Welcome, Heidi, a Farmers' Market aficionado who recently toured around the market at Union Square in NYC to give us an early-season report...
While the Union Square Greenmarket this time of year is nothing like it is in September, there is still a bounty of locally produced goods. You'll hear talk of that evening's dinner plans, you'll smell the sausage being cooked for samples, and of course, the feast your eyes get.
Pick up some baby greens and arugula and top off a salad with those apples and a little fresh goat cheese. You could also add some of the first radishes of the season. Their ruddy pink skins are a pleasure to behold.
Nothing reminds me of spring like tulips. And the market is full of them. You don't need a special occasion to buy flowers. They'll brighten up any room in your tiny sun-deprived apartment. Apples from last fall's harvest spill over their containers, and while some should be passed by, there are still juicy, crisp ones to eat on the spot.
Further exploration finds beautiful herbs like orange mint and mountain mint, standing sprightly in their pots, just waiting to be plucked or planted. If you're one of the lucky ones with a backyard or garden plot, there are tomato starts ready for Mother Nature's tending. Beautiful orange and yellow zucchini blossoms invite some questions from those unfamiliar with them. They can be pan-fried in olive oil or battered and fried to a crisp.
It's just the beginning of the season but you can feel the excitement in the air, as the days get longer and warmer, and you can see the anticipation of the upcoming harvest growing on everyone's face.