Wednesday, September 3rd: Icebox Melons, Nectarplums, Everbearing Strawberries, Seattle's Oldest Winery & Chef Ethan Stowell!

Icebox cantaloupe melons from Around The Table Farm at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Yes, those are regular-sized tomatillos next to these icebox cantaloupe melons from Around The Table Farm. See, it's the melons that are an unconventional size! The good folks at Washington State University have been working hard with Westside farmers to develop melons that can easily come to maturity in our, until recently, cooler, damper climate, since melons generally favor hot weather. These smaller varieties do just that, ripening while still small. They get the name "icebox" because unlike larger melons, these puppies fit perfectly into one's fridge. And since they are so small, they are perfect for urban households of one or two people!

Chef Ethan Stowell today at Wallingford Farmers Market. Photo courtesy Ethan Stowell Restaurants.

Chef Ethan Stowell is one of Seattle's great chefs and restauranteurs, bringing together great ingredients and talented chefs to produce wonderful cuisine that runs the gamut from comfort food to fine dining at his Ethan Stowell Restaurants. Enjoy a fun-filled cooking demonstration today at 4 p.m. by one of Seattle's masters, and pick up a few tips you can employ in your own kitchen. And when he's done, you can turn around and enjoy some amazing food made by one of his restaurants using market-fresh ingredients at the Ethan Stowell Restaurants booth!

Gorgeous chard from Alm Hill Gardens at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

As the days are getting shorter and (a little) cooler, now's a great time to enjoy some fabulous late-summer greens. This stunning chard from Alm Hill Gardens is wonderful simply sautéed with a little garlic until just wilted, or added to grain salads or soup.

Everbearing strawberries from Sidhu Farms at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Sidhu Farms has a fresh crop of late summer strawberries for you today at your Wallingford Farmers Market. Gorgeous, aren’t they? These are from a class of strawberry varieties known as “ever-bearing,” which means they will keep producing blooms and fruit until it gets too cold and dark to do so. Spring varieties are known as “June-bearing,” which means they are naturally genetically preset to bloom and produce fruit for only a specific period of time, usually 10-14 days in and around June, after which they go dormant again until next year. See, aren’t you glad you tuned in to your Wallingford Farmers Market blog this week?

Puntarelle Catalonian Chicory from One Leaf Farm at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The cheery folks at One Leaf Farm grow all sorts of wonderful bitter greensthat are members of the chicory family, from radicchio to sugarloaf to escarole, and they also grow this: Puntarelle Catalonian chicory. Yup, this is the actual head of the family itself — a lovely, dandelion-esque green that grows in a large head, kind of like a cross between dandelion and frisee. And it is in season right now!

Ginormous melons from Lyall Farms at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Lyall Farms has lots of these ginormous, delicious, juicy melons right now at  your Wallingford Farmers Market. They grow all different kinds of melons, some all too familiar, and others downright strange. But they are all great and just waiting to make a mess out of your best shirt!

Cherry tomatoes from Gaia's Harmony Farm at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Gaia’s Harmony Farm has lots and lots of these spectacular cherry tomatoes today! But wait, don’t they just sell berries and juice, you ask? Nope. So come get you some of these wonderful, organic cherry tomatoes today at your Wallingford Farmers Market!

Nectarplums from Collins Family Orchards at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

The last of the season's funny-named hybrid stone fruit has arrived: nectarplums. Yes, you guessed it. They are a cross betwixt nectarines and plums. They are large, juicy, sweet and delicious, and they're pretty cool looking, too, eh? Grab some today from Collins Family Orchards.

Kale-spinach tortelloni from Pasteria Lucchese at Wallingford Farmers Market. Photo courtesy Pasteria Lucchese.

It is also fine pasta weather again, since you can count on your house cooling off overnight. These kale-spinach tortelloni from Pasteria Lucchese will certainly hit the spot for a lovely blast of flavor and quick prep time on a busy weekday evening.

Artisan breads from Tall Grass Bakery at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Nothing like a nice, chewy loaf of crusty artisan bread from Tall Grass Bakery to make your meal complete. From pain au levain, a lovely, sour loaf made with whole wheat, to hominy, made with, um, hominy, to their just plain comforting oat and honey bread, Tall Grass has set the standard for great bread in Seattle since their humble beginning with our market organization almost 20 years ago.

Organic, Estate Wines from Wilridge Winery at Wallingford Farmers Market. Copyright Zachary D. Lyons.

Don’t forget a nice bottle of wine from Seattle’s original winery: Wilridge. These bottles, above, in fact, are their estate wines, made from grapes they grow themselves in the tiny Naches Heights appellation, just west of Yakima in the foothills of the eastern slope of the Cascade Mountains. Stop by their tent for a sample today, then grab a bottle of Washington winemaking history from right here in Seattle to enjoy tonight!

There is plenty more local deliciousness waiting for you today at your Wallingford Farmers Market. Just check What’s Fresh Now! in the righthand menu for a more complete accounting of what is in season right now.