The Market Report

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Amelia Saltsman, author of The Santa Monica Farmers' Market Cookbook: Seasonal Foods, Simple Recipes and Stories from the Market and Farm, will do a cooking demonstration from 10am to 1pm Wednesday, July 23 at the Market tent on 3rd St and Arizona.  She'll be grilling some seasonal fruit (peaches and figs) in a main dish salad with some delicious Italian sausage.

Laura Avery talks with Amelia about shelling beans, mature beans that are fresh, not dried.  They come in multiple colors, flavors and shapes, and make great salads.  Here's a summer twist she recommends on the classic Italian recipe of sausages and beans:

Summer Shelling Beans and Italian Sausages
Makes 4 to 6 servings

  • 2 lbs fresh shell beans in shell (yield 4 cups beans)
  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb hot or sweet Italian sausage links
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • Fresh bay leaf
  • Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Shell beans, cover with water bring to boil, reduce heat, simmer partly covered until tender about 40 minutes. Add salt to taste and allow to cool in cooking liquid. May be made 1 to 2 days ahead and stored in refrigerator.

Using a kitchen scissors, cut raw sausages into 1- to 2-inch pieces. Brown them in a large skillet with a bit of the olive oil over medium heat. When the sausages are partially cooked, add sliced onion, garlic, and bay leaf and continue cooking until the onions are tender and golden and sausage cooked all the way through. Drain the beans reserving their cooking liquid. Add the beans and a little cooking liquid to the sausages. Cook on low heat until flavors are blended, at least 10 minutes, or longer, adding bean liquid, water, or chicken stock, if you have it, as needed.

Laura also chats with farmer Greg Nauda, who brings in grass-fed and grass-finished, free-range pork and beef.  He also owns Rocky Canyon Produce, famous for delicious melons.  Amelia will be using his ham in her cooking demo next week!  The ham is cured in a light salt, and smoked for 24 hours.  The flavor is much more rich and distinct than what you'd find in a supermarket--once you've had it you'll never go back to regular bacon.

Music break: Fascinating Babies by Hirose Kenjiro