In season now at farmers' markets are crisp Asian pears and juicy ripe Bartletts. Laura Avery talks with farmer Jeff Reiger of Penryn Orchard about five different varieties of Asian pears, which are more like an apple and ripen fully on the tree. They store well in the refrigerator and are great for baking and poaching as well as eating out of hand. Jeff also talks about Bartlett pears, which only ripen fully after they've been picked from the tree and have been cooled in storage for a number of hours. Jeff's also selling fresh lemon marmalade, made from sugar, lemon and water.
Laura also talks with Mark Gold about the wonderful green, round eggplants sold at Weiser Family Farms. Mark slices them into 1/2-inch thick medallions, tosses them with olive oil and fresh rosemary, and grills them until they're soft and tender. A sprinkle of sea salt and garnish of lemon zest makes them the perfect accompaniment for fish. If you remember Mark from Leatherby's Cafe Rouge in Costa Mesa, you'll be happy to know that he's looking for a location in Santa Monica to open a new restaurant called Eva. You can email Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you're a tomato lover -- and who isn't! -- drop by the Hollywood Farmers Market this Sunday, September 2. It's time for the Annual Peak of Summer Tomato Festival. Get there between 9am and noon and enjoy free samples of several different varieties!
Annual Peak of Summer Tomato Festival
Sunday, September 2
Hollywood Farmers' Market
Ivar Avenue between Hollywood Blvd and Sunset Blvd
Music Break -- Clutch Cargo Cult - Don Tiki