We are blessed here in Northern California to have the Farmer’s Market available all year long. There are only about half the amount of vendors during the winter months with less selection of course but it’s still worth while to attend. Earlier this week daughter Katy picked me up and we made our way to the Farmer’s Market near my house. I hadn’t been there since before foot surgery. The air was crisp, the sun was shining and we were met with a variety of beautiful locally grown citrus fruits.
This is one place where you can feel good about the samples. Vendors were handing out Mandarins as you passed by their booth to entice you to purchase. The flavor varied from very tart to juicy sweet. We ended up with a bag of easy peel sweet mandarins grown just a few miles from here.
Enjoy at breakfast, snacking or dessert. Beautiful in a fruit salad or tossed with baby greens and dressed with Liquid Gold Salad Dressing. The warmer days and cool nights of the foothills is the perfect climate for creating juicy sweet mandarins. If you don’t live in CA your market will most likely have “cuties” that are an easy to peel small citrus fruit like these mandarins. Ooooooh so good right now!
Look at how huge the grapefruit on the left is! In the middle is a regular sized grapefruit and the mandarin is there to help show the size of the other fruit. Citrus fruits are packed full of Vitamin C, fiber and phytonutrients. Grapefruit may interfere with absorption of some medications so if you are taking any prescription medications be sure to check with your doctor before eating grapefruit.
One of the perks of shopping at the Farmer’s Market is trying different varieties of produce that are grown in small quantities that would never show up in the grocery store. Such as this Mellow Gold grapefruit. It is huge – filling this large cereal bowl. This is a low acid grapefruit, extremely juicy and satisfying. It’s grown at one of my favorite orchards called Twin Peaks. We buy produce and jam from them all through the year.
I don’t remember the name of this grapefruit – I need to take photos of the signs at the market. It was amazing – so juicy good! Note that this grapefruit is in a small dessert dish not nearly as big as the other grapefruit I bought. That is a grapefruit knife – it has a serrated edge making it super easy to cut the grapefruit segments. I have no idea where I bought them but we have had these for at least twenty years! You may not have year round Farmer’s Markets where you live so check out the produce department at your grocery store and get some citrus fruits – it’s their time of year to shine.
The Real Food Cookbook was my Christmas gift to my local friends this year. It was written by two women who documented a years worth of visiting one of the local Farmer’s Market here each week. They purchased everything needed to serve dinner to a different group of people each Monday. The book documents those meals, recipes and how they used locally grown food. Its a fabulous resource for what to do with some of those lesser known foods found at our Farmer’s Market or the local CSA boxes that are home delivered from local growers.
Eggs are an easy protein source to have on hand. So versatile and easy to cook. We like these organic eggs from Costco.
These have a very hard shell – takes a good wack against the counter top to crack them open. Perfect for using in one of the most popular recipes from this blog Sausage Cheese Egg Muffins.
If I happen to be shopping at Sam’s Club I will buy the Eggland’s Best Eggs. These are also sold at most grocery stores.
The Eggland’s Best eggs have less cholesterol and fat. I love that!
Going to the Farmer’s Market this week with daughter Katy was an amazing outing. It’s funny how when you have been stuck at home for weeks any outing is like a new adventure! Son David took me to Target yesterday! I was in heaven – it was fun. It wore me out and I crashed early last night. There is not a lot of cooking going on around here. I really don’t feel inspired to cook right now. It just seems to take so much effort and by the end of the day I am tired and not wanting to cook fussy meals.
I’m sticking with easy meals like this oven baked fish and vegetables made one night earlier this week. A bag of trimmed fresh green beans, a pint of salad tomatoes tossed with garlic infused olive oil and freshly ground salt and pepper cook alongside the fish. A one pan meal.
This salad was super easy to assemble. Hubby Tom cooked Trader Joe’s Carne Asada which comes already marinated. Meanwhile I sautéed some thinly sliced onions and pepper slices. He wrapped his all up in a hot flour tortilla while I opted for a fajita style salad. Filling, fabulous and fast. Plenty of leftovers from both meals pictured so we had more easy heat and eat meals later in the week.
Don’t laugh when I tell you that I feel at times as if I am residing inside someone else’s body right now and she is old and slow! It’s been months since I have been able to exercise and my body is getting soft and mushy. My left knee is making a strange clicking noise when I walk. Most likely from my walking stride being off due to the boot/shoe I have had to wear and the resulting limping. Plus I tend to put more weight on my left leg when standing to take the pressure off my right foot. Uggh! I’m hoping it clears up now that I can wear a regular shoe and stop limping around.
Out of my control – much of what is going on with my body right now is out of my control and that isn’t easy to swallow for a controlling personality type. As you might imagine all of this being sedentary has lead to some weight gain – how could it not? Stress, pain, lack of sleep, not being able to move around – much less exercise, holiday eating and well – there you have it! I have cut back on eating and snacking, trying to get more sleep and drink more water. That is about all I have control over right now. Being able to move more as time goes on will help and once I get the okay to resume exercise that should give me a boost physically and mentally. I look forward to it, although I know it will be slow going and even painful at first.
Good news! I actually got one of my tennis shoes on my post surgery foot! It is one step closer to being normal. My foot still swells and my toes are a little chubby but it’s getting better. No driving yet – that will come in time.
Fewer blog posts have been happening because I don’t feel like I have enough to post about. Hard to believe for someone as chatty as I am. There might be more food find posts than new recipes for a while, but you all seem to really enjoy the food finds! I have received some requests for my own top 12 favorite recipes from last year. I like that idea and I could also do my all time favorite recipes from the hundreds posted here. If you have any post ideas or requests please leave me a comment and let me know what you would like to see here on Nutmeg Notebook.
Wishing you all a fantastic weekend!
I’m glad you are here and hope you will leave a comment.
What do you cook when you need a fast and easy meal?