Halona Black is a personal food shopping consultant, teaches raw and vegan cooking classes, and is building a personal chef business. To learn more you can subscribe to her blog, Garlic & Lemons, follow her on Twitter, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Farmers Market Update: Takoma Park
by Halona Black
What I love most about living in DC is being so close to small towns. Many people who have not visited DC do not realize that Maryland and Virginia are a quick train or bus ride away. So when I grow tired of looking at backyard alleyways lined with garbage cans, one of the places I head to is the Takoma Park Farmers Market.
The Takoma Park Farmers Market is a year-round market that has been serving local residents every Sunday since 1982. It is located smack dab in the center of town on Carroll Avenue, Takoma Park’s own mini “main street.”
Most main streets in America are closed on Sundays, but here the shops stay open during the market to take advantage of the traffic. So after picking produce, you can go antiquing, peruse a bead shop, or visit Middle Eastern Cuisine for a delicious brunch for under $10.
What I like most about this market is their commitment to selling local produce. The sellers grow their food within a 125 mile radius of Takoma Park.
I have been to a few other area farmer’s markets and have seen produce with the PLU code sticker on it. I’m not a farmer, but if the produce was picked and packaged for travel to the market within the last 24 hours, who has time for putting on stickers?
On my last trip I was able to find a few goodies. Eager to utilize my new raw food skills I had learned in a recent class with raw food expert, Aris Latham, I was looking for a few fresh ingredients to use in a recipe.
Here are a few of the jewels I found:
- purple basil
- red early girl tomatoes (Blue Ridge Botanicals)
- garlic scapes
- savoy cabbage (Waterpenny Farm)
- Halona melon (I’m excited about finding a melon that shares my name…) (Blue Ridge Botanicals)
- cherry tomatoes
- hibiscus (Blue Ridge Botanicals)
I used some of these beautiful red early girl tomatoes and garlic to make a delicious, raw spaghetti.
Here’s the recipe:
Raw Spicy Spaghetti For Two
- 1 package kelp noodles
- 1 fresh tomato
- 5 to 6 sundried tomatoes soaked in water (just enough to cover)
- 7 to 8 dried apricots
- 2 cloves of garlic
- season salt to taste
- cilantro leaves to taste
- cayenne pepper to taste
Remove kelp noodles from the package. Soak in room temperature water for 5 minutes. Drain and put in a bowl. Put all the ingredients except the cilantro in a blender and mix until smooth. Add more fresh tomato if it’s too thick, more dried tomato if too thin.
Adjust seasoning according to your taste. Mix the sauce with noodles and add fresh cilantro leaves. Let it marinate for 5 to 10 minutes and enjoy.