McClendon’s Select has just two more markets for the season. Our last market will be next week on Wednesday, June 26th, so make sure to stop by this week, since we will have the bins full with so much summer goodness!
The sweet corn has been a huge hit and there will be plenty at the market this week, along with the heirloom tomatoes in all shapes, colors and varieties.
Not to mention all of the bins filled with summer squashes, eggplant, cucumbers, peppers and squash blossoms.
We want to thank all of our wonderful customers for your continued support of our family farm. We love your enthusiasm and loyalty and it is only because of your dedication that we are able to bring organic, locally grown produce to the markets. We have seen the understanding and commitment to organic eating and its benefits to both personal health and the environment grow over the years. It is an honor to be a part of this and to serve our market customers and restaurants.
Sweet corn and heirloom tomatoes are the highlights of summer produce. We apologize to anyone who did not get sweet corn at the Town & Country Farmers’ Market last week. We brought 90 dozen (yes… 1080 ears!), but they sold out quickly. Not to fear, we are bringing much, much more tomorrow. But given how good this corn is, I would still advise that you get there early. There will be some heirloom tomatoes, but in limited supply, so again, set that alarm clock!
If you are considering making cream corn, here is a new recipe from Chef Payton Curry that looks delicious and takes only one ingredient. (Well, two if you get fancy!)
Shuck corn and then cut the raw kernels off of the cob with a bread knife into a bowl.
Save the cob and place into a stock pot and cover with one inch of water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes. Strain the liquid and reserve.
Place half of the kernels in a blender with one cup of the corn stock and puree. This is your corn juice.
Now heat the corn juice on the stove on high and stir continuously until the mixture thickens.
Add the remaining raw corn and cook for two minutes and garnish with parsley (if you are fancy!)
Doesn’t that look good??! And if you are craving some more delicious vegetarian dishes from Chef Curry, there are still a few spots left for tomorrow night’s Vegetarian Beer dinner at the Brat Haus (details here). And yes, sweet corn is on the menu along with a nice variety of beers from Odell Brewing Company.
And if it is heirloom tomatoes that are on your mind there are a few heirloom tomato dinners around town that you may want to try. Beckett’s Table is having Heirloom Tomato week all this week. In previous years he has done a crab BLT and a red wine marinated flank steak with corn and heirloom tomato caponata, (click here) so I can’t wait to see what he does this year. And Kevin Binkley is holding an heirloom tomato dinner at Binkley’s on June 19th. If you haven’t been before, it is quite an evening, take a look at last year’s dinner (click here), it was a feast!
3622 North Scottsdale Road
3717 East Indian School Road
Phoenix, AZ 85018
6920 East Cave Creek Road
Cave Creek, AZ 85331-8604
The Brat Haus and Odell Brewing Company are putting together a fantastic evening next week with a vegetarian beer dinner, pairing farm fresh vegetarian courses and different Odell beers. The menu is five courses of amazing dishes that highlight the best of summer vegetables paired with the perfect beer from Odell Brewing Co. Chef Payton Curry’s Brat Haus has taken the German beer garden concept with its jovial spirit of communal celebration and infused his commitment to farm-to-table freshness and purity of ingredients. If you have talked to him at the market, then you know that his guy worships veggies, and even better, he knows how to make them standout on a dinner plate. We love going to the Brat Haus (read more about that here), and even though the temperatures outside are creeping up their outdoor patio and fun vibe keeps it cool. If you haven’t been to the Brat Haus, this is the perfect opportunity to go and see what you have been missing. Check out the menu…
Brat Haus with Odell Brewing Company
Vegetarian Beer Dinner
Wednesday, June 12th
Reception at 6:00pm
First Course at 7:00pm
Odell Beer: CELASTRINA
Stuffed Shishito Peppers
Sesame Sweet Corn Pudding
Odell Beer: MYRCENARY
Potato with Minted Spring Peas
Odell Beer: 90 SHILLING
Odell Beer: IPA
Odell Beer: LUGENE REDUCTION
Dinner is $55/person (includes gratuity), for reservations call 480-947-4006. This is going to be quite an event, make sure to get your spot before it sells out. Here’s to summer!!
3622 N. Scottsdale Road
Tomorrow at the Town and Country Farmers’ Market we will have sweet corn. Lots and lots of sweet corn. Sean planted four acres of it at the Hope Spring Farm at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America and it is beautiful. You don’t have to do much to enjoy it – just shuck it and throw it in boiling water for a minute or two. Or you could enjoy it Aidan’s favorite way… grill the shucked corn for about a minute on each side, then roll in a shallow dish with a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt, parmesan, chopped mint and a touch of red pepper. That is a summer staple in our house.
We will also have quite an array of peppers (beauties like Aconcaqua, Corno di Toro and Poblano), basil, all sorts of summer squash, eggplant, and cucumbers, especially those wonderful lemon cucumbers. If you haven’t tried the lemon cucumbers, get one before they are sold out and you will understand why they are so popular. And, of course, add shishito peppers to your list. They are on a number of menus right now as an appetizer, but they are so easy to make that you can enjoy them at home. I love these. Just pan-roast them in a little olive oil until they are a little blistered and the sprinkle with sea salt and a squeeze of lemon. You can also roast them in the oven at 450-degrees for about five minutes, until they have slight char marks, or throw them on the grill in a basket for just a moment. They are mild in flavor, but every now and then you will get one that will make your eyes water. This usually happens at the end of their season, so don’t worry about them just yet.
And tomatoes… it is that time again. We have quite a number of beautiful varieties coming to the market, Garden Peach, Punta Bandas, and Golden Nuggets, and my favorite the Sun Golds. I grab them straight from the basket while I am cooking.
