My Yummy Local Life

{June 30, 2012}   Farmer’s Market 6/30

Farmer’s Market Fare!

This morning I went to the market stupid early again, but instead of hoping to beat the crowds (which when I got there at 7:30 I had not successfully done), I was hoping to beat the heat! It’s supposed to be up over 100F here for the foreseeable future.  Insert my NOT excited face. So I am working on myself or someone watering the garden EVERY day and not getting overheated.

Last week we did marathon cooking days so that we did not have to get our kitchen hot every day.  Planning on some grilling (and letting others cook for us) this week to keep the heat out of our house.

So here is what I got at the market today:

A 2 colored squash, purple potatoes, sungold tomatoes, purple cherokee tomatoes, and blackberries: $12.60

Peaches (Yellow flesh freestones): $5

Goat Cheese: $4.50

Bib Lettuce: $2.50 (our refrigerator has been freezing our lettuce and diary so here’s hoping this one doesn’t get ruined!)

Small whole TILAPIA (!): $10

Eggs (from Bobby at the pig picking- Not pictured): $3

Grand Total: $37.60

The menu will be up tomorrow- and hopefully some pictures from the pig picking we are going to this evening. Gonna be using some recipes I found on last weeks link up, which is why I’ll be linking up again:)

Have a great week!

Doing a little local spotlight here today: Vineyards at Southpoint:

Vineyards at Southpoint (image from their facebook page)

These guys are pretty much right in our backyard and they are making some mighty good tasting wines.  They are also looking to get a $250,000 grant which they will be able to use to help expand both for themselves and for some other community vineyards and wineries.  They are planning to purchase new bottling equipment and a highway road sign, which would increase their production capability and make it easier for people to find their tasting room.

They need 250 VOTES  for their grant application to even be considered.  The last time I looked they had 179 votes.  Voting ends this week! Please take a second to go show them some love and vote for them. Here’s how:

Follow this link:

Click “Login & Support”- then it will prompt you to login via facebook

Type “Vineyards at Southpoint” in the search box and click “search”

Then scroll down and click “vote” to show your support

Yesterday, I set out our newly arrived “Smart Mouse Trap” which is a live catch mouse trap that is supposed to catch mice that are smart enough to avoid regular traps.  After a couple months of having multiple traps set and catching only beetles, we figured we’d give it a try.  And low and behold, when I got up to go to the farmer’s market, there is Jerry freaked out and safely INSIDE the trap! So before I hit up the market I drove the 3 miles to the closest park *but hopefully far enough from home* and let him free into the woods. He was a good little passenger, but I hope not to see him or any of his friends again.  We set the trap again just in case…

Jerry the mouse! Captured at last!

So since Jerry (and hopefully his friends) are out of our lives, here is the delicious food we’ll be noshing on (without having to sanitize the kitchen way too many times per day).

Yesterday, we made this roasted fig and onion thing, which was pretty tasty, but a lot of work and kind of a pain to eat… there are also not clear serving directions which could be part of the problem.

For the rest of the week:

Tomatillo enchiladas– have a butternut squash still lying around, also gonna add in some of our refried beans from a couple weeks agos beans and rice week.

Black bean quinoa bowls (again)

Vegetarian Chili- in our house this means a more jazzed up version of cooked beans, hubby makes it different pretty much every time (not my idea- it’s a bit toasty here in NC, but we can use the crockpot and keep the kitchen cooler I guess…)

Gyros– with our local ground lamb and some homemade pita (I use the wheat version of the recipe in How to Cook Everything) and tzatziki sauce (super cute kiddo making the version in the link)

Purple potato gratin- yet another hubby invention, probably won’t look delicious but it should taste good- how can you go wrong with layers of potato and cheese right!?

Grilled pizza take two (as a side note, our apartment complex saw our pictures on the card table last time and have ordered a picnic table for our grill!)- hubby says he’s going to be incorporating the squash blossoms onto the pizza somehow…

The fruit this week simply has the fate of being delicious for snacking upon.

Still haven’t made the quinoa cookies I mentioned last week, but the oatmeal cups turned out VERY well- they are freezing up for storage now.

What kind of yummies are you eating this week?

