Who knew that eggplants came in so many shapes and colors? We're sure some of you did, but it's a whole new world to us, as we've only recently joined the eggplant lovers club – and just in time for the start of eggplant season at our farmers' market!
As temperatures climbed into the hundreds yesterday, we escaped to the breezy shores of Malibu. Inching our way up Pacific Coast Highway (apparently everyone else in LA had the same idea), we were lured by a sign for figs, pulled over, and wound up discovering the Vital Zuman Sustainable Farm and Biointensive Village.
If we looked a little guarded and paranoid while navigating the crowds at the farmers' market yesterday, the reason was our bag of highly coveted, delicate produce. In winter, we can toss hardy squashes and root vegetables around with minimal concern, but summer brings out our desire to handle produce deliberately, cradling heirloom tomatoes like prized possessions and nestling ripe peaches into our bags with care. Here are some of the delicate seasonal treats to be found at the Hollywood farmers' market this month.
We don't know many decor and gift shops with a patch of lettuce and tomatoes just out the door, but LA's ReForm School is committed to many aspects of sustainable design. Since last month, shop owners Billie and Tootie have been tending to their very own MinifarmBox on the sidewalk in front of their Silver Lake store. After curiously passing by it several times, we finally decided to take a closer look.
One of the best places to find things to outfit your kitchen is Craigslist. That's no secret, but have you tried looking in the "business" section lately? Some of our most fabulous finds have been ones sold by businesses with too much inventory or ones who are closing their doors. Today, we did the legwork for you and found 25 of our favorite finds from all across the country!
Garlic is such a staple in our kitchens that we sometimes take it for granted. In spring, however, with the Hollywood farmers' market full of young, green garlic at every turn, we pause to acknowledge just how special this allium is.
Neighborhood Fruit is a Google map mashup that shows citizens of San Francisco, Seattle, and Los Angeles (as well as a growing list of other cities) where to find fruit growing on public land. In other words, fruit you can forage for yourself at no cost!
As die-hard Hollywood farmers' market shoppers, we sometimes forget that there are nearly 100 other farmers' markets in LA County. While few of them match the spectacular size and selection of the Hollywood market, they serve as essential sources of fresh, local produce for LA's varied communities. Last Friday afternoon, we paid our first visit to the Echo Park farmers' market and filled our bags with glowing cherries, strawberries, asparagus, and arugula blossoms. With Sweredoski Farms as its cornerstone, the market is small but the vendors are high quality and notably friendly. (It's also refreshingly low-key for those who find the bigger markets overwhelming.) Click through for photos and recipes of our favorite seasonal finds...