Semi-Spring Saturday At The Farmer’s Market (plus a salad)

14 Mar

Saturday was so unseasonably, wonderfully warm a trip to the Union Square Farmer’s Market seemed very, very necessary. I was hoping, rather irrationally, to see signs of spring amongst the produce, but alas, the produce was the same as it’s been for the past 5 months; root vege, onions, the mushroom lady, the kimchee lady, the greenhouse leafy greens people, winter stored apples, parsnips, potatoes, horseradish, and on and on.

BUT! And this is a big but… the FLOWERS! Oh man, the flowers. Even the herbs were feeling the vernal love. Goregous rosemary shrubs, blooming no less. *sigh* If only I had a garden!

union square farmer's market

And since I found no inspiration at the Market for dinner, I pushed along to Soho to peruse the produce available at Gourmet Garage while the boy stood in line for fresh mozzarella at DiPalo’s. Ah, spring, when a young man’s heart lightly turns to thoughts of milky, salty mozzarella!

blood orange And what did my thoughts turn to? Sunny, sweet, tangy citrus. Originally, I was fixating on sweet Palestinian limes. I had gotten them a month or so ago to use in Poc Chuc, but alas, they weren’t there. So I grabbed two heriloom, Sicilian blood oranges, two hyper trendy Meyer lemons, a fat, frondy fennel bulb and some frisee (I swear, I wasn’t feeling the alliteration while shopping.)

winter's salad
I sectioned the oranges, thinly sliced the fennel, squeezed the lemons over the whole lot (in a bowl of course) sprinkled liberally with salt, chili flakes and lots of lovely, peppery extra virgin olive oil. I let it all sit and macerate for an hour, then poured the liquid off into a cup, tasted it and adjusted the dressing with a little sherry vinegar. Frisee goes into a bowl, oranges and fennel on top, dressing over it all. Simple, delicious; one foot in winter, another foot toeing into spring.

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