92037. 858.551.7575 (tel), www.whisknladle.com

Featured in Food & Wine Magazine
Conde Nast Traveler Hot List – One of the World’s 105 Best New Restaurants, 2008
Riviera Magazine – 3/4 Stars “Whisknladle manages to be all things to all people.”

La Jolla Village News, Winner of Best New Restaurant Reader’s Poll 2008

San Diego Union Tribune – 3/4 Stars “It happens to be one of the most

exciting restaurants in San Diego.” Michelle Parente, Food Critic

San Diego Reader – 4/5 Stars “I predict that in a couple of years, this is likely to become

not only one of the county’s most famous restaurants, but one of the

whole country’s food meccas.” Naomi Wise, Food Critic

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