Maybe it’s just me, but I can’t help but feel like there wasn’t much of a summer this year. In fact, if it weren’t for the amazing produce at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, I wouldn’t believe it had been summer at all. Shouldn’t I have tan lines by now?
Yet somehow it is October.
And despite the confusing weather, it is clear that the market is moving on to fall. There is still plenty of summer bounty to be found, but make no mistake about it: this is your last chance for stone fruit, tomatoes, summer squash, corn, eggplant and melons.
The Sungold cherry tomatoes (the little orange ones) are especially awesome. But the most impressive thing I found at the market today was the chili peppers.
I never cared much about peppers before I started shopping at the farmers market, but I can assure you that nothing smells better in my market bag than the peppers. (Maybe the basil. But not really.)
A fellow market goer was blown away that Tierra Vegetables had these Scotch Bonnet peppers, which she said are necessary for making Jamaican jerk sauce. I had already spent over $10 on peppers, so I held off buying them until next week. But aren’t the beautiful?
I also got to try these funny looking pepper chips from Happy Quail Farms, and they were delicious! Sweet, flavorful and crisp without a drop of oiliness. They had a spicy variety as well, but the woman scared me off from trying them because she said, “I mean really hot.” Again, maybe next week.
Also peaking now are figs, grapes, pears and apples.
But how we really know fall is here are the winter fruits and vegetables that are appearing. I saw the first persimmons this week at Twin Girls Farm. I also bought one of these adorable white and green baby pumpkins. I was told they are really sweet and easy to cook.
Pomegranates are also fantastic right now. I’ll let you in on a little secret of mine (shhh, don’t tell anyone): the white pomegranates at K & J Orchards are worth getting to the farmers market early for–before they sell out. They are sweet and amazingly flavorful, but the seed is much more tender than in a red pomegranate. Plus they are a beautiful pink color, amazing in salads or on cereal. Their season is shorter than the red pomegranates, so get them while you can.
(Read: How To Clean A Pomegranate)
I have another not so well kept secret for you today as well. The pears at Frog Hollow Farm have, against all odds, reached new heights. I’ve been obsessed with their Warren pears for years, and they are just coming into season. But right now I cannot get enough of their Taylor Gold pears. These things are amazing! What’s a girl to do?
- White pumpkin (Short Night Farm)
- Garlic (Short Night Farm)
- Sweet crimson watermelon (The Peach Farm)
- Eggplant (Balakian Farms)
- Sungold tomatoes (Knoll Farms)
- Taylor gold pear (Frog Hollow Farm)
- Warren pear (Frog Hollow Farm)
- Assorted peppers (Happy Quail Farms)
- Green and gold zucchini (Green Gulch Farm)
- Rainbow chard (Green Gulch Farm)
- White pomegranate (K & J Orchards)
- Red pomegranate (Twin Girls Farm)
- Gem lettuces (Marin Roots Farm)
- Arugula (Marin Roots Farm)
- Leeks (Dirty Girl Produce)
- Italian parsley (Dirty Girl Produce)
What are you eating?