Summer must be in full swing because I had to make myself a farmer’s market grocery non-list.  This is a list of all the things that one should NOT spend their hard earned money on.  Not because these things are less delicious than the rest, but because they are FREE-flowing from your own and your friends gardens, or maybe you can get them wild off the side of the road.  Here are some of the things currently on the non-list:

Zucchini/Squash (these are pretty much ALWAYS on the non-list because they are also so easily frozen and saved for later)- looked like the average at the market was about $2/lb. These particular zucchinis came from the Love Chapel Hill Garden and I’m going to be taking them to church to try to give them away tomorrow!

Zucchini from LCH gardens

Blackberries (Einstein and I went picking on the side of the road last week)- we probably picked about $2.50 worth of blackberries for free- and they are just coming in.

Einstein “helping” pick blackberries

Freshly picked blackberries

Pink blackberries- we will be back!

Tomatoes and bell peppers are from the over flow of my friend’s garden, and the zucchini blossoms are from the Love Chapel Hill Garden at Merritt’s- again probably $2/lb for tomatoes and peppers usually are $1 a piece.  Squash blossoms were $0.50 each the one week I saw them at the market.

Homegrown goodness

Alright then, that is about $15 or so worth of FREE produce.  Here’s what I got at the Farmer’s Market to add to it:

Farmer’s Market Fare

Cucumbers, HUGE figs (!), and sungold tomatoes (if you have never tried these they are like candy!): $10

Onions and blueberries: $8

Peaches (Still the white ones, although they had some yellow freestones this week too): $5

2 lb bag of cornmeal, 1 lb of tomatillos (!): $6.50

Market Total: $29.50

Total Value of everything: $44.50

What are you growing? What’s in your box?  What are you making with fresh local fare? Share it at the inherchucks link party.  I’m there too 🙂

Have a yummy week!

Freeze it and make smoothies!

As Saturday rolls around and it’s time to hit the market again, there is usually some fruit (or veg) from the previous week left over. I’ll do some caning later in the summer, but I also do a lot of freezing. One thing I have learned living in NC for the past few years is: DO NOT spend money on squash and zucchini! Just wait for everyone else to have too much of it and then graciously take it off their hands for them. If you wait long enough into the summer, they might even pay you to take it 😉 (ok that has never happened to me, but then again I’ve never asked).  Last weekend we met up with my grandparents and mom and a couple of my sisters in Asheville, and they came bearing a grocery bag full of zucchini from one of my grandparent’s neighbors.  I forgot to take a before picture, but after shredding it and portioning it out into one cup portions, I ended up with TWELVE (12!) cups of shredded zucchini:

12 cups of shredded frozen flat zucchini in individual 1 cup portions!

I’m pretty sure I am set for about the year! The zucchini goes into cookies, muffins, breads, pastas and lasagnas throughout the year!

Also this week we had extra peaches left over (I know shocking after how overboard I went on the fruit last week at the market)

Last week’s leftover peaches

Peaches sliced up and layed out for Freezing (lay them out so that they don’t all clump together)

Do not freeze any nasty, bruised or unsightly bits!

Once they are frozen, put into a bag and store in the deep freezer for smoothie snacks throughout the summer (znd keep some around for next spring too)!

{June 17, 2012}   Menu for the week of 6/16

It’s a pretty chill kind of week.

6/16 dinner is grilled pizzas (and a grilled fruit tart- using this super neat recipe builder that I found) in celebration of our 5th wedding anniversary. This is our first take at grilled pizza. Also made some white peach belliniswhich were very delicious.

Our first grilled pizza with tomato, red onion, mozz and fresh basil.

For the rest of the week:

Heading out the the Fullsteam Local Virginia foods “Neighbor to our North” event on 6/17 to continue our weekend of relaxing and celebrating.  If you are in the area and don’t have something better to do for Father’s Day, you should head on over and check it out.

Monday is Gary’s grad school oral final exam- if you pray, send him some good vibes!

The rest of our menu in no particular order:

Cheese-y pasta wine dish- probably gonna hide some frozen shredded zucchini in here for veg and use the cherve goat cheese

Bulgolgi made from local flank steak of course with sticky rice and mac salad (although not as much as last time when we were eating it for a week and a half)

FRIED GREEN TOMATO salad- yeah that’s right, fried and salad in the same sentence- that’s how we roll…

Broccoli Mac and Cheese- kind of our own scaled down version of this one, Gary makes up his own cheese-y delicious sauce.

