Veggie Farmers on California Avenue

CALIFORNIA AVENUE MARKET
CALIFORNIA AVENUE MARKET

 

Two weeks ago, I wrote about the fruits at the California Avenue Farmers’ Market in Palo Alto. The fruits and veggies were intermingled with flowers and other products, which I’ll show you next week. This week it’s time for your veggies.

Across the way from Joanie’s Café where we ate a fantastic breakfast, there was the “asparagus and potato” stand. That’s the first stand that really caught my attention. When I shop in my local grocery store, I might have a choice of two or three kinds of potatoes, but look at the variety here – with fresh asparagus, no less!

 

I learn so much when I write these posts! I hadn’t noticed the name “Zuckerman’s Farms” on the canopy of this stand until I was writing, so I looked it up on Google. This farmer is part of an organization called CUESA, which means “the Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture,” a topic about which I’m extremely interested.

The many varieties of common vegetables we often take for granted were obvious at this market. Of course, it was all fun and educational to see them, but I have to admit to a degree of envy that people have this at their disposal every week of the year! Check out these colorful cauliflower varieties.

 

Here is more cauliflower with artichokes and broccoli. . .

 

And how about all these fava beans??

 

So many beautiful varieties of string beans!

 

I’m not quite sure if sauerkraut qualifies as a vegetable or not, but it’s certainly made out of a veggie – and mighty good stuff it is, too! I grew up in Midwest German neighborhoods eating sauerkraut, spare ribs and mashed potatoes, almost all of it homemade. I absolutely adore sauerkraut whether cold from a jar, or slowly cooked with thick pork ribs. My dad made sauerkraut in our basement, until a batch blew up and ended up all over the ceiling! Needless to say, this stand caught my attention right away.

 

Squash is another vegetable I love, so I try to eat as many varieties that I can – both summer and winter squashes. There are amazing displays of fresh-picked squash. Here are at least two links to information about the Happy Boy Farms.

 

Behind these beautiful squash boxes, you see seedlings ready for people to take home and plant. I was so inspired when I came back home, that I put some seeds in little pots and other seeds I put directly into the ground. Everything is up!

 

I was surprised to see so many root vegetables. I usually think of them as fall or winter crops, but in a place like California (and actually in Hawaii, too) I think almost anything can be grown at any time of year. That was my experience when I lived in California, and it’s my experience here in Hawaii.

TURNIP ROOTS AND MORE
TURNIP ROOTS AND MORE

 

PARSNIPS, GARLIC, RADISHES
PARSNIPS, GARLIC, RADISHES

 

Sugar snap peas are among my favorite spring/summer veggies. This is a beautiful display of the basket overflowing with goodness. I have sugar snap peas coming up in my garden right now, which shows just how cool it is here this time of year. That’s not how most people think of Hawaii.

 

What a delight to see so many mushrooms! This is a delicious, low calorie product that can be a special addition to almost any recipe. They also can stand alone on their own. If you haven’t discovered the versatility of mushrooms, just Google mushroom recipes.

 

It’s worth making a special trip to California Avenue in Palo Alto on a Sunday morning just to do your week’s grocery shopping. Join others in making this a Sunday tradition. Next week, I’ll post flowers and other items available at the market.

 

I apologize to those vendors I don’t mention or for whom I don’t provide a link. I looked up all of the names I could read on my photos. Next time I get to this market, I’ll be more diligent in my efforts and ask!

A hui hou!

 

2 thoughts on “Veggie Farmers on California Avenue”

  1. Wow…that’s amazing!!!!! I wish I could shop there. NOTHING like that here. It’s wonderful.

    It’s true, like you mentioned about CUESA, we learn a lot when we write our blogs. I know I do, too. There’s always something I need to clarify for myself and, hours later, I’ve learned all kinds of new stuff I had no idea about but am interested in.

    Love you blog, truly.

  2. Thanks for your comment, Hilton! Like you, I wish there was something like that here. Actually, Hilo has a beautiful farmers’ market that carries everything the Asian would ever want to use in cooking, plus fish and more. The problem for me is that it’s a 2-hour drive to get there and I’d have to leave at 4 in the morning to get the freshest veggies. It’s worth it occasionally, but not something I can do every weekend. It’s just wonderful to know that something like these markets exist in this world!

    Maybe you need to start one there in St. Pete! Surely there are plenty of farmers in the area who would love to contribute! Watch for next week’s blog when I show what else this market carries!
    Aloha,
    Lucy

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