Meat Your Daddy
If you've been reading Fresh Picks for several seasons, you may have picked up that the newsletter preceding Father's Day is the annual meat issue (highly sought after
by collectors!), with an emphasis on grilling. With apologies to dads who are vegetarian or vegan, this year will be no different.
Despite our suggestion last week, apparently no one preordered meat with Harvest Local for Saturday (yes, we check to see if anyone's listening), so you're going to have to take your chances, though we have asked them to bring more than the usual amount of
grillables. Thus, they'll have humanely raised, non-drugged-up steaks, ground beef, and beef patties (ie, preshaped burgers). We always go for the ground beef over the beef patties because we like to add stuff to the mix and don't mind getting our hands messy, but if your family prefers their burgers on the flat side and unadulterated
and you value convenience, the patties are for you. Be sure to check with Great Harvest for rolls if you go the burger route.
To make whatever you grill more interesting, you can get a couple varieties of barbeque sauce at Schobers (one of which is peach based and luscious), at least one kind at Harvest Local,
and ketchup made from heirloom tomatoes at Green Zebra Farm (assuming their truck is operational this week). Now if you went ahead and made the
onion and bacon jam we suggested last week, you might not need these toppings, but just in case not, these special add-ons will let dad know you cared enough to go beyond Kraft and Heinz for this very special day.
Thinking Outside the Grill
Some other gift ideas for papa (or whomever deserves acknowledgment this weekend) don't require cooking over an open fire. A bag of coffee from Golden Valley Farms or the Regency will put the giddy-up in his morning step, and a nice
bottle of red from Penn's Woods Winery will help relax the tensions of wherever he giddy-ups to on work days. One of the spicy hummuses from FreshaPeel (Blazin' Buffalo, Jalapeno Lime, Chipotle Black Bean) would go great with some hard pretzels from Harvest Local (what dad doesn't like hard pretzels, and
can we never meet him?). For a pop with a sweet tooth, a box of upscale chocolates from John and Kira's that he doesn't have to share with any of you would be a nice change for the poor guy, wouldn't it?
Asparagus is nearing the end of its local growing season, so time to binge before it's gone. If you've never tried, we're here to tell you that asparagus grills
wonderfully, especially if you soak it for half an hour in a bowl of water into which you've poured about two tablespoons of olive oil. The oil floats on top and coats the asparagus as you drop it in and pull it out, and the water helps the spears cook through without immediately burning. Grill it till char marks start to appear (a grill
pan is the best way to grill veggies, so get one, we beg you), then top with a little vinaigrette and crumbled cheese (feta, goat, parm, whatever), or just some lemon juice and salt, and eat up, preferably with your fingers, despite
Emily Post's waning enthusiasm for the practice. (Whatever, Emily. Fingers are mandatory if you're pairing the asparagus with burgers.)
This recipe from the Times for
white bean and asparagus salad was enthusiastically recommended by an LFM shopper, and if you use canned beans (and who doesn't?), it can be put together in a snap. It calls for fresh tarragon, an herb that might have had its heyday
in the late 80s and early 90s when it was in everything. It has a slightly anisey flavor, and if you can't find it or don't like it, the other impactful ingredients (lemon juice and zest, garlic) are companionable with any number of herbs, so try basil, parsley, oregano, fennel, mint, or chives.
Or, get completely fanciful and try this
shaved asparagus pizza, which might be just the thing for the aforementioned vegetarian daddies out there to let them know you wanted to do something special,
you were keeping it seasonal, and their pizza love has not gone unnoticed. (Note especially the instructions at the end of that recipe for making this [and really any] pizza on the grill, which is easily done; you just grill one side before you pull it off, flip it, add the toppings, then slap it back on.)
Name That Kid
Donna of Spotted Hill still needs input on a name for her tiny baby goat, which might become known as Pickle, or might not, depending on what shoppers suggest.
Also under consideration are Curry and Gherkin, but there might be something fitting that no one has even proposed yet that will cause her to yell, "That's it!!!", Charlie Brown style. The tiny nameless one will be visiting the Market this week (weather and other
intangibles permitting), so stop down and see her and give Donna your thoughts on a name. By the way, dad could use a new bar of goat milk soap too.
Sweet cherries and English shelling peas debut this week at Fruitwood Farms. And if strawberries make it at all (rain, rain, go away), it'll be their last week. (Bad: no more
strawberries. Good: no more strawberry juice on our shirt.)
Have you liked the
LFM on Facebook yet? If you're part of that online community, you really should. Our more than 1100 likers get info about vendors, late-breaking news, helpful reminders (like when the knife sharpener is coming next, which just got bumped back to July 6), and chances to win things that
we can't do in a once-a-week newsletter. Just this week, Kristen Nicole won a Come Chill in Lansdowne cooler bag (we know, we know, but they'll come in eventually) for being the 1111th liker. Join us at Facebook for some contact throughout the week, not just on Thursdays.
Not enough LFM T-shirts showed up last week, so we'll pay you a Market Buck to wear them again this Saturday. We've run this promotion so often over the past
three years that some of you have probably recouped the whole cost of the shirt by now!
If you're thinking about participating in Community Day #1, on June 29, act now. The application is
here, and it's due no later than Saturday the 22nd, but we'd be surprised if any spaces were still left at that point. Move, move, move!
Flag Day Salute; 'Ark' in the Park
With today's rain hopefully bringing our recent damp spell to a close, two evening events tomorrow provide an excellent night outdoors with the family. First, head to Borough Green (the cozy little park tucked on the corner of Baltimore and Lansdowne next to Borough Hall) at 7:00 pm for
Lansdowne's Flag Day Service, sponsored by the Lansdowne Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution.
Following the ceremony, head just down the road to the still-kinda-cozy-but-much-bigger Hoffman Park on Scottdale Road as the Lansdowne Parks and Recreation Department presents a free showing of the 1981 movie
Raiders of the Lost Ark. The film is scheduled to begin at 8:30 pm, however, early birds are welcome to arrive beforehand to picnic. Adding to the pre-show festivities is a planned re-enactment of the movie's classic boulder scene organized by the
Lansdowne Public Library. Bring low-back chairs or blankets for maximum comfort. Call 610-284-1493 for more information.
Seeking Young Gardeners
Lansdowne's Community Garden is returning in 2013, and young volunteers are wanted to lend a hand with this year's project. Youths interested in being a part of the
garden are invited to an informal discussion (including pizza!) at 3:00 pm on Monday, June 17. The meeting takes place at the Community Garden -- behind Penn Wood High School Green Avenue Campus (100 Green Avenue, near the football field). For more information, please email