Farmer’s Market bounty – 2nd week of June

So I wrote about our bounty from the first weekend in June, and already, I’m noticing a marked increase in the quantity of produce being sold at the local farmers’ market. I was super excited to see more strawberries showing up and I hear that the U-Pick may be open next weekend!

Back in high school, I worked at a local fruit/veggie market (literally a 2 minute walk from my house) during the summers; they brought locally grown produce from a variety of farmers and sold it to a neighbourhood that didn’t previously have a farm-fresh supplier. One summer, there was a shortage of strawberry pickers plus it had rained tons the night before and we – at the market – found ourselves with few strawberries to sell. That day was my first ever experience picking strawberries; I didn’t know that they grew right off the ground or that they propagated using runners or just how exhausting it must be for farm workers to have to pick these berries!

Fast forward many years and now I try to (voluntarily!) visit a U-Pick for strawberries and, if possible, blueberries and raspberries. I buy pounds and pounds of berries, spend a few hours washing and prepping them (eg. hulling), lay them on baking sheets until they freeze, then throw them into a freezer bag for enjoyment all winter long. Last summer, we froze strawberries, raspberries, nectarines, and tons of peaches (recommend asking your farmer if they sell ‘seconds’ – which are the not-as-perfect peaches – because they’re cheaper…also works well if you’re making jams or pies) and we’re just starting to run out of frozen fruit!

Anyways, this week’s bounty:

Cucumbers, beets, chard, asparagus, butter lettuce, purslane
Sugar peas and cherry tomatos

We also bought a dozen eggs, pepperettes, and some mixed ground game to make some burger patties! I love discovering new-to-me items at the market. This week, it was purslane.

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