Broccoli Parmesan Fritters– probably gonna make these on the side of the mac and cheese for a little crunch- Thanks for the suggestion Leslie! Realy can’t go wrong with a smitten kitchen recipe anyways 🙂

Quinoa Swiss Chard Salad– as you may be thinking- she did not buy any chard yesterday at the farmer’s market- that is correct, but never fear, there is plenty of it growing over at the LCH Garden!

Other things I want to try that I saw this week: Oatmeal Cups from Val over at My Imperfect Peace and Quinoa Cookies form Two Peas and Their Pod- both of these looks like they will make excellent snacks and/or breakfasts. YUM!

Peach Bellinis- do yourself a favor and make this!

Once again it was a profitable early morning at the farmers market. Back home by 8 am! I might I back to bed after I write this all down! Here’s what I got:
$8.50 peppers, potatoes, blackberries, cucumber
$13.20 onions, sungold tomatoes, blueberries
$5.70 flank steak
$5 peaches
$4.5 chèvre
$4.90 tomato, green tomatoes
$4 raspberries
$2.70 broccoli

Grand total: $48.50


{June 10, 2012}   This weeks menu

Here goes for a tasty week:

Tamales (never got to these last week) gonna add in the mushrooms I got this week along with the beans from last week

Grilled salmon and baby artichokes

Fried rice with broccoli, bell peppers and tofu

Sweet and Sour eggplant over rice (another Indian in 6 recipe)

Purple potato latkes

Mexican Salad


What are you making this week?

Carrboro Market before 8am provides a glorious bounty of color and variety.  Dang it! I’m a morning person, but I still don’t like to be anywhere before 8 in the morning. But today I wanted blueberries and the last time I went to the Carrboro Market there were no blueberries to be had (at 8:30am!).  So today I rolled out of bed, took Einstein out, threw on some permethrin treated clothes and headed to the market as early as I could muster. After (hunting!) for parking, walking the quarter mile from where I had to park and setting foot on the farmer’s market grounds, it was around 7:35am.  And hallelujah! the sweet old lady that I like to buy from had blackberries! I ended up getting all of this glorious bounty:

Pre 8am Farmer’s Market Bounty

Breaking everything down, here’s what I ended up with:

1 pint blackberries, 1 qt plums, 1 qt PURPLE potatoes, 1 head yellow cauliflower: $12.80

1 HUGH head of lettuce, 3 small heads of broccoli: $3.90

2 quarts of peaches (Free stone), two varieties: $10

PURPLE bell peppers, 3 cucumbers (one that is round?!), 3 purple eggplants: $4.50

1 pint oyster mushrooms, 1/2 pint raspberries: $8

5 baby artichokes (!), 4 squash blossoms (!): $6

Grand total: $45.20- Sometimes I feel like I am stealing this stuff!


So things that I found that I was not expecting to buy (but HAD to based on their amazingness): artichokes, mushrooms, purple potatoes, plums, and squash blossoms.  Things that I was planning to buy (and the entire reason I went so early), but did not buy: blueberries! I saw blueberries, but by the time I saw them I was already overloaded with all of the above gloriousness! Also there were still strawberries (I have no idea how since it’s been HOT) and if you know me at all you know it’s very strange for me to pass up local strawberries.

The moral of the story is: the early bird gets the worm (and fruit) and the late worm gets to live (but doesn’t get fruit).

I made this chickpea fennel recipe last week.  I didn’t love it.  It was a bit bland, needed some more flavor.  But, I hate throwing away perfectly good food.  So I took the leftovers and made these “burgers” out of it.

1 cup leftover chickpea fennel salad

1 cup leftover quinoa

1 egg

2 tbsp of cheese- I used the beautiful gouda with caraway seeds that I got at the market this week

enough whole wheat flour to hold everything together

  • Process everything together in a food processor
  • Dump into a bowl and use a spoon to make sure everything is combined evenly
  • Heat cast iron pan to medium with a small amount of oil
  • Form into patties, brown on both side (about 15 min total)

et cetera