Brookline Farmers' Market Dinner
I’ll admit it: I’ve said some not-so-nice things before about the Brookline Farmer’s Market. It’s conveniently located right in my ‘hood, every Thursday all summer and right into fall. I get excited to visit it every year, support my local farmers, and get better produce than some of the crud that’s sold at Trader Joe’s (sorry, TJs but it’s true). And every year I visit on the first or second day it’s open and am disappointed with the lack of selection and high prices. But now I see it’s totally my fault! Going at the first crack of summer means there isn’t a ton of produce to sell…YET. When I went last week, the parking lot was bumpin’ from corner to corner with amazing, overflowing stands of produce with fantastic prices on massive heirloom tomatoes and deep purple eggplant and more. I stocked up! So I take back every jab I’ve ever thrown at this farmer’s market and can’t wait to go back in the upcoming months. Here’s what I picked up
5 heavy heirloom tomatoes – at least a pound or two each!
2 ears of corn, picked that morning
2 purple eggplant
1 crisp apple – I forget the name but I LOVE fall New England apples and while I don’t want to rush summer, the apples might be my favorite part about fall coming. I ate the apple as I wandered around the market – it could not wait!
Homemade whole wheat pita bread
A mini watermelon (this was a bit pricey – whoops!)
I would have bought more but this stuff was heavy! Next time, I’ll bring my shopping cart. I know, mom.
That night we had a farmers’ market dinner. I made:
Eggplant chips inspired by this recipe. I made the mistake of cramming two trays of the eggplant rounds in my oven, one on the top rack and one on the bottom. I should have assumed this was a bad idea, and both of our smoke detectors let me know it was. Twice. Even though these turned into charcoal crispy eggplant chips, some of them were still pretty tasty! I guess I like things a little burnt (or that’s how I justify my oven snafu). One tip: use WAY less salt than the recipe calls for.
Tomato Basil Salad with diced heirloom tomatoes, fresh basil, olive oil, salt and pepper. If there is one flavor of summer, this salad is it.
Corn on the cob. I did the easy microwave method and husked my corn, wrapped each ear in a wet paper towel, then microwaved them one at a time for three minutes. Perfect!
Usually we don’t just have a straight-up veggie dinner, but when you consider the fact that we each ate the equivalent of a whole eggplant, 3 huge tomatoes, and an ear of corn, we were pretty stuffed full of farmers’ market finds.