On a different note, many of you have asked about the incident that happened at the Town & Country Market on Wednesday, May 22nd. One of our regular customers Bill, who is a long time friend of Bob’s, was leaving the market after finishing his shopping and the collapsed over his steering wheel while backing out his car. Some quick thinking people were able to get him out of the car and lay him flat. Our cashier Chris Davia, who has long been active with the Boy Scouts, saw what was going on and quickly began to administer CPR. Bill was not breathing nor did he have a pulse. To all who saw the ordeal it was quite harrowing and did not look good for Bill. Chris had seen a video on the new Chest-Compression-Only CPR method that was e-mailed to him just two weeks prior. He followed the instructions and continued the chest compressions until the paramedics arrived. When Bill arrived at the hospital, his doctors noted that those chest compressions saved Bill’s life. Bill is now recovering nicely and will hopefully be back at the markets soon.
We want to commend Chris Davia for his heroic efforts that day and thank everyone for their concern and well wishes for Bill. The video that Chris watched is on the Sarver Heart Center website and is linked here at http://heart.arizona.edu/cpr-video. It is only six minutes long, but well worth watching.
Summer is approaching and as the days are getting longer our time at the markets is starting to near an end for the season. We have two more markets in Scottsdale. Our last market at the Old Town Farmers’ Market will be Saturday, May 25th. We will be at Town & Country until Wednesday, June 26th. We look forward to seeing you!
Bob just got a new toy for the farm that has been three years in the making. In 2010 he ordered a specially modified seed cleaner to be used for cleaning bee pollen. Three years later it arrived. This cleaner is hand-made with wooden frames and metal screens to use agitation and air to clean our bee pollen. The man who built this for us has a long history in doing this. His grandfather made the first seed cleaner in the 1920′s and while ours is a little more high-tech, the same basic principles and design are used in the one we now own.
The bee pollen is shaken and sifted through several sizing screens by airflow with any waste separated and disposed. For decades, farms have used this type of device to remove the chaff and excess plant material accompanying harvested seed so that it may be sized uniformly to fit in planters. It also allows for inspection of the quality of seeds. Our cleaner will be used to remove any bee material or wax while leaving the pollen granules whole.
Bee pollen, along with nectar, is the total source of nutrition for a bee and is the most complete food known to man, containing amino acids, vitamins, minerals, folic acid and it is a richer source of protein than any animal source. It is credited with helping everything from athletic performance and the immune system to treating skin inflammation, but the two main reasons people consume bee pollen to treat allergies and to use as a nutritional supplement. It takes about a teaspoon a day for three months to see any benefits from bee pollen, and consuming raw, locally harvested bee pollen is best since the bees are gathering pollen from the same regional plants that may be causing seasonal allergies. Of course, the best way to find out how bee pollen would benefit you personally is to consult your physician.
At the markets we have heard of all sorts of uses and benefits from our customers. Since it is such a richly packed nutritional food, it is advisable to introduce it to your diet slowly and to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction. It is wonderful to add to a multitude of dishes, I have had bee pollen on everything from yogurt to salads, but do not add to anything hot since heat will destroy the active enzymes and reduce the nutritional benefits. It can be stored for about six months, and it can be frozen safely for later use.
Also, here is a quick note about the markets…
It is getting close to that time of the year when the temperatures rise and our days at the market are coming close to an end. Our last market at the Old Town Farmers’ Market will be on Saturday, May 25th. We will continue the Wednesday markets at the Town and Country Farmers’ Markets until Wednesday, June 26th.
This past weekend we held the cooking class and farm tour that were auctioned at the BASIS Peoria school fundraiser. Chef Payton Curry graciously offered his time and talents and created an amazing menu of dishes using produce picked that morning from the farm. Payton showed how to love your veggies roasted and raw. He taught the class how to make perfectly roasted beets, rutabaga and turnips, gave a lesson in how to hand-pull mozzarella, and made a dish that I have obsessed about for two years. He also did some simple dishes that made our veggies shine… like drizzling honey over grilled fava beans in the shell or adding whipped honey butter to a plate of raw radishes. He taught us when to use vinegar for roasting beets and why not to use it when roasted rutabaga, and he gave some tips on how to use green garlic. At the end of class, Bob, Sean and I got pizzas going in the wood-fired pizza oven using sausages from the Brat Haus, Payton’s pickled onions, the mozzarella made in class and veggies from the farm. The pizzas, along side all of the wonderful dishes Payton made during class, left the class smiling and full. You know the food is a hit when there is a quiet happy contentment that passes across the table after a meal.
Bob got the event started with a quick tour of the farm, starting with the high tunnel that is filled with our heirloom tomatoes.
Payton educating and entertaining the class
Turnips roasting in the fire
Perfectly roasted and tossed with a little green garlic
A wonderful assortment of mushrooms that were cooked in the fire. Eaten on their own and on the pizzas.
And my favorite dish…
We first had this dish two years ago when Payton was at the Welcome Diner. We loved it so much we ordered a second bowl for our table. We then went back to the diner for it again. I may have asked Payton about it so feverishly that he made me a gallon (no joke!) to take home. Sean, Aidan and I made short work of that gallon. I have tried recreating it at home since then, but it wasn’t the same. And then as a gift, Payton taught it to the class, and this student took note… yellow eye Steuben beans, grilled Favas, pecan pesto, lemon zest, a little love. Sounds simple, but done right it adds up to pure happiness. It was just as I remember and totally worth two years of obsessing. (We may have had it again with dinner last night.)
Much thanks to Chef Payton Curry and his always lovely wife Shantal for a wonderful afternoon. And a big thank you to all of the auction winners who bid on the class and came out to the farm. We were thrilled to help the BASIS Peoria school… and to have so much fun doing it!