The Market Report

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John Edmondson, chef at Little Flower Candy Company, takes the sweet red spinach sold at McGrath Family Farms and makes a sandwich with it. He wilts it with caramelized shallots, goat cheese, honey and walnuts on top of toasted wheat bread.

Prosciutto and Red Spinach Sandwich

  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 shallot, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 4-5 thin slices of prosciutto, preferrably Prosciutto de Parma
  • 2 slices of whole wheat or multi-grain bread
  • 1 bunch of red spinach, rinsed thoroughly and dried (McGrath Farms at the Farmer's Market)
  • 3  1/4" slices of Cana de Oveja (Spanish sheep's milk cheese)*
  • 5 walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon rosemary honey

1. Melt butter over medium-low heat. Add shallots and slowly caramelize, stirring often. Shallots will turn a golden brown when finished. Approx. 15 minutes.

2. Remove shallots from butter and set to the side. Turn up heat to medium and add spinach and a pinch of salt to remaining butter. Quickly wilt the spinach and remove from heat. 1-2 minutes.

3. Lightly toast the bread.

4. Place the shallot and spinach mixture on one slice of bread. Then layer the prosciutto over the spinach. On top of the prosciutto lay the cheese followed by the chopped walnuts. Drizzle the honey and some freshly ground black pepper on top of the nuts. Top with the remaining slice of bread.

*Goat cheese such as Bucheron will work just as well.

Laura Avery also stopped to chat with Amelia Saltsman, author of The Santa Monica Farmers' Market Cookbook. Amelia, who loves to eat crunchy winter salads at this time of year using radicchio, Napa cabbage, arugula and apples, offers this recipe.

Hearty Winter Slaw
Makes 6 to 8 servings

1/2 head napa cabbage
1 small head radicchio
1 fennel bulb
1 large handful arugula
2 apples, such as Pink Lady or 4 mandarins, such as Satsuma
1/4 lb sheep or goat's milk tomme, such as Riconada Dairy or Redwood Hill, cut into 1/2" chunks
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
2 to 3 Tablespoons walnut oil
1 Meyer lemon
Coarse sea salt, such as Maldon, and freshly ground black pepper

Have a large bowl of ice water ready. Cut cabbage leaves crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide ribbons and place in bowl. Cut radicchio in same manner or, if you prefer, tear into bite-size pieces and add to bowl. Remove any tough or bruised outer leaves from fennel, cut bulb in half lengthwise, cut each half crosswise into very thin slices (I like to use a Benriner mandolin), and add to bowl.

If arugula leaves are large, cut into ribbons. Place arugula in a salad bowl. Cut apples into 1/2-inch chunks or peel and segment mandarins and add to arugula. Drain and dry the cabbage-radicchio-fennel mix and add to salad bowl along with the cheese and walnuts. Drizzle oil over salad and squeeze juice of 1/2 Meyer lemon over. Use your fingers to crush about 1/2 teaspoon of salt over salad, and season with a couple grinds of pepper. Toss salad, taste, and add salt, pepper, or lemon as desired.

Recipe courtesy of Amelia Saltsman's The Santa Monica Farmers' Market Cookbook.