Post by Kelly Merrick
In just a few months I will be sitting in the Newmark Theater listening to my favorite author and food advocate Michael Pollan discuss his latest book Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation and talk about why cooking matters. And I can’t wait.
Ever since I read Pollan’s book An Omnivore’s Dilemma a few years ago, I’ve completely changed my eating habits. Instead of relying on packaged food as meal inspiration, my weekly meals rely on the fresh produce, eggs, cheese and other goods available at the Portland Farmers Market. I plan our meals based on what’s in season and on recommendations made by the vendors themselves, and as a result I have developed a great love for cooking.
Whether you’re an avid from scratch cooker or prefer to heat up prepared foods, the market can meet your needs.
If you prefer takeout:
Try Souper Natural, which offers fresh homemade soup you can bring home. They have gluten free, vegan and vegetarian options.
Visit Gathering Together Farm and grab a jar of their delicious leek marinara sauce.
Choose from one of many varieties of pesto from Pesto Outside the Box (my favorite is the one with pistachios).
Grab a loaf of your favorite bread from Delphina’s Bakery or Fressen Artisan Bakery to dip in your soup, slather with leek marinara sauce or dip in pesto!
Get yourself a sweet treat from Cherry Country or Two Tarts Bakery.
If you prefer to cook from scratch:
Grab a $5 bag of your favorite kind of mushroom from Springwater Farm and make your own stock to add to soups and risottos.
Pick up a dozen eggs from one of many vendors, including Dancing Chicken Farm, Pine Mountain Ranch and Sweet Briar Farms and prepare a breakfast quiche with your choice of cheese from Ancient Heritage Dairy or Rogue Creamery and smoked salmon from Columbia River Smoked Salmon.
Stock up on winter squash from Rick Steffen Farm and make stuffed squash, squash soup or even a pie!
Visit Kiyokawa Family Orchards and ask for their special juice apples to make your own apple juice.
Of course these suggestions only scratch the surface of what’s available at the market this week, so you’ll have to visit the market yourself to see what’s available.
But you better hurry because tomorrow is the last day the winter market will be around in 2012. After this week we’ve got a two week break and then the market moves back to its regular spot on March 16 at Portland State University in the South Park Blocks between SW Hall & SW Montgomery.