I had a lovely post written out about my love of farmers markets and how I’m rather passionate about supporting local agriculture. And then my computer erased it all. Never to be seen again. So, instead of tirelessly attempting to re-create my well thought out and succinct thoughts on the matter, I’ll leave you with this excerpt from an article I wrote for Chickpea Magazine back in 2013 entitled “Love Thy Farmer” in which I discuss the myriad reasons to support local agriculture:
“I think that what I enjoy more than the produce is the connections I’m able to make. I am not only able to create and develop personal relationships with the farmers, but I am also tapping into a more intimate relationship with my food. I know where it comes from, who nurtures it, and what time of year I should expect it on my plate. I’ve learned to surrender to Mother Nature and let her plan my meals for me. I’ll be the first to admit that this change didn’t happen overnight. It was more of an evolution that occurred over time, spurring adjustments and creating “growing pains” along the way. But, humans by nature are adaptable creatures, and I like to think I’ve adjusted quite well.”**
If you’re feeling inspired or curious at all, I urge you to find a local farmers market. Look around, talk to farmers, see what’s in season and growing in your area. Hell, maybe even buy a vegetable you’ve never eaten before. Go crazy! Every little bit counts in terms of support, whether you are able to go every Saturday or one Saturday a year. Do it. Cultivate a deeper relationship with your food and where it comes from.
And on that note, here’s a meal I made this week, based solely around my finds at the market last weekend. All of the produce you see used (purple potatoes, green onions, Thai basil, micro greens) was sourced from the Urban Harvest Farmers Market in Houston, Texas. Simple, beautiful, and incredibly delicious.
**If you’re interested in reading the entire article the excerpt came from, you can find it in the Summer 2013 issue of Chickpea Magazine along with a lovely illustrated summer produce guide by my brother, and a few summer-inspired recipes by me.
Chickpea Frittata with Purple Potatoes & Thai Basil Sunflower Aioli
notes: Since this frittata is based on what’s in season in Houston at the moment, use it as a rough guideline if you live elsewhere. Sub in what’s locally available to you or what you have hanging out in your fridge at the moment. It’s all about adaptability 🙂
3/4 cup sunflower seeds, soaked overnight then rinsed and drained
1 small bunch of Thai basil, leaves only
1/4 to 1/2 cup of water
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1 large lemon
1 tbsp miso (I use chickpea miso–it’s both gluten free and soy free)
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 or 2 large garlic cloves (depending on your garlic preference)
Drain and rinse the sunflower seeds off then add them to a high speed blender along with 1/4 cup of water and all of the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth. Add more water as is necessary to get to the thickness you want.
3 cups diced purple potatoes, steamed until just tender
1 bunch of green onions, sliced
6 tbsp melted coconut oil, plus more to grease the skillet
2 cups garbanzo flour
2 1/4 cups water
heaped tsp of sea salt
black pepper to taste
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup of nutritional yeast
zest of 1 lemon (save the zest from the lemon you use for the aioli)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Grease an oven proof skillet well with coconut oil. Place the purple potatoes into the skillet in an even layer. In a large bowl, mix together all of the remaining ingredients until smooth, then pour the batter over the purple potatoes. Bake the frittata in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until the edges are golden and the frittata is firm. If you want a toastier top, you can let the frittata sit under the broiler for a minute or two. Once you remove the frittata from the oven, allow it to cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting into it. Makes 8-10 servings.
To serve: put a generous dollop of the aioli on top of the frittata and serve with your favorite micro greens or baby greens.