Saturday, May 03, 2008

Greenness

Though last week was really my first visit of the season to a bountiful Greenmarket and requisite enthusiasm, it was a harried, hurried morning, and I ended up buying far fewer vegetables than I needed. But it gave me something to look forward to all week, knowing that asparagus, ramps, and other green and leafy wonders would be there for the taking. This is what got me out of bed by 7:30 this morning.

Welcome back, tired shoulders:
1.5 lbs. asparagus
1 bunch curly parsley
3 lbs. zucchini
1 bag spinach (at least 2 lbs.)
1 bunch curly kale
1 bunch ramps
3 lbs. Mutsu apples
Total spent: $42.50

And as the photo indicates, everything's green! One greenhouse grower had some tomatoes, which I skipped because I'm experimenting with lower my nightshade intake at the moment, and a few vendors had early rhubarb, which I skipped because I have no idea what to do with it; everyone else had cooking greens, ramps, salad greens, asparagus, zucchini. Though I've been really jonesing for carrots for the past few weeks, the joy of an overflowing vegetable crisper will carry me through until they arrive.

My friend Mark asked me yesterday if I could include some more breakfast recipes on Produce Stories - and mentioned that he is not a fan of omelets. (I love omelets, but they are a bit stressful, and even when perfectly cooked, I admit they don't thrill me the way they seem to thrill some.) Because I'm not the sweet breakfast type, I'm sticking with eggs, and recommending a frittata, which is what I'm going to make with most of the plate above: inside will be ramps and zucchini, sauteed together, and some Lynnhaven Farms feta, and I'll serve a few spears of blanched asparagus and some tender baby greens on the side.

Food Blogga has a good basic frittata recipe - the key is to keep the egg moving while it's on the stovetop, to avoid uneven cooking and dryness. And of course, like anything cooked under the broiler, keep an eye on the frittata to avoid burning. Like omelets, frittatas are very versatile, but they allow for a bit more flexibility in amount and type of filling, and a bit less precision, which is nice in the morning, especially pre-coffee.

If I had any bread in the house I'd serve this with toast, but I don't, so I won't. Potatoes would go well, too, but they're nightshades, so they're out too. Cold frittatas are really good leftover, too - when I studied abroad in Italy, we would often have slices of cold potato frittata in our packed lunches, which I loved.

Almost as exciting as fresh things returning to the Greenmarket is that I had my first day at culinary school on Tuesday! It was a bit of a non-event, mostly talking about procedures, protocols, and rules (apparently federally-accredited trade schools require all sorts of policies and procedures to maintain this status), filling out forms, etc. But tomorrow is my first full day (starts a 9 a.m, sigh), and we'll be starting knife work and have to wear our uniforms. More on this later!

1 comment:

Ann said...

Yay! So glad to see you posting again and I can't wait to hear about your classes!