Sunday, March 2, 2008

To market, to market.

Late winter is a tricky time to visit the farmer's market. Brussels sprouts are gone, but it's not quite time for early asparagus or peas. You're mainly looking at a whole bunch of root vegetables - beets, onions, potatoes, parsnips are all plentiful - and what's left of last year's apple crop.

That said, it's still a treat to take a stroll around Union Square's Greenmarket; hot apple cider is available at convenient intervals around the park, and there are plenty of hyacinth and crocus dotting the landscape to keep things cheery. And if you're in the market for them, the potatoes and onions are not only plentiful, but fabulous. Purple potatoes, waxy yellow fingerlings, candy-striped beets, cippolini onions - you name it, they got it. For once, the parsnips look healthy and plump, and the celeriac is positively golden.

During my visit yesterday afternoon, I managed to make out with a pound of onions and half a pound of beets for three dollars, and rounded things off with some cherry blossoms - because if I'm going to be eating like it's still winter, I'd like to look at something to remind me that the days are getting longer and spring is just around the corner...

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