From the Farm: Spring Markets

Usually we like to give you a weekly update on our farming efforts (or, “the farm project” as we call it), and how the fruits of those labors are used at the girl & the fig and the fig cafe.  Sadly, the farm is quiet this week, and not much of our own produce is making it into the kitchens.  There is plenty to look forward to, with heirloom tomato starts in the greenhouse, blossoms in the orchard, and buds on all of the perennial shrubs.

Perennial herb beds at the girl & the fig

Perennial herb beds at the girl & the fig

This is definitely the time of year when we count on our local farmers – and they never disappoint.  This week on our menus, spring alliums (courtesy of County Line Harvest in Petaluma) are popping up in dishes like shellfish stew with braised bacon, white beans, & white wine-onion broth.

So in deference to all of the hardworking Sonoma County growers, I thought I’d share with you when and where you can catch up with them this time of year.

The Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market www.thesantarosafarmersmarket.com

Photo Credit: The Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market www.thesantarosafarmersmarket.com

Early Spring Markets, Sonoma County:

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At the Farm: Stands & Markets (just a few, to be continued as the season progresses….)

  • Bear Foot Honey     By Appointment     4989 Occidental Road, Santa Rosa
  • Green String Farm     Winter: 10-5 Daily     3571 Old Adobe Road, Petaluma (*Also offering free farm tours, every Saturday at noon)
  • Tierra Vegetables Farm Stand     Thursday-Friday 10-6, Saturday 10-5, Sunday 10-4     Airport Blvd & Highway 101, Santa Rosa
Green String Farm, Petaluma, www.greenstringfarm.com

Photo Credit: Green String Farm, Petaluma, www.greenstringfarm.com

Of course, more will be springing up as the season gets going!

Don’t forget to check out our posts on what’s in season, along with recipe inspiration.

Now, head out and hug a farmer!

 

Poinsettia

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Here is a little something to make your holiday merry – the Poinsettia.

There are countless variations on this sparkling drink, and of course we have our own local twist on it–incorporating orangecello made by our friends at HELLOCELLO.

Ingredients:

sparkling wine
1/2 ounce orangecello*  (*Cointreau or triple sec orange liqueur may be substituted)
3 ounces cranberry juice
orange twist

To prepare:

Chill all ingredients
pour orangecello and cranberry juice into chilled champagne flute, stir well
Top glass with chilled champagne

Toast and enjoy!!!

Vendredi Vocab: Gastrique & Spaetzle

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For this week’s Vendredi Vocab (see last week’s here), I picked two words from one new dish on our menu – the local chicken thighs with butternut spaetzle, delicata squash, pomegranate gastrique, and a blue d’auverne cream sauce, garnished with crispy kale. The dish is so delicious. The fall flavors of kale and squash pair with the creaminess of the Blue d’Auverne sauce, and the acidity of the pomegranate gastrique. The set works perfectly to showcase the quality of the local chicken thighs, which are crispy, yet moist.

Gastrique [gah-STREEK] French for “gastric,” referring culinarily to a syrupy reduction of caramelized sugar and vinegar, sometimes with the addition of wine. Gastriques are typically used in savory dishes that include fruit, such as orates and tomatoes.

Source: The New Food Lover’s Companion, page 322

Spaetzle [SHPEHT-sluh; SHPEHT-sehl; SHPEHT-slee] Literally translated from German as “little sparrow,” spaetzle is a dish of tiny noodles or dumplings made with flour, eggs, water or milk, salt and sometimes nutmeg. The spaetzle dough can be firm enough to be rolled and cut into slivers, or soft enough to be forced through a sieve or colander with large holes. The small pieces of dough are usually boiled before being tossed with butter or added to soups or other dishes. In Germany, spaetzle is served as a side dish much like potatoes or rice, and is often accompanied by a sauce or gravy.

Source: The New Food Lover’s Companion, page 720

The first time I had spaetzle was in Munich, Germany. I had never heard of it and was a little turned off, because the kind I first had was in a cheesy cream sauce (and had an orange hue reminiscent of Cheetos), but it was love at first bite. And I soon learned that the dumpling-like side dish is a staple on the tables of, not only, German households, but also Austria, Switzerland, and Hungry. Spaetzle is easy to love because it is so versatile and can be transformed by whatever it’s served with and works in every season. The butternut squash version we are serving now is so perfect for fall. It’s also a component that can be ‘dressed up’ or ‘dressed down’ – it can be upscale cuisine and casual comfort food all at once.

Find more history behind spaetzle, which can also be spelled “spätzle,” here

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Chef Jeremy Zimmerman presents the menu changes for the week, including the plat du jour three-course meal, the persimmon bread pudding, the new set for our beloved duck confit, and the local chicken thigh dish.

Happy Vendredi, everyone!

From the Kitchen

 

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Each day we are in awe of the amount and quality of beautiful produce coming into our kitchen. It’s so exciting to see the produce change with the seasons. We are loving the fall lineup – kale, squash, mushrooms, citrus fruits…the list goes on. Feast your eyes on the goods that are going into our dishes this week!

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Brian Casey and a crazy mushroom

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Margarita with Meyer lemons